How to survive the first year as an entrepreneur

The first year as an entrepreneur is for most people one of the most intense experiences in life. On the one hand, you are faced with an uncertainty that you have never experienced before. The question suddenly arises if the idea really will come to life and if it was the right decision to go into self-employment.

But it is much less bad than you think. The important thing is to always keep the goal of entrepreneurial independence in mind – and to work consistently and hard to achieve it.

The following advice will help you get through the first year

Never lose faith in your own idea

Normally there is a great idealistic goal behind every foundation. This can be to make people’s lives better through a certain product or service, but it can also mean simply trying a new approach in a traditional industry.

Whatever the idea is – it is important not to lose faith in it and to stick to it. In your first year as an entrepreneur you will meet people who say that the business idea is nonsense or that there is too much competition. A good entrepreneur will not be intimidated by this, but will continue on his path unwaveringly.

But believing in an idea also means being prepared to adapt it to real needs. Because only in this way is it possible to build a functioning and therefore successful company.


In order to achieve your goal as an entrepreneur, you should know the stages by which you can reach this goal. To reach this goal as quickly as possible, it is important to focus on the things that move the most.

Every morning you should ask yourself: What are the two most important things I can do today that will move my business forward? It is important to write these tasks down and not to go to bed until they are done.

Do not live beyond your means

Especially at the very beginning of self-employment it is important not to live beyond one’s personal financial circumstances and to reduce the cost of living. This does not mean that you have to starve! Rather, it means that you should postpone your next luxury holiday until the time when the business becomes profitable.

The luxury office in the city centre or the expensive company car should be saved for later. These things are not necessary for a company to be successful and can wait. Pleasant side effect: life becomes much easier and you finally understand how little you need to live a good life.

Set up cooperation with other entrepreneurs

In the first year as an entrepreneur, an important goal should be to establish a good network of cooperation. Cooperation means working together with another company, whereby both sides ultimately benefit from the cooperation. This can happen, for example, when two entrepreneurs become even more competitive on the market by combining services.


If you are suddenly self-employed, you will soon realise that you have to take a lot of things into your own hands now. As an entrepreneur, you are confronted with new challenges every day, which have to be solved. Entrepreneurship also offers a new freedom. If you were bound by internal guidelines and specifications in your employment relationship, you can do everything you want when you are self-employed.

The courage to break new ground and find solutions is a prerequisite for success as an entrepreneur. Therefore, in the first year you literally have to learn to love learning and integrate it into your everyday life.

Exchange with other entrepreneurs

All entrepreneurs sit in the same boat. Everyone was faced with the same challenges and problems at the beginning. Therefore it is important to establish contacts with other entrepreneurs with the aim of exchanging and supporting each other. At networking events or events for entrepreneurs it is usually very easy to get in contact with like-minded people.

Stay fit

Entrepreneurship is not a walk in the park and challenges you mentally and physically. Health and fitness are therefore two important components in remaining successful. Only when your body is healthy will you be able to perform at your best. It is therefore important to take breaks, eat a healthy diet, get enough sleep and stay physically active. This is not always easy and that is why it is important to discipline yourself.


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Christian Wagner
Founder RiskPlayWin | Owner & Founder of the digital marketing agency

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