This is going to be a long post. Make sure you take some notes, and feel free to reach out to me if you want more info on any of this.
A message to myself mainly because I feel like a loser for not having the mental capacity to do more with my time.
It is absolutely OK to have seasons in life just as nature does on earth. In fact it's necessary.
Without seasons we could never embrace the chance to see what each offers. Through my travels around the country and a couple times around the world having experienced places where they have two seasons hot and hotter, it makes you step back and appreciate the time you do have when you get to experience all the seasons. You take it for granted. I would love summer to last longer,
I really would. But then, would I start missing autumn, winter and spring?
But what does this have to do with anything about business and life?
I'm glad you asked.
I spent months going to the gym everyday, running, working out, then Xperience closed out of the blue. My reasons feels like an excuse to me, although is it? I had to move to a gym I didn't enjoy, which didn't help any, plus I started getting busy, so I stopped going. It was an easy combination of circumstances that led me to where I am at this exact moment.
I found myself annoyed and irritated at what just a simple change could do when everything else in my life was changing rapidly. I just wanted some semblance of the sameness. For once in my life, I found myself asking for something to remain the same, that's not my M.O. these days. I felt like I was cheating my body from the workouts and activity I was used to. But then a friend commented to me, "I call this re-creation-al time." and it was a total mindset shift. I didn't feel so guilty. I have embraced the idea that I needed this for some reason otherwise I would burn out. I also had far less going on even a couple months ago compared to June, July and August, which allowed me to maintain a schedule of 430am wake up, 530am gym times.
"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you've collected nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays." I kept telling myself, "tomorrow" and then tomorrow never comes. In reality it does, but I found and find myself less and less enthused to exercise. I want to sleep later because bed is nice. And frankly my hours are everywhere but consistent, one day I could work until 630p, the next 9p, the next midnight, the next be at the job site by 645a, and then my eating schedule doesn’t stay consistent too which doesn’t help any... all I know is, I am working more hours in a day to keep up with the flow happening. Good problems to have. Good challenges to learn how to work around and learn how to make easier for the future. Good things to remember when I brain drain and journal about this later and ask "Who is my ideal client? What is my ideal project?"
“Our minds must be allowed a break—once rested, they will rise better and sharper. Just as fertile fields must not be overworked—for endless productivity will exhaust them soon—so too continuous work crushes the force of our minds; but rested and relaxed they restore their own powers. Weakness and weariness are born to minds from constant efforts.” - Seneca I have to remind myself it's ok to take a break from something so long as you know you're going to get back into it, set a date, set a time, and stick to it. It just feels weird because for months the gym was such a part of my daily routine. I've lost my daily routine to lack of a routine despite keeping habit trackers. Wake up and work has been my life lately...right now I am running a marathon and I'm in the middle of the race hitting the wall. I just have to push through.
“When the student is ready the teacher will appear. When the student is truly ready... The teacher will disappear.”
― Tao Te Ching
I have taken an oath to build my freelance business to $100,000 a year (and above with the right work) and I'll be damned if I let that dream not work out. I finished the E-Myth by Michael Gerber, and the biggest takeaway is systems, systems, systems. Now I am listening to Who Not How by Dr. Benjamin Hardy. The premise is simple, we all need a who, more than a how. The how costs time and money. The who is going to provide you with suggestion and solutions you would never have thought of.
The execution can be difficult. But it's also akin to the age old phrase my dad imprinted on me over the many years, "It's not what you know, it's who you know." It's how any good business is built, trust, confidence, great marketing! This takes time to build. This takes effort to build. It's not for everyone that's for sure, but everyone can do it to some degree.
For example, I went to meet a friend to talk about marketing this week. Something I think I need help with. While waiting for her to show up my other friend Zaid Jazrawi of Zaid Realty sees me at the coffee shop and we got talking. As I'm sitting there telling this marketing girl, "I feel I've done a great job at networking and marketing my brand.", coincidentally Zaid walks by and says as he's about to walk up the stairs,
"Chris. The man. The myth. The Legend." and she just looks at me and smiles and says "that's all the proof you need your marketing and branding is working."
I am not complaining, this is the life I built for myself. So I am embracing it. I am embracing the need to take some time to breathe in and out in silence every so often.
I am not treading water feverishly like I was last year in hopes I'd be ok, I am making massive strides and moves into positions I wouldn't otherwise be because I am working and connecting smarter to be in a good position this fall, winter and beyond. That's not something I did last year. I learned too late I have to plan 3-6 months ahead of time while simultaneously doing the current work, which includes photo shoots, edits, journalistic writings, concert reviews and album reviews. Block scheduling is your friend. These are the things you learn as you grow. All in all, July and August are very busy, and I'm sorry to anyone who feels I am not keeping in touch with you. I am doing my best. I am always a phone call, text, or email away if you do want to connect. Now, onward and forward, carpe diem my fellow chickens!
Your Head Rooster,