I know I can't be the only one who feels like if I take a minute or two or three..the earth will stop spinning on it's axis. Right? Ironically , my first year being "unemployed" or self employed rather, was the hardest I've ever worked in my life.
2015 was a really amazing year for me. Five years after college graduation, It was my first official year free from the corporate world. I was elated. For the first few months the freedom was great. I felt like I could breath. Woke up when I wanted to , slept when I wanted to , ate whatever I wanted to....all of that. I did what I wanted when I wanted how I wanted and IT. FELT. GREAT. The world was mine and I had the time and freedom to make my wildest dreams come true. It wasn't long before reality set in , and my unemployment check clock was beginning to tick louder and louder. I was hell bent on not going back to working in an office for someone else. I started trying to figure out my life..where I wanted to be ...what I wanted to do, and with a 5 year old, an apartment , and all the things I have to pay for ..how exactly I was going to make money? I can't tell you how many times I thought I would have to move out of my apartment , or how many times I wondered how I was going to pay my phone bill or electricity bill. My answer was to work through it . I figured, as long as I'm working hard everything will work out. I'm optimistic by nature so I tend to turn my back on negativity and focus on the good stuff. The pressure slowly but surely started to build up. But I did what I always do ....I kept it moving. I figured If I didn't acknowledge it , it wouldn't affect me. So I carried the weight of all the worry and the stress with a smile. I told myself "this is what they meant when they said it wouldn't be easy". I knew I could've went out and gotten a job. But for me ,that was the easy way out. I was afraid that I would go back to working and lose sight of everything I'm doing. I needed to prove to myself that I could make it using my own skills, creativity, and talents. I started to become more active on youtube and got some jobs editing other people's projects. Soon after, I received my first Social Media Strategy client. From that point on I was HOOKED. That feeling of making money based off of the work that I love to do was like no other feeling I've experienced. I became obsessed. I fell in love. I said YES to every opportunity that came my way. Most of which , ended up opening other doors for me. I stayed up super late and woke up before the sun every day. When my son would go with his dad on the weekends I would hang out , have fun, work, go on dates. etc. I was LIVING. I never stopped moving , talking, thinking, writing , posting ,editing , planning.
Needless to say, toward the end of the year I started to lose steam. I felt unmotivated. I couldn't create. The ideas just weren't coming to me as easily as they had before. I didn't want to go out or talk on the phone or return text messages( sorrryyyyyyy if I haven't text you back ..NEW YEAR NEW ME lol) . I felt crazy. I felt like I did't even exist. The light within me was dimming and I felt like I had no control over it. I'm so used to being upbeat , optimistic and ready that I was upset with myself for being drained. I internalized my lack of energy as me not being tough enough or ready to have my own business and be my own boss. You know that little voice in your head? I call in the "Jan Brady" voice. It tells you you can't , or you're not enough. It encourages you to quit , to shrink , to color within the lines. Each day the voice got louder and louder. So I stopped everything. I just detached myself from everything and everyone and took a break from life. I felt what I had to feel and as soon as I started feeling better I hopped right back on the horse.
Here's what I learned.
- I cannot run myself into the ground. My business, my well being, and my light, depends on me being well rested, well-fed, and happy.
- It's OK to be tired and to take time to myself. I'm not weak, I'm human.
- It's ok to SAY NO. Actually, there are times where I will have to SAY NO. I'm one person. I don't need to do every single thing every single time.
- Being happy every second of every day isn't realistic. Other emotions exist for a reason and I need to learn how to balance them and not have my entire world fall apart when they come because THEY WILL COME.
- WHEN YOU'RE BEING TRUE TO YOURSELF AND YOUR PURPOSE THE UNIVERSE WILL ALWAYS MAKE A WAY!
I wasn't taking care of my SELF. I wasn't sleeping right, eating right...taking time off or away from building my brand. I was just going non-stop , as fast as I could and I hit a wall. I felt like nothing worked. Why am I here? Why am I doing this? Let me just say this for aspiring entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs who haven't experienced this feeling yet. Being your own boss sounds really luxurious and fun. And it is. But if you don't take the time to take care of your SELF , It's a matter of time before everything else will fall a part. Needing a break and taking one doesn't make you weak, it makes you human.
ALL LOVE , ALWAYS