Small business owners are the most vulnerable in this environment and a pro-active approach is needed.Here are a few things to do as we all work through this situation.
1. Acknowledge your feelings and concerns. Your feelings are valid and you right to be concerned. However, don’t allow your fears or worries to cause you to panic. Panicking increases the chances of making mistakes and pushing you and your business further into crisis.
2. Assess your financial situation. Do you have savings? If so, how much and how can it serve as a cushion in this time. If you don’t, then you know that moving forward you need to set up a financial safety net.
3. Speak to your creditors. Your creditors have creditors so don’t avoid the talk. Whether it is your banker or another business which is expecting payment, find out whether you can pay a small amount of the balance until your finances stabilize or delay payment for a month or two. It is better to deal with the situation head on.
4. Read more. Find out what other people in your industry are doing to manage their business and continue serving their customers. Assess which ones you can implement.
5. Diversify your Income. Is there an added service you can push more of while your primary business is slow? As more people will be self-isolating, it will mean more time spent alone and online. Could you offer a class that can be taught virtually? Another income source may not be a radical stretch from your main business, explore where the opportunities lie and go for it.
6. Vent. Not on social media. Reach out to your family, a close friend or advisor to whom you can share your frustrations. No one available? Journal. Head outside and have a good scream.
7. Exercise and Eat Right. Some people stress eat, others don’t eat at all. As this is a health crisis, keeping your body fit and fed with the right food will help you not only physically but mentally as well.
8. Pray. I am a firm believer in the power of prayer. I am also glad that even if it has been a minute or years since I spoke to God, He is always ready to listen to me. Take time daily to pray and express your gratitude for your life, no matter what shape it is in right now. Declare Psalm 91 over your household and your business.
We are all in this together. Don’t panic. Keep the Faith.