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Archive for the ‘money’ Category

Still Rowing

It’s funny how my work is never a level line, but jumps up and down sometimes in the span of minutes.  I took some time to do a mid-year review to check on how things have been and how things are going.  It’s OK.  I’m not setting the world on fire, but I’m making consistent progress.  It’s a marathon, not a sprint I remind myself.

Last week I was feeling off, waking to a headache/slight migraine most mornings.  It took me a couple of hours to shake it off and I still felt icky the rest of the day.  I had a networking event at a business conference where I didn’t know a single soul and it was tough.  I met a couple of nice ladies, but for the most part, it was a bust.

Then in the rollercoaster of my work, I go back the next day for a luncheon, miss the keynote speaker, think the whole thing is a waste of $$ until I see one person I know.  Lo and behold he introduces me to someone great, we are meeting tomorrow and I see a potential series of speaking engagements.  Let’s see how that goes.

I guess I shouldn’t bitch and moan, but hey, it’s one of the reasons I have a blog.  I get a bit frustrated and impatient, but I think that’s normal.  I went to my Weight Watchers this week and the new leader asked for a one-word description of our July.  Mine was “undisciplined”.  I know the things I need to do.  I know I need a firm schedule.  That pertains to both work and weight loss.  Yet I don’t do it.  OK, I’m not in the horrible funk I was in last year and I am doing quite a few things correctly, but once again I am being hard on myself and feel like I’m not doing enough.

I did say “No” this week to an organization.  I have been sitting on the Board for years and now they asked me to run sponsorship.  Now?  When I am starting my own business, you want me to ask companies for money for you?  It’s not even a charity — it’s a professional organization with $100K in the bank.  Sorry, but I have to put my oxygen mask on first, thank you very much.  It felt good and I knew I did the right thing.

I am fine.  I just need to keep rowing because I am in the middle of the ocean with no shore in sight.  The only way to be successful or even just earn enough money to pay the bills and stay afloat is to keep on plugging away.

 

I Dreamed of a Black Snake

black snakeI had a very vivid dream last night about a black venomous snake.  The snake wasn’t hidden or slithering that much.  It was actually in a box and then it got out.  Other people around me were afraid of it and looking to me to handle the situation.  It was dangerous, I remember acknowledging that, but I felt in control of the situation and in charge of the snake.

The climax of the dream was that I was lying down preparing to go to sleep and the snake, which was still loose, comes up to me.  I open my eyes and it is by my face rearing up to prepare to strike.  I grab it behind its head and squeeze it tightly.  I get up and declare the I am going to kill this snake.  It no longer deserves to live, but I decide I won’t kill it.  I feel strong and powerful in my dream.  I woke up feeling like quite a badass.

What does all of this mean in my particular situation?  The Google wizards provided a host of websites and they provided some insight.

  • I’m sure it’s not Freudian — it’s phallic shape representing sex.  I am having some great sex but I’m not feeling temptation, repression or anything sexual.  This probably would have been a much more interesting post if it was sexual, so sorry, Dear Readers.
  • Snakes refer to hidden threats.  If the snake bites me then the dream is trying to alert me of something in my waking life that I am not aware of.  If I kill the snake, then this threat has passed or I have overcome it.  That’s interesting because apparently I am in the processing of overcoming it because I didn’t kill it, even thought I could???  I think this represents me controlling my anxiety, which I did last night by going to the gym and having a strong workout.
  • Snakes refer to fear ( and once again for me it’s that awful anxiety again).  They are unpredictable and can strike at any time without warning.  In this situation, the snake may represent something that is unpredictable or out of control.  I could be afraid of the unknown.  With my pipeline virtually empty of new clients (even though I have some great leads with some good potential but a very loooong timeline), I have been having anxiety about work, so I would agree with this.
  • Snakes can point to my creativity and potential (although I doubt that since I was squeezing it’s head and threatening to kill it).
  • Snakes tend to show up in dreams in times of transition and transformation.  A black snake is the dark power of deep transformations from my subconscious. The snake can indicate that I am in the process of healing and transforming.  I agree with this 100% since I am four years out from ending a 25-year marriage and now creating the life I want.
  • A black snake showing up in a dream means I am dealing with a difficult situation, unsettling emotions and I am having a power struggle in my waking life.  They can represent sadness and anxiety in my case.  This would be my work anxiety of late.  Absolutely agree 100% again.  Yesterday I was feeling a bit frustrated and anxious at the end of the day.
  • A key point is to remember is that a serpent in my sleep means I am symbolically receiving a wake up call from my subconscious.  
  • Black snake could be symbol of rejected aspects of my personality.  Points to a dimension of myself that has been avoided and needs to be exposed and dealt with.  Hmmm, that could be with my business development stuff and my relationship with money….
  • Black snakes represent a threat.  It could be challenging and I’m avoiding it.

I think that the snake is my anxiety and by not killing it, I am allowing myself to be anxious, but I am not allowing it to control me.  In conversations with Robin and my business coach today, I described my current state of affairs as being in the wide open ocean and I have to keep rowing because that is the only way to get to the shore.

So let me get back to rowing and kicking the ass of those black snakes…..

 

I’m Learning

My business world is such a quirky, not-normal one.  We like to pretend we are normal and a necessary component of any legit business, but we are a strange bunch.  Entrepreneurial, merciless, and smart — oftentimes a lethal combination.  This week I was at a lovely cocktail party of my tribe and found a whole crop of newbies.  Fascinating.  I have a pragmatic trait of not noticing newbies until they have made it past their first year — why waste my time?  I love the hypocrisy of my buddies telling one newbie that his mentor/team leader is a great guy (he’s not — a complete ruthless asshole) and that he’ll learn a lot from them (only how to be screwed over).   I wanted to tell the kid to make sure that he gets everything in writing up front, but hey, why be a downer when the free alcohol is flowing?

This week was good and flew by without me getting through my To Do list.  Of course, I am not helping matters as I sit here and write, but hey, it’s Friday so WTF and TGIF!  I am trying to get back on a regular schedule and actually made it to the gym pretty regularly and I’m feeling great.  Still fluffy and not losing weight, but hey, I have to remember to be patient.

I continue to find my relationship with the Hunter so interesting as I look from the outside in.  If we had met anytime before now (aka before empty nest), I doubt I would have been interested.  During my previous stage in life, a Provider was key to me.  That’s why I didn’t leave my Ex — I liked the $$ in the bank and the security he provided.  But I digress — sorry, but my writing today is wandering all over the place in some random free thought streams.  I actually just wrote two paragraphs that are going onto another post because it’s off topic.  Wait, do I even have a topic today?  I digress further…

Oh, yeah, the Hunter and our relationship!  We are in a comfortable place.  I am learning that I am a stronger force than I thought.  I am learning to sit back and let other people take care of me.  I am learning to talk about my anxieties and concerns because he (and my dear friends) will provide the love and support to talk me off the ledge.  I am learning that I will be a great success — just like my affirmations tell me — but I have to be patient a bit longer. I am learning to say no to volunteer projects that suck my time (I just bequeathed a great one to Robin — she needs this to get out more anyway),  I am learning that I am not a domestic goddess in any way, shape or form, so I just need to give up that charade and move on. I am learning that the Hunter is a good man with dreams and hopes that are finally coming true.  I am learning to trust him completely and to never be afraid to tell him anything (scars from my past life are healing).

A year ago I was in a different place.  One of apprehensive excitement because both the Hunter and I were launching our new companies.  Folks continue to shake their head in amazement at our courage (or foolishness) in starting two companies at the same time, but I like it because we both understand 100% what the other is feeling.  We are in a good place.  I’ve got $$ in the bank, Robin and I are finally splurging on haircuts after 6 months (LOL), the Hunter has a ton of meetings set up as a result of his smash hit presentation last week, I have a HUGE meeting next week with a potential new client as a result of my relentless marketing campaign (that shit really does work!).  Now my son needs to spend the weekend with his dad so I can fuck the Hunter silly this weekend.

