Guest post: Katarina Stetz is the founder of NINNI and offers personalized skin and personal care for individuals and tailor-made product lines for businesses. She is a Swedish formulator (a person who creates and develops skin care) with a dual Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology and Finance from Stockholm School of Economics, one of Europe’s leading business schools. During her maternity leave from one of Sweden’s most famous skin care brands, she got the idea for NINNI and decided to take the leap. Today she creates simple, natural and sustainable skin care on her own terms. Here, she writes “Leaving Motherhood” – a post about hiding behind fear as an entrepreneur.
Let me tell you about Motherhood
I live and work in Motherhood.
I prefer working with other residents of Motherhood. They understand me. They understand that I can’t have a meeting at 3.30 pm because I need to pick up my kids. They understand when I have to cancel an appointment because the school called, or when I do conference calls from the playground. It’s great – we understand and respect each other here in Motherhood; because we are all just trying to make it all work.
There’s only one problem with Motherhood: It’s a small town. Cozy and understanding, yes, but very small – and somewhat isolated from big cities like Investor City and Unicorn Valley.
For years I have been isolating myself in Motherhood, hiding behind the fact that I am a mompreneur:
“I can’t make the meeting in Investor City this afternoon because I need to be in time for pick up.”
“I can’t do the network event with people from Unicorn Valley, because it’s spring break and I can’t leave the Motherhood.”
“I can’t, because school called.”
But to be honest…
To be completely honest, I’ve could have made it to all those appointments. The fact that I live in Motherhood doesn’t actually prevent me from attending. What’s stopping me is my fear of Investor City and Unicorn Valley. In Investor City things are real; the competition is ruthless, customers are demanding and the investors will hold me accountable. If I’m going to make it there, I need to step up my game and give it my everything. Only then do I have a chance of success (or not).
That gamble is terrifying.
It’s much safer to stay in Motherhood. The problem is as long as I stay in Motherhood, my business will not become what I want it to be. I block my own success by hiding in Motherhood.
Also, I send a signal to others that my business is a local Motherhood shop and always will be. When I talk to someone from Investor City or Unicorn Valley and say, “I’m live in Motherhood; I’m a mompreneur,” this person sees me as a small local business owner…not the groundbreaking entrepreneur I want them to see.
So as much as I love living in Motherhood, I need to stop hiding here. It’s time to suit up, leave my cozy corner on School Street & Snack Ave and go to Investor City.
And if I don’t make it back in time for pick up? There is always the after school club.
What fears are you struggling with?