Mentoring Matters: Imagine The Possibilities

by Debbie Ruston, MASTERMINDS Panel Member

Dear Masterminds:

I have an excellent startup idea for an eCommerce site. I have an investor interested and a partner in place. I just don’t know if I have the time when I need to put in 80 hour work weeks as it is to cover my expenses. Is it even possible?

Let me congratulate you on your idea and securing a partner and investor.  You have taken some important first steps.

When a person decides they want to take a new path in life,  it requires making different decisions than you have made up to this point.  You cannot get different results with the same thinking that brought you to this point.

PAY it FORWARDMy first question for you would be do you believe it’s possible and how strong is your desire?   If you believe there are too many “roadblocks”  and your desire does not outweigh the roadblocks, then it will not be possible for you.  You need a burning desire and a willingness  to do what it takes, for as long as it takes.  If you believe there are too many “roadblocks”  and your desire does not outweigh the roadblocks, then it will not be possible for you.

Second, do you want what everyone else has, or are you willing to do what it takes to create something better for yourself?  Society is full of people that “settle” for what they think is possible in their lives.  Most are stressed out, unhappy and unfulfilled, and yet they wonder why nothing changes for them.   If you are not willing to settle, and you are willing to roll up your sleeves and go to work, you are on the way to creating something that others just dream about.

Third, do you want to continue building your employers dream, or are you ready and committed to building your own?  You mentioned you are working 80 hrs per wk for your employer.  Ask yourself who is benefiting most from this?  If you don’t take this step, where will you be in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years if nothing changes.  How long do you think you can maintain an 80 hr work week without burning out?   I remember being in those exact shoes, working 80 hrs per week and starting a new business.  Where do you find the time?   It starts with identifying all the areas you shouldn’t be wasting time on.    There is a very simple question you can ask yourself when making decisions on how to spend your time and what actions to take.   “Is this bringing me closer or further away from my goal?”   Working 80 hrs per week when you want to build your own business is not taking you closer to your goal of being self employed.  You will need to be willing to pull back from things you may be doing out of habit, so that you free up pockets of time you can devote to your own business…..remember you must take different actions and make different decisions than you have that brought you to this point of working 80 hrs per week for an employer.  The other thing you can consider is why are your expenses so high….is there something you can give up in the short term to reduce your expenses so that you do not need to work 80 hrs a week to pay the bills.

If you believe there are too many “roadblocks”  and your desire does not outweigh the roadblocks, then it will not be possible for you.

If your desire is strong enough you will overcome every challenge that you can identify.  Challenge IS part of the process.  Every success in life starts with a burning desire, and every person that creates success has gone through their own set of challenges.

“Mentoring Matters” is an exclusive ongoing series of Articles featuring select questions received from our readers via our @MENTORING Channel, with responses provided by our @Masterminds Panel. If you’d like your business or career challenge considered for publication, please visit our @Need A Mentor? Page today! And please don’t forget to join our new mentoring community on Linkedin, committed to giving back by paying it forward: BIZMENTORING 360°.



Debbie Ruston
Debbie Ruston
ENTREPRENEUR, International Trainer, Visionary Leader – Debbie has been a successful entrepreneur, since 1986 and believes in taking an active stand for true human potential. As the owner of The Success Educator, Debbie has spent her career helping individuals discover their limitations and overcome them and assists people globally in starting their own businesses. She also has a personal passion for education reform and providing youth the knowledge required to succeed in today's changed world.

CHECK FOR TICKETS / JOIN OUR WAITING LIST! It's not a virtual event. It's not a conference. It's not a seminar, a meeting, or a symposium. It's not about attracting a big crowd. It's not about making a profit, but rather about making a real difference. LEARN MORE HERE



  1. Hi Michael

    Great suggestion for the individual that is starting an eCommerce site that posed this question.

    You have identified something very important in your message – you manage to find a few hours a day despite your busy schedule. This is key and something every successful person understands. When the desire outweighs the circumstance, there is nothing that we cannot find a solution for. It’s not how much time we have, but how we choose to use our time for things that are important for us.

    Best regards

  2. Debbie,

    Thank you for sharing this experience. As a student at PSU, I’d like to think my schedule is pretty busy. However, I still manage to find a few hours per day to conduct research and work towards creating the business(es) I dream to make realities.
    Working 80hrs/week presents great challenges. Especially if you have aspirations to achieve your excellent eCommerce site.
    Could I suggest, bringing on another partner who can invest several hours a week to achieve this common goal? Delegating some tasks to launch your eCommerce site could put your idea into motion, Debbie.

    Great insight. Great inspiration.
    I am continually enlightened by your applicable knowledge.