How My Life Changed After Opening Virtually Untangled …
My job as a designer and an artist is to research everything (yes, literally everything) then look hard and close at many seemingly unrelated items and figure out a way to make them connect. Whether this connection is by look or feel or purely for functionality purposes. Having this type of mindset may seem like I have it all together and that I would be a great problem-solver. But the truth of the matter is … problem-solving in design-land, YES. Problem-solving when it came to my career, NO. A hard NO.
Over the last few years, I found myself holding some hard truths in front of me. Truths that I never knew how to tackle or have the ability to make a change in my mindset. Truths like:
- Being a designer is my whole life, but I am tired of being overworked and undervalued at my day job.
- Follow my true passion and break away from the 9-5 gig … scary and seemingly impossible.
- My day job is making my life and those around me miserable … feeling exhausted and unmotivated.
During these truthful challenges one major thing has always been stuck with me; “Let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are”, stated by author, Brene Brown. But, how do I “embrace who I am” by staying in this dead-end day job? How do I accomplish the day-to-day things in life such as bills, being comfortable with habit (because that what became of my life … a bunch of habitual ways of living – rinse n’ repeat) and not becoming homeless or more in debt? How do I find happiness again?
I thought to myself on many, MANY occasions … How do I get out of this black hole? How do I figure out how to be happy again and truly live the life I want and deserve? How do I take what I’ve learnt and move forward? How can I possibly change my mindset and make such a sudden move in career?
Well, let me tell you … it was all possible. Never to this day did I ever imagine myself owning my own successful full-time business and still having the opportunity to follow my passion in life. At one point I even considered dropping graphic design from my life and going to work as a barista at Starbucks. That is how much my 9-5 sucked from my being.
Time and time again, you have heard me talk about the importance of the foundation of a story. You can refer back to a previous blog post where I talk about The Foundation of a Story … My Story and see the process of how creating Virtually Untangled began and the struggles of Motivation for Living Creatively which has now lead me here. It has been 8 satisfying months since the re-brand of MyDesignSmash into what is now known as Virtually Untangled and I feel as though I have been reacquainted with reality. I can now say that I know myself for who I truly am, have a more positive outlook on life and where this new path is taking me and that I know the value of my worth, as a person and through services within my business.
Yes, I sometimes work long days and many hours past the usual 9-5 but to me it is worth it, and I enjoy every moment of it. Yes, I have still have deadlines but this is all now on my schedule and on my terms. If I want to work harder and later than usual one day that is now my choice and I (as well as my lovely list of clients) reap the benefits. I feel happy and satisfied working my own hours and stepping to my own beat and the only person who can make me feel undervalued or overworked is myself and to me, there is no room for that anymore. If a potential client and I clash to the point where I feel the working relationship/projects will be more stress than worth financially, I have the option to walk away and refer them to someone else. I guess what I am getting at here is that I now have choices and I felt as though I didn’t before. Plus, all the options I get to choose from lead to happiness and nothing else. If I want to stay up late working, writing, learning or even binge watch some TV … I can do that if it creates happiness for me. No more rinse n’ repeat. I am finally in charge of my own life … my own happiness … my own success.
If you think about it, Virtually Untangled has literally been an “untangling” of my own life. I was lucky enough to have the pleasure of working with talented individuals to help me find the courage to set myself up for achieving my “bigger picture”. Of course, taking those first steps were scary as hell but isn’t that what being an entrepreneur is all about? Working hard. Taking leaps of faith, but for yourself, not for others. Building connections. Putting yourself out there and just being the best YOU, you know YOU CAN BE (sounds like a corny 80’s TV commercial, but true).
It’s been said that courage is contagious and that every time we choose courage, we make everyone around us a little better and the world a little braver. I truly believe that. We must learn to cope with our vulnerabilities and have a willingness to be “all in” or we’re never going to get to where we want to be, we’re never going to be truly happy and life is just going to pass right on by.
And, here I am … still lucky enough to be accomplishing that dream I have forever held close to my heart. I feel very grateful and very lucky to be one of the few who gets to work in a field that was once only a childhood dream. Unfortunately, not many people have that privilege or drive to get them there. But, after reading this post, I can virtually guarantee that building your dream business is possible.
So, are you ready to be courageous in your life?
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