There is a joke among entrepreneurs that goes, “Entrepreneurs work 80 hour work weeks to avoid working 40 hour work weeks.”
It’s true, you know. We bust our derrieres doing what we love because we love the challenge, the creativity, the joy of creating something new. Entrepreneurs are risk takers. We think differently and outside of the box. We would rather work until midnight doing something that we love, something that we’re passionate about, something that is going to change the world than work until 5PM doing something that bores us out of our minds. Trust me, I know. I worked a 9-5 job for 7.5 years (pre-Reverence and during the first four years that Reverence was open) because I had those pesky bills to pay, a cat to pamper, and a life to live. I learned so much at that job and I am so grateful for the years I spent there. However, I knew that the risk of staying the same was greater than the risk of change, so the leap of faith to open Reverence was necessary. And, six years down the road, I am grateful I took it. I remember signing the lease to the studio space we have and feeling like I was going to throw up. And I did throw up later (don’t judge–it was nerve-wracking!).
In commiserating with some other entrepreneurs, we laughed at some different misconceptions that people have of us:
1. We work five hours each week and the money just rolls in.
2. We sleep in until noon each day, roll out of bed and check our Facebook for a few hours before working in our pajamas.
3. Our success was overnight/instant.
4. We have it easy.
5. We are billionaires.
The truth, however, is that it’s not easy. We all work long hours, waking up early/staying up late, for free until our business gets off the ground. More often than not, that takes many, many years of blood, sweat, toil, tears, failures, and more. It hasn’t been easy to learn all these lessons. In fact, it’s very humbling to learn them. It’s a lot of heartache, insecurity, crying. But it’s also an extremely rewarding thing to do. I get so much joy out of every aspect of being an entrepreneur (even the things that I previously thought were boring!), and I know that I am making a difference for God’s Kingdom and eternity which is worth it to me.
It’s so easy to compare ourselves to others. At the beginning of Reverence, I used to compare myself to other dance studios. They had more money that was just handed to them, they were in an umbrella organization, they had bigger spaces. And then I just had to stop and say to myself, “Look at what God is doing in your tiny little space that HE provided for you.” And I’ve been so much happier. It’s also easy to compare OTHER people to others. But it is so very dangerous.
Never EVER doubt that when God has given you something to do–whether it be in a leadership or entrepreneurial role, a 9-5 job, a job at home, being a stay at home parent, whatever it may be–that He will give you the power necessary to complete it with excellence.
Every day I have to walk confidently and boldly on the path that God has called me to walk. And so do you. Let’s run this race together!