Updated: Dec 15, 2019
Starting my business, The Simple Concept, was not an easy decision or one that happened overnight. I have been thinking about it for years, even trying a few things that never turned into anything. Throughout my journey, I believe I have come to understand why:
It was my own fear of failure
that would sit me out of
the race before it even begun.
It was during the end of my pregnancy with my 3rd child, that I realized I was very depressed. I sought help because I was fearful that it would only get worse and turn into post-partum depression. There were many times where I was so tired that I just wanted to give up on it all, I wanted to run away, I wanted time to myself, I wanted space to think. I was just so tired and overwhelmed. For the past two years, I have seen a counsellor on a regular basis. She has been wonderful in helping me work through, and even overcome, a lot of personal challenges.
I am a wife and mother of three children, but also working full-time as a secondary school teacher. Between the commitments of being a wife, mother and educator, I just felt lost, and to be honest, unfulfilled. My head always felt 'cloudy.'
I was confused because I couldn't
understand how I could be so
blessed and still not feel content.
I had such guilt associated with this feeling. I felt selfish and even disgusted in myself. I had three healthy children, a loving husband, a good job and the necessities of life. How spoiled must I be to not be happy? The guilt and misunderstanding around this only drove me deeper into depression.
I worked on many things over the past few years to try and make it through. Looking back, none of it really worked, but there were certain things, like meeting with my counsellor, that provided some temporary relief. It ultimately came down to time. I needed time to get through the nights of little to no sleep. I needed time to get to know myself as a mom. I needed time to learn and grow as a woman. But I found myself wishing time away, which only increased the feelings of guilt and shame. #momguilt is reeeeal.
While I couldn't make it instantly better and make my depression disappear (trust me, I tried), I did work very hard on realizing who I am.
I truly believe we have core
components, GIFTS, that make us
who we are, and essentially,
these cannot be changed.
We have choice on how we employ these gifts, but ultimately they make us who we are and cannot be done away with.
My gifts you ask? Organization, Drive and Efficiency. Not exactly glamorous or what anyone really wants to be 'known' for.
I tried to be what I thought I wanted to be, but finally realized that I was fighting a battle I couldn't win. Those pieces of me come naturally, and when I employ them, I light up. I just keep picturing my funeral and everyone standing around saying, "she was always so well organized..." and cringing at the thought.
I decided to stop hating myself for these qualities and embrace them instead. I cannot worry about the future or my funeral and I just need to be concerned about now.
I lost my grandfather unexpectedly this year, and as all loss does, it makes you think about this one life you get to live. I work tirelessly day after day for other peoples' kids, which I love, but I have come to realize, that it comes at a huge cost to my own children. I don't have the energy, concentration or time they need from me. In order for me to work the job I do, they are spending 10 hours a day away from our home. This model isn’t working for myself or for our family.
So, while I love my job, it comes at a price I am unwilling to pay. This coupled with my self-discovery, guided me to lean into who I am, set healthy boundaries and start my own business. I want flexibility to serve my family, and to allow my gifts to flourish as my own boss.
I finally saw what I wanted, and have now started to go and get it. I have set goals and given myself a timeline. But it goes without saying, I am scared. I am more scared than I ever have been. I have already risked so much time, money and effort. To think that it may not be successful, or that people might judge, is hard. It is crushing me already even though it hasn't even happened. It is easy to see why so many don't make it. I think we are all our own worst enemies and
we quit before we can fail.
I have decided that I will not quit. I want to keep my goals realistic and directly in front of me. I am going to believe in myself and my business.
The hardest part of it all, in such an instant gratification world, will be telling myself to keep going and be patient.