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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The call is answered...

Earlier today I told the Universe that I wanted to write more.  Actually, I think I said, I want to be a writer, but then I also acknowledged that this meant I needed to write more and I committed to doing so.

A short while later, an e-mail from the people over at Storylane was delivered to my inbox.  This is yet another social media forum - this one inviting you to tell your story, er, I guess more like write your story.

Serendipitous, no?

So, the Universe answered my call and I, in turn, answered back.  I love it when the Universe and I really 'get' each other like that.

Here is my first post on that site.

(The question was: What are the greatest challenges in running a small company or start-up?  The post is called: When you don't quite fit inside the box)

I was at the Dermatologist's office today (not to worry, just having a harmless spot burned off my nose with liquid nitrogen... that was a 'special' experience!), and I had to fill out a big long form for the nice lady at the front desk. There were the usual (and relevant) questions pertaining to my medical history, allergies, age, blah, blah, blah etc. Oh, and also on the form? Occupation.

Really? On a medical form? Sigh. Fine. I scribble down a quick 'self-employed' and soon after, find myself being escorted into the exam room by none other than the dermatologist himself(!) 

'Ah yes, Maren, nice to meet you, my name is Dr. W., am I saying your name correctly?'

I should add here that I am currently suffering from a wicked case of laryngitis and sound like a croaky, squeaky, toad-like creature. Seriously. My voice is barely audible. You should see the look on people's faces when I try to talk. It's like I have the plague or something. 

But ANYWAYS, where was I? Oh yes, back to Dr. W. and his next question:

'I see here that you are self-employed, what do you do exactly?'

Seriously? How on earth is that relevant to the spot on my nose?

Hmmm... I quickly consider my choices. I could:

A. Smile, nod, and pretend that I didn't understand the question. (Downside - kind of rude and lacking Integrity) (PS - I just wrote a book on Integrity. Honesty is kind of a non-negotiable for me these days...)
B. Slide him my card with a big smile. (Downside - this would require a grace, preparation and ease. The reality would be more like me scrambling around in my purse for my card, past the dirty kleenex, old grocery lists, toy cars, and crayons which are all likely to end up on the floor. Nope. Not a good option...)
C. Attempt to croak out my 'list' as gracefully as possible. 

Sigh. C it is.

'Well, um. I do a lot of things. I teach yoga, I write, I am a life coach, and I am an educational consultant.' 

Wow. He looks uncomfortable. I am not sure if it is my voice or the crazy 'list' that I just choked and croaked out of me. 

I smile sheepishly and make a motion that I hope he reads as: 'bring on the liquid nitrogen Doc and let's get this over with.' He does, and I note that he seems very glad to oblige and get me out of his office asap!

So, finally, the answer to the question that inspired this post. I am in the 'start up' phase of building my writing/coaching business. The thing is, I currently do all of the things that I squeaked out to the kind Doctor. For me, one of the most challenging parts of what I do is trying to explain it to people. Our society isn't really 'set-up' for people like me. Heck, the taxation system isn't really set up for people like me either. 

One of the things that had previously been holding me back from chasing my dreams was just that. The fact that 'society says' I must be some sort of career person that fits inside a box. Boy do I detest boxes. I am like the Houdini of societal boxes. Put me in there and start the stopwatch to see how fast until I bust out! 

What else am I struggling with? 

Oh you know the usual stuff: 
-Sorting out my accounting and finances
-Figuring out ways to market and advertise
-Trying to self-teach myself about the the publishing industry
-Trying to figure out the various social media tools and use them wisely and effectively

Working for yourself has a lot of advantages, but some distinct disadvantages too. For one thing, right now I am a 'one-woman show'. I am my own accountant, marketer, publicist, and agent! All would be grand except that I don't really know how to do any of these things well. But, I am figuring it out and taking it one day at a time. Being gentle with myself as I go along and really, authentically, enjoying the ride. 

I LOVE what I do. It is my passion. This fact makes all of these challenges seem small in comparison with the fact that I am living out my dreams. 

Go and get yours!

You can see the post here:

If you want incentive to write or feel like connecting that way, let me know, I will 'follow you'...

Thanks for listening :)



  1. Hey Maren :)
    I've said it before, but I don't think you give yourself enough credit! I think you're doing a great job of your 'one-woman-show' and are facing the new challenges and learning curve the best way you know how... with a positive attitude and open mind. Keep doing what you're doing. You're passionate. You're sweet. And I love that you are true to who you are and are proud of it. We're proud of you, too :) I'm lucky to know you!

    1. Lesley - thank you for the very kind words! I am holding up a big mirror right back at you! Thanks for all of your love, kindness and support!
      xo M. (See you tonight!)