14 Apr From Comfort to Risk
We, as women, never think we can take a risk. It is always about our families, managers and that our partners are looked after, nourished and secure. We forget that we must fill our vessels. Let’s be honest, it is scary to take that leap of faith. But imagine the possibilities?
Take a few minutes to really think of what could happen if you get out of your comfort zone and push your own limits?!
My whole life I felt that I could not live “inside the box” my family and society believed was right for me. As the saying goes “I walked to the beat of my own drummer”…until I began to realize that people judge. Judgment is everywhere, especially in high school. After graduating the place I fondly call HELL, it occurred to me that with without definitions from others I was lost. When we feel lost we tend to go back to what we know even if that was not the healthiest nor the most productive response. My life continued, I did the “typical” school route that everyone expected and maybe even surprised a few! My dreams of completing law school were dashed but I have put that to bed! It was now time for me to truly ask myself what is PLAN B and be OK with it.
For me, that meant keeping the knowledge I gained in law school and applying it to a profession that would also bring me tremendous satisfaction…and that is when I decided to become a Human Resources practitioner. It was interesting to learn about the behind the scenes working of an organization and understand all the moving parts, as one does as a HR professional.
Fast forward 13 years and there I was with a robust career behind me yet feeling like there was a void.
I was also at a crossroads as my children were little and in daycare. I have written a couple of previous blogs about my decision-making process to become an entrepreneur and how my dedication to my family was the precipitous to making this decision. The thing that I only brushed over was the complete and absolute fear I had of FAILURE. How could I not complete law school so many years before and then fail at starting my own business? A million voices ran through my head about what I should do and what I needed to do.
It would have been very easy and comfortable for me maintain a six-figure management level HR job and continue in the rat race of life. Running from home to work to daycare and back. I could be like so many Moms and rush through moments with my kids because things need to get done. I could focus on the money and the lifestyle that it brought our family. I could continue to make someone else’s business successful and I could move up the Corporate ladder. All the coulds did amount to internal fulfillment. It left me empty and yearning for more for myself and for my family! But the fear at times was so crippling that I tried to quiet the voice. It was when people would ask me what I was going to do after my maternity leave with my second child was done in the summer of 2014 and how maybe I could consult on a few projects, that it hit me! People actually wanted my advice and support. Me. Sherri Rabinovitch. Really?
All the self-doubt and hate-talk that played in me head like a recording since high school slowly started to mute.
If I really did get outside of my comfort zone what would the business look like? I knew that traditional HR work was not my fit any longer but I could advise businesses on best practices and offer insight that was unique and innovative. It was also possible that I could share my story with other women, moms, and be an example and through my practice and shared experience other women could find alternatives to what they believed was their only option.
And so, my husband and I sat down and had a very real and frank discussion about what impact it would have on the family’s finances and he said, just be happy! Now with no external obstacles and no more excuses I leapt into the unknown and took the risk.
Each day that passed once I decided to forge ahead, negative self-talk and all it became easier for me to move past the fear. I took on clients, communicated with others in the same business space as I and screamed from all the rooftops that I was Open For Business, The People Guru™ was a reality. Over the next few months I aligned my business with a former colleague in Toronto and took on their clients. It was all moving along and it became easier to accept that I had something to offer!
Today, as things stand I am even more passionate about the work that I do. The risk to break out of the comfort zone has created huge dividends.
It has lead to appearances on Breakfast Television’s “Mom Talk” and future media opportunities. There are still times when the insecurities creep up and my head plays tricks on me but I have the tools and proof that my decision was the right one.
If there is a lesson that I would love to share with all other moms/women/risk-adverse folks out there it is this: take the plunge and know that pushing, working hard, believing in what you have to offer will pay off! I am living proof that it can be done. I’ll always be here to cheer you on!