For those who are reading that are familiar with my writing, you know that I’m not one to package my thoughts into a palatable box and wrap it in an insincere bow. If you are looking for quotes that you can pull out of this article to share on Instagram, I’ll save you the time now. You will not find one here. If you are not familiar with my writing, that’s understandable as I have not written in a long time. I had become too mentally exhausted to do my passion. Even the thought of writing down my daily tasks and future aspirations became an anxiety-provoking activity.
An entrepreneur can only listen to so many inspirational podcasts and only say so many affirmations without seeing results before they question if any of this mental work and positive talk they are speaking to themselves is actually true or if they are just truly destined for failure. There are only so many overdrawn bank account notices and paying bills on the last possible day that a business owner can take. There are only so many success stories and public wins from other entrepreneurs who seemed to pop up overnight that even the most humble person can take before they question throwing in the towel and working someone’s desk job.
I can’t tell you how many emails, Facebook messages, tweets and DMs I receive from people asking me how they can do what I’m doing or become a part of what I’m creating. As appreciative as I am and as humbling as it is to receive these emails, I can’t help but feel like I’m the wrong person to come to because I don’t even have my own stuff together. I usually refer people to a post that I have written or another great article that I found online; however, what I really want to tell people is, “I don’t even have my entrepreneurial life together, so I definitely can’t help you get yours.”
The other day, a friend in business asked me how I was feeling about things pertaining to entrepreneurship and I responded back that I feel like a clumsy gymnast.
Yes, you read that right. In this world of entrepreneurship, I feel like a clumsy gymnast.
Similar to a gymnast, I feel like I running all of the time, trying to gain and keep up with the momentum of this ever changing industry. I feel like I’ve been stretching so hard and for so long that I’ve forgotten what comfort feels like. My life is up in the air; however, I feel like I am making all of the correct calculated steps, just like I’ve been told to do. I’m leaping out on faith, twisting, turning and transforming based on my intuition and making sure to water all of the seeds that I have planted. The universe tells me to leap here, I leap. The universe tells me to pivot, I pivot. My mind constantly recites that list of affirmations and bible verses every time that I think about that ending goal; however, for some reason, I can never perfectly stick the landing. I always wobble, stumble and barely make it through.
Another analogy that I have told someone is that I feel like God keeps telling me to leap and while I keep surviving after the leap, I always make it barely hanging on to the cliff. With each risky leap I take, I feel like I am only given the bare minimum of what it takes to survive. Instead of landing on my feet into solid ground, I am barely hanging on with my finger nails and am left huffing and puffing when I finally get to the top of the cliff, when it feels like it is time to make another leap.
This entrepreneurial journey has broken down any little bit of ego that I had when I first came in. Going in a pridefully independent person, I’ve had to lean on people in ways that I never imagined myself doing so. I’ve had to ask for help, not because I didn’t know something but in the sense that I needed someone to help me or I might not make it past the month. I’ve made so many sacrifices and irresponsible financial situations that sometimes thinking about it too hard makes me feel insane.
The only thing that keeps me going, other than the amazing readers of Quirktastic and supporters of The Quirk Shop, is the fact that I know that I’ve come through things before in the past that I never saw an end to. As a writer, I document a lot of my painful moments in journal form, so that I remember how far I have come and how distant those problems are for me now.
Sometimes when I reflect, I catch on to the lessons that I was supposed to learn from some of the hard times, as well as how similar hardships come whenever I don’t learn the lesson the first few times. Even sometimes, I’ll see that a hardship will come even after I feel like I’ve learned the lesson, just to test me to make sure that I know how to react.
While I’m sure that entrepreneurship comes with a lot of lessons, I’m also sure that a breakthrough has to come sooner or later, whether that comes through your current business or a pivot, even when you can’t imagine yourself doing something else.
Someone once told me, “the more hard lessons you go through in entrepreneurship, the bigger your business is supposed to become.” I hope that they are right.
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