My daughter turned two over the weekend. Two! I’ve heard it countless times since before she was born and now I’m one of the billions of parents spouting off the same cliche. They grow up so fast!
Ok, so I know I’m exaggerating quite a bit and she’s nowhere near being really grown up. My parenting journey has only just begun. But seriously, where did my tiny baby go? Wasn’t this spunky toddler just a cuddly sleepy newborn, like, yesterday?
Her second birthday naturally got me thinking about Wild Olive. I’ve written before about how pregnancy and Ellie’s birth led me to start this business. And it was just before her first birthday last year that I began to prepare for my launch.
I’ve wondered if I was crazy more times than I care to admit since then. Not only did I decide I could balance starting a business and mothering a toddler, I decided to do it as we moved our home from Las Vegas to Oregon. Because, you know, an out of state move on its own is such a piece of cake.
It’s been challenging every single day. I’ve thought about giving up more than a bazillion times. When I haven’t gotten much sleep the whole week, our apartment looks like a bright pile of toys and crayons, all my kiddo wants to do is cuddle all day, and I can’t find the time (much less the motivation) to work, I wonder if I should just stop and wait a couple of years.
Obviously, I’ve kept going and I’m still showing up to work (almost) every day. These are the top three reasons why I’m convinced there’s no point in waiting and we should all start whatever project has been tugging at our hearts right this second:
- It’s ok to take the slower route
On a really really good day, I can put in 4-6 hours of work. Some of those have to be sneaked in during a couple of episodes of Daniel Tiger or some intensely concentrated free play. Most days, I’m lucky if I get 2 hours in.
According to some business gurus who shall remain unnamed, I have no right to call that a successful day or #hustle my Instagram post. What these 20-hour work day bros fail to realize is that a lot of people need and even want the slower path.
To be completely honest, I don’t know what I would do with even 5 new leads per day. A full inbox would stress me out to the brink of a panic attack. And a 20 hour work day sounds like my worst nightmare.
Not everyone wants to be the next Steve Jobs. Not everyone wants to run a multibillion dollar company. And not everyone’s hustle has to look the same. We’re completely free to find what works for us and take a slower path without guilt or fear of judgement.
- Any progress is good progress
Building a business takes time, and that fact stays the same whether my daughter is 2 or 22. Every time I show up and put some work in, I’m chipping away at that big ball of time and getting a little closer to my goal.
Every newsletter, every Instagram post, every behind-the-scenes effort gets me a little bit closer to my version of success. A little bit closer to my dream life and business.
On the really hard days when I can only check my email and like some photos on Instagram, I remind myself that progress is progress. Little bouts of work add up over time. Every single effort, no matter how small makes a difference.
And it’s better to be making slow progress than to be making no progress at all. I could stop and wait for Ellie to be a little older. But four years from now, I know I’ll be so glad for the progress I’ve made.
- It’s never going to be easy
I find it pretty funny that I can’t remember what my life was like before becoming a mom. What did I do with all my time? It must have been so easy! Why didn’t I start my business then?
Oh, yeah, because it wasn’t easy. I may not remember all the details of my pre-mom life, but I remember being busy. I remember stressing out. I remember struggling to keep my house clean, driving all over town to run errands, and feeling exhausted at the end of every single day.
Here’s the harsh truth. There’s always going to be something that makes building a business hard. The circumstances are never going to be perfect. It’s not supposed to be easy.
It wouldn’t have been easy before Ellie was born. It’s not going to be easy when she’s old enough for Montessori school or even when she’s moved into her own apartment. I can either do it today with these struggles or sometime in the future with those challenges. Either way, it’s gonna be hard and take a lot of work. Might as well start today.
You may not have a toddler complicating your business life right now, but is there something holding you back from starting the project that’s been on your mind? Get started on it today! It’s not going to be easy, you may have to make slow progress. But it’ll be so worth it in the end.
What are you going to start today, friend?