The last few months have been pretty tough. For the first time since I quit my full-time job and started my own business I wanted to throw in the towel and just walk away. I was going through some personal changes and growth and wanted nothing more than to go back to my boring desk job where I could sit on Reddit all day and turn off my brain so that it could concentrate more on my personal life. I didn’t want to have to rely on any creative output from myself because to be honest, I wasn’t “outputting” anything at all. Now I’m back on track – and kicking butt more than ever – but only due to some incredible family, friends, and a lot of effort on my part. And I got back on track just in time for a major personal and professional milestone:
This month I’m celebrating 1 year of self-employment!
It’s been one full year since I quit my comfy full-time job and started what would eventually become Social Swarm Media. I’m still working with what ended up being my first client, the Canadian Red Cross. Since then I’ve worked with some really amazing companies and some not-so-great ones. I’ve learned some important (and painful) lessons in running your own business. I’ve done things I never thought I would do like fly to San Francisco to meet a new client and speak on panels to both students and professionals (who PAID!) to see me talk about my work. I’ve hired an intern and got office space. And I’ve paid my rent and made my bill payments every step of the way. I’ve learned a lot about personal relationships and that my family will probably never understand what my job actually is.
One year later, I’m not working any less and the work has never gotten easier. But it’s fulfilling and there is a certain amount of freedom in being chained to your home office and smartphone and making your own decisions about your job and professional life. My secret: being told I can’t do something motivates, challenges, and pushes me. Want to see me succeed? Tell me I can’t do something. One thing I’ll never bet against is myself and my own personal resolve.
And if nothing else, my mom messaged me today with the following note: “Jamie, I’m so proud of me. I’m so happy when my friends ask about you. I tell them what you’re up to and they think you are just great!” So at least there’s that 😉