Updated: Mar 20
I’m not going to lie, this week has been difficult on me and I’ve had a hard time finding the will to write this post. It hasn’t been tough the entire week, just Monday, but it kind of shook me up the rest of the week and I thought it would be interesting for you all to see that being a start-up can be difficult.
On Monday there were about 20 different things that needed to be finished. Not all in one day, but throughout the week. It was really difficult to concentrate and I just kept jumping from a Google doc to an excel sheet to my website to the blog and repeat. Monday is kind of a blur and I don’t remember a lot. The feeling of dread and failure kept creeping up a lot and was overwhelming. There was a to-do list to accomplish and a strange feeling of urgency to finish them all in one sitting. I tried to take a break and do the dishes because if I was doing something at least it was something productive, right? Nope. The to-do list was still there and by doing the dishes I was just avoiding it.
By taking a step back and writing everything down on an actual list, instead of looking at my calendar at time slots, I was able to better visualize what I needed to finish and what days were the busiest.
Tuesday I had 2 business courses to attend, the one for the Stiwdio I am a part of and Helen Corsi-Cadmore’s course, Positive Disruption. I was still feeling low from having so much to do, but Helen’s course gave me clarity on focusing on the important things first. And it also was reassuring to know that others feel similar in feeling deflated some days. What I took from her course that day was this: Take time to work ON the company, not IN the company. Setting aside time to plan for the week/month/quarter/year will help with the overwhelm. Because of that I’m allocating Friday’s to my planning out my days (minus half of today, I’m writing this blog for all of you lovely people). Side bar: On Tuesday I had all this energy which meant I couldn’t sit still. So I turned on some music and had a dance party before getting back to work. (“Shake it Off” from Sing, “Hoe Down” By Miley Cyrus, and “I Like to Move It” from Madagascar.)
Wednesday I was feeling much better and was taking one task at a time. I joined an informative call with a recruiter to talk about a possible art director role that was open. It wasn’t a right fit but I met a lovely recruiter who gave me some pointers. It was also a big step in taking chances. There have been opportunities missed because I was scared to jump or afraid I wasn’t qualified enough, but this was one step towards being courageous and confident in who I am. I’m glad I did that. I also met up with some friends for a movie night (Hocus Pocus 2 is amazing!) I could have easily backed out saying I was too exhausted but I needed to get out of my own head and house for some self care.
Thursday I had an all day course with Creative Enterprise which helped me overcome my lasting feelings of disappointment. The biggest takeaway I had was: Being a founder is difficult but it’s the challenge we enjoy. So it’s ok to have off-days, as long as we don’t wallow in them. Meeting all these amazing business owners who can say “Yes, we’ve been there before, you’re not alone” only encouraged me to work harder. If they could get past these bad days then so could I!
Friday has been easy with my task list slowly going down. It started with a meeting about my VISA progress and some insightful comments and help have landed me here, writing this blog with ease. Compared to Monday where I was low in spirit, frazzled about what I needed to finish, and feeling beaten, I am flying! I have some amazing support behind me helping me, I have kept going and that’s the most I could ask of myself this week.
I think we all fall into these pre-notions that we have to do absolutely everything as soon as possible and forget that we’re human. Sometimes we don’t have the focus to write a blog, write out a strategic payment plan, do a financial forecast, or meet with friends when you feel drained. It’s 100% ok to feel like the world is falling around you. If I could show you pictures from my lowest moments, you would see a huddled ball of blankets on the bed listening to Starset on repeat not moving. It’s ok to do one task on your to-do list (or none) and say “That’s it, I need some time to reflect and be away from work.” It’s how we react to these moments that define who we are. My mom always said, “When you wake up in the morning, make your bed. Because if you do nothing all day, you can say you made your bed and you did something.” And she’s right (I don’t make my bed though, I usually do dishes, I know, I’m a freak)...
The point I’m trying to make but probably messing up is, it’s ok to have bad days. We all need them. We all need to sit in bed watching Big Bang Theory and staring off into the void. And if you ever (doesn’t matter who) need someone to talk to, please don’t be afraid to reach out. I can’t solve problems, but sometimes you just need someone to message and vent to. I am GREAT at listening to rants. I love them! Lay them on me! Just ask my friend Hollie, she and I have some great rant sessions.
Please remember you’re not alone and I’m always around if you need me.