Guest Blogger — Michelle at Secret Weapon Copywriting
Moms decide to work at home for many reasons. Some choose to work from home because they want to raise their children, watch them take their first steps, or lose their first tooth. While others leave to get out of the “rat race” or they want a change of pace. There are still others who leave the workforce because of a sick family member or personal illness. I was in the latter group.
Seven years ago, I had to make a very hard decision. I had to leave my job of 13 years for health reasons. As the doctor put it “If you stay I think you won’t make it.” He didn’t need to spell things out for me. I made a choice—it was far better to be alive and jobless than to be dead.
Though I made my decision, I had to adjust to my new role—and it was difficult. Emotionally I went through periods of anger, frustration, and despair. I lost my sense of self wondering who am I? What is my purpose?
Mistake 1: Loss Of Identity
For over 13 years, my job had defined who I was. I was Michelle the caseworker and then Michelle the Adult Protective Services Supervisor. My identity was so intertwined with the roles I performed or the title I carried. Once I no longer had a job—I lost my identity.
In hindsight, I realize that was a mistake. Yet at the time, I didn’t realize it was a pattern I would soon repeat. During the first few months of being a work-at-home mom, I dove into writing which I had dibbled and dabbled in over the years. I had even gotten a few articles published on the web. Now I needed to try to earn a living at it. I wanted to establish my new identity as a writer.
Mistake 2: Defined By Rejection
I sent articles and stories out to editors and each submission was met with a rejection. Some editors were nice about it while others were very harsh. Since I was thin skinned each rejection was like a mortal blow. My self-confidence was holding on by a thread, and each rejection unraveled it more.
I felt like a total failure. For a time I stopped writing. I gave up. Why? Because I believed the rejections defined who I was. I believed I was a failed writer. I believed my new identity was failure.
Many women make this same mistake. They define themselves according to the role that they fulfill or the job they perform. When their status changes often times, they’re left wondering who they are. You may have experienced something similar.
Solution 1: Know Who You Are
So how do you establish your right identity? For me, it was to find out who I really was. I was more than the person who worked for the City of New York for 13 years. I was more than the woman who was now at home collecting disability. I was more than the writer with a drawer full of rejection notices.
I had to make a decision. Did these notices define who I was? I chose to accept that rejection notices were events that happened—they were experiences I had—things I lived through. And challenges that I had to rise above. I took a deep breath and decided to join a few writers groups. I took up a few writing classes and put my shoulder to the wheel.
I was still scared but I had to find courage by pushing past fear. Now I am still learning and growing in my craft but who I am is no longer defined by what I do. I am persevering, determined, and creative. What I do is write.
Solution 2: Get What You Need To Succeed
If you need to more knowledge to hone your skills, run your business, or to establish yourself then seek it out. If you need personal tutoring then find a coach. If you need business help—find a forum or group that will enable you to reach your goals. But don’t define yourself by what you do this would be a mistake. You’re so much more.
Who you are is not what you do. You are a woman of vision, determination, and perseverance—and what you do is work from home. Keep yourself on the success track remind yourself of this daily!
About The Author:
Michelle J. Dyett-Welcome is a SEO Copywriter/Ghostwriter. She can be contacted at: michelle (at) Secretweaponcopywriting.com http://www.secretweaponcopywriting.com