Some time ago I lost my job. Faced with what felt like limited opportunity, I thought 'you can’t wait for the job to come to you, so make the job'.
Friends and family were proud when I tried to start my own business, and not-so-secretly envious saying that they had long wished to do the same. Anyone who has lost their job knows what a trying time it is, but I can also attest to what an enormous learning experience it is too.
It's important to note that previous to losing work, I had not planned to start my own business. I did so out of necessity. At first I took to the novelty and challenge, but in time this grew to be overshadowed by stress, impatience, and concern. I struggled with these feelings as those around me reinforced the greatness of the decision I’d made.
Eventually unable and unwilling to deal with the financial uncertainty ever-present in the life of most self-employed individuals, I began to focus instead on finding full time employment. And I secured a great opportunity. Though I worked hard for it, we know that there is no guarantee for a positive outcome based on hard work and effort. So, if there was a little luck and timing involved then I am thankful for that too.
And how do I feel about jumping ship on self-employment? In a word, great. I learned that though I may have the intelligence to do something, this is only one factor in a much bigger whole. I acknowledge my need for the serenity that comes with a (work) routine.
I enjoy the challenge of my work, the freedom of financial stability, the company of my colleagues, the structure of my work day. And I appreciate and acknowledge the risk, uncertainty and unpredictability so common in self-employment some may thrive on - but not me. I have great respect for the path the self-employed have followed, and hope they have the same for mine.
Remember that there is no one way, right way or better way - just your way, my way, our way. As long as we keep this in mind, we will be more likely to find what makes us happy and understand what about it provides us that happiness without judging others, or ourselves.