Thursday, June 18, 2015

My Fearless Year: Quitting the 9 to 5

Ever since I started my own writing and editing business, editZing, I've loved being a freelancer. I've always had projects going on outside of my 'regular' job, whether it was helping edit a book, write one, blogging, or otherwise creating projects and supporting friends with their projects.

For a long time, I let these 'side projects' be in the background-- I would think about them a lot between 9am and 5pm, and often I would long to be away from my computer, out doing something meaningful. I wanted enough time to be able to focus my attention, to quiet down. It's hard to be creative when you've got deadlines looming and emails filling up the inbox. And when you get home exhausted, feeling like you have to hurry up and get to bed so you can wake up and do it all again the next day, the cycle is hard to break.

This year, I made another big step toward living fearlessly: I quit my 9-to-5 job doing project management, and I'm now focusing my attention on teaching yoga, offering Reiki healing, and working on Web and social media projects for small businesses.

Can I just say... wow! This is huge. A huge move. Certainly the boldest change I've made in a while. Ever since I graduated college, I've worked 40 hours a week, generally in a fast-paced, high-stress environment. 

A part of me thrived on the chaos, and especially on the dynamic interactions with coworkers and friends. Being on a highly productive team has a sort of buzz to it. But what I discovered, just this year, is that I was ready to move on. 

To create my own work, meaningful, powerful, healing work. To guide others through practices like Yoga and Reiki. 

To devote myself wholeheartedly to this path. 

Spending more time in meditation, in presence. Tuning in. When you allow yourself to be in that space, to be quiet and peaceful instead of frazzled, it's a whole different experience.

I wake up in the morning and I don't rush out the door. Sometimes I don't even set an alarm; I just let my body wake when it's ready. I like to sit in the backyard with my coffee and my breakfast and the dog, and just take my time starting the day. Setting an intention.

During these quiet moments, I can really feel a sense of peace. And I'm able to carry that with me and use it in everything I do... all the 'work,' all of my relationships, all of my teaching. It makes such a powerful difference.

And yet even with this big change of pace, I still draw on all the experiences I've had, all the work settings where I've been building my 'professional' skills. Project management is important with any endeavor, including this blog. Communication and clear writing are key with any business. Graphic design, social media, meeting deadlines, bringing a positive attitude to the workplace... yes! Every business can benefit from these things I've learned, whether it's in the health and wellness arena or not. I'm so grateful that I now have the chance to choose which businesses I want to collaborate with, and help them grow.

And while I love not being at the computer screen quite as much, I'm glad I have creative projects coming my way. I'm currently building websites for an Ayurvedic wellness center, and an organic skincare line. I'm talking to small business owners and helping them understand what tools they need, and how to conquer the overwhelming feeling that comes up when they think about Facebook or Twitter. Diving in to these projects is fun!

I love that I can do a variety of things to earn my income, on and off the yoga mat, at and away from the computer screen.

All the time I spent doing other work has prepared me for this, and has helped me develop my work ethic, my rhythm, my flow. I have been learning my purpose all this time, and will continue learning it as I go. 

Maybe something is happening right now that is painful or uncomfortable or disheartening. But you know what? It is preparing you for something. Every experience you have leads you to another. You're building your determination. 

If things aren't quite the way you want them to be, consider this: you have the power to change your life. 

I'm living, walking proof of that.

One quote that I wrote down and kept at my desk for the last six months was this:

How brave -- to imagine a different life!

Change starts with the mind. The thoughts. Every thought you have shapes your reality. If you want to make a change, start thinking about it as if it is already true.

I'm so grateful for you, dear reader, for following along. You inspire me daily.

And I'm here for you, if you have any questions or want a little support with whatever shifts you're making. I fully support and love you :) 

Can't wait to see how this unfolds for all of us! Gratefully, humbly, namaste.

PS More fearless year posts: releasing fears, and embracing my inner weirdness

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