When I decided to become a freelancer a couple years ago, I was definitely sold the dream. Work when you want, spend time with loved ones, pick your own rates, etc., etc. I still believe I made the right choice, but nestled in those dreams were some startling nightmares I didn’t prepare for. The stress can be unreal.
If you’ve taken a moment to look around lately, you may have noticed that the world is becoming a giant dumpster fire. Socially, politically, economically, environmentally, we’re living in troubled times. And I feel like I keep looking over my shoulder waiting for the four horsemen of the apocalypse to ride past me.
It happens every year in December. The world starts to slow down as people anticipate the well deserved break on the horizon. But once we ring in the new year, it’s time to get back to work. In theory.
When I was a kid, my material possessions brought me a lot of comfort. In fact, the closer I kept them, the better. So, everything special to me got to live in my bed. Or, it lived on the floor right next to my bed, where I could easily reach it.
You want to do something, but you can’t bring yourself to face the frozen wind blowing tiny ninja stars into your eyes.
The day I’m writing this, I was up before the sun. WAY before. I jumped out of bed at 4:30 am, went for a run, and completed a strength training workout before walking the dog and starting my workday.
If you’ve followed this blog for any amount of time, you know that I have a tendency to make big, impulsive decisions without always stopping to think of the possible consequences. The benefit of this is that when I let my passion lead without pausing to let my fear stop me, more often than not, good things happen. But it also means that when bad things happen, they can be disastrous.
When I feel overwhelmed, I imagine myself as a bricklayer. I try not to picture the finished project or every painstaking step it will take to get there. Imagining that kind of immense scale will give you vertigo.
I recently learned about a study that tested the best way to become proficient at a task. They did this by looking at how two groups of people learned to make clay pots. In one corner you have the ‘studiers’ who were asked to spend the majority of their allotted time researching best practices, new techniques, etc. In the other corner you have the ‘doers’ who were asked to spend their entire allotted time making pots and learning on the go.