Does this sound familiar? You’re starting a bookkeeping business or recently got started as a bookkeeper and you’re struggling with self-doubt and lack of confidence. If so, you’re not alone. It’s normal to have fears about the future. I can empathize because I have been there, frozen with fear and scared out of my mind when I first started my virtual bookkeeping business. But don’t worry, there is hope. If you’re looking for some practical advice to overcome your fears and self-doubt as a bookkeeper, keep reading or click on the video linked below where I’ll share my top 4 tips with you on how to gain confidence as a bookkeeper.
Tip #1: Feel the fear and do it anyway
You’re experiencing fear because your brain hasn’t yet accepted your new reality. It’s trying to protect you. I used to think that I was the only one who felt fear about starting my own business and working with bookkeeping clients. I realized that the fear I was experiencing is totally normal and that most people experience some level of fear and anxiety when doing something new. So you need to retrain your brain so that it can accept your new reality. Instead of dwelling on “what if I fail?” – focus on asking yourself “what if this is the best thing that ever happened to me?”.
Tip #2: You don’t have to know everything
Are you dealing with impostor syndrome? You’re probably doubting your skills and talent and are scared that a client is going to ask you a question and that you’ll be exposed as a fraud. I can totally relate because I let impostor syndrome hold me back for years. But here’s what I learned. Focus on what you know and focus on becoming the best at what you do. Become comfortable with saying, “I don’t know” or, “I’m not
familiar with that” or, “I haven’t come across that before.” Bookkeeping clients don’t expect you to know everything. In fact, in many cases, they ask about legal, tax, and accounting questions that are outside of your role as a bookkeeper. Focus on discerning whether a question falls in your wheelhouse or whether your client needs to consult another professional. Then team up with attorneys, tax preparers, and CPAs so that you can refer your clients to them.
Tip #3: Training and mentorship
You may lack training and experience in real world bookkeeping situations. While you may know your Debits and Credits, you may not know how to take on a messy cleanup project, how to work with clients virtually, or how to manage multiple clients. I highly encourage you to get bookkeeper training if you haven’t done so already or if you haven’t done bookkeeping before. I also encourage you to get certified in QuickBooks Online, and to take advantage of the resources in my own YouTube channel, 5 Minute Bookkeeping and my online academy for accountants and bookkeepers, 5MB Academy. I’ll give you more information on those resources in the closing and resources section below.
Tip #4: Community
When I started my business, I just felt so alone. Social media was not what it is today, and I really didn’t have a way of connecting with other accounting professionals and bookkeepers. But now there are so many groups that you can join on social media to get around like-minded bookkeepers. And that’s why I started my Facebook group, 5 Minute Bookkeeping Community. It’s a safe and positive community of over 20,000 bookkeepers who are either facing or have faced the same challenges that you’re
experiencing right now. If you haven’t done so already, join my Facebook group by clicking this link. You’ll be able to ask questions and network with our community. Everything you’re experiencing is normal, you’re not alone. But you need to be willing to make yourself uncomfortable for a time so that you can achieve your goals. And remember, you have everything in you to reach your highest potential.
Closing and resources
Now that I’ve shared my top 4 tips on how to gain confidence as a new bookkeeper, I’d like to share some additional resources with you. First, I invite you to subscribe to my 5 Minute Bookkeeping YouTube channel, where you’ll find a dedicated playlist for building a successful virtual bookkeeping business. For even more resources for virtual bookkeepers, including my free Pricing Strategies for Bookkeepers and Accountants, my Simple Pricing System course, and my free Virtual Bookkeeper’s Toolbox, visit the 5MB Academy. Finally, as mentioned above, you can also connect with me and get plenty of bookkeeping advice, stories, and resources in my online community. Join the 5 Minute Bookkeeping Community on Facebook to connect with fellow bookkeepers, to ask questions and share your journey. I look forward to seeing you there!
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This post originally appeared here 5 Minute Bookkeeping