Oof

I’m tired of looking at my site and seeing that I haven’t written a post in nearly a month. A month, people!

So, I’m posting.

It’s kind of a placeholder. Just a post to say I’ve posted, so that I feel less pressure. You know, the pressure to actually write something, when (as you’ll see below) I really didn’t feel like writing.

The last three+ weeks have been pretty hellish. But not in an outward way, exactly. It’s been more of an internal hellishness.

I’m still processing my way through it, but there were two big things happening.

1. I launched my course, and it did not go nearly as well as I’d hoped.
2. Thanks to some medication I’m taking, I’ve had full-blown PMS for over a month.

Each of those two things, on their own, would have sucked big time, but together? Oof.

The timing is almost comical, really.

Putting oneself out there is hard enough. And not getting the desired response is easy to take personally. Or maybe that’s just me (but I don’t really believe that).

Sure, intellectually, I know that when you’re in business, sometimes you try things and they don’t take off. And you just have to troubleshoot and try again.

Easier said than done.

Lots of my patterns and Stuff were triggered, including my Tendency to Set Overly High Expectations, my Need to Place Blame Somewhere, and my Tendency to Say “Fuck It” and Go into Hiding.

But then, to top it off, the hormonal depression was magnifying all of it by a factor of 1000. I didn’t know that was part of the problem until I’d been utterly useless for two weeks straight and kept wondering why the hell I wasn’t feeling any better.

Maybe this is starting to sound like a load of excuses. But now that I’m starting to feel functional again – and like “me” – it’s more obvious how much I was “not me” while I was trying to work through this.

It’s impossible to know how much of how I handled it was because of my hormonal state, and how much was my “normal” reaction, because I can’t have a do-over of this experience minus the hormonal upheaval.

Either way, I’m feeling disappointed with myself for how I responded to this whole situation. And, truthfully, it would be comforting to know that the magnitude of my tantrums was at least partly out of my control.

Anyway…

I’ve been trying to address the patterns and the emotions with compassion, which hasn’t been easy. Especially when underneath them there’s a belief that I shouldn’t be feeling this way.

I’m working on reminding myself that none of this reflects on my ability to help people, even though my monsters are trying to convince me otherwise.

And working on being okay with feeling what I feel about this. Because lord knows I’d much rather have been able to Just Get Over It and Move On.

And I’ve been re-evaluating what’s next. Trying to find what’s real and true beneath the hurt, so that I can exercise my sovereignty, rather than making choices based on what my Stuff is whispering yelling in my ear. For now that means postponing my course for a couple of months, until I can get clear on what I need and what it needs.

This is one of those posts that is terrifying to publish. Feels a bit whiny, and maybe a tad defensive (which just goes to show that I’m still resisting some of my emotions).

But it would feel dishonest to go back to writing as though everything is fine. I’ve been transparent, so far, about this whole transition from not knowing what I want, to owning my desire to be a coach, to launching my practice, to quitting my job.

How could I not be transparent about the reality of launching a creation, having Stuff get triggered, and trying to deal with it while also dealing with meat-suit issues and the Usual Pressures of Running a Business?

It’s all learning. Or so I’ve heard. Launch let-down wisdom still TBD.

Today’s comment zen:

I’d love to hear about it if you can relate. But for the love of the gods, please do not make suggestions about what I should have done differently in terms of my launch or my sales page or my pricing. So help me, I will kick you in the shins. This is an advice-free zone.

Because that’s not what this is about. This is about acknowledging the aftermath of our Stuff getting triggered when we do something new and things don’t go as planned.

31 thoughts on “Oof

  1. Nathalie Lussier

    Oy! My dear, you need some hugs! *hug hug hug hug* It sounds totally horrible, on both counts and gahhhh… let’s all exhale.

    I totally understand where you’re coming from! I’ve launched stuff that totally flopped. Like all the way. It was hard, it was frustrating, and it felt like it was a reflection of my worth. Truthfully “successful” people launch stuff that fails. They launch and it doesn’t work. So they just launch something else. That’s what I did after my first horrible flop. I learned so much from that “flop” and I wouldn’t trade any of it. It’s not how you feel right now but I know every step of the journey is necessary sometimes.

    Big big hugs again. You are an incredible human being. Even more so for sharing so honestly.
    .-= Nathalie Lussier´s last blog ..Mindful Monday: Sunny Packing Edition =-.

  2. Tanya Geisler

    All I really want to say is I wish I could teleport myself to AZ and share a cup of tea and a good heart-to-heart with you. And a hug (I’m a hugger).

