The amount of reading I have done on “How to be a VA” is equal to a degree course in English! The information available can be both awesome and overwhelming.
There are some amazing online VA mentors who offer courses and provide great support and help along the way. I have also connected with some great VA’s who have taken the time to help, encourage and support me. Without them, I would be losing my mind & soul within the 9-5 rat trap (virtual gratitude and round of applause!)
From what I've gathered most start their VA journey not because they want to become powerful, rich business people (it’s perhaps the dream - not the goal!) but to utilise their skills working for themselves to make a good income. Given that Virtual Assistance isn't an accredited industry and most people look bewildered when you mention the term (or pick up on the 'virtual' and ask "are you really here!"...hil-larious!) the VA journey can create a lot of doubt.
And not just doubt on whether being a VA will pan out – there are so many other challenges. And given there are no hard and fast rules to setting up your VA business there are also many questions with varying and often confusing answers, for example;
Do I need a business plan and/or a business coach?
Should I set up independently as a freelancer or work for an agency? Can you do both?
Do I need a website? Can I create one myself or will that look amateurish? Would it be better to pay a professional? Should I write a blog? What will I write about? Shall I list my prices?
What do I charge? Shall I start low and increase my rates when I am more established?
Should I network locally or go further out? Should I find a networking group and become a member?
Can I find clients via networking or Social Media? Which works best?
How do I find my niche? I enjoy working with individuals and small companies, do I have to choose?
Should I work as an Associate? How do I get to work as an Associate?
Should I get help setting up social media accounts? Which ones will work best for me?
Ultimately, the answer to these questions are for the individual to decide and anyone reading this at the start of their journey might now be having palpitations.
You can also get discouraged by posts and articles on how best to present yourself. Only this morning I read that using the terms "outsource" or "delegate" are detrimental and downgrades the work I do…I know I’ve used both terms in at least 2 blogs I have already written!
The thing to remember is mindset is everything.
There will be times when doubt and confusion take hold though a negative mindset doesn’t have to develop. The journey began with hope, desire and most of all belief – and this is what we need to hold onto as therein lies the answers we’re looking for. It’s hard work – really hard work, but worth it.
Being a VA means nourishing and nurturing a positive mindset.
The external conflicts of balancing life commitments, clients etc., are inevitable but internal conflicts are within our control.
Focusing on the belief and reasons for starting your VA journey can stop the negative tailspin.
In amongst the doubt and confusion, I’ve never forgotten the reason I started my VA journey. My ‘sense of self’ is more intact than it has ever been – financially poorer (at present!) but soulfully richer.
“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself " ~ George Bernard Shaw