Come On In The Water's Fine

My woo woo friends say Mercury is in retrograde which is why I’ve been tired and why nothing should be attempted at all by anyone anywhere now. However, in a couple of days Mercury will “go direct,” and it will be time to do absolutely everything with incredible fluidity, grace, and ease. I’m totally down for that. So I was talking to this friend of mine, Shiloh, about re-launching her business after mainly focusing on raising her kids the last several years. As we talked it became apparent that a) she’s been doing projects all along while she “wasn’t working,” b) she’s done some very sizzle-riffic stuff in the past, and c) she already has a bunch of clients with projects they want her to do, several months worth of work in the pipeline, and leads for more.

So I was kind of like, “Umm, I’m not sure what you think you need.” I’m kind of attracted to people starting new businesses, the life-changers, the entrepreneurials, the jump-starting self-employed mamas, the hey-I-could-work-for-myself-ers. They’re like plants. They need food, water, the right soil, and they grow. They need to know what kind of plant they are so that they give themselves the right inputs for what they are and don’t go wasting time doing stuff that isn’t in line with their Plan A (see Plan A essay).

At one point Shiloh confessed to me, “I have a major block I feel like I need to push through.” And I said, “Yesssss….” And she said, “I feel like other people are doing this.” Which is one of those evergreen fairly universal self-sabotagers from what I can tell. Like if I said, “Well, there’s already a blogger, so I guess I better get out of this space.” Or my friend the painter who’s from time to time observed that there are other painters, which causes her to question the validity of her being one too.

Or the cook, the photographer, the wedding dress designer, the sportswear designer, the TV producer, the nutritionist, the financial advisor, the investor – All of these folks, these friends of mine, who somehow live and support themselves and have a good time even doing things that other people also do.

I still remember this guy I used to hang out with quite a bit who’s now started and sold like seven companies. Whenever he found out about a new competitor he’d say, “That’s very good. It shows there’s a market for what we’re doing.” The first time I heard him say that I thought, “Motherf-cker.” My brain simply was not wired that way, to maintain positivity and momentum no matter what. It was more wired to see imminent disaster and destruction as the default.

Nowadays I get it. There’s room for Lululemon and Gap Body, there’s room for Chelsea Handler and Amy Schumer, there’s room for a realtor on every corner in our tiny town, there’s room for the I-Phone and the Android, there’s room for me, and there’s room for my friend Shiloh. There’s a lot of room for everyone.

But that thought comes. Someone’s better at this than I am, someone else has a cooler brand, someone else has figured out how to link the comments from Facebook onto their website and vice-versa, someone else is killing it even while Mercury is in retrograde. Grrrrr. That someone.

I’m not going to get a lot done focusing on that someone, and it’s not going to feel very good either. I’m gonna focus on me today, my Plan A, and feel good doing that.