Sometimes we have an idea in our head and we know exactly how it should go – the timing, the place, the people. When I planned my departure from the University of St. Thomas that’s exactly what I thought. Again, I thought I was “in control” of the situation. It almost makes me laugh now. I had an idyllic plan. I was going to have a balanced life as a mom. I was going to work 20-hours remotely every week, keep the boys home with me two days, write more in The Linda Project, oh and have enough time to keep the house clean, cook, and maybe even squeeze in some self-care. Yep, I thought I was going to be Wonder Woman. We really can have it all, right!?
Well, things don’t always look or turn out the way we plan them. I did indeed start out working 20 hours a week, 100 percent remotely, for a start-up medical company. I kept the boys home at least one to two days a week throughout the summer, but somehow I wasn’t able to squeeze in all of that other stuff. I struggled finding a balance again, but in a different way. Exactly what I was yearning for, balance. More time with my children, more time with my husband, more time for myself, and fulfillment from working for a company I believed in.
Well, one thing that happens when you become your own boss is that you gain an enormous amount of flexibility, but you lose all the structure that’s in place for you. I am naturally an achiever (it’s true, it’s my No. 1 strength according to Strengths Finder), I found myself fitting in everything else, but time for myself. I prioritized making money and hitting my number of hours, I spent time with my boys and Matt, when I did have some spare time I tried to fill it with cleaning or the other things on my to-do list. I learned that it didn’t really matter if I had a full-time job or not, writing and self-care are the things that will always be the first to go for me. But, I’m not ready to accept defeat when it comes to balance.
I’m just over three months in on this journey and I have learned a lot – mostly about myself. I learned that I yearn for structure. I learned (and this is very hard for me to admit), in the past I put so much of my self-worth into my job titles and my salary. Removing these items was humbling and scary at the same time. I wasn’t sure “who” I was the first couple of months. I felt like an impostor saying I owned my own business, I felt like I couldn’t really say I was a “blogger,” because I wasn’t living up to my own expectations. I honestly felt a little lost. At the end of the day, the thing that I did realize is that it’s not what I do, it’s who I am that really matters. I am a Child of God. He has a plan for me, that isn’t what my plan is. It’s already proving to be so much more and better than what I came up with.
Going into the second-quarter of “my new lifestyle” my day-to-day has significantly changed. My contract is complete with the medical start-up company, but I have gained two new clients. I am working on-site at the Science Museum of Minnesota three days a week in their mission advancement department, and I am officially a consultant now with Groundwork Digital. Our first project together will be working on the University of British Columbia’s giving website. I’m thrilled to be working in philanthropy again and I am loving the balance of being on and off-site. At the beginning of this journey I didn’t know any of the people that I’m working with now, but through wonderful friends and past colleagues new doors have opened.
There’s so much to share with all of you on what I have learned. But, for now, I want to really encourage anyone who’s walking a scary or unknown path to know that He has a plan for you. He will bring the right people. He will bring you to the right place. I know He will, because He did it for me. The other piece of my journey that has been so powerful for me is learning who I am. It’s scary to lose the titles that people put on you and that we honestly put on ourselves. It’s scary when the dollar-value others put on your worth is removed, but you are so much more than all of that. You are His. I am His. I need to remind myself of this everyday as well.
I thought it would be fun to give you a peek into my home office to show you where the “magic” happens 🙂 Photos credits: Kelsey Rothe!! Thanks, girl!
Blessings to you and your family!
Three items I’m grateful for:
- Amazing friends and former colleagues who believed in me enough to recommend me!
- My family for their endless support throughout this transition – a big thank you to Michelle for walking with me during this journey!
- The excitement of new beginnings!