 

Losing Sight of Shore

Losing Sight of Shore is an amazing documentary currently on Netflix. It is the story of the Coxless Crew – 4 women who ROWED across the Pacific from San Francisco to Cairns, Australia. They started with the quote “You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” Of course that quote was Christopher Columbus, but I had never heard it before this documentary. Grab a bottle of wine and watch it – it’s amazing. These are among the bravest women I have ever seen.

final_ocean_quote_pictureIn any case, that quote has been rattling around my brain this week. It’s been a week of highs and lows. Let’s start with the lows and get them out of the way:
• I have been rejected for new business (OK, shit happens),
• Today marks the last day with a lovely client (I will miss them and the $$)
• A frenemy is riding that high of launching his own company and he’s on that early wave of beginner’s luck that I had. (My green-eyed monster reared its head.)
• I asked a long-ago boss for some business and he soundly rejected me, but I have to say the conversation was really constructive and he was kind enough to walk me through why he was saying no and he was right. (Life lesson, sigh).
• I can’t seem to get myself up on a consistent schedule/routine. I’m really frustrated about this.

Now let’s talk about the high’s for the week:
• I’m winning a new piece of business that isn’t easy, but it could be very cool with a nice payday.
• I have a new project that launched this week – also not easy but cool.
• The Hunter gave an amazing presentation to a small group of his ideal type of client and hit it out of the park.
• My son is hanging with us and it’s been lovely to see him
• I just had a lovely chat with a great friend and we made plans to see each other next week. She’s always a great inspiration and mentor to me.

I didn’t have a lot of wins, but these were good. It wasn’t a particularly busy week (another problem). I spent time on some things that I shouldn’t (correcting that course!). I didn’t spend time on things that do matter (like my cold calling course and other business development).

I am now headed out to sea without the shoreline in sight. I have very little to nothing in my pipeline. Yes, my bank account is now safely in the black with about 6 months of reserve, but I feel anxious and the pressure of an empty pipeline. I have to remind myself that Robin needs to pull her weight with the business development and she can’t be included on every $$ that I bring in unless she has actually worked on it. I’ve been down that road before and I ended up broke & resentful.

I talked to my BFF because I feel the stress. I wake up (unless I exercise and take a melatonin) in the middle of the night thinking about work. I’m having a few anxiety dreams (a man stalking me down a street with the intent of killing me – that was a lovely one). She sadly told me that this is all perfectly normal and probably won’t go away anytime soon. WTF? My other great friend just told me that I just need to give it another 6 months and then I’ll be more stabilized. She should know – she has been an independent business owner for many years.

The Hunter took me to the beach this week with the Kracken. I had an active, not even resting, bitch face on which scares him. LOL. The walk was fabulous. He dealt with the dog and I strolled up and down the beautiful, windswept beach watching the waves, the light dim – it nourished my soul. I have started listening to my daily affirmations and it calms my negative self-talk.  Today we are knocking off early to celebrate his great day and I hope we do a replay. This man truly gets me.

 

We are Off to the Races

Lots of good things are happening in my work world and thankfully it is translating into cold, hard cash. I just sent out three invoices last week and have several more teed up in the next two weeks. Cash flow has finally started and none-too-soon. OK, it isn’t a river of dollars, but it’s a steady stream that will keep us going as things continue to build.

My bestest, favorite client is in town next week and asked me to lunch. It’s been 6 months since I left the old firm, so I am wondering what they have on their mind. I had started pinging them gently about once a month or so with info on this and that. I invited them to an industry event and since they weren’t in town that resulted in the lunch invitation. I keep telling myself not to get my hopes up, but since I am ever the optimist, I can’t help but hope. They have some future staffing changes and my former firm hasn’t made any headway, so perhaps they are ready to jump ship. This would be a great account for Robin and she is willing to give it a shot.

My client who followed me to Maggie & Co is about to wrap things up, so by June I’ll be done with them. It’s bittersweet, but it has also lead to the possibility of something bigger with a related frenemy of theirs. Right now the frenemy handles things in-house, so we will have to see if they are willing to out-source. The timing is right and they have asked Maggie & Co to pitch along with only one other competitor. I have a chance, so I look at the elephants on my Vision Board and tell myself I can win this business.

I did something very bold and completely outside my comfort zone this week for work. It didn’t pan out, but I was proud of myself for really putting myself out there. It’s a long game, so I just have to go back to basics and keep on trying.

