When a woman goes through a hard divorce, it drains out a lot of her enthusiasm, motivation, and spirit. Not to mention the amount of judgment and cruelty she has to face in Indian society.
However, things in India are changing slowly but surely with more and more women talking about divorce openly and not being scared to walk alone. They managed to use their divorce as an opportunity to turn over a new leaf. And so can you!
A new beginning is the best way to forget about past, unpleasant events. Even though it might sound impossible at the beginning, you could actually set up a home business and start working on your professional life. If you’re not sure whether you’d be able to pull it off, and you’re curious to learn about starting a home business, or a family business just keeps reading.
Here’s a step by step guide to starting a successful home business after a hard divorce.
1. Work Through Your Emotions
You can’t have a fresh start if you’re still holding on to the past. It’s highly important that you process all of the mixed feelings about your divorce to be able to go on with your life.
You have to be prepared for what’s coming your way: some people, especially those from rural parts of India, are going to look down on you, think of you as less worthy, or simply disrespect you for being a divorcee.
However, you need to look past this and focus on building your personal strength. Try with:
- professional help like a therapist
- a support group of other divorced women
- writing a diary and confessing your emotions to yourself
- talking openly to a friend or a member of the family
Don’t suppress your feelings and pretend like the divorce never happened.
Keep in mind your divorce doesn’t define you. Take the example of a woman named Lalfakzuali, who took over a family weaving business after her divorce, determined to succeed. She learned, worked hard, and is now a successful entrepreneur.
2. Examine Your Talents
If you’ve been living in a marriage in which an Indian woman is not supposed to provide for the family, but simply support her husband, it’s time to step out of that mindset and realize you’re just as smart and capable as any man out there.
You no longer have a falling-apart marriage or a non-loving husband in your way. It’s time to focus on yourself.
The best way to start this process is by examining your talents and taking a deeper look into yourself.
- What am I good at?
- What do I love doing?
- What do I get praised for the most?
Make a list of everything you’re talented and good at to have a clear image of the possibilities and potential directions you can go in with your business.
3. Assess Your Skills
Your skills are the things you can do and the things you might have even received some training for. They also might be closely related to your previous working experiences, if you had any.
Many divorced Indian women find it hard to believe in themselves, due to many years of being told they’re incapable or less worthy.
Forget about that. Try answering the following questions:
- What do I know how to do?
- What I am best at?
- What are my valuable working experiences?
- What makes me stand out from others?
Now blend that list with the list of your talents and you’ve got a deep professional analysis of yourself and of your potential.
4. Additional Training
If in the last couple of years your only job was to be a good Indian housewife, don’t despair.
There are online courses that can help you freshen up your skills, improve, and grow professionally.
Therefore, if there’s something you want to learn about or figure out how to do, all you have to do is:
- go online
- find a course
- try to learn as much as possible and make the most of it
Remember, it’s never too late to start learning and working on self-improvement.
Allow yourself the pleasure of learning something new, acquiring a new skill, and becoming good at something you’re interested in.
Now it’s time for some brainstorming for business ideas.
Try not to think about what society will say about your business or how are you going to make it happen as a divorcee in India. Just focus on your goals.
The best way to do it is to take a piece of paper and start writing down ideas. Don’t forget the basic rules of quality brainstorming:
- you let your imagination lead you
- you write down everything
- you don’t make any changes nor do you erase anything
- once you’re completely drained out and have no more ideas, you leave your list to sit
- you come back to it later and assess your ideas
This is the best brainstorming recipe and it will help you learn a lot about yourself, your actual desires, and what you’re striving for.
Once you go back to your list you might just find the perfect business idea for your business venture.
6. Business Ideas
Here are some of the most popular choices for women entrepreneurs or those who’re just getting started with a home business. Take a look at the list and see if something intrigues you:
- social media manager
Manage people’s or companies’ social media accounts to help them expand their audience.
- social media consultant
Teach people how to manage their own social media profiles.
- party planner
It’s a profession in demand and a great idea for your home business.
- web designer
Is web design among your skills? Don’t let it go to waste.
