Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Getting selfish

Apple Blossom by Josef Petrek

It is not generally in my nature to be selfish.

As anyone knows who has been following me for at least the past few weeks, I've been going through a lot of transition lately, in business and in life.  It occurred to me earlier as I was thinking about the contents of this post that  I may have come off as self-absorbed or self-impressed.  I'm not, it's just been a very different experience  and a lot to process, so I may wax wordy.  But if you continue reading this, you get to deal with it!  Yay!

(Thank you for sticking around.)  I got a call yesterday afternoon from my boss at the bead store.  I was hoping it would be to schedule a meeting I left her a note about, but she was asking if I would be able to work this Saturday in place of her business partner who wants to hold a garage sale.  However, I have two other obligations I cannot/don't want to get out of that take up pretty much my entire day, so I won't be able to help there.  Usually I'd feel worse about not being able to contribute, but for once I don't.  I am standing firm in the knowledge that I have my own priorities, and it's okay.

Her next question was whether I'd be able to work Fridays because the same partner wants to travel again like she did last year.  I said probably-maybe but I'd have to check my schedule and get back to her.  This one's a little more complex.
  1. I would have to switch my rental days to Monday-Thursday, making the whole weekend available for another practitioner to share the space, if the salon found another.  That could be very appealing to another therapist, more than Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday.  Having invested as much as I have in time, energy, and money into making it my space, I'm not sure I'm keen on that clean of a split. 
  2. Renting the salon for five days will likely end up costing an extra $100 per month due to a gaff on my part with the rent for four days.  Whether I am presently at the point where I can afford that is questionable, but when she let me off the schedule a couple months ago, I started making plans to fill that time with other things, like work.
  3. Working at the bead store every week brings in a reliable $252 every month.  I like reliable money.
  4. I can earn from one massage more than I can in an entire day working at the bead shop.  That reliable income is three and a half hours of massage or infant classes.  With my upcoming skills and some extra self-promotion, I can make that very easily.
  5. The current part-timer is cutting back to two days (she needs studio time for her real work that pays her mortgage.  Oh, that sounds familiar!) which is what's causing the gap in people working there.  If I refuse to go back, the shop may have to close one day a week.  This is not unheard of, but summer can be a very profitable time, and I'd like to see the shop succeed.

When it comes down to it, though, ultimately I want to succeed.  As noted in previous posts, I am really close to seeing everything I've wanted for the past six years-- a little longer than the bead shop has existed under the current management, in point of fact--come to fruition.  With the small exception of wishing I had a few more square feet to operate and do some retail in, I am on the edge of creating my pregnancy-centric practice.  I'll be able to work and save and feel like I really do "specialize in pregnancy massage".  It's exciting!

And it's impossible to do if I continue trying to shuffle everyone else's needs and dreams into the deck with my own and attempt to keep everyone happy and be everything to everyone.  I've done that for so long because I could, because I wasn't really going anywhere.  Now I've reached that quintessential Anais Nin place: There came a time when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

I can remain "selfless" (spineless) and continue to work at massage four days a week and make myself available for the bead shop and open myself at the salon to having someone else come into my space on the weekends and do what I'm not.

Or I can become "selfish", do what's right for me, grab my dreams, sprint for that light at the end of the tunnel and take my leap of faith.

I'm going to have to get selfish.

Jena Vincent of Abundance Massage

UPDATE: I talked to my boss and let her know that Fridays are out. Whew. She called this morning to say she wants me back on Wednesdays on a permanent basis, aside from the weeks I've already marked off. While this is a step up, I'm still not thrilled by it. I don't intend to make part-timing there a career, especially when mine is taking off.

I'm considering telling her I'll do Wednesdays until the end of summer.  That will give her plenty of time to find someone (maybe a JC student who can block out a day or two for work or go at night) and I can train them if she needs me to.  It would also give me time to actually build my client base to justify that extra $100 rent expense for the five days.  I mentioned in passing that I wanted to go to full time at massage, and she seemed supportive.  We'll see.

1 comment:

  1. It takes faith in yourself to make that leap and make decisions that are best for you, even if they disappoint other people. I wish you the best of luck! If I were closer, I'd schedule a massage! :)