Last year, Forbes reported on a startling finding that by 2020, 50 percent of the workforce will be self-employed. That’s only 7 years from now. When I digested this possibility, it reminded me of the fact that I NEVER had a desire to be self-employed. Nope. Not me. No way, ever.
On the flip side, I have always wondered what it would be like to make my own hours, carve out family time based on my work schedule, have the opportunity to create a fulfilling business and, just possibly, be more financially independent than I thought possible.
Meanwhile my inner voice was always giving me a zillion reasons why I could never make it. For starters, there was that million dollar question: What kind of business would I go into? Along with that uncertainty, there was a self-imposed doubt and terrible fear that my business wouldn’t be successful.
Why couldn’t I embrace entrepreneurship like everyone else?
Growing up as the daughter of a Marine Corps fighter pilot was probably one reason. I can still hear my parents’ shrieks when I confidently announced that I was taking a commission-based sales job at the age of 23. My cultural background and upbringing mandated me to embrace a risk-averse career and lifestyle.
On top of that, I married a serial entrepreneur who launched so many businesses, it literally killed the marriage. I kid you not. The fear of launching something on my own was based on a philosophy and model of other people’s failed ventures and an old paradigm which instilled in me that nothing is more secure than the conventional route.
Nevertheless, I learned a lot about business during those years, including how tough it could be. What became tougher was my own personal experience on January 26th, 2008: the largest layoff in modern-day America. A legal recruiter at that time, I was one of the 650,000 people that lost their job that day.
Only 90 days before my life and career exploded, I awoke with the greatest clarity about going into business for myself. It was the strongest revelation I can ever remember. I peered into this very door of freedom from a different lens. I was one of the many “wannabe” entrepreneurs feeling unfulfilled working for a large corporation and living a life of anxiety and doubt about what the future held. The dark cloak of fear seemed to lighten that day.
A significant event moving me in the direction of self-employment was when my boss declined my request for a $250.00 investment to help me become certified as a résumé writer. I actually proposed that I could become the principal writer for HER company.