Thursday, September 12, 2013

Letting go of small

Man, do I want to stay small, hidden, and inconsequential at the moment. Well, sometimes.

Despite my loud mouth, my 'big' energy, and my often intimidating (unintentionally!) ways, I am practically addicted to staying small. Letting go of that smallness, that desire to hide, and the safety of well, playing it safe is really challenging.

And I am doing all sorts of things to keep it going. I'm worrying (great way to stay small, for sure). I'm making up arguments from imaginary people who have not said these things to me ("You can't make money with the B&B," "Writing is not a career, it's a hobby that pays poorly," "You don't look good on video so don't put yourself on YouTube," "Everyone else is craftier, more pleasant, more creative, and has more discipline than you."--the list goes on). I'm creating busywork that doesn't feed/foster my business. I am creating busywork that I can't do/am challenged by, just so I can make excuses about why I can't make money, as a self-employed person.

Ack. I think I solved my problem with why I can't sleep most nights.

But playing small is crazy. And letting go of playing small is one of my claw mark moments.

So no more playing small (declaration!). Part of being a good mom for me is showing K how to do stuff. Not just telling him, or having him watch it on TV or reading it in a book. Part of me leaving my job is about admitting to myself that since family is one of, if not the, top values/priorities in my life, spending more time at work clashes with that value.

I haven't spent a lot of time reflecting on why family is so important to me, but it occurs to me that with  my dad's very early death (cancer/brain tumor at 41, with 4 kids!), it's just about spending as much time as possible with the people I love. Additionally, when my dad was sick, my family got even closer and that really helped us all survive the death, in many ways, in my opinion. So spending more time being available to my family is just something that attracts me to a more flexible schedule.

Running a business is hard work. What makes it worthwhile to me is not just the flexibility, but being able to make an impact in other people's lives. That's a real thing for me. Not just "you're a great person, thanks for being our guest," but more along the lines of "My life will never be the same, you've helped me see how amazing I am, and I want to pass this great feeling on to others." That gets me up in the morning, that's what I think about on my way to bed, and that's what keeps me growing. K needs to know that. He needs to know that I am not choosing to work less, but I am choosing to work differently and that difference is aimed at being the change I want to see in the world.

This is deep stuff for a 1 year old, but I plan on discussing it later (like when he's 3...ha!) with him because I can't make him do stuff (get into college, get a good job, etc), but I can involve him in why we choose what we choose. What led us to the choices, who is impacted by those choices, etc. Most of the time, when people talk about living in poverty or struggling, they don't dwell on that. They mention it, say it was hard, and then say that they never felt a lack of love. I am not planning on poverty (I'm playing bigger!), but I don't want to worry about that. I want K to see that we are consciously making these choices. Also, I want him to see that I am not worried, that I have faith in the path ahead, and that I see this departure as a definite opportunity to see just how big I can get.

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