It was a Tuesday afternoon and I was sobbing on the bathroom floor. Literally sobbing on the bathroom floor. This was not at all what I had planned for my Tuesday work day and yet there I was, crying like a baby on my porcelain bathroom floor.
Just six short months prior to that moment, I decided to finally start my own financial planning company. I’ve always been the go-getter, entrepreneur type, but this was the first time, I really put my money where my mouth was and finally create the dream business I’d been envisioning for years. Everyone told me it would be hard, but typical Brittney style, I would simply nod while thinking, “yeah that’s just you, for me, I know this stuff and it won’t be that hard.” After all, I’d read every entrepreneur story and business book out there, plus I majored in business economics and was a certified financial planner, so I just figured I had an advantage over these so-called challenges of running a business.
But that moment on the bathroom floor was it for me. My lowest moment. The moment when I was ready to toss in the towel and call it a day.
I had just been alerted to a tax issue that I hadn't expected or even knew to prepare for, and I completely lost it. Full melt down status. I was broke, invested all my money into this company, physically exhausted, emotionally and spiritually drained. I was now ready to give up.
Then something magical happened next. I viscerally felt myself surrendering it all. Surrendering to the master plan for me. To God, the Higher Power, Universe, whatever you want to call it. It was a full body experience and a moment that was very intense for me. I began to feel a sense of relief as I continued to cry my eyes out and one I had never fully experienced before. It was my version of making a conscious decision to surrender and trust and say, “alright, show me the way, because I have no clue what to do next.” At that moment, one of my close girlfriends called and nurtured me on the phone, telling me I would be okay and that I could figure it out. That call helped me peel myself off the bathroom floor and figure out what to do next.
Still unsure about how I would actually “figure” out this major obstacle, I called my Dad and asked him to come meet me in LA the next day for lunch. This was out of character for me, as up to that point, I was never one to ask for much help. I was the one who played the “strong, independent, I have it all together” role in life. So admitting I didn’t know what to do, especially to my parents was huge for me.
My Dad, being the strong, traditional, protective type, came out to take me to lunch the next day and was absolutely amazing with me. I had really never asked for this type of help before and he was so sweet with me and sat with me at the restaurant table while I balled my eyes out again, telling him about how i wanted to give up.
Then he did something that changed my life and our relationship forever. He simply looked me in the eyes and said, “Brittney, you are a very strong woman and will overcome this. You are not someone who gives up. You can handle this. And one day you will be lying in bed and laugh thinking about this dark time in your life and wondering why you made all the fuss.”
I stared back at him, still sobbing of course, and said, “thanks Dad.” It was exactly what I needed to hear to continue moving forward. To take the next step. Just the next step.
Fast forward to today, a year and a half after the bathroom floor moment, and I can honestly say, that moment was the pivotal moment for me and my entrepreneurial journey.
You see, that’s exactly what the entrepreneur journey is all about. Ups, downs, highs, lows, challenges, growth, surrender, trust, let go, asking for help, failing, getting back up, again and again. The difference now is that I finally get it. Like seriously get it. And now I embrace it all and am able to have so much fun on the wild journey because I accept and embrace it.
Just like any entrepreneur, I've had so many challenges along the way. And what I've really learned along the way is how to enjoy the journey and see each challenge as an exciting game I get to play.
I have an amazing support group of family and friends and my spiritual community that has been my way of overcoming any obstacle that has come my way. I've learned how much power I have and have faith in myself and trust my ability to get through and overcome even the darkest of times. Without my own belief in myself, my vision, and the village behind me, I would not be where I am today.
Today, I have a whole new understanding of success. I am less focused on the destination and material compenant of “success” i.e. money, fame,awards, etc.
Now I see that my business is just an arena for me to play in and grow as a person. I am challenged everyday to become better and able to express myself creatively through my work and my business allows me to live my dream life. I am very proud of how I live life and how I help people through my work and business.
Being an entrepreneur is beautiful. I believe you learn so much about yourself and life and even though the ride can be difficult at times, I would not change it for anything in the world.
So throw your hands up, and ride the wild ride of entrepreneurship. Just don’t forget to have as much fun, laughing, dancing and of course crying (all types of tears) along the way.
Onward and upward!