|picture courtesy of thefertilechickonline.com|
I had a decent job. Well paid. Flexible. And most days were pretty "even steven" (in other words, stable and consistent). I was comfortable.
I needed a change. I wanted to create a life and business I loved.
I just happen to be home while doing it.
The feelings I had leaving my job then were many different things. But little did I know, the feelings I would have months and months after, realizing what leaving entailed, and how much the thoughts and comments of others would affect me. All of which weighed heavy on me.
Not everyone is going to support you. Not everyone is going to have something nice to say. Not everyone will understand your actions. People will talk about you. People will try to talk you out of it.
Could it be the lack of understanding? And generally from a cultural standpoint, this is not something we do.
"Say, what?! Quit ya good paying job to go 'fluff' 'bout?! You musse crazy, eh!"
Or could it be the fact that some would simply love to do what I am crazy enough to do? Just maybe.
I've been pigeon holed into categories such as, "Stay at Home Mom", "Woman of Leisure", "Homemaker", "House Manager", etc., the list goes on. I would be lying if I didn't say those words bothered me. Not because those roles aren't valuable but because it's just not everything I am trying to accomplish. I do spend more time at home. I do spend more time with the kids. I do have a bit more time for other activities. But I am also not limited to those roles either. I felt the need to constantly defend my choices until I caught myself. To who? And for what?!
I guess people have a natural tendency to categorize others when we have a hard time understanding (because everyone needs a label, right?!) someone's actions that don't make sense to us. Someone who has decided to pursue something outside of the 9am - 5pm. Even more so when that someone doesn't yet know what direction they are heading in and just for a time, they just want to be.
And I've never felt more alone.
I'm not here to pit a debate between one or the other. The old time debate between one who works a 9pm-5pm versus one who doesn't (Whether she/he is building something on her/his own or stays at home).
For me, it's more of discontinuing the habit to label something we do not understand. Once you begin to label, you start down the slippery slope of judging. Judging then leads to unwarranted comments and that helps no one. Unfortunately, we are all guilty of it. We are entitled to our own opinions and perspectives, but we are not entitled to project them onto someone else.
Funny thing is, it's not like I've never worked a day in my life! But for whatever reason, the minute I left it was as if I could no longer relate to those that were working on someone else's time!
I'm not doing anything extraordinary or something that hasn't been done before. But I may be a bit more courageous than most by standing out on this lonely limb.
So, my advice for those that are thinking about leaving their jobs or will be leaving their jobs soon is this...
1. It's okay to not know what exactly you are pursuing. For some, there is an immediate plan. For others, space and an undecided amount time is needed for them to figure it out.
2. Try not to be affected by what others think you are doing or NOT doing. There is no need to explain anything. It is not for them to understand.
3. Use this time to get back in touch with yourself. Re-discover yourself!
4. Those things you liked doing as a child all the time. Do them. Do them often. You have no clue what ideas can come out of them.
5. Beware. You will have many lows. You will second guess yourself. Have mini depressions and breakdowns. It's all a part of the journey.
6. There will be many times when you want to say "fuck it, I need a job". Don't give in to that voice.
**Unless, you discover that working for yourself isn't the path for you and you prefer something more stable and look for a job. That's okay too! It's not a failure.**
7. Your children (and spouse) will think you are there to cater to their every need because "mummy doesn't have a job for real".
8. Set boundaries for your time. No one will value it if you don't. As far as they are concerned you are always accessible and can do whatever they need you to do at a drop of a hat.
9. Decide immediately that you will enjoy the journey no matter what happens. Good and the bad. Very important.
10. Keep working at it. The more you do, the more confident in your choice you become!
You've made the best decision for you which hopefully will not only benefit you, but your family as well. You should never have to apologize for or explain the decisions you make for yourself and family.
#JudgeYaMa (LOL, I couldn't resist. Int'l peeps, it's a very Bahamian expression)