by Rebecca Dickson
Rewind seven months and you’d find me surrounded by hungry teenage boys who were eating faster than I could stock the pantry. Then there was me, working as a writing coach and editor, bringing in so many clients I needed a support staff, but hell, I couldn’t feed the two teenagers staring into the refrigerator, so how could I put someone on payroll?
In August 2014, I brought in $212 of new work, but I was overloaded with manuscripts and coaching clients. People wanted to work with me because I’m honest and transparent in my coaching techniques and plot critiques. They slung out words and I cut ‘em in half, flipped them over, and returned a draft readers would want to marry.
But I was running my business without taking into consideration how many hours I needed to work. And I was stupid exhausted. If I pulled back, my kids went hungry. If I moved forward, my bed remained untouched.
I was left to decide which is better: a successful business that earns money (but you don’t have time to spend) or working normal, healthy hours without being able to feed your family.
While I struggled with my own business model, I realized I was more than qualified to help other people with theirs. My coaches and clients would ask for marketing advice and I always gave them a successful answer, earning dollars on their bottom lines, and lighting up parts of me I didn’t realize were bored. And even though I was honest with my clients about their work, maybe I hadn’t been so transparent about who I was or what I wanted to do (with them or myself).
Why couldn’t I get out of my own way and make entrepreneurship work?
I think I was just too damn close to the problem to realize I already knew the solution: I needed to strip down.
People loved me for my honesty, yet I’d been lying to myself. This writing gig just wasn’t working anymore, and coaching entrepreneurs to fix their problems was the best part of my job, but I wasn’t getting paid to do it.
The earning potential for coaching was puke-worthy amounts higher. I wouldn’t have to charge based on the amount of hours I needed to finish a project. More money while working less time.
Instead of hiding, I stood vulnerable in front of my audience and told them I was changing.
I didn’t apologize. I didn’t feel bad. I knew I needed to follow my gut instead of playing it safe.
From there, I stopped taking new writing clients and started coaching entrepreneurs on how to build a business. I didn’t design a new website first or change my Facebook page. I just started taking clients and taking back my life. In the next two months, I earned more than $100,000.
Yep. From $212 to $100,000 in a matter of two months. It’s not a typo or an exaggeration. I didn’t create some magic program. I just coached.
Sure, there were scary moments. I always feared I’d be worse off than I was when I was coaching writers, but to be honest, broke is broke. If I did worse, I’d still be scrounging up quarters and dimes to buy milk. I’d still be working long hours with very little reward.
But what if I succeeded?
Most people look at what scares the hell out of them and react based on fear, instead of trusting the universe to provide what they need. If my gut told me I needed to make this leap, that meant I needed to do it.
If you’re thinking of switching gears but you’re afraid of what might happen when you do, remember this: Perfect moments do not exist. You have to make the perfect moment happen, and wishing and planning are two things that don’t put money in your bank account—but action does.
Is there potential that this business model I have right now might not be as successful a year from now? Sure. Could I burn out again? Absolutely. But until either of those things happens, there’s no point in worrying about them. Because in my world, you move when your gut tells you to, not when your head gets congested with anxious white noise.
Even if the worst thing possible happens and my business goes under, at least I am able to say I spent most of the last year of my life with my family, watching my boys grow up, and helping other people find their true callings. At least I learned I’m resilient and leaping isn’t so scary. At least I have the experience, which is far more than I can say for the old Becky, who sat on the sidelines wishing and hoping answers would come to her at the perfect moment.
The truth is I’ve never been more successful than I was on the day I decided to be brutally honest and exposed. That’s when I started living the life I’d always wanted.
Rebecca Tsaros Dickson or Beckster, as her friends call her, is a woman who knows what she wants, and she’ll use profanity to tell you. She’s a coach for female entrepreneurs who are ready to make bank, banishing the absurd idea that it’s a faux-pas to earn what you’re worth. A former award-winning journalist, Amazon best-selling author and renowned writing consultant, she gave up all of the comfort to go with her gut: and she’s been rewarding her clients with major winnings (and having six-figure months) ever since. You can find her at http://Rebeccatdickson.com.