The fear inherent in growing a business

Another fear article for you folks. Again, I’m writing this because I’m sure I’m not the only one going through these emotions right now. Lots of people are riding this web revival – just look at the number of entrepreneurial blogs there are. Everyone and his dog is in business in some way.

I’m also trying to be more aware of what’s going on in my head and my body, and have started to learn to recognize certain things. I’m still at the brute force stage of watching. It takes an event of seismic magnitude to register with me. And fear certainly knows how to shake the earth. So I’m noticing fear more than the more subtle emotions at the moment.

Again, just look at “Merlin Mann’s”: feedburner numbers to know that there’s a gazillion life hacker/searcher dudes out there, trying to figure it all out and make a decent living. All at the same time.

So maybe someone will get some use out of this.

The Blog Studio is doing pretty well. We’re booked solid and taking deposits on future work. We’re doing more and more high profile projects, and our SEO efforts are starting to bear fruit.

In eight months we’ve grown from me working in the evenings and weekends to me, Lucia, “James”:, “Mike”:, and “Richard”: Each of whom needs a workstation and a paycheque. < insert hypertension here />

So I’m equally exhilerated and horrified. Proud and panicked. I vacillate between the two at sufficient hertz to make my right leg do an endless tribute to Elvis.

Despite our success, every cent that comes in is reinvested in staff and equipment. Instead of watching my bank account grow, I’m watching my exposure increase. Which can be just a tad nerve wracking.

Now I’m sure this is the normal state of the entrepreneur. We’re prone to living on the edge – if I were risk averse I’d be working as a bit player in someone else’s dream. But at some point the whole managed-risk thing becomes a bit tiring – boring even. So my question is, am I alone in this fear/thrill/joy/panic thing? Is this universal, or is it really just me?

Tyger Tyger burning bright

Busy busy busy. Just enough time to say “wow, watch this short movie”: Amazing work combining photography, puppets, animation, and motion graphics. Via “Boing Boing: