Saturday 21 September 2013


It is the first time in my life that I am truly on my own. I have friends for socialising and who give me advice and help if I need it, the decisions I take however, only have to concern me and the only voice I have to listen to is the one in my head.

... and it is interesting what this voice has to say!

I always felt that my biggest need was and always will be 'independence', and yet, I always committed to others, the husband, the boyfriend, my cats, houseplants, friends. I like to care. It takes no wonder that those two lifestyles clash when tasks become too manifold and something's gotta give.

One of the tasks I always wanted to achieve was my own business, I like the idea of having the freedom of decision making and to do what I am good at, which raises the question: What am I good at? I have many skills, which over a lifetime I could have developed to be good enough to make a business out of, but I never did. I think I figured it out now. Now, that I only have my own voice talking to me I cannot avoid hearing the odd uncomfortable truth about myself.

I am not a leader!

I can lead if I have to, but in the depth of my heart I am at my happiest, when I can support, and I am at my best when I am happy; a self-enhancing circle. I am a fantastic wing man; I am a carer and organiser, I have visions, I can improvise, but I need leaders to take those things on board to make  them reality. I am happy to work my rear off and all I need to keep going is a bit of praise. I need to know that I am of use. I need no money, no goods, I might be knackered, I might look like hell, but knowing that I am not living in vain will make it worthwhile and I will not crave independence.

Ever so often however, I felt taken for granted. If people know that you can do something, they stop the praise. This is a huge incentive to improve, I work even harder, learn even more, but there is the moment when I run out of steam, when I realise that I will not get this high powered energy back, that I am in a rut of commitment that is not appreciated anymore. That is the moment when I get all those ideas about running my own business. This is not for the money or the freedom, but to create something visual, a proof that I am good, that I still can do stuff.

Now: Building a business means talking to people, and that is where the voices come in. People see me as active and quite powerful and think I may be a leader. My ideas about the small coffee shop or the arts and craft studio all got smashed and I was encouraged to think big, be the leader of an enterprise, making money.

I am not a leader!

... and in order to show that I can do stuff, I need something that I can do.

I am not a spiritual person and the word meditation usually gives me the creeps, but there is something to be said for mulling over things without listening to the voices from the outside. What however, does mulling over mean? We always think we have to find answers to questions. I learnt that we have to find the right questions first.

Even if you are a leader, you might want to ask yourself how much control you need, how much you trust others. You may see hints of where your questions lie in how you communicate with others, if you praise or not, whether you bottle up or bring things into the open. Are you introvert or extrovert, does that conform with how people see you?

I did not like to find out how dependent my happiness is from other people's appraisal. I had to learn that I can find content on my own, but happiness for me lies in dependency from others. Now that I know that it is in my hands to decide how much happiness I need, or if content is enough. I can do my risk assessment before I give my commitment to someone. I did not like to find out that I am not suited to run a business as a front man. It is a lifelong dream to give up on. I probably could do it, but I quite likely would not gain the joy that I envisioned. So in a way I can be glad that I never dared.

Those little insights are paving my path into the future now: I will not aim to run my own business anymore, I will finish my work life in an office and may do a few bits and pieces on the side: a hobby that sells. I may keep my eyes open for a leader who lets me be the perfect wing man, though. My little voice is telling me that happiness is a goal worthwhile living for, after all!

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