THE BLOG
06/17/2014 03:01 pm ET Updated Aug 17, 2014

The Three Worst Times to Quit Your Job and Start a Business

This has nothing to do with the economy and everything to do with the way you set the stage for your transition to full-time entrepreneur. While it may be tempting to jump now, your leap into entrepreneurship will a rough one if your starting position is off.

Here are three scenarios that put you at a disadvantage if you don't address them before you leave your 9 to 5:

#1. You still think like an employee - not like an entrepreneur. Have you developed the habits of mind to think like a business owner? Are you prepared for the isolation, to make tough decisions about your priorities, time, and money? Have you been actively learning the skills and traits that differentiate a business owner from a hobbyist? Have you planned out the goals and marketing strategy for your business or are you jumping out of emotion - the excitement of having a new idea. Take the time to understand the many hats that a business owner has to wear and the strength of mind it takes to persevere through the rough spots of being your own boss.

#2. You hate your job more than you love the idea of being your own boss. This is about the emotions and experiences that might be driving you to start your own business:
  • It's the second time you've been passed over for a promotion.
  • The third time you've put in a 60 hour week in the two months.
  • It's the fourth time your boss has criticized your work while overlooking the contributions you've made.

If you're in a bad work environment, chances are you feel like an overloaded camel dreading the weight of the next straw that just might break you. On a daily basis you may feel depressed, irritated, and frustrated - you are emotionally drained. Making a transition when your emotions are in such a frail state is a bad move. You will lack the energy and clear vision you need to make wise decisions. Also missing will be the confidence and resiliency required when challenges arise.

It can be hard, but restoring your emotional health before you step away from your job will increase your chances of starting and staying strong. It will also ensure that the bad feelings about your current job are not clouding your judgment about the decisions you will need to make as you start out on your own.

#3. You don't have a solid financial plan. Even with social marketing platforms and online tools, pursuing a great business idea still requires money. While you may not be ready for Shark Tank just yet, you still need to pay your bills, eat, and take care of yourself and family in addition to investing in your business. Maybe your idea requires very little startup capital. You still want to have at least 12 months of expenses covered. This relieves you from operating your business under the pressure of needing money immediately.

Make you sure you have clients lined up and money to support you if those expected sales fall through. The more desperate you are for money, the more likely you will take projects from less than ideal clients or you will cut your prices, diminishing the perceived value for your services or goods. Having a solid financial position, keeps you from risky business that ultimately threatens your peace of mind and reputation. And if anxiety and frustration about money keep you from providing quality work, you and your customers or clients will have doubts about your business.

If you want a strong start to being your own boss, pay special attention to your thinking patterns, emotions, and money. Take the time to stabilize, plan and prepare so that you can learn from the journey of launching your own business instead of struggling through it. And remember you can always launch while working.