When one door closes, another opens.
When one chapter ends, another begins.
A woman who changes her hair is about to change her life.
Yup, all those those things.
I’ve been talking about this big news for a few weeks, simply because I’m terrible at secret keeping and it’s taken a lot of planning and time to transition. But we’re here, and it’s finally time…
What a surreal day this is. I’m writing this in the clouds – which seems like such a symbolic representation for the dream this is. I’m on my way to Phoenix, Arizona for Beautycounter’s annual consultant conference. It was less than one year ago when I attended this event and had an overwhelming realization. I wasn’t as happy as I told myself that I was being a dual career woman. Crying, no – sobbing, followed as a speaker told the story of how she quit her 20 year career to pursue self-employment full-time. I admitted out loud to myself and my team that I wanted that for myself; I declared that I wanted to spend more time with my family, to have better work-life balance, and to make my dream a reality.
And today, that dream has come true.
Yesterday was the first day of my new reality in being my own boss. And you know what I did? Went to bed early. I have so much planned for the betterment of our lives! Our family will be spending the entire summer together, without me “going to work” or burning the candle at both ends after I get home from work. I couldn’t have imagined the range of emotions associated with this freedom: joy, nervousness, fear, relaxation.
As the sole breadwinner for our family of 5, this is no small feat. We have written multiple bestselling cookbooks, run a blog for 9 years, and explored a multitude of business ventures through that avenue. I was always chasing the next affiliate partner to pay for the blog’s staff’s salaries (since I couldn’t do it all). We never really turned much of a profit, even when we were pushing so hard. None of it was ever stable, steady, or substantial enough, for me to consider leaving my corporate career.
I’ve been working 21 years in varying corporate offices.
Like the speaker who inspired me, Ayesha Dawley, my career was also a 20-year tenure. I began working in corporate America in 1998, as a Junior in high school. After winning state recognition for fast and accurate typing skills, my “Word Processing” teacher (how’s that for a throwback for you) got me an interview with a Fortune 500 company, and I was hired on the spot. I worked there for 2 years before college, from school straight to the office before getting home at nearly 9pm. Where I’d then study, sleep and start over. I then did the same thing and worked full time through college night classes.
When I went to University I only applied to one school. I wanted to work as an activist with the Government, as a lobbyist “for the good of people.” I would have made a really good lawyer. In fact, my career ended up looking a lot like being a corporate lawyer. I had the best year professionally, giving International webinars and speaking at the biggest conferences in the industry. I am respected in my field and enjoyed my job. Which is why it has so hard to leave; but, my dream looked more like the Notorious R.B.G. [side note, if you haven’t yet watched that documentary, please do!]
A year into my Political Science program I realized my impression through rose-colored glasses wasn’t the reality of how the system worked, and I switched majors. Despite having incredible academic accomplishments in math and science, I got a Bachelors of Arts in English. I wanted to try my hand at being an activist through words, and as a fallback plan I’d be a teacher, or, really, I could be anything with an English degree I told myself.
I had always planned on using my words to be an activist.
The truth is, my English degree is for a concentration in “cultural criticism” and I minored in Women’s Studies. I’m not someone with a background in marketing, media, or business. I created my careers by putting all of myself into them. I feel passionate about certain topics or philosophies, and I’m good at over-sharing about them.
Often I dream of using that degree the way I intended: to be a voice that helps change the world.
I used this platform to do just that for nearly a decade now. From posts on sizism and self acceptance to encouragement for us all to love, accept and respect ourselves – mind and body. This platform has been a place where we muse on concepts that matter. I enjoy topics that expand our minds and encourage us to be our best selves.
However, there is only so much I can do. When a demanding full-time job occupies 50-60 hours a week, you don’t have time for everything you want to explore. Add to that a team of hundreds of entrepreneurs I mentor through team meetings or one-on-one coaching sessions, a podcast that takes up an evening a week, a blog and social media that requires maintenance… there’s no time for my family, my husband, my friends. And there’s no time for me.
Today I’ve changed everything.
I was able to write this because I want to. Because I don’t have e-mail to catch-up on or documents to review. I am my own boss, and what an insanely amazing gift that is. A gift YOU gave me. By being here reading this. For supporting our affiliate links. By purchasing our cookbooks. For sharing our message with the world, you allow your voice to be amplified and in exchange allow us to put (real) food on the table.
What can you expect going forward?
The priority is my family. We plan to spend the summer traveling together, because we can. My boys are at that amazing age where they’re curious, will remember memories we create, and don’t yet hate their parents (though, unfortunately, they do smell quite terrible).
The priority is me. More sleep, more exercise, better lifestyle choices. Topics I want to write about or explore, like how amazing Captain Marvel and Shrill are – and why. Maybe even a podcast with Matt, because he’s amazing and so smart and more of a humanist than even me. And exploring topics with his brand fills my soul.
The priority is you. I can now fill my time and that space of my brain previously occupied by the complex business matter I once managed with the creative content that I think about, or discuss with Matt, but have to set aside because I simply don’t have the time or ability to share. The backlog of recipes I want to create, test, and post will emerge. And who knows what else I’ll find along this journey for you all!
Want to join me?
None of this would have been possible without being a brand ambassador and leader with Beautycounter. I mentioned this as being my rock – the stable, steady, sustainable income I can count on to pay our family’s bills. The customers who have chosen to support us in switching to safer personal care has made this possible. The team of 300+ diverse women (and 2 men!) who are a part of my team have made this dream a reality. Each of them with their own businesses, hopes, and dreams with varied backgrounds.
I recently posted about how this also helped me fulfill my dream of being an activist in lobbying for safer personal care for everyone. This job has brought together my passions and allowed me to be my own boss. No commute. Being with my family more. If that’s something you dream of, whether you’re able to admit it yet or not, I’d love to talk to you about how this may work for your life. As little or as much as you want to do in your Beautycounter business, every single person a part of this mission is contributing to making the world a better, safer place. I’d love for you to be a part of this journey with me! E-mail me or comment for more info ♥
Want to support us in this endeavor? Thank you!
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Wanna hear more of the story? Tune in tomorrow to our podcast, The Paleo View!