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12 Typical First Steps For Starting A Home-Based Business

12 Typical First Steps For Starting A Home-Based Business

Starting your own business is a big, and sometimes scary step. The best way to be confident is to be prepared. Below are some questions you need to ask yourself before quitting your job and starting a home-based business.

1. Have you identified a need?

Identify a need in your area that isn’t being met, and match your skills to that need. Maybe you and your friends have discussed the need in your area for an affordable scanning service. Why not take a class to learn about scanning and digital image manipulation? Then your skills will meet a need, and you can offer affordable scanning services to your community. Most of all, make certain your idea is practical. Personal branding is an absolute key in every business; don’t get totally hooked on an idea that has no future.

2. Have you analyzed your income needs?

Remember to take into account all the benefits you may be giving up when you quit your current job. Put yourself into a better financial place by eliminating as much of your personal debt as possible. Pay off the credit cards, your car, and any other outstanding debts that eat your income each month.

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3. Do you know the law?

Ignorance is not a defense for ignoring zoning and other laws. All it takes is a few phone calls to make sure you are going to operate within the legal guidelines, but foregoing operating within the legal boundaries can cost you a lot of time and money. Some communities don’t allow any form of business to operate from a residential area. If applicable, check into laws governing product labeling, product safety, interstate commerce, and postal regulations.

4. Do you have a business plan?

Believe me, it will do wonders to focus on exactly what kind of business yours will be, who you are selling to, how you will sell, how much to charge, how much it will take to start up, what internet marketing tools you need to have, and where all the money will come from. This is your road map.

5. Do you want your own business?

Do you want your own home business badly enough to work long hours without knowing how much profit you’ll end up with? Know how hard you are willing to work without being certain of the outcome.

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6. How much of your own money will you have to put in?

Or how much credit you can expect from suppliers? Have you talked to a banker or lender to see what is expected of you?

7. Are you organized?

Organize yourself and your business! Get organized from the beginning, because it won’t take long for things to start piling up. Organization equals professionalism, and clients will quickly be able to tell if you are professional or not.

8. Can you run a business?

Do you have the ability to organize, prioritize, and manage money, time, projects, and people? Check with your local SBA because they have lots of free resources to help people trying to start a new business. They also have free business templates that you can download at www.sba.gov.

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9. Have you thought about creating a website for your business?

Research all the possible avenues of advertising available to you and choose the methods that will benefit your business. Even if you aren’t selling anything online, create a nice, clean, professional website for your business. If you don’t know how, then get an expert to do it, such as Tulsa Marketing website design, as they have online assistance. Remember that the Internet is quickly becoming a preferred medium for business. You can incorporate your website address into all your advertising media, such as your business card and letterheads. This makes your business seem more professional and credible!

10. Have you set aside your budget for marketing?

You need to figure out to what extent you can set aside money for marketing. Both offline and online advertising are needed for almost every home-based businesses, and you should know your budget for marketing. Be smart about it. If your coverage is within your local neighborhood, you could print some flyers together with your website address and your phone number. However, if you cover in a much larger audience, such as national or global, you may start thinking about Google Adwords, Facebook ads, and other methods. Social media is often utilized, so you can set up your business page, get some followers, and get more likes in your Instagram photos or tweets on Twitter.

11. How are you going to do your bookkeeping?

Find the proper bookkeeping system for your business. You must keep accurate records of all financial transactions related to your business.

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12. Do you have access to equipment you’ll need?

Locate and price all your equipment and supplies. In fact, it is a good idea to talk to others in your business, if possible, and see what equipment and supplies they started with, what things they could have done without, and what things are vital to start-up. Take stock of the supplies you may already have on hand, and see where you stand. Some common supplies of any office-based service will be a computer, decent printer, fax machine or modem fax; some businesses may need even more supplies. Write down every little thing you may need. And while we’re on the subject of supplies: Don’t be wasteful, or buy things you don’t need right now. If you can make do with your old equipment until you start making money, don’t buy that new computer just yet.

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Junie Rutkevich

Game Developer of iXL Digital

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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