Entrepreneur Cherrelle Slaney, Sat at her Desk Working

OVERCOMING SELF-DOUBT

Sam: Your Llamas for example, you’ve created these beautiful llama invitations and I remember you put them up for sale and you thought no one was going to buy them.

There was a lot of self doubt there.

Cherrelle: There is because I am a typical TYPE 4 on the enneagram test. Essentially the weird kid. The eccentric. (You can find out your own Enneagram personality here)

That’s the kind of category I fall into; so my ideas aren’t necessarily other peoples ideas. 

I find that a little bit difficult because everybody wants to be accepted. When you design something, w you research the market and get inspiration.

A lot of the time – especially with the llamas – I think I don’t fit into this. This isn’t a trend yet. People aren’t doing that. But I like it, so do I just do it anyway because I like it and hope somebody else gets my vision. 

Sam: But your style, the way you design, the way you draw is very niche to you. You have stamped yourself all over your business, practiced & honed your creations.

Cherrelle: Yeah there’s a certain bravery you have to have to put yourself out there. It’s like if everybody wore a uniform and you dared not to wear it, it’s having the confidence to accept that yeah I’m different, and I’m ok with that.

Sam: Well, from my perspective, you’re a very successful person.

Do you find yourself believing that more as you go on or do you think you’ll always just be in the moment with where you are with work?

Cherrelle: Ha! That’s so funny when people say that. 

Yeah, I do but there will always be that self doubt, that little voice that goes what if. 

It is, it definitively is and I think it will shift and it will change over time. I was listening to an interview the other day of someone who is really successful. 

She said you have all this self doubt in the beginning, what if I’m not enough, not good enough, not talented enough, not smart enough, beautiful enough. 

Now though she’s at a point where that self doubt has turned on its head and now it says what if I’m too much, what if I’m too big for these people. What if these people don’t relate to me. 

So I think no matter who you are, that self doubt will always be there to some degree. I think even the most confident people have doubts about anything.,

Sam: So what would be your advice to someone who has an idea that they want to persue. Maybe they’re at a stay at home mum and in the same position you were, where they have the fear of going back to work?

Cherrelle:

Just Start. 
That’s literally it. 

I always say this thing – the fear of ‘the thing’ is worse than the thing itself. So the thing you’re scared of if you just get on and do it, it’s not going to seem half as scary. I say this a lot. You can apply it to so much. 

The longer you sit, and over think, and plan and put off that thing you really want to do, the more time you give yourself to be talked out of it. 

If you get on and do it, you’re doing it already. 

I wouldn’t have sat here, way back when and said ‘I’m can be a designer’. 

I was like I would be a designer but I don’t know how to do that. Ok, so I need to go to school – well I can’t do that because of the kids. 

But actually, if you’re designing something you are a designer, regardless of if you have a qualification or someone standing over you saying ‘yeah You designed that’

Sam: You basically don’t need anyone else to validate what you’re doing. 

Cherrelle: I think that’s where a lot of my struggles have been, that I want someone to validate what I’m doing.

I want someone to come in and say ‘Yeah you aced it’ Whereas, especially when you work alone, you don’t have that, you don’t have a team.

And because any feedback I get on my products is after the fact, that’s part of the fear as well.

I’m going to do this thing – what if it flops?

But actually, how many products have I put out there that have absolutely flopped? And you go, ok this wasn’t my thing. Move on, don’t worry about it, move on. 

There have been things that haven’t worked. When I first started out, for example I was making scrabble frames. I saw alot of people doing that so I thought I could jump in here, I can make this work but ended up feeling that it wasn’t what I wanted to do. 

And I still feel that my business will change, it will pivot again because you know things change, life changes.

People have to find different avenues of putting their creativity outthere, so I’m open to the idea that this business will continue to change and evolve.