Monday, 20 May 2013

daily battle

Day 20 of Blog Every Day In May. Get real. Share something you're struggling with right now.

This May Challenge. I am struggling with this May challenge. Hehe. No but really. I am.

Besides that, I think my number one struggle at this juncture is keeping balanced and staying disciplined and being proud of the work I do every day. I guess that's three things. Let me set the record straight for those of you who may be confused about what I do. I run this blog semi-professionally, which is extremely time consuming, but I also launched my own photography business a year ago this month, and between those two things (the blog and the photography), I have more than a full time job working for myself. For all the time I spend on the blog, I spend twice as much on the photography. It's wonderful... working for myself... it really is, although the pay fluctuates and, honestly, I sometimes usually make less than what I made waiting tables in college. That's frustrating, but I know it comes with the territory of building your own business, and it helps that I can see a great statistical improvement from month to month over the last year.

I struggle, though, with a couple of things related to all this. One, I still get this nagging feeling that people in my life think I don't do anything.  That I have all the free time in the world. That unless I'm making a professional salary and going to a "real" job, it doesn't count. Like maybe it's a fun hobby I happen to make money off of? This really gets to me, and of course maybe I'm projecting those feelings onto people and they're not really feeling them at all, though I do still worry that they are. I also feel embarrassed, a little, that if I had a "real" job and contributed more to our bills, we wouldn't have had to move from our beautiful home and live with mom while something more affordable is being built. But I really, really try not to go there. I think doing what you love and what brings you joy is always, always more important, and will always, always pay off in the end. It's worth sacrificing for.

I work all day long and on weekends, too, but I think what I'm struggling with most right now is feeling proud of how my time is spent. I am someone who thrives off of accountability (preferably to a boss-type figure who actually pays me in praise for my work/a raise/a promotion/a good grade) and even after a year of owning my own business, I still find it difficult to take myself seriously in this role as my own boss. I lack discipline, and even though I work all the damn time, I recognize that my actual productivity could be lots better.  My boss - she's a pretty easy task-master. She doesn't crack the whip too hard. I'm not that scared of her. If I get really stressed out, she says to me, she says, "Jenni, I think the answer to this is a nap and a fig newton or three." And before you know it, there's two hours of our day gone. If you know what I mean.

So that's my current struggle. I struggle with being proud of what I do during this stage before it really, really takes off and gets legit in the eyes of others, I struggle with making and sticking to rules for myself, and I struggle with managing my time most wisely and most profitably. Working from home and being an entrepreneur seems glamorous or awesome or whatever, but it takes a certain kind of person to succeed at it, and I have this nagging worry that maybe I'm not that right kind.

But maybe, just maybe, that's exactly why I will be.

What about you? What are you struggling with right now? Lay it on us!

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