I was fired from my job for being a mum when my eldest daughter was one year old (read about it here) There was no reason or warning given, just hush money to go away quietly and prior angry vibes from the boss anytime I was called to pick my daughter up from daycare because she had the latest germ going around town and needed to be with me.
I tried so hard to fit in mum life around full-time employment. The pressure, the expectations… the exhaustion. The stifling of an inner voice that was trying to tell me….. there is more out there for you.
After leaving that ‘meeting’ feeling completely defeated I ugly cried all the way home. In the days after, I knew there was a choice I had to make. Go back to employment and continue the rat race or listen to the calling I had for a long time of starting my own business. It was a huge gamble, we couldn’t afford to live on just one income. But I knew, if I pulled it off we would be better off physically, mentally and spiritually.
My journey into creating a business that now allows me to be my own boss and choose how I am going to spend my day wasn’t easy, or an overnight thing but the honest truth is, I have never looked back (but boy do I wish I had of known about all of these resources from the start to help me out!) After two confronting episodes with PND, it was my business that gave me the time and space to put myself back together and continues to provide me the flexibility I need to be a mum of 4. I can safely say I’ve learned a thing or two about managing my expectations, my business and my sanity to allow me to thrive instead of simply surviving and live life the way I want to, not the way I am forced to. Turns out I wasn’t alone in wanting to change my life, and I realised this when I also started Remarkable Business Mums which is a Facebook group of like-minded business mums that has grown to over 16,000 members.
It is these experiences and the inner wisdom I gained that led me to reshape the way I work and take more of a holistic view in my business, and the way we assist other mums with starting their businesses too. Because the simple fact is, as mothers, we can not work the way most people assume when starting out in business and when people try, most end up failing and think that there is something wrong with them.
It is just that the load is significantly heavy, that is, if you aren’t aware of the things you can do to make the process easier on yourself. Fast forward 12 years since that day, I can say, I pulled it off. It wasn’t easy, but I did it – and so can you. Because life is too dam short to stay in a safe but soul-destroying job while our heart is screaming out for something more. The problem is our brains are wired to keep us safe, so we struggle to make bold, courageous decisions and follow our hearts’ true calling. Our brain is telling us it isn’t safe, so we stay where we are, never knowing what it is like to earn an income doing something that sets your soul on fire. Yes, it is totally possible, you just have to choose happiness over safety and if you want to learn more about how to sit into the fear instead of racing away from it read this fascinating post on the subconscious mind and the nervous system by clicking here.
It’s time for a change. It’s time to stop settling for a mediocre existence. The majority of the short time we are living this human experience is spent working, we might as well make it an uber-fulfilling time! Start striving for something more. You owe it to yourself, your family and the people you can impact by finding and pursuing your Ikigai. It is absolutely possible to have an amazing life full of purpose – you just have to be brave enough to take the leap and live out of your safe zone – because this is where the magic happens.
First up, what the heck is Ikigai? (Not an icky guy – the two should never be confused).
Ikigai is a Japanese concept that translates to “reason for being”. It is often represented as a Venn diagram with four quadrants:
- What you love
- What you are good at
- What the world needs
- What you can be paid for
The idea is that your Ikigai is at the intersection of these four quadrants. In order to find true fulfilment in life, you need to find a way to make what you love, what you’re good at, and what the world needs, all while earning money for it! Sound good?
Making changes to be in alignment with your Ikigai is on you. Your destiny is your responsibility. It takes bravery to make the changes necessary to live an authentic and fulfilling life of purpose, but it is so worth it. Don’t settle for anything less than the best – your Ikigai is waiting for you.
Are you ready to take the leap? What next?
How to Find Your Ikigai (where are you Iki?)
So you’ve read about what Ikigai is and how it can lead to a more fulfilling life. But how do you find your own Ikigai? It’s not as easy as flipping a switch – it takes some exploration and bravery to find out what truly fulfils you. You may have to try a few different things to realise you’ve found it! This is what happened for me and Business Jump.
Here are a few tips to help get you started:
Figure out what you love – and if you don’t know, ask someone to help.
The first step is figuring out what you love. What are the activities or things that make you feel most alive and make you bounce out of bed in the morning? What do you lose yourself in? When you’re doing these things, do you forget about time and everything else going on around you? This is your clue that you’re onto something special.
Identify your strengths – we all have them including you.
What are you good at? What comes naturally to you? Not everyone is good at everything, so it’s important to focus on your strengths and talents. When you’re using your strengths, do you feel energized and alive? This is another sign that you should explore this further.
Consider what the world needs – tip, if you need it, so will others.
This may be the toughest part for some people – thinking about what the world needs. But if you can find something that intersects what you love, what you’re good at, and what the world needs (solves their problems), then you’ve found your Ikigai. Maybe there’s a need for more artists, or more healers, or more teachers. Maybe you needed something when you were going through a tough time and now you know how to help others through it. The possibilities are endless, so start dreaming.
Work out a way to be paid for it – it is entirely possible to monetise pretty much anything.
Last but not least, you need to receive an energy exchange of dollars for the energy you are sharing. Think of how you would like to monetize your purpose-driven business. Could it be through an online course or membership, one-to-one coaching, digital products, drop shipping, affiliate marketing, blogging etc. In the modern age of the interwebs, the choices are many. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box – the key is finding something that brings all four of the quadrants together. And again, you may need to work your way through some of these income streams to find your happy place.
If this is bringing stuff up for you and you know there is something more awaiting you, why not take this free, quick and easy email challenge by clicking here that takes you behind the scenes so that you can gain inspiration, clarity and confidence in choosing a business idea to get you on the path to finding your Ikigai starting today! Also, check out our free resources by clicking here.