I have been technically “out of work” for 6 months now. And by that I mean without a contract nor a salary.
True, I did have a few weeks of time off to start with. Then, not so much anymore.
These are a few things that you only find out about when you embark on the adventure of creating your own business.
Work hours don’t mean anything anymore. 9pm meetings. 6am sending emails. Waking up at 4am thinking about money. Entire days in front of your laptop. Days where you feel super productive and efficient. Days where you don’t even know where to start. Mondays, Thursdays, Sundays, it doesn’t matter.
I have a great business partner/friend, she is one of my favourite persons. We used to talk about diving and books and weekends and life questions and a bunch of other things. Now, 95% of the time, we talk about the business. Anywhere we go together, we look at construction and layout ideas. We are sitting somewhere having coffee and one of us goes “check their lamps, they are quite cool what do you think?”. Soon enough we are going to be like these couples that need to plan a date night so they can talk about something else than work and the kids.
You have to learn fast. Sometimes, really fast. Because you have to make decisions about things you ignore everything about. That includes building and plans, accounts, legal matters, and more. You end up talking to your friend and family a lot, hoping they know more than you do about the topic at hand.
Money becomes a thing. For me, money was never really a thing. For the last 20 years I had periods with very little, lots, average, and I think my way of dealing with it is that I just go with the flow. Spend it when it’s there, stop spending it when it’s gone. Now money is needed to build and run and make things happening, and it’s becoming something I think about. A LOT.
The small wins are still wins. When you finally manage to access your business bank account online. When you successfully input an invoice in the accounting software for the first time. When you launch and grow your new Instagram account. When you show your logo around and people go “yeah, I like it!”.
You have to make peace with the fact that stuff is not going to go as planned. Delays won’t be kept. You’ll be forced to change plans, make plans B, etc. Especially in Indonesia but I suppose that is valid for any business creation. For the control freak inside me, that’s pretty difficult some days.
So, delays. The road should have been sort of finished by now but of course it’s not. But it’s coming along.
Soon enough we will be able to walk all the way to the land without climbing a bunch of rocks and that's a BIG win!