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Is Running A Small Business Really Worth It? Finding Myself After Hiatus #3

One of my predictions for the near future is that we're going to have a lot of people walking away from their small businesses and the passive income gals will be running back to that full-time work way of living.

There's been a huge surge of small businesses popping up which only means one thing: what goes up must come down and I think people are on their way to being fed up with having to manage every little thing on their own and they’re going to start missing the structured 9-5 work life. I know I am anyway.

I’ve always hated the idea of work. I’ve hated the idea of spending the majority of your life doing something you’d rather not do, surrounded by people you more or less put up with, only to have evenings and weekends to yourself. And if you have kids you may be lucky to get those few solid minutes just before you fall asleep.

It just never made sense to me and I have tried my absolute best to avoid it.

Until now.

I went to university and graduated with a Bachelor’s. Then it was officially time to enter the world of work. Except, I wasn’t quite ready for that. So then I did a Master’s which was only one year unfortunately for me and then it was officially time to enter the world of work.

But then there was a pandemic. And I was still recovering from a really bad eczema flare up so even if I wanted to I couldn’t put on my best pantsuit and hop into the big city looking for a job (insert sarcastic aww sound here).

Instead, I started a business. small leaf press. Yes all lowercase, I am That girl.

And it started off great! I was having a wonderful time running my own little indie press until it became bigger and morphed into a wellness magazine, reached 4000 followers on Twitter, and was shortlisted for a literary award… I was really doing something.

And I’m definitely not complaining about that, that was more than I ever dreamed of. But maintaining it all on my own was just too much and the little ROI was starting to get to me. It wasn’t worth the strain on my mental health anymore and I think more people need to be aware of just how much work goes into “living life on your own terms”.

It’s not as easy as opening an Etsy shop, making cute stickers and waiting for the sales to roll in. It’s email marketing sequences and daily social media posts on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and god knows what else, it’s coming up with content every day and copywriting and outsourcing work you most likely can’t afford and SEO and EMAILS and customer management and returns and overseas postage-

I could bloody go on.

Doing the job of about 28 people singlehandedly is no walk in the park. And I had to do a lot of those to regain my sense of self that wasn’t small leaf press or the unopened boxes of unsold magazines under my bed.

I miss running my own business and perhaps I can go back to it one day once I’ve outlined some serious changes that need to be made. But for now, I’m on a hiatus and I’m trying to find myself again.

The whole time I worked on my business I never took a second for myself. I physically couldn’t even if I tried because there was always something business-related that I could or should have been doing if I wanted to be successful. According to my journal, this time last year my writer's block was at its all-time worst and all I was thinking and worrying about was the magazine and how I wasn’t really looking forward to picking it back up again for the new year. And that made me really sad.

So this year I am determined to dedicate my time to myself and my writing. Poetry, personal essays, blog posts for my own website, fiction writing, whatever I feel like. And I’m really looking forward to all of it.

But with the UK taking steps for 4-day work weeks and the introduction of hybrid remote working, having a 9-5 isn’t looking as bleak anymore. Us full-time girlies can still work from bed in our comfiest pyjamas, close our laptops at 5 PM and open our Haruki Murakami books knowing there’s nothing to think about until tomorrow.

So next time you see some coach in some sunny state in America declaring that you can do it too! and passive income is as easy as 1 2 3! Don’t feel bad for saying, Nah, I’ll stick to the 9-5 for now. You’ve got it easier than most!

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