Right now I have four elephants in my sights. They are all different sizes, but that’s fine. I just need one of them to give me the cushion of more time. I feel good. I am taking a course over the summer to address my greatest business development fear – cold calling. I find myself so busy that I hardly have time in front of the computer or in the office. That’s both good and bad. I need to make sure I’m getting the basics covered.

The Hunter and I are headed off on a road trip next week. We are headed to a remote place we have never visited. Rest, relaxation and exploration – I can’t wait. It should be lovely.

Crazy Week

crazy meme

The past week was crazy.  Crazy people, crazy events, crazy busy — just crazy.  I kept asking the Hunter if it was a full moon because it sure felt like one.  The great news is that many of the things I was bitching about two weeks ago are being resolved.

The car situation has been successfully resolved.  I got the leased car inspected and it will be turned in momentarily.  A new car has been purchased and I really like it.  I am still working on quashing my snobby “is-it-good-enough” inner voice, but it drives great and I have always wanted a compact SUV, so I am just telling that voice to shut up.  It has all the bells and whistles I like (rear camera, blind spot, bluetooth, etc.) so who cares who the manufacturer is?  I paid exactly within my budget and my payments are exactly what I wanted.  I got my preferred color and it feels great to drive.  As I rack up the miles on it, I won’t worry so much about the cost of the car. Whew!  Problem resolved.

I had a couple of projects right at the finish line (a.k.a ready for a paycheck) and they took a quick unexpected detour.  Sigh.  We have gotten them back on track, but that set us back a week or so.  Robin and I just sigh and talk about drinking….

The Kracken has been neutered (thank you, sweet Jesus) and we are already seeing a calmer dog.  Now that he is neutered, he can go to doggie day care which is fabulous.  He had is his first visit and came home happy and (more importantly) exhausted.  The Hunter was ready to get rid of him, but I asked that he be given more time.  I know, I know — I blew that golden opportunity, but I knew that the Hunter was acting in haste. The Kracken has good potential — we just need to be patient (never a strong trait of mine).

My son is home for the summer.  He came home in the midst of drama (Wildflower passing, car buying, etc.)  My Ex persuaded him to give up a low-paying job up at school to come back home to work for him and me (wish he had talked to me about that). I think my son also returned home because his girlfriend was going to be home for the summer also.  My son hated working for my Ex, so Taz and I think he just didn’t have the guts to stand up to my Ex.

My son is staying with me right now and just got the possibility of an unpaid internship with a nearby non-profit that fits in perfectly with his major.  I told him that if he wasn’t going to be paid by any of these jobs, then take the one with the non-profit.  He has an interview next week and the Ex set him up with another non-profit so hopefully he gets one of those.  He needs something on his resume that doesn’t have one of  his parents as his supervisor….

I successfully tackled and won the lease renewal on our home.  My landlord is a bitch, so I told the Hunter that we won’t win next year, so we better be ready to move.  She came by to “inspect the house”, but had no idea what she really wanted to see.  When we got into a mildly heated discussion, I asked her what outcome she wanted from it all because she was dropping into a “you said, I said” argument.  The outcome she wanted:  “I don’t know”.  Geez, you like arguing just so you can be right?  Stupid.  I finally said, “OK, it sounds like you want better communication from us.  Would you agree?”  She did, so now I send her follow up emails on work that is being done on the house.

My favorite client that kicked me to the curb when I founded Maggie & Co is back sniffing around.  I have kept the lines of communication open, sent them some information and now they want to have lunch on their next visit to town.  That’s great.  I have a new project idea to put in front of them, so I have to focus on getting an introduction to someone who won’t take my phone call, I can’t find her email and she hasn’t responded to numerous messages, voice mails and letters.  I have 10 days to reach this hussy.  She works two hours from me.  I have blocked out a day and plan to drive to her office to stage a sit-in until she or her boss sees me.  #Old School Sales.  My BFF is egging me on to do this to see if it will work.  I’ve done it in the past once and it worked.  Will I be 2-for-2?

I feel good things happening and good things in my future.  If that fave client thing would take off, it would be like winning the lottery.  I feel lucky, so wish me luck!

Can Somebody Loan me some Patience?

