One year ago today, marked my last day working a traditional nine to five job. I was one of the hundreds who was let go over a period of time from an amazingly innovative brand as they forged a path through the Digital Era. I was crushed.
Although I had been already been working on my side passion projects, I by no means felt that my chapter there was complete. I was faced with two choices. Find another job, or venture out on my own. I was a 31-year-old millennial, with zero savings, over $30,000 in debt, and a new mortgage.
Being the brave woman that I am, and knowing deep in my soul that I could not work for anyone else and give them my best, I really didn’t have any choice. The next three months I worked what I called “two-a-days”. Inspired by an athletes intense practice schedule where they have one in the morning and one at night. I adapted a similar routine. I woke up at 7 am, worked through the day, tried to take a nap by 6, and went back to work for a second shift, in bed by 4 am latest.
When I tell you those were some of the wildest months of my life I’m not exaggerating. There were nights and days where I thought I was on the brink of insanity. I maintained a sane appearance for the sake of my mom. I didn’t want her to worry.
The craziest thing was I didn’t feel tired. I was energized every moment. I woke up excited to work. I had an overload of inspiration. I built the alpha version of my website. It looked ok, it certainly was more of a vision board of where I was going, than where I was at.
A year later I haven’t stopped working.
- I am tired all the time, but I am not out of inspiration or energy.
- I have lost contact with some friends, but I have strengthened relationships with others and my family.
- I have given up “luxuries” which are actually just bare minimum standards for a United States Citizen.
- I got to see a painting that I am in love with, up close in person.
- I learned that not all clients are people that I want to work with.
I have expanded my business, kept all my bills paid, helped my family financially, and paid down some of my debt. Now I work with people; not for them. I am extremely grateful. I have had the opportunity to meet, be inspired, and work with other incredibly talented and hard working humans. I have been told more times than I can count that I am an inspiration.
Hearing it is always humbling. I hope that by sharing my story and these tips I can help others who may be on or thinking about embarking on a similar journey.
Here are some tips I’ve picked up:
- Limit and control your content intake. Unfollow, mute, create multiple social media accounts to organize. Do whatever you have to do to figure out what is important to you, who is important to you, and make sure that the content you are absorbing reflects that.
- Don’t let people failures derail your faith. People are going to let you down. Over and over again. People you never thought would let you down WILL fail you. Do not let that change how YOU approach new people coming into your life. Give them the full trust that you would have given them had you never been let down by anyone in the past.
- A few words about time. Time is the greatest equalizer of life. Do what you want with your time. Know that what you put in is what you will get out. Don’t make people feel like you don’t have time for them. If you can do this with grace, and still maintain balance with everything that you have to do, you are winning.
- Realize that in the world we live in today, no one cares about you the way that you care about you. Every situation is about perspective. Don’t worry about what people will think. Worry about how you make people feel.