Hello Gwen! I am a college student that hopes to eventually launch my own startup. I am not exactly sure what I want my brand or company to be. However, I was wondering when an idea does come to me, how do I know it is the right move to go all in and actually act on the idea?

Hi Ann Maris.  

It’s exciting that you feel the entrepreneurial spirit within!

I had the same spirit and learned that finding your business calling is much like dating.  An entrepreneurial idea could be compared to a summer fling–maybe it was fine for a high school romance but not one to keep investing in during college or later in life.  And then there are the ideas that get stuck in your mind and you can’t stop thinking about them – like that person that you can’t wait to go on the next date with, and the next one, and the timing is just perfect.  

Finding a love interest to turn into a boyfriend or girlfriend, then a long-term life partner, is a similar experience to choosing your work/life relationship.  You must really love this idea, want to spend all your waking hours with it, feeding it, and nurturing it.  And it needs to be the perfect time in order to fully and truly give yourself to it.

And also like a romantic relationship, you just don’t stop what you’re doing and stand still waiting for it to find you. Instead, you go on with your life, have experiences, and take jobs, while continuing to learn, grow, and create until you land the right idea and moment. 

When you get an inspiration for an idea, then you’ll need to “date” it! The true test is when  

you find yourself obsessing over your idea, spending every extra minute to research, learn, strategize, and put a plan together to prove to yourself and to others, that YES, this concept is excellent and viable. And you may “date” a few ideas, too, along the way until you check all those boxes.

Trust me, I “dated” two other business ideas before The Laundress–one my senior year in college and another two years after.  It wasn’t the right time or the right ideas, but what I learned from those journeys was invaluable…and also fun!  They were excellent practice.

In the meantime, fill your time with learning and exploring and trust that, much like a dating relationship, when you’ve hit your big idea, “you’ll just know.”  Enjoy the journey and I look forward to seeing how your adventure unfolds.

I’m rooting for you!

Entrepreneurially yours,