Not everyone is going to be pushing from the same place. Some of us are complete independent contractors and freelancers, some of us still have 9 to 5s and there are many more of us who are various hybrids. Regardless of what combination we are, or where we are, we still got cards to play.
First thing’s first, assess where you are right now in this moment. Are you still working? For an employer or yourself, or both? Has your salary or income been drastically affected? What can you do without to ensure you stay above water? What can do to ensure you stay above water? What aren’t you doing enough of or doing too little of to get through this?
You don’t need to have all the answers today, but you do need to starting penning some of this answers down sooner rather than later if you plan to get through this. This global crisis, pandemic situation is a huge setback. A loss, but not a defeat. And a loss is nothing but a lesson. A teachable moment. A moment for a to grow into.
Where are you now and where would you like to be when this is all said and done?
Have you ever noticed how much better you feel after a nice hot shower in the morning? I know, I know. Many people need a good old cup of joe. But others like myself, all we need is a gentle and freshening wake up. And on days we really don’t want to leave the bed, a hot shower does the trick.
That’s becoming a bigger thing: not wanting to face our day, whether it be people, our jobs or whatever challenges life will be throwing our way that day, getting out of bed means facing all of that. And for the most part, we “adult”. We remind ourselves of bills and other responsibilities so we drag ourselves away from the comfort of our comforter and arm ourselves to play “the real world”.
But if we stayed in bed all day long, it means we’d be missing a great wealth of opportunities that no Serta or Sleep Number could give us. We’d be missing out on life. And all that it would hold in store for us.
So when you feel in a funny or stuck in a rut, like getting out of bed isn’t worth it, even on the weekends, thinking of all that you want for yourself: your dream home, the ability to travel and vacation wherever you like, starting a family, being a dog mom, visiting and seeing out of state friends more, learning to paint, writing that book — you’ll do none of that from your bed. Not at least with the attitude and lack of motivation keeps you in your bed.
So… get up. Get dressed. Take a shower. Feel refreshed. And remember, you’re working for and towards a bigger goal. And you gotta be up to get there.
People are creatures of habit which means we’re also creatures of comfort. If it’s familiar, we like it. If it’s tried and true, we love it. If it’s normal, we’re about it. We like things that feel secure and are comfortable. It gives us security. We know we can always rely and depend on it.
Like people. We like dependable people even if we’re not the dependable type. We like having someone who comes prepared, can jump in and know what exactly what to do and take care of a hot mess even if it’s not their own. We like those people. They cover for us despite it never being their intention. But if we’re the dependable type, those comfortable moochers who don’t contribute but know everything are a drain on our happiness and peace of mind.
And they gotta go.
Comfortable people — people who are too comfortable in their ways to make changes for the better, especially for themselves — are not the people we need to be around. Ever. Have you ever heard that you are the sum of the 10 people who spend most of your time with? It’s true. We’re influenced by our surroundings and that includes people. Why would you want a comfortable person in that mix? Why would you want someone who is half -assing their way through their own life?
But, like other toxic people we may have had in our lives, we probably have some comfortable folks still latched to us. People who are not doing anymore than the status quo. Those “C-” students. They just wanna pass. Those are not our kind and definitely not our tribe. And there’s nothing wrong with being comfortable if you have everything you could ever want in your entire life at this moment. Then being comfortable is the endgame for you.
But if not, you need to make peace with getting outside if your comfort zone. And you need to kick those comfortable people out of your life. You need smart people, ambitious people, people with drive, people with dreams, people on the move. You need people who are so uncomfortable they are constantly making moves for the future because it’s all they know.
You need to be around people who have a goal and are working towards.
If having a side hustle has taught me one thing it’s that nothing goes completely as planned no matter how well you planned it. People don’t respond they way you want them to, things don’t always line up they way you thought they would and the outcome isn’t always what you expected. In the beginning you may let that roll off your shoulder and chuck it up to lessons learned or just part of the growing process. As few more (hundred) times after that, okay — you’re borderline frustrated trying to paste on a smile. A few more (thousand) times after that, you’re just straight fed up.
But a lot of the people you regularly interact with aren’t part of your circle of influence or don’t understand the challenges you’ve willingly taken on, so they can emphasize, but sympathize with what you’re dealing with. And that can lead to some bottle up feelings. Way past frustration.
In which case, you need to vent. To whom? Someone in your tribe. And if you’re side hustling, girl, get you some tribe members. Even one person will make the difference in your life. This will be your someone who understands juggling a job, a hustle and that thing you call a life. They can listen without judging you or give you honest feedback. Whatever it is you need, they can be the person you vent to so you can continue to steam ahead.
My venting buddy: Elle. And she already knows. Who do you vent to?
Yes, I’m guilty of this too and it’s not always easy to decipher between waiting for your breakthrough and wasting time, but it’s a fine line that we ladies gotta figure out. I say in this in exasperation of someone else’s struggle I’m all too aware of. And even thought I know she is doing what she can and she’s persistent in her approach, her approach is outdated.
Maybe “outdated” is the wrong word choice here. Her approach isn’t working. She’s been working on the same project for 18 months, going about it the same way — and rather than getting more hits and inquiries, she’s getting fewer – but despite the drop off of her work, she hasn’t changed her method, or approach her problem from a different lens. She keeps doing the same ol’ shit. Complaining about the same lack of hits and connections. Dealing with the same ol’ frustrations.
