I almost quit all of the time.

Here is my experience with leaving a salaried position to work for myself. I am, very often, shaken to the core with fear so intense it makes me feel like I'm about to throw up. 

Here is how it goes, I get to the end of a really hard day – the kind of day where I can hear my baby screaming for me with the nanny, but I have to focus on work.  Clients are late.  I have to say no to new work or collaborations (it’s necessary but still a sharp pain every time for me) and meanwhile personal timelines get pushed back.  It all feels like the grind I thought I left behind with my salaried position, except worse because I crafted my schedule today.  

I start telling myself, “it’s not suppose to feel like this, it’s suppose to feel like I’m in aligned service to the world” but in that moment I feel so far from it.  My vision boards look like a joker taunting me.  And that’s when the “I’m about to quit” thoughts begin,

“What if I just went back to the way I used to be? I could get a really comfortable job, probably in digital marketing… maybe I should polish my LinkedIn account. *opens LinkedIn*  Fuck, I hate LinkedIn.  I could probably whip that together these updates pretty quickly though.  Or, another option, I could totally disappear from the internet.  What could I do for my kid with a salary?  I could do a lot.  Language Immersion school in 2018?  Yep.  That would be cake…”

And THAT right there, that is fear food. Fear will gobble that up and have the strength to party all night long with you.  I know better than this mindset. But it still catches me unaware after a particularly draining day.  I thought by now it would be gone. I thought after doing this for over a year now, the heat that hits my stomach when these thoughts arrive would cool down. But it isn’t so. 

So I breathe. And I breathe some more. I tell fear it can stay in the room but it cannot run my business.  Just like dust settling, those heavy fearful thoughts loose their weight and slowly float down to the ground around me. 

I now have the clarity and power to remind myself: 

  • Finishing is hard. 

  • No one is immune to a bad day and it will happen again.  

  • The next hour is a new hour.

And then I immediately open my calendar and schedule some time for self-care.  I close my lap top and get a glass of water to take with me to my porch to breathe in some cold air before bed.  Away from the blue lights and buzzing phone I come back to myself where I now hear,

“I’ll never quit. I’m just getting started.”