4 LESSONS FOR THE "GREEN" ENTREPRENEUR
Article by: Kathleen Macken
With my freshman year as an entrepreneur in the bag, I feel as though year one, kicked me in my metaphorical balls. I also get the impression, I’m not alone in this feeling.
It was like going out to eat at a fancy pants restaurant. Your expectations to eat a decadent meal is set pretty darn high, until about ten minutes into your culinary indulgence, when your stomach begins to gurgle and you barf it all up.
With regurgitated butter sauce dripping down your chin, you wonder aloud, “What the fuck just happened? Why is my body rejecting such incredible delicacies?!” Well my friend, you are not alone, because I definitely have a few barf stains on my clothes from year one as well.
While some of last year was a shit show and you may have felt like a hot mess for 99% of your year, there were four important lessons that I intend to carry into my sophomore year and beyond.
Lesson 1: The Importance of the Tribe
Year one, was the year of the Tribe. Never before have I been more aware of the importance of my tribe, the people whose spiritual DNA is forever locked by the magnetic pull of friendship, sisterhood, and unity.
When you have the support from your people who understand when you forget their kids birthday, or forget to return a text or phone call, or bring you food or wine when you are tired and over worked, you have everything, because the understanding of your tribe is cyclical. There are times when you may feel like a selfish jerk, but your tribe will show up for you unconditionally anyway. Prepare to be empowered and inspired by these people.
Lesson 2: You Gotta Laugh!
The kind of laughter where you cross your legs or you might piss yourself, your stomach hurts, and your mouth and face are so distorted, it looks as if you stuck your face into an airplane toilet, then flushed. I know I did this at least two times this past year…the laughing till you pee part, not the face in the airplane toilet part.
Balancing family life, business, personal care, making sure everything is perfect, is stressful! Life does not pause just so you can take a shit alone, and that feeling of chaos is overwhelming.
If you’ve had a shit day, grab your best friend and do something ridiculous like smoke weed...
and watch Family Guy, call one of the goofballs you grew up with and talk about all the stupid shit you did as a kid, go streaking, better yet, watch someone else streak. Whatever will help you step up your laugh game, do it!
Lesson 3: Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
Being a Cancer, I’m perfectly content in my little shell, with my little thoughts, and my little pinchers, however this year literally blew me out of my shell and out of the water. It wasn’t easy to step out of my safety zone, at times it was vomit inducing. But my heart was literally cracked wide open by the people I met and the things I overcame.
Allowing yourself to be vulnerable also allows you to trust that you are capable of creating great ideas and diving into passions that enable tremendous growth in your own confidence. Take a chance, go to the party, wear the dress, take the class, be pro active, despite any gastro-intestinal upset. Pop an activated charcoal tablet and handle that shit.
Lesson 4: Gratitude
It’s a lesson that we need to relearn every damn day. Wake up, grateful. Food on table, roof over head, grateful. Freedom to let your weird light shine bright, grateful. Develop a primal gratitude list, anything that comes into your head when you ask yourself, “What are you grateful for right now”. Consider primal gratitude your epi-pen, when you are really down in the trenches, and it seems as if there is someone standing above you, pissing on your head, you reach down deep into the guts of your soul and puncture your attitude with an adrenal induced shot of gratitude.
I did this after my daughter was booted from her summer camp. I was sitting in the Starbucks drive thru, sweaty and pissed off, angrily scrolling my Facebook feed, when the question was posed, “what are you grateful for right now?” A few highlights from my list were: Friends re-runs, wine, burping, running water and electricity, swear words. It grounded me and made me laugh (Ross yelling “PIVOT!" Hilarious, every time).
We’ve got work to do friends. It’s not going to always be pretty, we may end up with barf stains again, but that’s okay. Remember, you have the most amazing tribe, tell them how much you love them, lift them up as much as they lift you up. Laugh till your teeth chatter, preferably with your tribe, is there anything better than that? Step out of that circle of comfort and move into a space that is different…that shift is palpable. Finally, always give thanks, even at your lowest.
Cheers to your sophomore year and beyond!