I have a confession. Kind of. I haven’t really been working much.
And that’s just how I like it.
When everyone else seems to be glorifying busy-ness and hustling to get more done (yep, even I’ve done a post or two on hustling) … I made a fast decision to cut back most of my work for a while. As in 80%. I homeschool. I’m a full-time Mum. I run a small online business. I’m very active in supporting families in my local community. And I HAVE TONS of FREE-TIME … and deliberately so.
But it wasn’t always like this.
It took some major personal drama, to set this in place. And even though this stuff is deeply personal, I wanted to share this with you because I know that this (personal and family dramas effecting your work life) is something lots of women face, especially women who are small business owners with children.
To help you understand what happened, I’ve included lengthy portions of an email, I sent out to some of my clients about two months ago (shared with permission).
The Email ….
” It’s been soooo long since we’ve spoken.
I have run over in my mind, so many times how this conversation might go ….
… I wish I could give you an awesome answer, but instead all I can do is tell you the truth.
My personal life has been falling apart. Well actually it’s been my teenage daughters – which by default means mine too. She’s a really awesome,intelligent, creative, funny, good-hearted human being AND she has also been suffering with anxiety attacks.
I don’t think I’ve ever understood what anxiety actually does to someone – how it attacks them at the very core of their being, until it happened to my girl. Looking back, there were signs all along the way. Her constant drive for perfection. Not wanting to do sports because the other kids would laugh at her.
Teachers reports that would gently hint at her drive to get everything right. One year, I told her and her teacher, she was banned from doing homework. I hoped that she’d start getting more spelling words wrong and realise, that it wasn’t the end of the world and on a larger scale, that making mistakes is a part of the human experience and fine. It worked enough for her to be ok with misspelt words, but not enough to dispel her underlying feeling of never being enough.
There were other clues and we tried other little things … I wasn’t oblivious. Over the years I’m sure my husband and I made alot of stuff ups, but mostly we tried to remind her, how awesome she was and is. But in the end, Anxiety has still had it’s claim on my daughter’s mind and heart.
So, about two months ago things started getting really bad for her. Doing her hair began to result in daily melt-downs. Leaving the house became traumatic for her.
As a Mum, it’s heartbreaking and infuriating at the same time.
As someone with a background in Energy Psychology, I felt like the worse kind of failure.
I wanted answers. What was the root cause of all this and what could I do? What should I do?
I looked at all my options. And I chose her. I chose my greatest responsibility, joy and challenge. To honour my role as Mother, completely … when she needed me most.
This meant making changes to how I used my time. How we use our time, says so much about us. It changes lives for better or worse.
After I finished hosting the Step Up, Stand Out 2013 Virtual Event … I chose to STOP about 80% of what I was doing in my business.
No blogging. No Newsletters (not even for my newly acquired list of subscribers). No events. No guest-blogs or interviews. No working on the 505 Project (note – this has finished). No webinars.
Instead, I hooked up with one of my superstar clients (who does energy therapies) and she helped us to get to the bottom of her anxieties. I also finally started homeschooling again (we dabbled for a year about 4 years ago). I only took on or worked with clients who were willing to invest bigger dollars and big commitments. We just relaxed. I chose more family time.
Don’t get me wrong. Before this happened, we had family time. I was always there for my children. I wasn’t working hectic hours most of the time. That’s not my style. But, the truth was my girl still needed more, right now.
So, I wanted to write this email to you several times … But I couldn’t find the right words. I couldn’t find any words, until now.
The funny thing is, that between the time that my daughters anxiety attacks started and now, my life is far more aligned to the desires of my heart anyway. Homeschooling again. Check. Working with more high priced clients. Check. Working less hours. Check. Having more time, money and energy for more family adventures. Check. Just, when life looks like it’s falling into a big hot mess … miracles happen. Go figure!
And I’m 100% sure, that they wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t stop and make changes that honoured my highest values at a higher level.
Now, I hope that things are purring along beautifully in your life but when it doesn’t … remember…. the lesson is to honour your highest values more and the miracles will come for you too.”
So, now YOU can see why I’ve been missing for a longish, little while. Life threw me a curve-ball and I embraced it. My life is better for it. My business is better because of it and I’m a much better Mentor because of it.
Looking forward to 2014
As I look forward to 2014, I know I’ll work more. BUT not lots more. Helping my daughter, actually helped me to streamline my own work sooo much more. So what’s happening for you? Is your work schedule in alignment with your core values or do you need to do some adjusting too?
Don’t believe the hype. You don’t have to be crazy busy to have a good life and run a profitable business. Now, I’m not saying this is all a piece of cake. I’ve had to spend a lot of money, time and energy to find out what works for me and what doesn’t and the journey hasn’t been easy (which is one of the main reasons’s I love doing what I do).
So, if your life and business is purring along, than I’d love to offer you a virtual high-5. Really. That’s awesome. But if, you want better results in your business and life, than I’d love to help you.
I still have a few spaces in my Mindful Marketing Mentorship program. You can check it out here and see if it aligns with you.
In the meantime – be awesome.
Love and Sunshine,