Deep breath (my mother would be so proud). I'm sitting at the airport in San Diego waiting for my flight to Dublin, Ireland. So this is it. The beginning of my 6-8+ month European adventure. I have plans to hit Paris, Germany, Italy, Greece, Spain, England, London, Northern Ireland (and who the heck knows where else and in what order).
I've shared a few reasons so far as to why I'm doing this:
- I've always wanted to travel the world (since I was a little girl).
- It's just the right time: I run a little empire from my laptop (so I can work from anywhere). It's quite frankly cheaper there than it is here in California anyhow. And I have no major 'responsibilities' here (no mortgage or hubby or kiddos).
- I couldn't think of a single reason not to.
But I missed sharing something else even bigger....
I want my life back!
And hell, I don't know if Europe is the answer. But staying at home, drinking too much champagne, continuing the status quo sure wasn't - I know that much.
So what do I mean when I say I want my life back?
I'm living the dream right? And absolutely, running my own successful business has absolutely also been a dream of mine since I was a little girl. And I'm so proud, humbled, and appreciative of that.
But there is so much more to life than just making a living. Do I love what I do? Do I love mentoring my team? And consulting with my clients? Abso-freaking-lutely.
But there is something major I have not been properly taking care of.....
Myself. My soul. My body (to be honest). My heart.
I knew I would start crying if I tried writing this in the airport, and here they are: the tears. The tears from the emotions that I normally keep at bay each day. And I don't keep them at bay because they are even attached to negative emotions, because often they are not, they are just attached to heavy emotions. And I don't usually 'have time' for heavy emotions. Because I have work to do.
I got here because for the last three years (yep, I've built all of this in only three years, and maybe in some folks books that's a snails pace, but I'm pretty darn proud of how far I've gotten in only three short years myself - considering I started at ground zero in terms of resources, knowledge and connections).
Anyway I worked harder these last three years than I ever even knew that I could. Business came first. Clients came first. Employees came first. The facebook messages and emails came first. And I? Well I came dead last. And I don't regret a single moment (I wouldn't change a thing). And I don't wish I was in anyone else's shoes. I absolutely love my shoes. And I'm going to keep wearing them for a long time. And I'm going to keep helping all the other Hot Messes out there for a long time too.
But it's time for me to take my life back.
You know - it breaks my heart to think of all the business owners out there who are working themselves to the bone. Some of them for very little pay (or even no pay) at that. If that's what feeds your soul, fine. But in this culture of hustle, hustle, hustle and never stop. Never take for yourself (that's selfish). Give. Give more. Give until it hurts. I call a big f*cking bullshit.
Now do we need to work hard to make our dreams come true? Oh hell yeah we do. I wouldn't be where I am if I hadn't. And I'm not going to stop working hard now either. But that's not my point. My point is that we CAN have both. And I want to prove it. I'm going to prove it. I'm proving it right now.
I don't want the empire or the success, if I can't feel so f*cking fulfilled in every area of life that all the hard work is without-a-doubt worth it.
Beyond clothing, or websites. I'm here to f*cking inspire. THAT is my passion. That is my mission. And I will NOT be the one to stand up and encourage anyone to work themselves to burnout and never stop to smell the roses. Or to build a business that isn't sustainable (and one of the keys here ladies, is to let go of some of that dang control and let go of some of that money too, delegate, you and your happiness and well-being are worth more than any bank account balance could ever be, don't forget that).
So do I feel a little guilty for taking this big step to take care of myself, and put myself first, and remember how to live again? Yeah. I do - to be honest! But I would feel more guilty in the long run for continuing to propagate this 'hustle harder than you breath' culture. For heaven's sake girl, take a breath! You deserve it. We all do.
Hope you will follow me along. I'll be sharing it all - you know it!
- Angela, Hot Mess Consulting