…and why you should too
Ever since the Internet became a big deal (back in the 90’s), I have always dreamed of starting an online business of my very own. I can’t say those early attempts were very fruitful. I think I ended up stuffing envelopes at some point. At another point, I read tarot cards for a psychic line. Oh, those were the days.
My dream went dormant for a bit as I was raising my two little ones. I didn’t have much time to think about starting an online business at all. I was perfectly happy teaching. I was going to do it forever. I was happy with the way that things were. I had gone to college. I did everything I needed to do to be successful. Things had fallen into place. My career was STABLE, with promise of retirement, benefits, summers off (yay, I’m a teacher!), and plenty of opportunities for me to visit my kids where they were at all day long…their school.
Starting a business? Yeah. That sounded really super unstable. Too dicey. I’m also not a gambler, and it felt a lot like gambling to me.
Starting an online business sounded horribly irresponsible.
But then…things changed. In March of 2014 my stepdaughter took her life. I was in a daze, trying to make sense of the life around me. I desperately wandered through the crowds during those days leading up to her funeral, trying desperately to connect to them on an emotional level. I knew they felt as empty as I did. More than anything, I remember wandering around the funeral grounds through what seemed like a sea of kids that appeared to be terribly sad. I recognized a young version of myself in them. Hopeless. Rejected. Keenly aware that the education system really didn’t have my best interest at heart. These youth seemed to all be hurting, victims of the systems that seemed to be playing puppeteer with their lives. They would continue hurting, and the adults in their lives would continue to push the same outdated systems on their children that had always been pushed on them.
And here I was…in the front lines of a system that I knew HAD to do better by our children. At the same time, as a teacher, I was actually the low man on the totem pole. I knew that policies and initiatives that were (and still are) negatively impacting our kids come from the top-down. Teachers that want to keep their jobs will do whatever they need to do, even if it means going against everything they know to be right.
This isn’t acceptable. Our kids deserve better. For them to do better, we need to do better. And to me, this means following my heart…all the way until I succeed in starting an online business on my own.
Starting an online business became the most responsible thing I could possibly do.
I have an amazing astrologer friend, DK Brainard, that takes the firm stand that we are living in a time where the systems around us are crumbling. This means that the jobs that we once came to depend upon no longer be there in a few short years. There is evidence that the middle class is shrinking, and frankly, I don’t really feel comfortable sending my kids to college for a career that may or may not exist in two years. The point DK raises is that wealth is going to come-a flowin’ in to those of us that follow our natural gifts and talents, and pursue a lifestyle that FEELS good. You can hear him talk more about it on his Naked Songwriter podcast episode: The Pleasure Revolution.
That’s right…It is time to explore. This means that we need to dip our toes into what FEELS right on a heart and soul level. I know that this isn’t easy to do…especially if you’ve been swimming comfortably in the pool of certainty in a sweet government job (like I have been) for the past 20 years. You may be wondering: how in the hell am I supposed to follow what feels good? A.) It’s irresponsible. I have a retirement to worry about. B.) I don’t even know what that means. For this, I wrote this article: How to Start Living a Purpose-Driven Life.
Once you discover what sets your soul on fire, it’s time to take it to the streets and open yourself up for business.
Nobody can possibly offer the combination of skills you can offer, in the way that only you can.
We don’t need more farmers or pricey education systems to teach our young adults a bunch of skills they may or may not use in a few years. In fact, I believe that in the coming years, kids with entrepreneurship skills will have a leg up on everybody else that will be competing for scarce job openings. Once upon a time, folks wanted to own their own business for the freedom of it. We’re looking ahead into a time when the job market simply will not look the same. We’re going to need artists that have incredible people skills. Bright and shiny personalities that know how to care for others on a deep level. Mechanics that also have a passion for history. You never know where crazy combinations of skills will take you.
I know that this all may sound a little “out there”. But I firmly believe that the world needs for you to follow your heart. The best way to do this is to combine your gifts and talents with what feels good so you can create a business that is not only profitable, but is aligned with your truth. In the end, it benefits us all. Before long, the world around us is going to look completely different, and you are going to need a skillset that is adaptable. More than anything, we need clever, brilliant little souls to help us humans to fix what is terribly broken. This can’t happen if we are sitting here, desperately clinging to ideas and systems that are 100 years old.
So if you’ve got a great idea for a business that you want to birth into the world, now is the time to start entertaining it. I know that my biggest driving force to make sure that I succeed at this gig is to show my girls what is possible. I also want to be the one they go to when they decide it’s time for them to dip their own toes into starting an online business of their own. Until that day comes, I will continue to dink around and dabble, doodle and try until I see my efforts bear fruit.
Then I can say to my kids, “Hey! The view is great from up here! And it feels GREAT!”
I’d love to know what you thought of this post. Leave a comment below, and let me know if you have any questions.