Joining the Ranks

My darling readers, I have news.

Big news.

By the end of this week, I will be joining the ranks of the self-employed.

I am about to become a full-time entrepreneur.

It took me a while to figure out how to share this news with you, because it’s a transition and transitions are complicated. (Maybe I’ll share more about the complexities in another post.)

As complicated as it is, and as scary as it is, I just know that it’s time for me to move forward in this new direction.

A tweet from Jen Louden sums it up quite nicely for me:

When you “should” on yourself to do what weakens (even if you’re good at it) you exhaust your precious life force.

I have been in IT for over 10 years. And I’m damn good at it. But part of why I was continuing in my job was out of a sense of should.

I shouldn’t walk away from this stable career. I should wait until my business is bringing in more income. I should wait until we have a larger emergency fund.

I should wait until fill-in-the-blank.

What I’ve known for a long time – but convinced myself I must be wrong or making it up – is that staying in the job was weakening me.

My life force, or let’s call it creative energy, was being used up. There wasn’t enough left over to give my business and Right People what they need.

That’s what this move is all about.

Giving myself what I need and want.
Having more to give to my Right People.
Creating a life and work that is satisfying and fits me.

But isn’t this risky?

Yes. There is risk in leaving a lucrative career for something new.

Risk of failure.
Risk of losing our financial stability.
Risk of not being able to live the “American Dream” (which is pretty much bullshit anyway).

But, as Hiro so wisely shared with me, there is also risk in staying in my job.

Risk of losing my joy, passion and creativity.
Risk of becoming so depressed I’d give up on my business completely.
Risk of damaging my health by giving in to self-medication as a coping mechanism.

The more I listened to my heart, the harder it became to ignore its desires.

And the harder it became to ignore my heart, the riskier it felt to stay in a job that was taking the best of me and leaving only crumbs. The risks of staying feel far more costly to me than the risks of forging my own path.

Now begins the next adventure. I’m looking forward to seeing where it leads.

26 thoughts on “Joining the Ranks

  1. Shelagh

    Congratulations, Victoria!!! How exciting!!! Think how much more brightly you will shine…

    Yippee for you!

  2. Grant Griffiths

    Congrats and you will never be sorry for making the move to the ranks of self-employed. If you need anything, make sure to reach out to those of us who are there already.

  3. David

    Wow, Victoria. I’m jumping up and down for you right now.

    I went through this exact same thought process two years ago. I mean, it’s surreal.

    There isn’t a day goes by that I’m not assessing my situation (esp financial) and making plans for the next month, quarter, year, and further. It’s a lot different from seeing that regular direct deposit go “clink!” into my account. Worrying sometimes, sure. Huge celebrations sometimes, yes.

    But I wouldn’t go back. There are so many rewards in this new world that don’t involve the bank. It’s kind of like swallowing the red pill. Once you see the Matrix, you can’t un-see it.

    I see great things for you. This is exciting.
    .-= David´s last undefined ..If you register your site for free at =-.

  4. Hiro Boga

    Victoria, hooray! Congratulations on making the leap–I’m so thrilled and happy for you!

    Safety and support come in many forms. We’re all here holding the vision of your beautiful new business, and welcoming the light you shine in the world.

    Lots of love,

    .-= Hiro Boga´s last blog ..Of Dragons and Queens . . . =-.

  5. Ana

    Expressing our true selfs is the ultimate reason why we are here.
    I know you shall twinkle with each moment in delight of what you enjoy doing.
    I too quit my first full time job in mid August. Mainly to take some time out for me, and explore and express who I am more as a being.
    Keep shining!
    .-= Ana´s last blog ..Music for the Soul =-.

  6. Michelle| When I Grow Up Coach

    Woo hoo Victoria! I’ll be joining you early this spring & can’t wait. Sometimes I do catch myself thinking about it, though – really thinking about it – & get so, so scared. The risks you list just go wild in my head & I think I must be nuts. But I’ve been learning lately that the scary stuff is the stuff that ends up being most worthwhile, & I could never live with myself if I don’t see where this path leads. AND that I have too many people who love & care about me to let me be homeless/hungry. So YES. I say “yes”. So glad you are, too!

  7. Victoria Post author

    Thanks so much, everybody, for celebrating this move with me! I really appreciate the support and cheers. It helps so much to be in touch with such an amazing, caring group!

    @Emma – Rah, indeed!

    @Mark – I think I’ve been unemployable for quite a while already. I’ve just been faking it. Badly. ;-)

    @David & Havi – So excited to be joining the party with you guys! Pass the red pills! (See? Now that I’m not an employee, I don’t have to worry about how that sounds.)

    @Grace – Wise, you are. I wondered if people were going to figure it out before the cat was out of the bag.

    @Michelle – “But I’ve been learning lately that the scary stuff is the stuff that ends up being most worthwhile, & I could never live with myself if I don’t see where this path leads.” YES! That’s exactly it – there are times when I can’t sleep because this is so scary, but I know I have to try it. Glad we’re both saying yes!

  8. Dave Thurston

    Your post (including Hiro’s reference) bring to mind the “Dust Problem” – kind of in reverse. For you, if you stay in your job, the dust accumulates on the top of picture frames hanging on the wall, until one day, you see it and think, “Holy Cow – how did all that dust get there.” Leaving your job is swiping the dust off the top . . . and once again seeing how damn perfectly the frame goes along with the picture.

    Godspeed on your Journey
    .-= Dave Thurston´s last blog ..Red&Gray – Envelopes (Freedom) =-.

  9. darrah

    Hi Victoria!

    First of all, congratulations! I know what a huge decision this must have been and am truly inspired by what you have done. I have struggled with many of the things you mentioned in your post. Word-for-word, I completely related to what you wrote.

    I wanted to let you know that your post inspired me to take a big step today. I’d been pondering the idea of asking my boss if I could go to part-time for several weeks. My gut is telling me that something needs to change and all signs point in that direction. When I sat down at my desk this morning and read your words, I knew that today was the day.

    So thank you. I’m not sure what’s going to happen next, but I do know that I’ve taken a step in the right direction. Thanks for putting a fire under me at the exact right moment.
    .-= darrah´s last blog ..inspiration monday =-.

  10. Victoria Post author

    @Dave – I love that analogy! Here’s to dust-free picture frames!

    @darrah – Wow. I am covered in goosebumps after reading your comment. Thank you so much for sharing this. Big cheers to you for deciding to take that step. It’s a big one (I did the same thing back in June), but by taking it, the universe (or whatever name fits for you) seems to take a step toward us, as well. Wishing you all the best, and I hope you’ll let us know how it goes.

  11. Natalia

    I thought you were already doing that, actually :P But awesome!!

    Everything is hard in its own way.

    I have had jobs that were so awful for me that I became physically ill on a regular basis – I had bronchitis for two months, for crying out loud! Nausea, fever, headaches, and so on. I thought something was wrong with my health, but medical studies showed I was fine. Oh, the power of the mind and of our bodies! It’s a pain in the ass sometimes… but it’s wise, too!

    So congrats on that big leap!! You know what is best for you.

    “Go confidently in the direction of your Dreams. Live the life you’ve imagined!” – Thoreau

  12. Sarah M. Greer

    Welcome, Victoria!

    Now in the middle of my second year of self-employment, I can say it’s worth it. I’ve actually been puzzling out just this issue on my own blog. A few weeks ago, I began writing a series called “Passion Pays the Bills” and it’s kind of a summary of the steps you take to start doing what you love (and still pay the rent).

    As we say in the music biz, “break a leg!”

    .-= Sarah M. Greer´s last blog ..Passion Pays the Bills: Walking =-.

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