    What a rotten time for you. Thank you for your transparency and willingness to be vulnerable, honest and authentic…in service of your readers.

    And for real, if you want to share a chat with a fellow coach, I’m available to you! I have flopped and risen, risen and flopped.
    XO
    TG
    .-= Tanya Geisler´s last blog ..What’s your Stretch Goal? =-.

  3. kate

    um i have been having the same couple of weeks. at my corporate job i fell apart over something that really was not that big of a deal. kinda shocked me and my boss! But so far the good parts? It has forced me to figure out what i DO want out of this job, which really is pretty much a paycheck so i can do my own thing during my non-working hours, because my ultimate goal is to do my own thing full time. This is hard to see sometimes. This was one hell of a reminder.

    So from your sharing, i have learned the following:
    Step 1. look around and ask, “am i avoiding ?”
    Step 2. Read those Einstein quotes about how it isn’t failure, you are just discovering ways in which it doesn’t work. (what? you don’t do that?)
    Step 3. blog about not being able to blog if that’s all that’s swimming in your head.

  4. Wulfie

    Ow. Ow. Ow!

    I’m sorry things have been hard and your stuff is firing off on top of it all. Hard!

    I can relate and the whole dance sucks.

    I think you were brave to share this. It’s helpful for others to know the hard part of doing all this. It helps us see the process and be better prepared when it happens.

  5. Natalie Christie

    You know what is amazing? That you have the balls to show up. That you put stuff out there with your name on it. If it flops, then you’ve just done what needs to be done if you are creating and expressing and giving value to anyone. Thanks for being so honest 0 but really, you’re already streets ahead. :) Sending hugs and seriously buzzy vibes – you’ll have that mojo back soooooooon!!!
    .-= Natalie Christie´s last blog ..How To Get Lucky =-.

  6. Shannon Wilkinson

    Thank you for keeping up with the transparency Victoria. What a hard and courageous thing to do. Disappointment is always hard, much less when you add Overly High Expectations and Hormonal weirdnesses to it. I’ve been disappointed with my business stuff on more than one occasion. Sometimes I get a good lesson out of it, sometimes I don’t. At least not without a lot of wrangling.

    No advice, no platitudes, just a big hug. And hopes for clarity as you look at your needs (and your Stuffs’ needs too).

    xo

  7. Dick Carlson

    Many, many years ago — I moved 1500 miles from Minneapolis to Billings, MT for a new job. I was supposed to be the “golden boy” at the new place, eventually taking over from the owner who wanted to retire.

    Within a matter of weeks, I was fired. Turned out this had happened to several other people over the years, as he was one of those people who wanted to get different results without making any changes.

    So there I was, far from home at Christmas in godforsaken (excuse me, Billings residents) Montana. I’d bought a house, told all my friends how smart I was, and burned all my bridges.

    I’m telling this story because twenty-five years later, when something awful happens, I think to myself — “Well, at least I’m not in Billings.” That’s my theory on why a just and kindly God laid that kind of awful shit on me.

    Hang in there.
    .-= Dick Carlson´s last blog ..You Can Out-Teach The Competition =-.

  8. Linnea

    Oh, dear, I can so relate to the High Expectations, the Tendency to Blame, and (really) the “Fuck It” impulse. I’m just a hobbyist blogger and my posts have been so infrequent since school started I’ve nearly deleted the whole thing more than once. Then I thought about deleting Facebook and Twitter while I was at it, leaving nary so much as a “goodbye, cruel Internets!” in my wake.

    And this was without the added benefit of PMS-inducing medication!

    You’ve actually inspired me to explore my own acute “blog block” for consumption, instead of continuing to gaze at my navel. So, see? Even “oofs” can be inspirational! You’re awesome — hang in there.
    .-= Linnea´s last blog ..& less lost, as I once was. (wishcasting wednesday) =-.

  9. darrah

    Oh wow. I totally relate to the Stuff and even the hormones. I haven’t launched anything big yet since I quit my job and am full of excuses as to why. Last week, I had a hormone attack (due to medication) and luckily, I knew this might be a side effect. But that didn’t make it any more fun! To put it nicely, I was a hot mess. What little motivation I had flew out the window and all of my doubts and fears reared their ugly heads.

    I’m feeling much better this week and can look back to last week and know that I was in a fog. What came out of it for me was a renewed energy. I’m trying to go easier on myself and just put one step in front of the other.

    Just know that we are here. We understand that you are human. So are we. That’s why we like you.
    .-= darrah´s last blog ..scenes from the market =-.

