The first in a series of essays on mindfulness by a new entrepreneur
By Lauren T. Wilkie
This year I took on several new work projects and became a parent for the first time. It was a lot to manage. I lost my focus and soon discovered I was having difficulty balancing my work and my home life. I have learned that there’s no such thing as a work-life balance. Instead life is a seesaw, work on one side, family life on the other. The trick is knowing when to fluctuate your attention from one side to the other being present in the moment. This was hard for me when change came to both ends simultaneously, becoming a mom and shifting gears professionally.
It is taking me time to find the right tools I need to reset. When I took time to be mindful, it was clear that I needed to make some changes. Even when the reasons for making changes are clear, it is still hard. Why are we so scared of change?
I have sought and surrounded myself with several mentors who offer fresh perspectives. When asked what my passion is in my work, it took me a few months to be able to answer this question honestly. But when I did, I was able make changes that aligned with my passion. I was then receptive when the universe opened several doors of opportunity. I received senior level job offers for two positions and was also a finalist for two others.
In the end, I chose to join one of my mentors as an entrepreneur because it, more so than the others, would allow me the flexibility to follow my passion for community organizing and change. This new venture offers me the ability to learn as I help organizations in the private, nonprofit and public sectors.
Change is scary
The loss of a steady set salary and moving into the unknown of being an entrepreneur is hard enough. Further, add on the fear of learning new tasks. I just created a new website for our company using Wix, a user-friendly tool that I relate to creating a presentation through Prezi. But it still took me weeks to get started because of my fear of not knowing what to expect.
The decision to make necessary changes led to my becoming an entrepreneur. The fear of failure is real, but I am facing that fear head on with my husband’s backing and blessing. My parents, who are also entrepreneurs, taught me that there will be constant highs and lows. Mom says “Don’t do it.” But life has already taught me that learning from our failures is just as important as learning from our successes.