The Day I Became an Entrepreneur

Elizabeth Jarvis Holding iPad

“An entrepreneur,” says Michael Hyatt, “is someone who sees a problem and risks time, money, reputation or some other asset to deliver a solution for a gain.” Well, I’d been delivering solutions to problems for a long time: how to fit one more suitcase into an overstuffed car; how to prepare multiple recipes to be ready for the table at the same time; what order to run errands to take the least time, not have refrigerated items in the car too long, AND be close to school pickup at the designated hour. Though it had never really been top-of-mind, it was the “for a gain” part I had been missing.

When Kevin and I were first married, I’ll never forget, he thought he was paying me a compliment. At least that was his intention. I don’t remember the exact circumstances; but we were in the kitchen, and he said, “You’re so sufficient.” I can’t type it without laughing! We both knew that’s not the word he wanted to say; but from that day forward, even though the compliment came out wonky, my innate “efficiency” was validated.

Here’s how that’s important. Entrepreneurs see gaps in efficiency. We believe things can be better, and if there’s not a solution to be had, there’s at least a better tradeoff to be made. This vision causes a certain restlessness, a need to exercise ambition to drive change. As I said, I was doing all the things, but I wasn’t getting paid … at least not in dollars.

That all changed the day I was offered an opportunity to join a company in the direct sales channel. Instantly, my entrepreneurial brain started firing on all cylinders. While my vision had to blossom in order to grow along the way, there were a number of things that I saw clearly from the start. I saw a reputable product line. I saw founders and developers with a historically proven track record. I saw how I could bridge the gap between the products and my friends and contacts who would want this brand in their own homes. And, I saw the piece I didn’t really know I was missing – a paycheck!

Back to Kevin for a minute. He didn’t see what I saw. If we revisit Michael Hyatt’s thoughts about entrepreneurs, I think Kevin maybe was concerned about the risk of reputation. You see, he was from the camp that automatically associated direct sales with schemes and stigmas, not leverage and legitimacy. Thankfully, God’s voice was stronger in my head than Kevin’s during the two nights I prayed about what to do with this unexpected opportunity. His “do this” resonated in my heart stronger than any previous answer to prayer I had ever “heard.”

So, two nights after hearing about this unexpected opportunity, I became an entrepreneur. And, because direct sales has such great systems, tools and shortcuts already in place, my time is rarely overtaxed, and I’ve added a paycheck as extra validation of my “sufficiency.”


If you’ve been looking for your own opportunity, I’d love to continue the conversation and hear more about you! Feel free to drop me a note!