I originally posted this on LinkedIn and then took it a step further and shared to my Facebook business page and even boosted it to see what would happen.
I almost didn’t publish it but to my surprise, I received a tremendous amount of support, feedback and love from former colleagues, friends, and family.
Feedback from LinkedIn:
I didn’t invest any money on LinkedIn but after I saw the organic support I was receiving the same day and even throughout the week (still going), I shared a snippet of the post on Facebook and then added a link at the end of the Facebook post to encourage continued reading on LinkedIn.
Once I saw that the organic reach and engagement was expanding on it’s on, I boosted the post for just one day (little less than $5).
It wasn’t a viral post, but I was happy with the amount of link clicks and though there were not a huge amount of comments on Facebook and LinkedIn, I’ve had several people (still going) who spoke to me in person letting me know that they were either inspired or simply thanking me for being vulnerable to share.
Goes to show you that even if you don’t see a visible imprint on social media that there are some consuming your content in the dormant.
All that’s left to do now is share with you here if you didn’t catch it on LinkedIn (and of course are prompted to read). Keep reading below:
The regret of leaving my corporate job 4 years ago…
I was hired to work a corporate job my last semester of college in December 2006 before I even graduated and man was I on top of the world ecstatic about the opportunity!!
I started working January of 2007 which also required relocation from Brookhaven, Mississippi to Omaha, Nebraska.
On top of that, I had enlisted in the Air Force Reserve in March of 2003 so I was able to transfer to a reserve unit at Offutt Air Force Base about 25 minutes away from where I would be living.
Double on top of the world for me!!
2012 is when the spark ignited in my heart that I was born to be an entrepreneur (or so I thought).
After all, I had no clue what I really wanted to do with my life career-wise before college and even during.
My path to the corporate career world was based on looking at what everyone else told me and what I thought was the best depiction of the American dream for my life.
Not to mention that I didn’t have the best foundational maturity to deal with the corporate politics that I found myself facing as I worked for the best company and best job in the world.
Throughout the 6 years I worked there, I found myself being attracted to entrepreneurial people, ideas and programs.
I started to read everything that I could find and listen to on entrepreneurship and starting an online business.
All it took was an emotional twist of several months that came to a head and I found myself writing my resignation letter allowing 30 days for me to tie up work and train my team members on my job so that they would be set before I left.
Little did I know that the next few years would be some of the lowest points of my life.
I had a handful of clients before I left my job and figured I could continue to build from there with all this extra time!
I never factored in that clients can decide to end service and that I would need to be prepared for fluctuations and consistent marketing and connecting to bring on new clients.
I first left my job in February of 2013 and did OK for about 4 months.
Then things started to snowball…
My husband was working a traditional job which was a blessing but with the unstable income that I now had, we could not live at the financial level that we had been living when I had a guaranteed salary (if guaranteed is truly a thing).
Plus I had to shamefully get a job making about 3 quarters less than what I was making from my corporate job.
I felt a huge level of disappointment in myself.
Here I was an educated woman with a Bachelor’s degree and military experience now working a job that someone from high school could work.
Clearly I had jumped out of a plane with no clear landing plan.
Once the dust settled and I came to terms with my new normal.
I became content with working and worked hard (two jobs at one point) and gave up on my business plan and idea for a few months.
My attitude and demeanor remained positive though I still felt a huge amount of shame on the inside especially every time I ran into someone from my old job and they always asked the classic question:
“So how is business going?”
At first I would hesitate and say something like any combination of the following:
“It’s going great!” (which was not the truth at all but I was always told to stay positive and ‘fake it till you make it’)
“It’s a lot of work… (who knows what else I said to make it sound like I was doing OK)
Eventually I went back to my business idea and started taking on clients again and defining my services, the clients I wanted to work with, and how I wanted to work.
I started to grow more into myself and develop an attitude that this is my life in which I’m proud of and I will proudly live it and work how I see fit without shame or explanation.
Here are a few key things I learned the hard way:
- Never make a decision based on impulse unless you connect with it intuitively and believe that God told you to do it (plus be willing to humble yourself and do whatever it takes)
- Entrepreneurship requires patience (and hard work depending on your level of experience in the entrepreneurial game).
- Because entrepreneurship requires patience, be willing to put your head down and work even if you have to take on undesirable work or projects to build it.
- Enjoy the process and be grateful because there are no overnight successes.
- Do more than clients expect and look for ways to go the extra mile on every project.
My regret lasted about 2 years until I realized that this wasn’t the end…
During this journey, I’ve met and worked with entrepreneurs from several states across the nation and starting to connect with international clients more and more.
I dismissed the local business market for a while not realizing that people in the local community wanted to help and support me.
Now, I make it a point to be involved locally and support other local entrepreneurs.
I’ve traveled to Orlando, Los Angeles, Dallas and Chicago for entrepreneurial events (some free because I won an award – Yay!) and continuing to build wonderful relationships all over the world.
I get referrals more now than what I ever used to get.
My business income has increased every year, and I can actually pay monthly expenses!
I even work with a tax adviser now (huge for me).
Many of my fears like being shy and speaking in front of people were broken.
Well I still get jitters, but I say ‘Yes’ now whereas years ago I wouldn’t have had the courage to say ‘Yes.’
Entrepreneurship is a journey that requires enjoying the process, throwing ego out the window and down-right doing what you gotta do!
If I feel I need to work a part-time gig or event to boost my business or accelerate paying down debt, no shame in my game.
I absolutely enjoy the game and process of entrepreneurship! It’s refreshing but not for the faint at heart.
To your success,
P.S. – Are you enjoying the process with where you are right now – whether that be working a corporate job, being a stay at home mom, or playing the game of entrepreneurship?