I remember the time well. It was a couple weeks before Christmas and I’d just been told my job was being eliminated. I was completely speechless and stunned. It was the first time something like this had ever happened to me and I didn’t understand how. My work performance had been great, my team and business partners loved me and I was always being asked to take on more.
I thought I was doing everything right. Yet, in a matter of 5 minutes my entire world had been turned upside down and I didn’t feel like I had any control.
It is not much fun being side-swiped with something big in life. So many of us are not prepared for it so when it happens we are not only surprised but also scrambling to take care of our needs. It feels desperate and scary. How long can we go on our savings? What should we cut back on until another job is found? How fast can another job even be found and will it pay as much? While the focus is on survival concern that we’ll even like this new job are not even considered in the moment. We will just do what we need to not lose it all.
I always swore every time it happened to me that I would do whatever I could to not let it happen again. Not so much losing the job because well we are all at the mercy of someone else about that but about the impact it has on my life. The vulnerability of the situation is what convinced me that I had to do something to prevent so much control of my life being in the hands of someone else. The feeling I was dependent like this didn’t set well with me because well it takes a lot for me to trust someone first of all. Secondly, I’ve never been one who had much luck being dependent on others without being let down, hurt, used, and fired.
People can say it’s not enough to make a difference or it’s too much work for what you get out of it and from the outside in they are right. It takes a lot of energy to work a part time job in addition to a full time one. It takes even more energy to create your own business while working full time. When you are working full time and things seem to be going alright this is indeed a lot to keep up with every week. It is a lot until it is all there is left. When the rug gets pulled under your week and you’re left with no job and income all of a sudden that little something that was a few hours a week becomes a lifeline we wish we all had in place. My question is why wait until that happens to realize you need this?
After the year we all just went through where so many were impacted financially, I say 2021 is a perfect time to start rethinking this dangerous dependency. Whether they are a good employer or not, being able to take care of ourselves outside of that single job is one of the best ways to have control of our lives. It is insurance. Also, there have been times in my life a couple hundred extra dollars were really appreciated and needed. If nothing else it was extra savings for when I did need it. More than anything though it was peace of mind that I had some options and could lessen the sting of being let go from my job. Perhaps it even gives me some time to find another that I actually liked, wanted to do, fit my needs and paid me well. The desperate feeling is reduced because I know I’m in control.
My answer to this situation was to start my own business. I wanted something that didn’t require a lot of investment monetarily and that I could fit within my work and home life. I wasn’t interested in spending 20 hours a week outside my home working a second job for minimum wage either. No, if I was going to do this I wanted something that was entirely my own where I controlled how much I made and I could make it what I wanted. I could ultimately make it work for me and it had the potential to eventually replace my full time job if I wanted (or needed) that. When I looked at options to fit those requirements, I came up with direct sales as the answer.
Where I think many people trip up with direct sales businesses is they think it is a get rich quick scheme and only a few people actually make real money at it. After having been in it for several years now, I promise you none of that is true. It is a business where you get to design every aspect of it but you have a framework given to you and a lot of details already in place to help you. Shipping, customer complaints, product marketing, login issues, and more are taken care of for you so you only have to focus on running your business. You get to be creative, inspirational and completely you. More than anything I think that’s where people feel let down in direct sales because they are too used to just thinking like an employee. We all like to think we can do the job of our boss until we actually do it.
Retraining your brain to think like a business leader and entrepreneur takes some getting used to but there too you have help. When you really plug into the right company and team you find the support and training to really learn how to be successful. You learn the difference between desperate selling and selling to your niche of people you really love working with regularly. You realize the freedom you have to control your own future. Sure it may only start out as a few dollars that barely covers your monthly investment but over time it has real potential to lapse most of our full time salaries. As that progresses you start to realize how much control over your life you had given away at a job and your hunger to not let that happen anymore consumes you.
We talk of winning the lottery or getting to retirement as a way to end the need to go to our jobs ever again. It is a long time before retirement for most of us and if we lose a job or two or three along the way that impacts our ability to save for retirement and buy lottery tickets. To have full control of our life and experience it fully, the answer really is to start today making that happen. I believe we’ve been duped into thinking we need jobs. We don’t. What we need is work and there is a difference when that work is for something that is entirely our own and is something we love.
Back when our ancestors were farmers or small business owners with a shop in town, we were all entrepreneurs. We figured out how to sell what we made, grew, raised and created. We earned our own way in the world. Some were wildly successful and others struggled but we all had control of our lives. We all had the opportunity to make life what we wanted. As manufacturing emerged and people left their farms and businesses we became employees. We gave up our freedom for a dependence on another that promised security to take care of our needs. For many years that happened but with others determining our worth and contribution as represented in our pay. Here too, some did really well and others continued to eke out a living.
That story continues today.
If you want to make 2021 your year, invest in your freedom from dependence. When something threatens or comes out of nowhere that sets you back you can at least breathe and figure out what your next move should be. There is power in feeling in control in these situations. While the circumstances may still be scary (and they will be) we also see them as less desperate. We know we have choices and can do what is right for us. It may even be we don’t need to go to another job. The alternative is we can wish our days away until we retire or win the lottery. My choice is to live now and enjoy each day even if I have to work a little harder to create it. The difference is what I’m creating no one can take away.
If you’re ready to take control of your life and create the one you want, explore what it would mean to partner with me this year: https://www.dragonspitapothecary.com/grow