If you’re good with words, you could set up a copywriting business.
- personal assistant
Making appointments, responding to emails, making phone calls, and organizing the day of a business person might be a great job for you.
- language tutor
Do you speak more than one language? Become an online language teacher.
It’s a profession on the rise and you’ll be able to find your first gig in no time.
Are you good in the kitchen? Make a business out of your culinary skills.
- professional blogger
Blogging can get you some serious earnings if you have what to say and there are people who enjoy reading it.
- travel planner
There are people too busy to book their own flights and plan their trips. You can do it for them.
This is just the first thing that came to our mind and there is so much more you can do.
7. Business Plan
Let’s say you’ve decided what you want to do and you have a vague idea of how it all may look.
Now you need a detailed plan for your business venture, so as to ensure you’re entering that adventure fully prepared for what awaits ahead.
It would be best to find other divorced women in India who have started their own businesses successfully, to find some support.
The business plan should include the following information:
- what type of services will you offer
- how much will you charge
- who is your primary target audience
- how will you find customers
- how will you advertise
- what equipment do you need
- how much money do you need to invest
It’s crucial that you have all the facts necessary for planning and starting a successful home business. This way, you’re making sure each following decision is a smart one and will lead to success.
8. Money Investment
Depending on the type of business you plan on setting up, you might need to invest some money in it.
Of course, you’ll get over this in your business plan and calculate approximately how much money you might be looking at. For example:
- To start a copywriting business all you need is a laptop and a good internet connection. The investment is minimal.
- To start a photography business you need to buy quality equipment such as a camera, lenses, memory cards, a flash, a tripod, a computer, editing programs, etc. It’s a much bigger investment.
This might be one of the hardest steps for divorced women in India. If you don’t have your own money, you’ll need to take a business loan or hope for support from your family.
Don’t let anything stop you from finding those funds and investing in your future.
9. Setting it Up
You’ve come a long way from being devastated by a hard divorce to starting a new career as a woman entrepreneur.
There are just some final steps left.
It’s time to set up your home business and create a motivating, productive environment for yourself.
Here’s what you should do:
- find a remote corner of your house to set up your work equipment
- if you have a spare room, use it
- remove any distractions from your new home office and fill it out with essential work equipment
- make sure you feel comfortable, productive, and motivated in this new space
You’ve got your business corner all set. Now it’s time for some serious work.
10. Finding Clients
The final step in setting up a home business might just be the hardest one. You need to figure out how to find your first clients and get your first job.
Although there will be people looking down on you, or refusing to hire you, just because you’re a divorcee, there are more and more people in India removing the divorce stigma and treating women with equality.
Demand people treat you equally as men and don’t settle for anything less.
Here’s what you need to do:
- create a portfolio
People need to see your previous work so as to be sure you’re a professional and you know what you’re doing. If you haven’t had any jobs before, you can make your portfolio prior to this.
For example, if you’re a photographer, ask your friends or family to pose for you or to allow you to take pictures of their events. Build your portfolio like this and you’ll have what to show your clients.
- create a website
It would be great if you could put together a website with your contact info, your portfolio, services, and prices. It will make you seem much more professional and serious.
- create business pages on social media
There are nearly 3 billion social media users globally, and you definitely need to show your face there. Open business accounts and pages and start advertising your work.
Create a base of followers and share your best work with them. You can even organize a giveaway or use some other tricks to get more people to hear about you.
- open a LinkedIn account
It’s important that you connect with the people from your business surroundings and stay informed about the jobs and career opportunities out there.
Be prepared to work extremely hard in the beginning, until you gain a certain reputation and people start hiring you more often.
Once you nail a couple of clients things will start to run more smoothly and you’ll be able to improve your skills every day.
Setting up a successful home business is hard for anyone, especially for a divorced woman in India. However, it’s absolutely doable and possible. You do have to arm yourself with patience, persistence, and determination. Create a vision of your success and don’t stop until you’re there.
Hopefully, the guide above encouraged you to start thinking like a businesswoman and realize a hard divorce can’t break you. Get back on your feet and give yourself a brand new start. You can do it.