When I was in education, my family was proud of me and expressed it. I had friends that I would go to happy hour with and discuss the problems of the world. It was great being a part of a group and having a sense of belonging. Then I got this wild hair to leave the traditional workforce and join the business with my husband. I have never regretted that decision. But I am sad about some things that I lost and events that I hadn’t anticipated.
It feels like almost instantly I lost my friends. It was just as much me as it was them. Suddenly, I didn’t care about this parent and that administrator. I felt as if I had nothing to contribute to the conversation. When asked about what I was doing, my response would create an equally glassy-eyed response on their behalf.
For the longest time, I know my mother and grandmother as well as my in-laws worried we would end up penniless and living under a bridge. Many a question bordered on “When are you both going to get a real job?“. Those questions have finally stopped. I think they’ve realized that we’re not giving up and since we’re not out on the streets, something must be going okay. But they don’t have a real grasp on what we do and what is going on.
Last night I shared with my mom a recent accomplishment of mine. In a week and a half, I signed 5 new clients and brought in over $14,000 into our business. Her response? “Oh that’s nice dear. Did I tell you about this article I was just reading about…..” Seriously?! This is the first time something like this has happened in the 6 years we’ve been in business and I get a “that’s nice”!
But then I step back and realize. She just doesn’t get it. I am the first person she’s known that has started their own business and then we’re in an industry (social media marketing) that is even more foreign to her.
I have been very blessed to have forged new friendships with other business men and women. I have created my own entrepreneurial family who mentors and inspires me. They get me. It’s important to your spirit that you are heard and understood…to feel that sense of belonging.
So if you’re out there feeing all alone in a world of people who don’t seem to get it any more, get hooked up with a business community where you are. Look me up, send me a message on Facebook on in the comments below. We’re all in this together!