OK, Gentle Readers, this is one long bitch fest, so if you aren’t in the mood of hearing bitch, bitch, bitch, skip this and drink a glass of wine instead.  I have to vent and this is the safest place. 

I just need to be more patient.  I just need to hang on a little bit longer as Maggie & Co climbs up the steep hill of success.  I feel the momentum building.  Some weeks are better than others, but I do know that I am taking consistent action and more action than many of my colleagues.  It’s just that I have a short runway of time.  My money is running out.  Do I tap my retirement fund…again?  I don’t think I’m going to have much of a choice. Sigh.

I am a bit calmer.  I went to celebrate my dad’s 80th birthday.  My son joined me but the Hunter opted to go hunting instead.  The weekend was a lovely respite, even though the flights were hell.  We made an unscheduled landing for a medical emergency.  That was a first for me and we landed 2 hours late.  The return was delayed 2 hours as well. Thank goodness I wasn’t on United!  Anyway, the Hunter and I were apart for about four days.  Four days to think and boy, he did a lot of thinking.  He’s made changes to the Kracken so that nutty dog now stays outside most of the time.  He will give up the dog if he needs to, but I have told him that I want the dog to stay.  I see daily improvement with the dog, so once again, I just need to have patience.

My dad’s birthday weekend was great.  It is really nice to be in your early 50’s and be one of the youngest people at a party.  I felt young again – LOL.  It was a wake-up call to see all of my family with secure, well-provided retirements as I am scrambling for everything at the moment.  Sigh. But it was great to reconnect with family.  It felt good.

I came home with a huge, nasty cold.  I am the crankiest, bitchiest sick person on the planet.  I don’t want people to even think about me much less talk to me.  I huddled up on the coach as the Hunter drove 10 hours to get home from his hunting trip.  He brought me soup and avoided me for fear of me snapping at him.  I held my tongue, watched TV and vegged until the cold subsided.

I am in the middle of renewing the lease on this crappy house.  I’m not happy about it, but I don’t have the Fuck You money to move somewhere else, so I am forced to negotiate with a landlady, who for whatever reasons, has been under my skin from Day One.  I have a residential realtor friend coaching me through this and even she commented that she has never seen me dislike someone as much as my landlord.  I am usually cool and calm through negotiations and I find myself writing vicious emails, holding them for a day until the anger subsides and then editing them into something businesslike.

I have to buy a car this month and I really am not looking forward to it.  My lease is expiring and I’m over on miles.  I know the overage will continue, so I’m forced to buy something.  Yep, right when money is tight I have to come up with money for the mileage overage and a down payment.  Joy.  Add to the fact that there are too many choices of cars and I have been stuck, weighed down by indecision.  The Hunter is helping and we have finally identified the likeliest candidate — a 1-2 year old compact SUV.  Now I have to drive one and negotiate terms in the next two weeks.

With all my bitching and moaning, I have to say that I feel good things coming.  I feel momentum from all my marketing efforts.  I feel like I can do this.  I know I can do this.  I went back through records of when I switched firms and had to start again.  I looked at the income stream and where it came from.  The scary thing is to see how many clients bit the dust for various reasons, but it also shows me how many fish are out in the great blue sea. The Hunter’s business is picking up momentum also and he is slightly ahead of me, which is great.  My earning potential far exceeds his — fact, not boasting — so I need my ship to catch the winds of success also.

I feel like Robin is discouraged.  I know she is because I have my discouraged days as well.  When I have them, I call someone because when I don’t have courage, I ask other people to share theirs.  It has worked for me in the past and it works for me now.  I try to be her courage.  Even with the projects we are currently working on, the money won’t be enough to hold us for 6 months.  It will hold us for 2-3 months at most.  Hopefully that buys me enough time to create new opportunities.  Every day I look at my Vision Board which is full of Patience, Underdog, Pushing Through, Stay Focused — you get the idea.  Every day I work on business development more than anything else.  That’s what will generate results.

Now I am going to the gym.  I joined a cheap one because I realized that if I am going to sleep and stay sane, then I need to exercise.  I’ll write something zippy and happy in a day or two.  I am an Amazon.  I can do this.  I can do hard things.  I am an amazing woman who will be successful.  Yep, I need to get back to my daily affirmations.

patience belief

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