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What Being Self Employed Has Taught Me About Myself

As soon as the clock stroke midnight as we moved into 2014, I took one of the biggest plunges of my life. Nope, I didn’t get married or have a baby—in fact I had already accomplished those things! I took a big
leap of faith and became 100% self employed.

My career path has been a huge journey. A challenge. A wonderful experience with sometimes more downs than ups—but all the blood, sweat, and tears have been worth it in the end and part of the big picture that I dream about in bed at night. I own two businesses. One is a fashion/motherhood blog that I operate with a wonderful team of women and have been fortunate enough to work with some amazing brands. I also own a business that teaches blogging classes here in New York City to people who want to work from home, blog, and make money. Oh—and I’m also freelance writer and consult with companies to help pay the bills whenever the other businesses aren’t. I wear many hats, wouldn’t you say?

Every day is an exciting test of my patience, strength, bank account, and organization. I never know what everyday holds, as much as I try to plan everything out, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. I’ve learned a lot so far in 2014.

I’m able to push my “must have control” feelings aside and roll with the punches. Like I said, you never know what the day will bring. Projects and opportunities come along that need to be jumped upon right away in order to make the deal and most of the time you can’t plan those moments out. I guess you could say that I’m a little obsessive and a little bit controlling, so letting go and leaving things up to the business gods is difficult for me. But I’ve learned that it’s something that I need to do for the sake of my business.

I’m a hustler! Yup, I never thought I would hear myself mutter these words but it has become true. I put myself “out there” everyday and promote myself in ways that I never thought were possible in order to bring exposure, notoriety, and recognition to my businesses. And you know what? I’m having FUN doing it!

I’m confident and able to speak my mind more than ever. Being confident and able to speak your mind is always a great skill to have, but I never needed to use it as much as I do now. I’ve been in situations where I’ve needed to defend my writing and decisions that I have made—and I’m able to do it no problem! This shy girl from Pittsburgh is able to put people in their place if need be and call out those who need called out!

Flexibility is my new favorite word. Being so used to working a 9-5, only having certain holidays off and needing to ask permission to leave early for doctor’s appointments was what I was strictly used to. But that all changed in 2014 and the only person I answer to is myself. I absolutely love having a flexible schedule and being able to take my son to and from school—I can even accompany him on a field trip if I want. It’s truly liberating!

I go through more post-its than you would think is humanly possible. Post-its are pretty much my BFF these days. I know there are countless programs for tech lovers that are meant to improve organization and collect your thoughts in one place, but I’m old fashioned in this sense. I love writing everything down and using post-its to their fullest extent—I pretty much think I keep them in business!

Are you self employed? What have you learned about yourself?

Comments

  • Love Love Love this Allison!
    I have been self employed for many years as a beautician. I then took the plunge to work full time on my new website… Women Make Waves! I am working long long hours but its for myself so it doesn’t feel like work if that makes sense! I really enjoy working for myself, I can work the hours I choose, be around for my family and hopefully, ill never have to be employed by anyone else again!! xx

  • Sharlie Melly Sharlie Melly says:

    I have been self employed for two years and have never looked back! It’s hard work but so rewarding! I can never make appointments with friends and I never know what I’m doing the following day, my life revolves around how busy work is but I wouldn’t change it for the world, I can do things with the kids and work from the park or the beach (thank god for smartphones!) xx

  • Thanks for the feedback Brooke & Sharlie! It’s so great being in a community of women who “get it”! There is nothing like being your own boss!

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