September 27th, 2013, posted by Aimee
Well, it’s official. I have finally mustered up the courage to surrender the security of a lucrative paycheck and – let’s face it – my entire identity for the past decade as a hard-charging, long-suffering PR agency executive to pursue a more balanced life as a freelance consultant. What the heck is balance, anyway? Here are a few things it means to me in the immediate sense:
• The ability to see my son wake up every morning, push his bangs away from his forehead for a kiss and squeeze him while he’s still little enough to allow me that privilege
• Taking a run or a hike at lunch time – sometimes even with a friend – even if I have to get up and start making pitch calls at 5 am to do so
• Having the time to prepare a healthy dinner at least a few times a week
• Not worrying about accounting for every single 15-minute increment of time during my day or whether I’m working harder than all the others in my same role at the company
• Shoving that hideous roller bag that I lugged back and forth on BART into my office everyday far into the corner of the closet
• Never having to attend another management meeting filled with hand-wringing over junior staff morale or gossip in “cube land”
• The ability to pursue work with clients I like and brands I believe in regardless of budget limitations
And I could go on. But overall, the overlying theme here is freedom. Freedom to be a more involved mom. Freedom to take charge of my physical fitness and health. And freedom to pursue the kind of work I really enjoy best.
Am I terrified a little bit? Definitely. The reality of pursuing business as a solo practitioner and trying to make financial ends meet is still just around the corner. But I’m looking forward to the challenge too. It’s a new chapter and I’m ready for it.