Birthing a Business
I was in labor for roughly three days. I say roughly because in reality, I couldn’t have told you when a day started or ended- time morphed in to more of a competitor than a friend as I tried to will it to pass more quickly and DAMNIT WHERE’S MY EPIDURAL? Those three days were like a warp tunnel - I went in one person and came out another. Before my “transformation,” I was waaaayy modest. I would change under a towel in the dressing room and be self conscious of rolls and wrinkles on my body and shower in a bathing suit at the gym. Since becoming a mother I swear anyone could see me naked and I wouldn’t care. I laugh now thinking about the time in the hospital, and the male nursing student named Winston who has probably seen more of my body than I have, and *shrug* WHATEVS.
Becoming a mother has changed me in so many more ways than that. But this one stands out because it ties in to a bigger lesson: there is a lot of power and freedom in not giving too many shits. Or let me clarify- there is freedom in choosing to only give shits about the REALLY important things. In my post-labor self, I am able to prioritize what is really important, really I HAVE to do that to survive. In this new world, where sleep doesn’t come easy and I’m responsible for a very lovely, very busy little boy, I don’t have the time or the space in my mind to worry about holding on to shame, or annoyances, or grudges, or resentment. If I’m going to get anything productive done or bring any beauty in to the world, I gotta let that shit GO. I gotta let go of the fear and insecurities around my body and all the little shames the world tries to throw at parents, and any judgement of other people who are getting under my skin or approaching things differently than me, because those thoughts are toxic and poison the rest of the good things that are trying to happen in my life.
I often find similarities between parenting and business. My human child and my business child both need unending love and support and encouragement and time and energy. And I can constantly feel like I’m not enough for either of them. But when I realized that a good chunk of my pie chart of time was filled up with worrying about them, I started actively letting go and allowing that space to be for more worthwhile endeavors. In my experience, nothing takes the joy out of parenting OR running a business like worry and shame. It is time to fill that space with better things.
My cocktail for stopping worry in it’s tracks:
- Change what your body is doing. Getting out and walking or running or stretch a little bit - it encourages your body to change what it’s doing and thinking.
- Gratitude. Take 10-15 minutes to write out what you’re grateful for in your life. I try to do this every morning.
- Take a look inward and see if you’ve neglected something that you need. Sometimes I just need a nap or a snack. Why are adults so similar to toddlers??
Let go of what isn’t serving you. Breathe. Whisper some cuss words in to the wind. You got this.