I am not a risk taker. I do not like change. Twelve months ago I left the corporate world and started my personal chef business. How did this happen?
Did you miss Part 1?
STEPPING OFF THE CLIFF
I was driving into work, late again because of my 1.5 hour commute, when I got a call from my boss’ supervisor asking when I would be in. She was waiting for me in the conference room. I drove the remaining 15 minutes knowing full well what was coming.
My time at a once exciting, challenging job that had turned painful was over.
I felt angry.
I felt hurt.
I felt relieved.
Months prior to this layoff, I had started daydreaming again about leaving the corporate world behind and starting up a business – a recurring thought I had every 6 to 12 months. This time I thought I had a viable business idea. I had started researching the idea of becoming a personal chef. It sounded perfect. I could use my love of cooking to create wonderful meals for busy people. I could be home in time to pick up my daughter from school. I could commute less than one hour to work for once in my career. I could start up a food blog and use my creativity in new ways. I could call the shots.
So here I was, let go from a high paying job in a bad economy with no motivation to seek out another job in my field thinking about starting all over again. Was I completely crazy? Was I having a mid-life crisis? Could I really make it work?
Mid-life crisis? Could be.
Could I make it work? I had no idea. But my whole being was telling me to give it a try.
Well, maybe not my whole being. My stomach was in knots. My heart was racing. My mind wouldn’t let me forget all the things that could go wrong. But against my slow and steady nature, I quickly created a business name, a website, a brochure, and some business cards before I could change my mind.
You may think that leaving the corporate cubicle behind and having the freedom to create your own destiny would be a “throw your arms out wide and scream for joy” experience. For me, it wasn’t. Over the last 12 months I have felt:
- Scared out of my mind
In other words, it has been a rollercoaster ride.
I leaned heavily on others to boost my spirits and give me the confidence to keep going as I nervously watched our savings dwindle. My husband has been and continues to be an amazingly supportive force as have my family, close friends and confidantes. If I have learned one thing from this experience (ah but I have learned so much more – perhaps that will be Part 3?), I have learned that it is so important to lean on others for help. Having others to talk to, to motivate me, to fire me back up and kick me back out there is crucial to my success.
So did I make the right decision? You know, I can’t be 100% sure. I do know that I love the process of building something new and using my technical, creative, and culinary skills to make it happen. I also am starting to feel like I am learning the ropes and if I keep at it, more doors will open. But this is only the beginning of the journey. There will be many more months of uncertainty, doubt and stomach knots ahead.
Hmmm…perhaps I am a risk taker after all.
Have you ever done something in your life that was so against your nature? Were you glad you did?