We asked some brilliant folks from the community to tell us about the most important lesson their business or career has taught them. We’ve shared some of those responses below.

Miesha Hall | Health & Wellness Specialist

The most important lesson my business taught me is, even when I feel like giving up, don’t. To always remember my WHY. There have been many times I would look at my life and question is running this business really worth it. Especially when at 26 I’m not where I want to be in life. It gets very discouraging at times because I could easily get a job and not have to deal with the stress of building my own business, but then I think about my freedom, the hustle, the satisfaction of meeting my goals, the aha and THANK GOD moments, that I just wouldn’t get working for a job that doesn’t align with me. So in short my business teaches me to have diligence. Read more>>

Broderick Flanigan | Painter, Muralist, & Community Organizer

To not let fear stop me from actively working towards and realizing my dreams, goals, and aspirations. I was gripped by fear of failure, fear of making mistakes, fear of success, etc. Once I got rid of the fear-based thinking and stopped letting fear keep me from pursuing my passion, I began to blossom as a creative entrepreneur. Read more>>

Angely Martinez | Jewelry Designer, Bench Jeweler, BIPOCJD co-Founder

The most important lesson my business/ career has taught me is to set boundaries between you and the outside world. As an example, I only answer business emails Monday-Friday. Sundays are personal time off for myself and to go to museums. It’s important to take days off so you don’t burn out, which has happened to me in the past. Read more>>

Lia Kim | Illustrator & Motion Designer

I believe the most important thing as a designer and artist is getting out of your comfort zone. Before I pursued my career as a motion graphic designer, I was a painter who always drew on canvas and was afraid of trying digital arts. I got into college as an Illustration major but wanted to learn a new technique, or a brand new approach I had never tried before. I believe where you are starting from makes your art more special and differentiates it from that of other designers. My lesson from life is don’t be afraid about going in new directions or leaving behind your career because your previous interest and career become a part of your own style and make you stand out as an artist. Read more>>

Imani Murkison | Atlanta Realtor

You absolutely get what you put into it. If you want to be successful in real estate, you have to sometimes work those long hours, or take phone the inconvenient phone calls. It’s all about what you are willing to do in order to succeed, and hard you are willing to work. If it’s one thing my career has taught is that overnight success is short lived. Read more>>

Rashieda Timpson | Pastor | Author | Life Strategist | Mentor | Empowerment Speaker | Nurse Practitioner

If you have a vision or dream, pursue it despite of what others may think. When you are a visionary you have to understand that God has given you the vision and sometimes others can not see it because he did not give the vision to them. You have to be comfortable working sometimes by yourself to see the vision come into existence until help comes along. Don’t let your vision or dream die because of others unbelief, lack of help, or it is not taking off as fast as you thought it would. If you put in the work and remain patient your vision or dream will be a come to pass after while. Read more>>

Abasi Bassey | Engineer & Content Creator

The biggest lesson learned from my business/ career is that hard work and consistency are just as important (and in some cases more important) than pure talent. Additionally, as counter-intuitive as it sounds, you should embrace failure. One of my favorite entrepreneurs, Gary V, talks a lot about becoming comfortable with failure, because then there’s no self-doubt holding you back from getting back up and trying again. With that mentality, it’s only a matter of time because you achieve success. Read more>>

Ashley Clarke | Author, Nutrition Coach & Personal Trainer

The most important lesson that my career has taught me is that it’s never too late to start something new, and that even though starting over may feel like it’ll put me behind, the time is going to pass anyway. Would I rather spend it working my way closer to something that I’m passionate about, or continue doing the same things that aren’t getting me to where I want to be?. Read more>>

Erica Portalatin | Wardrobe Stylist & Owner of Mad Thrifty

My most important lesson with my business is that everything will not always work in your favor & that’s ok. Going into this you think since you have the right amount of money to invest & great business sense that its enough. Its definitely not. Its takes patience, consistency & dedication. They’re have been many times where I’ve sold packages that customers just weren’t happy with. Whether it be sizing or the piece wasnt what they expected you just run into those types of issues when selling online. Id get so frustrated but I eventually realizd that all though you’re taking the proper steps, you’re going to face challenges regardless. I’ve had to give my products away for free, offer discounts, or even lose money in returns but I made sure at the end that my clients were happy. Thats all that really matters. Read more>>

Jennifer Garth | Owner/Broker of Garth Property Group Realty LLC

It takes a lot of work and planning for a successful business, I’ve realized that all decision rather you made them fast or put a lot of time and thought into them all still have a long term effect on your journey. A well thought out plan seems to work better for me, I plan on taking my time and thinking things out every time I’m granted the opportunity. Read more>>

Shaniece Harvey | Entertainment Freelancer & Host/Motivational Speaker

One of the most important lessons I have learned in my career is that you have to take educated risk and have faith. Educated risk are when you decide to do something unpredicatble, but with a plan of execution and precaution. No matter how many times you fail and how stupid you may think you look to other people, if you have the courage to keep trying with faith, eventually things will begin to flourish one day at a time. I’ve also learned that if you put your best effort into everything you do, it will put you into rooms that you wouldn’t have access to otherwise. Read more>>

