I’ve been there.
Telling myself that I want to quit. Do my own thing. Get more balance.
While still sitting in a job that feels like family, no matter how dysfunctional, and that puts money in my bank account every month.
It can be tough to believe that not only does the grass look greener on the other side, but also that you can create it that way.
Here are 5 signs that you’re not going to be one of them any time soon:
1. You’re all talk, no action
Go on holiday, have a night out with mates, drink yourself to the bottom of another bottle of wine and you’ll tell anyone away from the office who will listen how you really want to pack in your job and do something else.
You may well have an idea.
Maybe some fabulous new product offering. Or a way to sell your services on a more freelance basis. Or to work in more of a helping space.
You talk of how you’d love it if only you could do something with your life that was more satisfying and fulfilling. And you mean it. It lights you up. Sets you aflame.
But you never do anything about it. You just talk.
And, since at the end of the day, it’s only ever action that gets results, chances are, if this is you, you’re not going to be realizing your dream any time soon.
2. Action equals moving jobs
Okay, so maybe you are doing something, imagining it’s furthering your self-employed dream, but that “something” means doing another job.
Either within your firm, or beyond it.
How you’re justifying it to yourself is to say that THIS one will give you the skills or resources or contacts that are going to be critical for when you make the leap.
Things that may indeed be long term beneficial.
The real warning sign is when you allow yourself to get just as embroiled in a different kind of overwhelm as you were in your old gig, and are pretty much back to square one.
3. Your key motivation is escape
Another danger sign is that, when anyone asks you about your business dream and what it entails, it doesn’t take you too long before you come back to bitching about what it is you’re doing just now. Why it’s so awful. Why all you want to do is escape it.
Your dream is just that. A dream.
It’s the white to your current black. But it’s undefined and very idealized.
And so long as you keep thinking only of escaping, and rarely in a concrete way of the challenge of creating your own thing, your dream will never be firmed up enough, or grounded in enough reality, for you to bring it ever to life.
4. You’re doing nothing to free yourself up
There are two ways I see this playing out, and both are big warning signs.
First, there’s the overwhelm monster.
Most of the people I work with these days have full schedules. And that’s a polite way of describing it. Many talk of being completely overworked.
So much so that burn out is never very far away.
Meaning that, if you ever want to line up some kind of self-employment while you’re still working, you’ve first of all got to get to grips, not just with the amount of work coming in your direction, but the time and headspace you give to it.
If it’s always easier to roll with what comes, you’ll never be free enough, or clear enough to hatch plans your alternative ideas.
Then, of course, there’s money.
If you really want to do your own thing, you have to have thought through what that means financially. How you’re going to fund your new venture. Where the money is going to come from in self-employed land.
It’s also critical that you have a grip on your personal finances. That you’re paying down any debt that you have and spending within your means.
Keeping your finances in a state of disorder is one of the surest ways to never allow your self-employed dream to come true.
5. You’re still caring too much about what other people think
People will have their opinions about you.
One of the things that’s holding you back is always needing to be seen to be perfect in the eyes of the people you’re around. That’s one of the biggest challenges as you actively disengage in order to create your own thing.
If it’s still important to you to get the top performance rating in your existing firm, and for everyone to rave about you, you’re focus is off, and you’ll find it very tough to have the kind of discernment you need to go solo.
The Real Issue?
The obvious advice for me to give you is to beef up your confidence, make a plan, get into action, sort your money, kill the overwhelm and give less of a shit.
All of these will go a long way to help.
But, I also want to leave you with an off-the-wall question, and a thought:
What if these things weren’t the real issue? And…
If they weren’t the real issue, what would be?
What if they were symptoms masquerading as the real problem? The real one being of your inner happiness?
How happy do you think you deserve to be?
Where do you think happiness comes from?
What would you do; what would you choose if your happiness was never in any doubt?