Thursday, July 17, 2014
Every year I teach at a CLE event in Houston.
This year I'm not feeling great for a few reasons. I have a shoulder surgery (again) scheduled for next week. I also have a nagging feeling that my little start-up should be doing better before I go under the knife.
So, last night one of my friends asked: "How's the business going?"
At first I felt doubt and disappointment. Then I realized it's been a full year since I saw my buddy. And then I was OK! In the last year, I've launched my website, completed a successful, paid beta test with 41 locations at a national hospitality chain, added an additional 35 locations, raised my rates a bit, and am waiting to hear if they want to go to a full rollout nationally. I also secured client #2 (a small one, but one with good potential). I got my trademark approved by the Patent Office. I also have a lot of people helping me, whether it's to secure finder fees or as part of my Board of Directors.
I have a lot to be grateful for. No wonder I'm still so excited!
Entrepreneurship truly is the biggest roller coaster ride of my life. I've learned that it's normal to move from anxiety to jubilation at least 10 times per day. And I've learned lots and lots of other stuff to.
A lot of people are going to ask me the "how's it going" question over the next two days. Now I'm ready to answer, "It's doing better than I ever could have dreamed."
I believe that there's usually a reason why we have certain interactions with people. If we pay attention, we can learn a lot from them. I am so grateful for last night's lesson with my buddy. Perspective truly is everything.
Sunday, July 13, 2014
So, here I am two years after my first surgery to repair a bicep tendon repair. I quickly progressed from surgery to a pretty severe case of frozen shoulder. It's been a mixed blessing.
On the physical side, I still have very restricted mobility and pain. I am scheduled for another operation in a couple of weeks Hopefully recovery will go faster.
On the professional side, the pain was so bad that I couldn't sleep and eventually quit my job. I launched a mobile recruiting software company and went through a successful paid beta test with a national hospitality chain. Like any start-up, it's always a challenge to find new business and balance out development costs. I'm having a blast, and I've learned a TON.
Now I'm at a tipping point.
On the physical side, I have no idea how long it will take to recover and what that process will look like. I know it will involve PT of course, but I can't wait to be able to be pain free, lift a free weight, swim, and be able to get in/out of my dresses that zipper in the back.
On the business side, I know I need to give it at least another 6 months to win new customers. As with weight loss, it is so hard to be patient and let all of my efforts come to fruition.
I look at my disability as a gift. It forced me to reevaluate my career and goals in life, and pushed me outside of my comfort levels.
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
It's hard to believe that I started sparking way back in 2007.
Back then I was at the height of my career with a major retailer. I travelled every week and wanted to drop a few pounds, which led me here to SparkPeople.
We didn't know what was coming at work. The recession created a new normal for many of us in the workplace.
Over the next 7 years I finally got laid off from my job (I could see that coming for ages), took another job I really didn't like, had shoulder surgery, launched a start-up, and am still recovering from that shoulder surgery. And still sparking!
I find myself at a really interesting part of my life. I'm in uncharted waters with my start-up. I always wanted to own my own business, and knew it would be hard work. I didn't know that there would be days that I'd go from exhilaration to fear -- often within the span of a few hours.
I find so much inspiration here on Spark. Some days I wonder how I'm going to make my business successful. I find an inspirational quote here and there -- and save them for future reference. I find inspirational Spark Friends everywhere. And perspective. There's no reason for me to struggle with my fear of business failure. Other people are fighting for their lives, beating back cancer and other debilitating, terrifying diseases. I'll take my lot any day of the week.
Thank you for 7 years of friendship and inspiration.
Tuesday, October 01, 2013
Sparkers, I'm writing this blog so when I look back next year, I can remember how far I've come. It's kind of long, so if you do read on, I apologize for the length.
Happy Birthday to me!
Last year I was two weeks into my new life. I had just quit my job and had no idea what I was going to do next. I was in a lot of pain from my frozen shoulder and was exhausted from trying to work full-time when I could barely dress myself. I also wasn't sure if my disability claim would be approved, which was causing me an enormous amount of stress. I knew I couldn't keep working, but I wasn't sure if I made the right choice to take time off. I wanted to focus on me for a change.
In late December my disability claim was finally approved. What a relief! I was still in a lot of pain and not sleeping. Having some money coming in took a lot of pressure off me, though.
In March I went to a class called "Inspired Work" in LA. During that class, I came up with an idea to create customized employment applications for mobile devices to make it easier for hourly people to apply for jobs. In April I met a brilliant coder from my college who graduated the following month. He created texting software that I incorporated into my company as a Virtual Recruiter.
I previously tried to other start-ups, but didn't have the right partner. I even met another potential partner through Inspired Work, but again, it wasn't the right fit. I finally feel as though I am working with the right people. We're having fun, there's no drama, and there's nothing we haven't been able to work though yet. Plus, if we are successful, we can share our success with our alma mater, Hampshire College.
By June we had a demo. Last week we had a national hotel chain agree to a paid beta test.
Throughout this process I constantly questioned whether or not I was doing the right thing. My Inspired Work class taught me that fear was normal, and some coping skills. I kept reminding myself that I had to walk through the fear. I'm still not making much money, but at least I know I have identified a need in the market and am positioned for success.
Now about my weight. Last year I planned to be at my goal, which means losing 15-20 pounds.
I just returned from a trip to NY/MA and haven't been logging my food lately. But I have been working out diligently, and we haven't been eating out much over the last few months (mostly to save $, but also to eat more healthily. DH needs to lose 50+ pounds).
I was nervous this morning when I got on the scale since I feel like a whale. I expected 170-173. So, I'll take 168.4 as a victory! I still have a long way to go, but as with many things in life, my weight isn't as big of a deal as I thought it was. It's always funny to me to realize how us humans can make a big deal out of a little issue.
So, how will I measure success on my birthday next year?
1. I will be at a healthy weight and my shoulder will be fully functional. No more pain!
2. My business will be thriving.
For now it's a lot of work, but I'm starting to see how Sparkpeople fits so perfectly into my work and personal life. I find inspiration here every day that flows into all aspects of my life. Thank you Spark Friends!
Get An Email Alert Each Time LSDALOIA Posts