If you have delicate sensibilities or are easily offended, you might want to sit down. I’m about to use a four-letter word that business owners seldom want to utter:
I’m not talking about the national debt, or the debt ceiling, or the debt of gratitude that I owe many people in my life.
And I’m not talking about running up your credit cards to the max buying frivolous “stuff.”
Instead, believe it or not, there can be extremely positive reasons for creating some personal debt.
First, you must understand that most businesses start off by obtaining a loan of some sort. It may be a traditional small business loan from a bank, a loan from investors or family, a Home Equity Line of Credit, or a bunch of your own low interest credit cards.
Unfortunately though, many of us were told that “getting into debt” was the road to financial ruin.
Instead of being taught how to creatively manage good debt, we were taught to avoid it at all costs! (I know because I was one of those people – sorry dad!)
And so if we do borrow money to start our business, we may be secretly harboring feels of guilt or impending doom. I know that I used to feel this way!
And yet most of us have no problem borrowing 100s of thousands of dollars to finance a house! (PSST – that’s DEBT!)
The trick is that the money you spend on growing your business – whether it’s paying for mentoring, or a training course, or hiring part-time VA help – must be treated as an investment in you and your business success. And you must put in the effort to make sure that the investment pays off in such a way that it covers your initial debt and brings in exponentially more.
You need to at the possible “return on investment” for your loan. If you are paying for education or for growing your business, those things can have a huge ROI potential – and can bring you exponentially more money than you initially had to borrow (or invest). So it’s not whether you have debt, it’s how you handle it that makes all the difference.
The first thing you want to explore is your mindset about the debt you might already have or that you are considering incurring. Beating yourself up about being in debt or needing financing for your business is unproductive and harmful. So let it go. Put your focus on moving forward in a positive and informed way.
By the same token, you can’t ignore your debt and just hope it goes away on its own. In order to have integrity in your life and your business, you must make good on the obligations you have agreed to.
You can’t expect your own money karma to be good if you default on paying others what they are owed.
The first time we invested 5 figures in hiring a coach, I nearly had a heart attack. We did not have that kind of money lying around. Nor did we have the cash flow to easily afford it.
But we bit the bullet, borrowed some money, and made a commitment to make the investment pay off no matter what.
Well, not only did our new incoming revenue pay for that initial coaching in less than 6 months, it was from that beginning that we have been able to grow into a multi-six-figure business!