Dismantling the Empire
I’m going to keep this one short today because the middle finger of my right hand is covered in a big fat bulky Band-Aid and typing is a bit of a pain. (I cut my finger yesterday while repotting a plant. Who the hell cuts themselves while repotting a plant? I do. Of course, now that I am associating every little thing in my life with some larger spiritual message, I asked myself yesterday: what does a deep gash on your finger mean, Grasshopper? And I was like, Um… it means there’s a sharp piece of unfinished clay on the bottom of the pot obscured by dirt, dumbass.)
(Inhaling…. thumb and middle fingers touching lightly, eyes soft and unfocused….)
I’ve begun the process of letting go of some of my clients (well, most of them, actually). I had a really life changing migraine (which I’ll tell you about when the bandage comes off) a few weeks ago and I’ve been using that god-awful day as a launching point to change my life. I literally felt like my brains were being scrambled that day, like the Universe had lifted off the top of my skull, stuck in a whisk, and agitated the contents of my skull (and then left without so much as offering me an aspirin). When your brains get scrambled, you can’t just carry on as if your brains were not just scrambled. I’m a believer in pain as a messenger and that day was my five a.m. wake up call.
In an effort to reduce stress in my life (the Great Cause of that horrid migraine), I’ve decided to cut my workload down by nearly seventy five percent. (I know, you’re thinking: how could you cut down your workload by seventy five percent and STILL have enough work to sustain your lifestyle? Ahhhhh, now you see, Grasshopper, the Way of the DayPlanner Warrior is not a balanced one.)
I’ve had to let some very dear clients go, people I have enjoyed working with tremendously. These clients are brilliant, creative people, people who have taught me so very much about business, about dreaming big, and about balancing work and play. It has been a very emotional couple of weeks here deciding who gets to stay and who has to go.
I figured my clients would be upset over my announcement; I figured they would be shocked. I figured they might even be mad, maybe feel let down or abandoned. The reaction I had not counted on was sadness. People are sad to see me go. They like me, and not just my ability to make a file cabinet neat and orderly. I can’t tell which is more shocking: their emotion over my leaving, or the fact that I don’t consider myself lovable enough to be missed. Jesus. Talk about pain as a messenger….
I’ve been doing lots of thinking about this notion of my work as separate from me. Every day I have to wake up and push aside the guilt over leaving my clients and repeat to myself: it’s your life or theirs, kiddo. I know that sounds extreme and dichotomous but I need to employ that bit of melodrama to get me through these next few weeks when it is inevitable that I will start reconsidering, and then berating myself for having made these decisions. I need a little mantra to keep my mind focused.
So this is it, Internets. It’s my life. I just have to figure out how I want to live it.