  10. judy

    Hi Victoria,

    I can totally relate. I haven’t posted on my blog for sometime. I’ve had moments of feeling like a slacker. I have moments of phenomenal inspiration. AND, I’ve been watching and listening. I’ve been watching and listening to see what emerges from joy and desire, not from a place of fear. It feels like a priviledge to give myself this time. This time is a statement of trust…..There really isn’t anything at stake here, is there?

    Today, I could even tell that I have a little ember of excitement building in me…. I may be ready to publicly explore life again. Who KNOWS what this comment will launch!

    So, I give you this little note as a gift to you, because your post here was a gift to me.

    w/ much love,
    Judy
    .-= judy´s last blog ..Maybe Life is a Dream After All =-.

  11. Victoria Post author

    Thanks so much for commiserating and sharing, everybody! I had to leave for a few hours after hitting Publish, and more than a few times I began to wonder if this was a bad idea. So what a relief to come back to such thoughtful comments. Whew!

    @Nathalie, Tanya, Wulfie, Natalie, judy, kate – Thank you, my dears. Your words really are comforting and mean so much to me! Actually, I’m seeing now that posting about this was a necessary part of the recovery process.

    @Mark – OMG yes! I had many moments as I was falling apart where I was even thinking of specific people I knew, and how this would be perfect for them, and yet, where were they? (I know it doesn’t work that way, but I can totally relate to the “not from this planet” feelings.)

    @Shannon – Thank *you* for being honest about sometimes not getting a good lesson from the disappointments. I know, this time at least, I’ll eventually look back and see all that I’ve learned, but I appreciate you acknowledging that sometimes it doesn’t work that way.

    @Dick – Ugh – moving for a job you got fired from? The part about “told all my friends how smart I was, and burned all my bridges” really resonated with me. There’s something about launching a course or product that feels just like that (to me, at least). Like I’m saying “I know all about this.” And then the subsequent floppage is kind of like getting fired from the new job, and not wanting your friends to find out how it all went down.

    @Linnea – Oh man, the “Fuck It” tendency is a scary one, isn’t it? It really does incite us to do all sorts of extreme things like deleting our blogs. And it’s definitely led me to wonder what the hell I’m even doing in my business. But…I love hearing that my oof is fueling some inspiration for you.

    @darrah – Hee – “hormone attack” and “hot mess” seem to go hand in hand for lots of us! Sorry you were dealing with that (from someone who definitely gets it). Going easier on ourselves is definitely a wise choice. Not an easy choice, but a wise one. ;-)

  12. cathy

    Dear Victoria,
    Thank you for being so courageous and putting it all out there!
    I am so glad to hear I’m not the only dealing with launches that didn’t lift off in the way we dreamed.
    I have felt like an abject failure, but as I read ur post, I realize it’s something we newbie entrepreneur coaches just go through. So. it’s not you either!
    If I could, I would give you a hug (a big one–im from TX so we do everything big). It will be better next time around — your genuine openness can only be a plus!

    Hugs,
    Cathy

  13. Sparky Firepants

    Up and Down and Over and Out. Several times a month, the tiny Frank Sinatra that lives in my head sings, “That’s Life.” He always leaves before I can tell him that he’s not helping. at. all.

    I can so relate. What is this mad monster that pushes us to create these things and then takes a vacation in Mexico when it doesn’t work like they promised?

    I can only offer a virtual hug. And a huge thanks for being brave enough to actually post this.

    Signed,

    CowardPants

  14. Josiane

    Last week on our call, I thought it was very courageous of you to share with us what had been going on for you. I can only imagine how much harder it must have been to publish this on your blog. You are awesome and amazing!
    {big hugs}
    .-= Josiane´s last blog ..A (huge!) shift in perspective =-.

  15. Michelle

    Your transparency and willingness to share is amazing, Victoria!

    The last few weeks have been really tough for me in a (tiny bit) similar way. Because my husband still hasn’t found a new job I’ve been devoting a lot of my time to uninteresting but stable work (like proofreading for a big company….aurghgh!). It’s left me feeling guilty for not devoting more time to connecting to the kinds of people I really want to work with–entrepreneurs and small biz owners.

    I’m trying to figure out how to balance my need for security (like a roof over my head) and making more time for “riskier” work that fills me with passion.

    Hugs during this process. If it helps, know that I have faith in you!
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..How to Write a Product or Service Description that Gets More People to Buy your Stuff =-.

  16. Julie

    Oh, goodness… I’m so sorry for all of the hard. Thank you for continuing to share with such honesty, courage, and grace.

