Why I work for myself

Last Wednesday I had a great reminder of why I work for myself. Now, let’s be clear that running your own business is not easy. You take on quite a bit of risk, there is no guarantee of a paycheck (or that your clients will pay you on time), and there is no such thing as work/life balance (you just have a life). I’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time lately working on training materials for one of my largest clients. This means not only am I working my three days a week with Naomi watching the kids, but I put in another three hours every night after I put them in bed, plus naptimes on the weekends. Add to that my frustration with government regulation and taxes (That’s a whole other post!) and there are days when I wonder if it would be easier to just work full-time elsewhere or be a full-time stay-at-home mom. While I know I could never go being a full-time employee (I like being the boss) I love working.

So last Wednesday, I got a reminder of what a great life I have. My son just turned 3 and my daughter turned 18 months. If you’re a parent, then you know that means a trip to the doctor for a well visit. Their appointment was at 1:30 pm, so Naomi came and I worked in the morning doing project reviews with the students in my Six Sigma Black Belt course. I came up from my office at lunch and we all ate together. (Daddy comes home everyday at lunch, too.) The kids and I went to the doctor’s appointment and on the way home, we got to stop by the railroad tracks so my son could watch for trains – I didn’t have to rush back to work. Then when we got home, my daughter took a nap and my son and I went out to fly his new Lightning McQueen kite.

It was a beautiful sunny 70 degree day – unusual for March. Two things happened that afternoon that made me really stop and thank God for my life. First, I watched my son as he was lying in the grass, propped up an his elbow, looking up at his kite completely at peace. Then a little later on, while we were playing in his sandbox, he ran out to the middle of the yard and laid down on his back and yelled “Come on Mommy, come lay down with me.” So I did. We just laid in the grass, feeling the warm sun on our faces, and watched the clouds and streaks from the planes. Later, that night as I was working on my training material and both kids were in bed sleeping, I remembered the afternoon and why I love working for myself.

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