Two years ago my Christmas vacation was not pretty! I wasn't mentally present with my family. I couldn't enjoy anything. I couldn't relax.
I knew what was wrong, and I knew that fixing it was going to be one of the toughest things I'd ever done.
I had to leave my job of 8 years.
I was feeling stressed out, unappreciated and unfulfilled and my boss was a nightmare. Colleagues were falling like flies with long-term stress or just leaving the mess. I knew that I had to get out before it got me too...
During the Christmas vacation, I wrote my notice, but freaked out and didn't hand it to my boss when I got back to the office in January 2016. This 'mental tango' went on for a couple of months. I couldn't get myself to do it.
What would people say?
How would I tell my boss?
Could we afford our life?
What would I tell people when they asked what I was doing for a living and who I was as a person when I didn't have a 9-5 to show for it?
Finally, in March I was mentally ready to take a huge step out of the rat race and the comfort of having two full-time incomes in the household - and an identity as an innovation consultant working with cutting-edge tech in hospitals (which people automatically admire).
2 other people quit that day... I was the third and last, so I almost didn't do it anticipating the bad mood of our boss. But I stepped up and chose myself and my freedom.
Today, two years later I'm way more optimistic. I'm present with my family and my kids are happy to have a laid-back mom with all the time in the world (little do they know about the late hours I put in ) That's the ultimate beauty of being your own boss. I can be there when I'm needed and wanted.
I managed to transform myself and my mindset from a stressed-out employee in a bad work environment to an entrepreneur, taking full responsibility for my own journey - learning, building, learning, taking action, learning, testing, failing, learning and earning.
As for my financial concerns, we couldn't maintain our lifestyle, but we agreed that it was perfectly fine. As many of our friends and colleagues, we'd been consuming way too much anyway...
So we cut down on our expenses, some of the travel, restaurants, takeaway, the clothing budget, shoe budget, gift budget, the cleaning lady!!, bike instead of car (we kept the car but didn't use it as much), went to the library instead of just buying books, movie nights at home instead of the going to the movies, consciously saving water, electricity, and over-insurance, had fun in the garden growing our own vegetables during summer, explored new playgrounds and parks instead of expensive amusement parks etc.
Was it always fun and interesting? NO!
Was it always easy? NO!
Was it worth it? YES!
Was it temporary? YES!
Have I reached my ambitious goal? NO!
Will I reach it? YES!
Will I give back? ABSOLUTELY!
Two years have gone by now... Two years of transformation, growth, and change all over the place. But what a good place!
I'm super grateful for everything new that I've learned, every new connection I've made, entering the online business space. This is where I'm supposed to be. Surrounded by passionate people, being my own boss - building a business and a life I love.
I wish you all the best in the coming year. See you there!