And maybe she’s so in the thick of it she can’t see the forest for the trees, but how long does she (or even “we”) need to go on doing the same thing expecting a different outcome? You know what would be called?
Ladies, why do we struggle to get out of the rut? Is it because it’s all we know? Is it because we really don’t want to challenge ourselves any further than we have? Because it’s easier to remain complacent and content where we’re at? But then why do we complain? I’m gonna ask that everyone who is working through something – personal, professional, passsion-related – whatever it is, don’t hang onto your method because you think you’re supposed to. Don’t keep doing the same things because it’s how you’ve been taught or all you know. Don’t keep suffering in silent or dealing with something because you think this is how it’s supposed to go. Things change for the better when we change for the better.
Let those habits and practices go that aren’t serving you and holding you back. Make changes to make change.
In the past two, maybe three months, I have been asked to help another aspiring notary with getting her business off the ground. She reached out to meet via one of my Craigslist ads and asked if would I be willing to meet her and help her with some ideas. After several email messages, I agreed to talk by phone.
This woman, Claudia, emailed stating she just got her notary package, and is an Accounting student and wanted to see if I’d take her under my wing. My first thought to her email was, wow. How brave must she have been to reach out and ask if I could help her in pursuit of her career. Which is weird because isn’t that how we’re suppose to approach getting to the next level? Asking for help? Reaching out? Getting advice from people who are already doing what we want to do?
Strange how the right path seems like the weird path to take, huh?
She emailed saying she was in the Long Beach area and wouldn’t mind taking taking clients I received in this area. Well, of course she wouldn’t mind taking on clients further away from my service area as it would business for her. Little does she know, I’ve serviced clients in that area and will continue to do so as long as I’m able to, but if I’m not. I’d be more than happy to hand them off to her. But I understood where she was coming from.
My second thought when I read Claudia’s email was, is there something I’m doing that makes people think I’m successful at it? That’s okay if it is, I’d just like to know what they’re seeing that maybe I’m not. But the truth of the matter is, we are responsible for helping others when we can no matter if we think or success is large, small or nonexistent. I’ve myself have had help along the way. So I can’t deny helping someone else if I’m in a position to do so.
And yes, this means I am helping someone who will be in direct competition with me. Some… what. She may be able to execute notary services according to the requirements of California per her commission, but she can’t do it the way I can. She can’t be me. She can’t come up with the same ideas as I do. She can’t create the same marketing ideas I’ve had. She can only do her and I can only do me.
Even as hustlers, we can’t be afraid to help someone else on their hustle even if it seems like their competition. For all we know, it could be the catalyst for other opportunities as well…
July was a very loose month for me and August is looking the same, but before lose the progress I’ve made and want to continue to make, I thought I reel myself and see what’s causing the lack of focus and the diversion.
Elle and I were talking about less than a week ago obstacles, more specifically, obstacles each of us wwre facing in hopes to understand what is holding us back. Everyone talks about the next level and leveling up, but, many of us – myself included – have road blockers, things are that stand in our way for getting to the level of success we want to achieve. But we may not always know what that is. I don’t. But slowing down and putting goals and activities on hiatus isn’t going to help me figure it out. Nor will it help anyone else out.
Taking small breaks are fine. Staying in break mode, not so much. So, I’m going to be revving up. As much as i can durng the last months of the year. I’m getting back on track, making clearer short and long term measurable plans in hopes that when I reach a roadblock, it will be clear what it is. Fear, uncertainty, commitment, whatever is, I want to name it so I can distinguish it when I come across it again. And of course, overcome it each time we cross paths.
July isn’t quite over yet, but it’s time we say goodbye to July. I found myself working a little harder and a little longer each day, evaluating each of my efforts and figuring out which steps are going to take me to where I want to me. And in the midst of working and pondering, I’ve been slipping with writing and keep you in the loop. Not much to report, but I haven’t been sharing as I normally do.
So, I blame July. It’s hot. It’s summer. I’m irritable when I’m physically warmer than I have to be so when summer comes each year, I blame the season for my lack of work. And obviously the heat, it brings. But we got four months left in 2019. And when 2020 rolls around, I don’t want to be celebrating the new year and what’s to come. I want to celebrate the year whose ass I just kicked.
So, come back. Join me as we continue to kick ass and take names later. We’re gonna kick things into high gear and see what we can be grow and blossom in the next 120 days or so.
I know I was a little radio silent last week. I hadn’t deserted you or the blog. Just needed a week to step away and regather my thoughts and make some plans. Such as… I’ve been working on recruiting another contributing writer for thr blog. Waiting for her confirmation, so I’m excited about that.
Beem brainstorming about my next venture as a side hustle coach. Nervous and excited. Nervous about the execution of the busines more than anything. Still brainstorming the name. Working on creating programs for the new ventures. Just working with the momentum I have and trying to do big things quietly.
Yes, I’m still high from attending the Girlboss Rally this weekend. And over those two days, I was reminded of something very important we women do but shouldn’t: we carry the burden of work – whatever work we do – all alone as if we’re the only ones experiencing our sort or level or dedication and standard.
Taking a page from the business consultant, Ivy Slater, we get more work done when we ask for support. Whether we need to go to a women’s conference such as the Girlboss Rally to be reminded of this. Or if need to ask out closest friend, like Elle is to me, to contribute to our blog, we need to ask for support. We need to network. Meet up with other like minded women, share our work or what we’re working on. Not for validation or for compliments. But for support. Our there is our tribe… let’s meet them halfway.