I don’t often write about things like blessings and thankfulness and self-care and other well-covered territory [at least, I try not to], because I leave that to the people that specialize in it, and who are good at it. I am neither, but as Makeness Media grows, so has the weight of the responsibility that I carry [we can debate about whether that is real or imagined later]. See, I like to over-complicate, over-complexify, and over-do. This, in turn, creates stress.
I’m sure none of you reading this can relate to that at all.
And then, this morning, a friend of mine passed away quite suddenly – right on the heels of losing my grandmother a month ago. In between, I launched a litany of new things in my business. Things that are big, and amazing, and full of complexities and complications, and beauty, and life, and some of my very best work.
But when grief [or babies, or illness, or financial collapse, or divorce, or a meteor (can’t believe that that’s actually NOT a joke today)] hits, and you’re a one man/woman show, it can all start to feel more than a little terrifying.
My natural tendency is to dive head-first into the terror – really roll around in it. Get all up in there until I can’t see daylight any more – until I start operating from a place of fear. Then, I make crappy, desperate decisions that don’t serve anyone.
But a couple things happened this morning that helped me back away from the edge – and remember why I do what I do. Call them lessons, or blessings, or important shit to not forget, it really doesn’t matter.
Next time you’re in the thick of it, close to the abyss, or backed into a corner, remember…
1. Being an entrepreneur means that you get to be a person.
Be honest with your clients. Let them know that they hired a human. Humans need sick days. Humans cancel calls when they just can’t talk. Let them know what’s up, and when you can get back to your best FOR THEM. They hired the best you, not the grieving, reeling, spewing, barely-able-to-concentrate you. You owe it to them to postpone. Just because you are CEO, secretary, and everything in between, doesn’t mean you have to be all of those things every single minute. Your clients will respect your ability to put their needs first – because that is EXACTLY what you’re doing.
2. You are 100% allowed to not shower for as many days as you want and live in your jammies.
Next time something goes pear-shaped, remind yourself that at least you do not have to wear heels or tie a Windsor knot today. That makes you 100% better off than people with jobs.
3. You get to change course, change your mind, change your logo, change your life.
You are not climbing a ladder for a living, your are growing – emotionally, mentally, financially – for a living. Never, ever forget what a blessing it is to be able to turn on a dime.
4. You’re priority list is your own.
Take responsibility for it. Hold it close. Never utter the words, “I have to…..” before talking about the work you get to do. You are one of the strong-enough-for-business-ownership-few. Wear that with pride. If the work you do feels like a have-to, it’s time to reevaluate. You are completely and totally in control of that. If you need help figuring out why things are starting to feel like a have-to, go here. I want to help [totally free – no opt-in required].
5. Many, many, many people want to see you succeed.
Your readers, your clients, your family, your friends, your colleagues – they are all rooting for you. No one is angling for your spot. No one is waiting for you to retire. No one wishes you would quit. You are the quarterback of their favorite team. You are the one they brag about knowing. You are their inspiration, and are the thing they think about when they muse about leaving their job behind. Never, ever underestimate the power of tapping in to that energy.
Today, I cancelled a call with a client. I was in knots about it. I felt terrible. He thanked me and told me to take good care of myself.
Today, I will write in my jammies and I ate chicken soup for breakfast, and hugged my sweet kitty.
Today, I am changing my schedule to accommodate my heart’s needs. I was supposed to co-work with a colleague, but cancelled [feeling guilty and apologetic]. She offered to bring me anything I might need.
Today, I get to work on some beautiful designs for a community choir. I picked that project for today because it’s all about joy, and I need to think about joy today.
Today, I am sharing the things that I hang onto on the tough days with you. Because I know you’re rooting for me. I’m rooting for you, too.