by Megan of Lilac Saloon
10 Reasons Why I Love Being My Own Boss
1.) Not Dreading Mondays
You know that feeling. That very specific heavy, horrible feeling of dread on Sunday night. You just really, really do not want to go to sleep because you know that when you wake up...it is Monday and it is time to go back to work. You don’t feel in control. You have to go. What other choice do you have? One of the unexpected side effects of running my own little business is that I no longer have that well-known feeling of Monday Morning Dread. It just doesn’t exist! I wake up every morning with a totally new feeling...looking forward to sipping coffee with my husband while reading a book or flipping through the news on our phones. And then I start my day. I don’t feel like I’m being forced to do anything and I don’t feel out of control in my own life. Empowering!
2.) Thinking Outside The Schedule
It’s a definite shift in thinking when you are the one deciding when and how much you will work. It was hard for me to let myself feel like it was ok to work differently than the normal corporate hours. I had to let go of that in order to adopt new standards. I let life into my schedule, and really, broke free from a schedule. Going to the grocery store in the middle of the day and starting up a new embroidery at 8pm is all ok when you are owning your day. As long as I know what I need to get done, and do it!
3.) Personal Growth
Having to do every job in your own little business means that you have to use all the parts of your brain...the creative, the problem solving, the analytical, the intuitive. Having to decide when to do things, how to do things and even just what to do at any given moment definitely has you thinking, constantly! All this responsibility really creates opportunity for personal growth. Owning all of my actions gives me a new perspective on what I’m capable of, what I need to work on, and how I set and accomplish goals. You can grow at your own pace and achieve the goals that YOU want to achieve, which is the best!
4.) Spontaneous Thrift Store trips & Coffee Breaks (guilt free)
I love being able to act on a whim! I’m a planner, but I do enjoy bouts of spontaneity because it keeps things fresh! Breaking up the work day with a browse through the thrift shop or a trip to buy some new thread colors really does keep the inspiration flowing. Having a day that is too predictable gets so stale. I love being able to decide to change it up whenever I want to!
5.) Taking Photos, Reading Blogs, Browsing Etsy, Bike Riding (are part of the job)
I am not getting paid by the hour. My work day isn’t a day of getting paid. I browse Etsy, take a little bike ride, read blogs and take photos of my studio or brush my cat. These things make me happy and I believe that the happiness translates into the things I create. That’s important!! Allowing myself to enjoy those "job perks" refreshes me for when it's time to dig back into the work!
6.) Cultivating My Perfect Work Environment (surrounding myself with things I love!)
Does anyone like working in a gray cubicle? How much do you love being surrounded by the noise of phones ringing off the hook, printers printing, people gossiping and paper being shredded? Oh and how about those fluorescent lights! Being in an environment that is calming, beautiful and inspiring has a tremendous effect on your mood and your outlook. I love being able to create the little world around me to be inspiring to ME. I’ve got natural light filtering in through white curtains, fresh color on the walls, piles of materials just begging to be made into something and music playing at just the right volume - or even just silence, at my choosing. It’s comfortable and less distracting to have my surroundings fit my needs. I spend way less time being annoyed!
7.) Direct Feedback
When I sell something, I know that someone likes it. It is a pat on the back and it is encouragement to move forward in that direction. If something sits and sits and sits in the shop - it is a subtle gesture saying “move on!”. Making decisions and then being able to directly see the results of those decisions means that I learn much more quickly. I learn what is going right and what is going wrong - rather than just handing the work over to my boss and never seeing it again - or waiting a whole year for that good old Employee Review.
8.) Self Expression and Making Connections
When you’re in the handmade business, you are truly expressing yourself through what you make. It is not about moving product and it is not about profit margins - it’s about connecting with people. There’s a really special thing that happens when you make something from your heart, with your hands, and someone else feels that it was made just for them. WalMart can never, ever, compete with that. Every person that reaches out to me to ask for a custom order - in a tiny way - becomes my friend. We talk about their wedding, their home, their newborn baby...and we connect. It’s more enriching than your average trip to the mall. It feels good to be working toward a goal to make someone happy, make a connection with them and express my ideas through my work all at the same time!
9.) Best Work Uniform Ever
I can dress up fancy. I can wear sweatpants. I can wrap a scarf around my head. I can go all day without putting socks and shoes on. I can wear make-up, or not. I can match, or not! I can wear crazy layers like an Olsen Twin/Bag Lady, or jeans and a tee. It never matters, unless I want it to!! Pretty nice perk, right?!
10.) Being In Charge of my Goals
In a job where someone else is your boss, you are always working to achieve the goals that they have set for you. Those goals may not be in line with the direction that you want to lead yourself in. I love being able to make my own goals and then strive to reach them! In this way, I know that I’m going my own direction in life. Maybe this makes me a stubborn person - like a 3 year old who yells “I can do it myself!!” - because that is basically what this is all about! I can do it myself - watch me! ;) If you want to try to “find” happiness...try reaching a difficult goal that you’ve set for yourself. Take a leap and make it happen! You will totally not regret it.