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Sometimes we know exactly what we would love to be doing for a living, but our current circumstances don’t allow for it.
There are bills to be paid, a family to take care of, and undisputable comfort in not paying for health insurance out of pocket. So, with the voice of common sense ringing in our ears, the notion of founding our dream business or writing that best seller gets tucked deep into a drawer to wait for “the day” when life isn’t so crazy.
As much as it would make our hearts sing to follow a dream (that we know we are perfectly capable of) making the leap from a stable job with bennies to the uncharted territory of business ownership is exceptionally scary when you have others in your life depending on you. The fear of the “what ifs” are downright paralyzing. At least, that’s how it was for me. For a very long time.
But finally, there came a day when I could no longer bear to squash or diminish to desire to do what I loved for a living: be a writer. So, twelve years ago, I did just that. I left a long-term job that offered paid vacation, 401K, and health insurance. The job was good, but it was killing my soul. I felt like I was slowly dying mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. And no, I’m not being dramatic.
So I left. I formed LAMS Communications and traded in my “employee” status for “business owner.”
I’m here to tell you that it was freaking hard. My leap from a traditional job to self-employment was not made without many sleepless nights, a crapload of fear, and lots of intense planning. But staying and feeling my spirit slowly croak was an even scarier thought. The first two years were hella-hard and it wasn’t for my ex’s income, things would not have ended well.
But I kept at it. I networked like crazy, pitched magazines like an insane person, and never stopped thinking about how I could add more streams of income to my business plan. It felt like I had traded in my 40-hour-a-week traditional job for a 120-hour-a-week one. But there was two big differences:
- I was happy for the first time in a very long time.
- And I was making a living on MY TERMS. I could flex work around the needs of my kids and was a present parent instead of a exhausted and crabby one. THAT, to me, is priceless.
And it all paid off. Over a decade later I feel I have hit my stride, found my “secret sauce” of business success, and am living the life I had dreamed of for years. The reality is that there are no butterflies, rainbows, and magic fairy dust when it comes to building a business. You just put on your Big Girl Panties and handle it.
So, if you are in a period of life where your dreams are being shoved to the back of a hypothetical drawer, don’t give up. Plot, plan, dream, and implement. Even if it feels like your forward movement towards your goals is in millimeters, it’s still forward movement.
When it comes to forward movement, motivation is helpful, but not always a deal breaker. I recently saw this meme on Facebook and it was so accurate, I felt I needed to share it here.
As important as finding your purpose is, it isn’t something you need to rush into. Take the time to examine who you are, what you’re good at and who you could help or sever. Who are the people that could benefit from your unique set of experiences and qualifications?
What do you feel called to?
More Resources to Help You Along Your Side Hustle Journey
MOM BOSSING: The Freedom to Create the Business You Love is a book filled with personal stories, resources, support, wisdom, and encouragement from a solopreneur who has been in the trenches as a mom boss. This step-by-step guide shares the truth, fears, tears, and cheers of being a mom who is building a business empire on her own terms. If you are looking for a new career for the “second half of life,” venturing into direct sales, rocking a home business, or dreaming of leaving a dead-end job, this book provides the building blocks needed to move forward with a healthy dose of humor authenticity. In many ways, this book could also sport the tagline of Building a LIFE on Your Own Terms.
I was lucky to have Becky Flansburg join us at Multicultural Children’s Book Day when we first began our nonprofit. She was the “head elf” which meant she did everything from project management to help us get sponsorships. In the early years, we weren’t able to keep her busy for more than a few months a year and even that was very part-time. Becky’s contribution to the team helped us grow our nonprofit, and, in turn, we were able to keep her busier. Now, as a “mom boss,” Becky is sharing her journey and her wisdom for moms who want to try solopreneurship. It’s particularly helpful for anyone who wants to become a VA (Virtual Assistant).~author and mompreneur, Mia Wenjen
FREElance FREEdom: Creating the Work-From-Home Life You Crave
Have you ever dreamed of working from home on your own terms instead of being confined to a corporate cubicle or windowless office? Have you ever dreamed of earning a steady and honest income while still having plenty of time for friends and family?
Lucky for you, it is all very possible. It’s a life that I have successfully been living for over 12 years…and I can’t imagine supporting my family (and following my dreams!) any other way.
Within the pages of this robust 90-page e-book and resource guide is the motherlode of excellent information about working from home (on your own terms) all rolled into a handy read-at-your-own pace guidebook.
Whether you are looking to pursue a career as a freelance writer, virtual assistant, graphic designer (and more) this Resource Guide will provide the insight, tools, guides, advice, and strategies that can apply to any freelance business. If you want the very basics of getting started without the benefit of support and coaching, this eBook is for you.
For anyone looking to start their freelance career, or up their game, this book is the perfect place to start. Jam-packed with actionable items and details about even handling unruly clients, well-meaning visitors, and kids while working from home – this book has it all! Highly recommended!~author and mompreneur, Carissa Andrews
For those who are contemplating the freelance lifestyle but need a guidebook with baby steps, this is your manifesto! Becky Flansburg shares her tips for balancing a freelance career with a family including the nuts and bolts such as the online tools she uses for networking and running her business. Becky is a gentle and realistic cheerleader for anyone who wants to work at home as a solopreneur.~Mia Wenjen
FREElance FREEdom is Available on Kindle
Available in Paperback on Amazon: mybook.to/FREElanceFREEdompprbk