Running a business as a sole trader can be HARD

I’ve been running my own business now for six years this month and it’s been an incredible journey. At times though, it’s HARD. It’s really hard. I want others to know that and for other business owners to be able to share too.


There are some incredible perks to being your own boss. You pick the clients, you choose the hours, you choose where you work and all the money you make… it goes to you.

However, the clients don’t always work out well. There are times where you have incredibly difficult decisions to face and it all comes back to you. Mistakes lead to lessons learned and make you stronger, but during the time, it’s tough.


The money is all yours. Yes! This is a perk. But if you don’t work, you don’t get paid. There’s no annual leave, there’s no sick leave and there’s no one to cover you. Of course you can take on sub contractors but there needs to be enough work. It instills in you a great work ethic, but it also makes it hard to switch off when you don’t have as much work on or you do actually take a break.

I’ve been blessed to have a lot of mentors, family and friends to support me over the time. The people around me are my best advertisements, always recommending me for work opportunities and helping introduce me to clients. They also are there to listen when I’m going through a rough patch. They even jump on board and sub-contract with me when I have too much on.


It’s important sometimes to acknowledge what you’ve been through, what you’re going through and share with like-minded people.

Here are 5 things I’ve learnt about running my own business:


  • Give yourself a break– you are often your worst critic and the hardest on yourself. Do your best and learn from the times where things don’t quite work out
  • Have a back-up – This means having a savings account with a good back of funds in case of loss of clients or times of injury. This also applies to having other staff or contractors to call on. It can also mean having an option of part time or casual work if things really dry up.
  • Take a break – Rest!! That email can wait. You can work normal people hours. You can take time out for you. You MUST take time out for you!
  • Ask for help – Get yourself a mentor, have someone that you can call in tough times or when you face an issue that you can turn to. If you’re struggling, share the workload.
  • Do work that serves you – If you are working for money, you will never be happy. Work on projects, with clients and in organizations that drive you. If you take a job just because or do a job for less than you are worth, you will never be happy, you won’t do a good job and in the long term, it won’t be good for you. Follow your passion!


Sometimes it’s hard, but I am so grateful and thankful for the experience of running my own business. I look forward to seeing Lovelly Communications grow and develop in the future.

Published by Emma Lovell

My name is Emma. Owner and Director of Lovelly Communications, I specialise in Personal Branding and key messaging. I'm also the Australian representative for Take me to India, a luxury boutique travel company in India. I feel blessed to run businesses that give me the freedom to follow my true passion, travel! I'm happiest when I'm having new experiences. Whether it's a new cafe down the road, a bucket list item like Everest Base Camp or seeing friends in another city, I truly love travelling! So please join me in my many adventures across my many sites. And please do contact me for information on any of the above!

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