Growing a Business, Growing a Self

So a week into my new scheduling routine, I’ve discovered a few interesting revelations.

The first is, in general, I’m about a day behind. Well, once I finish this post, a half day. (Short, quiet, private celebration.)

That’s considerably better than I expected to do, especially given the scope of work to be done.

And that would be the second realization: the scope of the work to be done.

When I started this venture, I felt as if I were ‘playing business.’ Sort of like ‘playing house’ but with more responsibility, effort, and trepidation. I spent much of my work time researching, learning, trying, and failing. Often asked what I had done/accomplished at the end of any given day, I would invariably make something up as I really had nothing to show for my time. Worse, when I did manage to produce something remarkable – miraculous by my standards – I was rewarded with blank stares that either knew not of what I spoke or glared with the disappointment that lack of surprise can cause. “Yeah. So?” became my friends’ and family’s typical response, though most were more polite about it.

What they were really asking was, “Alex, you’re a bright woman who can do pretty much anything you set your mind to. I don’t understand why you’re so impressed with yourself. I knew you could do it. I see this all the time. Of course you could figure it out.”

Cold. I know.

It’s like having to lose a hundred pounds and being super excited that you’re down 2 this week, especially after that Super Bowl party last weekend!

But I know how much of myself I’ve had to spend to achieve every single little success. I know exactly how much time, energy, effort, sweat, and sorrow each step forward has cost me. When I look back at the frustrations of first trying to learn some measure of competence with WordPress, I could laugh out loud. How excited and frightened I was upon receiving that first manuscript. Okay, that doesn’t seem to lessen much, although I am enjoying that more and more! And how I panicked at having to rework the entire website after I’d put so much into the original, only to find the improvement so great that I couldn’t really remember the first one.

Every step in the process has taught me some lesson. At times the lesson brought a new or improved skill into my repertoire. Others gave a new understanding, a clarity, that helped to build the foundations of my project. And others served to steer me in a new direction I hadn’t known possible. So much of what I do today is the result of the constant layering of skills and talents, ideas and purpose. Sometimes you do have to stop and smell the roses – or re-evaluate your schedule and goals. We can’t truly appreciate how far we’ve come unless we turn and look back every once in a while.

This is the cost of building a worthy, solid, and lasting business. I have to pay my dues. I have to learn the ropes. I have to grow with it. It is only in this manner that I will ever be deserving of the success I see for Romantic Shorts.

I guess the real lesson here is to just relax. There will come a day when I will look back at these days and wonder why I ever had such a ridiculously difficult time with Facebook!

Enjoy the journey. Getting there is all the battle.

Dream big,

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