Q: I am a very determined, energetic, smart African American woman. I really want to own my own business and I’ve been developing the vision since I re-entered college to finally acquire a bachelor’s degree. I am 25. I don’t own anything. I’m on a tight budget of $1,300 a month. Am I just dreaming about owning my own business or do you think a person like me can succeed as an entrepreneur? I want it more than anything, but I feel like I’m trapped between a rock and a hard place because of my age, my race, my economic status, and not having completed a college degree. Do I even stand a chance?
–R. Taylor, Atlanta
A: Do you stand a chance? I have absolutely no doubt that you do. But if you don’t truly believe that as well, what I or anyone else might think means nothing. It’s not about what’s going on around you; it’s about what’s going on within you. If you truly see yourself as a smart, energetic, and determined person, then there is no reason for you to be discouraged.
You are doing better than, or at least as well as, most 25-year-olds (very few of whom own anything). You need to view your age and race as assets, not liabilities. As for your economic status and lack of a college degree, you are already taking steps to change that. Give yourself credit for continuing your education, having goals, and making it on a tight budget.
We are never truly “trapped” or “stuck,” except in our own minds. If you accept as fact that you can achieve your goals, you can then focus your attention and energy on figuring out just how to do it.
Mail your motivational questions to: Help Yourself, BLACK ENTERPRISE 130 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10011 or send an e-mail to:firstname.lastname@example.org.