Courtney Lynn | Wedding Photographer

Coming in to my profession I thought I needed to have an incredibly professional front. Essentially- not be myself. But in years to come, I learned that being myself is what draws people in. Showing who I am as a human as well as the photos I take is one of the most important and life changing things I did. People want to know the person behind the camera. They like to know you’re an animal lover, that you have a life, that reading is a hobby for you. It helps them connect to you in ways that being overtly professional doesn’t allow. That’s the great thing about being a photographer- you have a bit of leeway when it comes to professional standpoints. You’re allowed to assert yourself and who you are into your work, your profession. It’s made my job so much easier as well. NEVER hesitate to be the silly fun human being that you are. Read more>>

Timothy Colston | HVAC Technician, Landscaper, & Do Home Improvement Work

The most important lesson I’ve learned. Was to be patient with everything, because everything is a process. Read more>>

Shatara Clark | Non-Profit CEO, Author, Blogger, Coach

My business and brand has taught me that I CANNOT be a closed-minded person. There is a world out there that is so BIG, and if you think one way about things you will never truly experience success. I am a Christian, and the word of God reigns high in my life, at the same time I know that true discipleship will not be complete in one race of person, one gender, one lifestyle, or ONE of anything. Everyone is included in Gods kingdom and there is no ONE of anything. I just believe that I am no good to the kingdom if I place limits on my reach, or who I offer it too. I know that everyone won’t want what I have, but those that do who am I to deny them that? My business, brand, and services don’t bulk against the kingdom agenda at all and I know that I have been God led to do what I do, and because of that I have to be open minded, and think beyond the sky. My business has definitely challenged me to do that. Read more>>

Bee Gandy | Professional Makeup Artist/Educator + Bridal Beauty Expert

I’d say one of the most important that I’ve learned recently is how important work/life balance is and how imperative it is to my business to take care of ME! As a service provider, ESPECIALLY working with Brides, I’m required to give so much of myself to my clients and my work. In order to do that I have to be whole! You know the saying?..You cant pour from an empty cup! In order to do this, I’ve had to learn how to set BOUNDRIES! I’m moving out of the habit of working all night, responding to text messages at dinner, taking calls from my son’s games etc. Striving for more sleep, actually scheduling lunches and breaks into my schedule! As someone who is passionate about their work, it’s hard, but I’m making it a conscious effort to prioritize me a little more each day:). Read more>>

Duane Jones | My name Is Duane Jones but in the Fashion World I Am Vincent B. Scott FATshon Icon , Wardrobe Stylist, and plus Size Model

The most important lesson that my career taught me was that you can not lose faith in yourself. Some days are gonna be worst than others but you have to remember why you started the journey in the first place. Also, I’ve learned to stop comparing myself to others success and just concentrate on my own personal vision and goals. Read more>>

Miss Monét | Radio Personality & Podcaster

The most important lesson my journey has taught me is that there’s never going to be a “perfect” time to start your career or your business. I used to let perfectionism hinder me from taking chances or taking that leap of faith. I always thought that it had to be the right time, the right content, etc., when really – you just have to do it. And you have to do it with passion. I wasted so much time waiting for the “right” moment when the right moment is now. Read more>>

Divine The Realtor | Realtor/CBD Wellness Products Owner

ABS… not a 6 pack of abs but an acronym.. Always Be Selling. I missed out on so many opportunities by not letting everyone I know or came in contact with no about my business. It was awful to later find out they had a need for my products and services but didn’t know about my business to choose me. Read more>>

25th Avenue | Behind The Brand of 25th Avenue

The most impactful lesson we have learned from starting 25th Avenue is that no one is required to support your dream, even those closest to you. Most of our customers are people we barely even know.We are thankful for all of our customers. At the end of the day, no one has to support your dream. This was a hard pill to swallow but we are glad we learned early in the game. Read more>>

Kadijah Oliver | Graphic and Website Designer, Creative, Photographer, Coach and Model

The most important lesson that I learned in business is never discount yourself and to put God first. Know your worth and never settle. If they can’t afford you, don’t sweat, they weren’t your targeted type of client. If they tell you you’re too high, it’s okay, someone values your time and craft. Read more>>

Deborah Ware | Author of “Breaking Chains “, Independent Artist, Educator, and Dream Catcher That Knows How To Turn Dreams into Reality

The most important lesson my business & career has taught me is to believe in both myself, my dreams and the business as well as my career. I have learned to not let fear or failure prevent me from putting in the time and effort towards building a successful business in music, as an Author and teacher. My drive for my business/career continues to be powerful and strong because I believe in what I do. Read more>>

Jewel Hazelton | Lifestyle Blogger

Your community is everything. It’s important to have a people surrounding you that inspire you, lift you up, but also aren’t afraid to get raw and real. This goes for your personal and professional life. This is especially important in the blogging industry because your community is the lifeblood of your brand. Tune out the advice that you need all the bells and whistles to launch your blog or brand, focus on building your community first and the other part will come. Read more>>

Jalen Elliott | Fashion Stylist | Creative | Content Creator

One thing I’ve learned is that everything that’s destined for you will play out in due time. I learned the true meaning of patience and its importance. There have been so many instances where I felt inadequate, less than, and not enough. I often thought that I would never be able to build a way for myself in this industry. I often look at the journeys of inspirational people in my field. Many creatives and artists don’t reach success until long after being in their careers. I say all of that to say, continue to work hard and strive for your dreams. Absolutely anything is possible with hard work and persistence. Read more>>