  17. Heather

    Sorry things did not go as you had hoped.. I had the same sort if situation and I let it derail many things for me.. but I have grown and changed directions since then.. I will be launching an online workshop this year and I am hoping I don’t have to go trough that again! ( the crappy stuff not the growth!) Deep breathe, step back and go forward!
    Above all , just be nice to yourself! ( ok so much for advice free zone!)
    .-= Heather´s last blog ..All or nothing.. Your goals in 15+ Minutes a day.. =-.

  18. Gina

    Hey Victoria, not sure what I could say (that wasn’t already said :) I’m still processing the “month long PMS” part and wishing I could come over and give you tea and some healing shiatsu. This may not help, but I’m sure you know this too will pass, and shall enter the annals of “Sucky Stuff that Happened on the Road to My Big Thing But Did I Give Up? Hell No!” and you’ll pull it out as a helpful blog archive when you see others going through the same thing.

    xo
    .-= Gina´s last blog ..Carnival of Healing #223 – Grace in Gravity =-.

  19. Square-Peg Karen

    What a gorgeous, beautiful, open and vulnerable post (yes, i DID read the post and I KNOW it wasn’t fun to live thru – just saying it is a beautiful sharing – not a beautiful experience)!!

    Your “patterns and Stuff” are my patterns and Stuff – what more can I say?

    oh, I can say that I love your writing – and that even if I didn’t THIS statement: “do not make suggestions about what I should have done differently in terms of my launch or my sales page or my pricing. So help me, I will kick you in the shins.” would have got you elected as prom queen in my book!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Allie

    It seems that the hellishness is certainly making the rounds. I’ve been quietly admiring your bravery (transparency! launching your own thing! quitting your job!) for quite some time, and now seems the appropriate time to stop being so silent about it. Even if you’re finding it difficult to practice compassion and Stuff-silencing and monster-wrangling, you’re fighting for it. That in itself is HUGE. Bravo on refusing to throw in the towel on the hard stuff.
    .-= Allie´s last blog ..A Night at the Academy =-.

  21. Victoria Post author

    @Mr. Pants – “What is this mad monster that pushes us to create these things and then takes a vacation in Mexico when it doesn’t work like they promised?” Ohmygosh yes! It could at least have the decency to stick around and remind us why we thought it was a good idea to begin with, you know?

    @Square-Peg Karen – I’ll take your vote for prom queen any day! :)

    @Sandra – Likewise, baby!

    @Allie – Wow – thank you for sharing this. And for reminding me that what I’m doing is brave, because it’s really easy for me to focus on how I’m not where I want to be, rather than seeing how far I’ve come.

    And to Elizabeth, Cathy, Josiane, Michelle, Julie, Heather, Cindy, Kelly, Gina – thanks for all of your kind words and hugs.

  22. Chris

    Major kudos for launching it in the first place. I’m learning that it takes *so* much courage to put yourself and your work out there. Thanks so much for sharing your journey with those of us who are still in the “might wanna” stage.

    Hugs to you….
    .-= Chris´s last blog ..Random Acts of Self-Care =-.

  23. Carrie Robertson

    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you…
    yep, same here, working on my next blog entry to be titled “splat”. I ate it, hard, with a small business project I tried to launch… and for MONTHS I have been avoiding stepping back into the limelight to explain, take down, apologize, refund, and find a way to move forward.
    Embarrassing, frustrating, demoralizing, and a whole bynch of other “ings”… I let a lot of people down, but mostly me. And though I’m thankful to have learned so much…did it have to be like this? LOL =)
    Hang in there, 2010 is going to be awesome…
    Carrie

  24. Andrew Lightheart

    Dude.

    I relate.

    Oof.

    Tiny example:

    Last year, I had to go give a talk to some businesswomen about giving presentations to promote their businesses, all in my suit and all. From 30 minutes to about 3 minutes before the talk I was sobbing uncontrollably out in the alley behind the venue (mainly on the phone to S) because I was so panicky about money. (I ended up telling them about how my business was going – they related!)

    Observation: as someone who has hit Publish on posts that I wasn’t sure I should write, and had all the second-guessing happen, I notice that reading your post all I felt was empathy and admiration. No pity, no patronisationism (I don’t know what the noun would be), no eye-rolling, no second-guessing you.

    It was instructive for me about when my Right People read what I write, they get it.

    I get it.

    Oof.

    (Yay you.)

    Fellow regular-blogging-hiatus guy.
    x
    .-= Andrew Lightheart´s last blog ..How to present like Ken Robinson =-.

  25. Lori-Ann

    wow. stuff. thanks for being so brave in not only working through it, but also sharing with us.
    yay for honesty! yay for presence!
    May your path be less brambly soon.

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