Today marks my three month anniversary of being a one woman show. Flying solo is AWESOME but it is also damn hard. I know that I read all about it in the blogosphere and heard it from friends who had done the same, but it just didn't dawn on me that I would no longer have an entire staff to draw on or that I would no longer have an office supply closet or that no one was going to hold me accountable for keeping my books up-to date or getting ahead on project work except for myself. I am the janitor, consultant, receptionist, and tech support all in one. Good thing I have experience in all those areas!
I had a grandiose vision of doing consulting work for 10 - 20 hours per week, developing my blog/online presence, and working on other creative endeavors the rest of the time. Oh, and doing some biz dev. Instead I've been consulting 40 hours a week and spending many hours doing all the administrative things that come with being a solopreneur: paying bills, chatting with the bank tellers, ordering supplies, fixing my printer, and obsessing over the fact that my office is still not fully setup.
I keep thinking that I should be farther ahead but then I remember this is only the first three months of a lifetime and from that perspective, I'm doing just fine and should chill out. And I've done a lot: I've wrapped up one client; I'm in the midst of a big project; I've built out a major template that I will be able to use over and over again with clients; my office is finally in working, presentable order (with the exception of unhung art); and I am implementing tools every day to make my admin life more streamlined like a project management system so I'm communicating less with clients less via email, doing auto-downloads of my credit card statements directly to my accounting system so I eliminate data entry, and making my life completely cloud-based so no matter what device I'm on, I can do work and access my files.
Most importantly, I've found time to form connections with people who are also out there, making a go at stepping away from comfort and stepping into the unknown. They are building their own businesses, they are taking creative risks, they are pondering their escape plan from the job that makes them miserable. It's a wonderful movement to be a part of, no matter where in the process.
So yes, it's hard and I'm working more than ever before, but it's all for me and that makes me so happy. I like to think that this happiness somehow makes the world a little bit of a better place.
Onwards. I hope you are happy and healthy wherever you are at in this world. LL