Sheep & Goats at large, I am frightened. I know I am not alone, but the fear is so large now it is sort of preventing me from talking about anything else. Have to say it aloud to start maneuvering around it. So here I go: I am scared to death of what comes next.
I was going to tell you a funny story about the cat, but well.....that would be a kind of bullshit, yes? (It was a good story though)
Business is bad. We've had three of the worst months ever - a term I keep having to redefine - in the last 8 months. Our single biggest customer hasn't made a substantial order from us in a year. Yesterday I cut people's hours 20% and my own salary for the second time.
Today I have to rewrite my personal budget and decide if I can still afford to fund 100% of the healthcare coverage I offer the people who work for me.
Some of this is not my fault - the lack of liquidity in the marketplace is a far more effective illustration of trickle down theory than actual trickle down economics ever proved to be.
But the most paralyzing thing about what's happening is that some of it is my fault and that is not something I need to make any more excuses about. I don't mean that in a self-immolating way, but yesterday I was hit in the face with the wet trout of truth.
I have been reading The Fluent Self on and off since JoVE
first mentioned it and I find it a weird combination of compelling and
repellent, in the way of things that have a message you do not want to
hear. I have been talking about feeling stuck for months. Years
really. And the Fluent Self is about destuckification. Terrifying.
So I read and then avoid, read and avoid. Yesterday, I read "It's Not the Economy" and this I cannot avoid, this is the wet trout between the eyes.
Read it, I'll wait.
I have this love/hate relationship with my business - love the independence, really not interested in the product. Hate the responsibility, love the flexibility. Wish someone else was holding me accountable, can no longer imagine working for any one else. Unable to visualize how to transform it into something that is weighted more to the plus than the minus. Stuck. Much rather think about yarn and perfume and books and love and friends and sex and cooking and the cat and family and ......
What I am living is more than duty and less than commitment, a fucked up middle ground that has bred a kind of panicked paralysis where I can come up with 1000 reasons why changing it for the better is impossibly out of reach and then sit there for another six months screwing around on the internet and seeing it get that much more out of hand.
I think I have been waiting for the universe to make the decision for me.
My therapist often reminds me that silence is not empty and now I need to add the correlary that inaction is a choice.
I had this revelation yesterday as I read up on marketing consultants: everything I respond to in the material I am reading is aimed at people in creative fields - people selling their ideas and their work rather than goods. I am not a creative person, but I do not need to be an artist to work in a field with more congenial values. I need a new career. But instead of letting this one implode and losing years to self-loathing, maybe I can transform it so I am not hanging my employees out to dry, so I can close or sell or grow it so it gives me more options, not fewer.
(Message to the universe: I am looking (actually, actively, looking as opposed to hoping vaguely one falls from the sky into my parking lot) for a non-sleazy marketing consultant/business consultant with a perspective that straddles both my industry and my personality.
And as long as you are looking into stuff, Universe, a yoga teacher. The right kind. kthxbye)
*title belongs to the goddess Claudia