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  • Writer's pictureSusan Carr

Living life without lipstick

The other day The Husband and I went to a Major League Baseball playoff game in Tampa.

And I forgot my lipstick.

I learned from my grandmother and mother that a woman never leaves the house without her lipstick. It's just one of those things that I've carried with me through my adult years. Like earrings, if I don't have lipstick, I feel incomplete. I swear I will buy three more tubes of the Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk shade and put them in all my purses.

I really don't like being unprepared.

The Husband and I were also unprepared for what's happened with our new backyard visitors.

About a month ago, two raccoons started frequenting our oasis. Both being fond of all animals, we've entertained their presence to a small degree. Emmett and Marty are their names; at first, they weren't too much of an issue.

They'd eat at the bird feeder. We'd calmly request they move along. They'd slowly climb back up the tree, watching to make sure we were truly asking them to vacate the premises rather than offering them a spot of tea to go with their biscuits. And then they'd return a day or two later and look all cute, so we'd walk outside to watch them.

For what happened next, we weren't prepared.

Emmett decided to take up residence in Jasper Cat's cave-under-the-table. And we weren't too thrilled.

Side note: Jasper Cat is actually quite happy with the new arrangement. He loves spending most of his day in the garage, and if we keep him in the house for too long, he comes and finds one of us, leads us to the appropriate door, and requests to go back out. Weird cat.

So, we borrowed a humane trap to use for raccoon relocation purposes. Emmett has now found a new home two miles down the road, next to a large wooded area, a huge pond, and a gas station dumpster full of stale Twinkies. Bliss.

On the other hand, Marty is still here and attempting to outsmart The Husband. It's quite comical, really, as he said the other day he now knows how Wile E. Coyote felt trying to trap the Roadrunner.

Literally, there is a 12-foot piece of string attached to the door of the trap, which is on our back porch, and then stretched to the couch in the living room so The Husband can watch and wait, ready to snatch the door shut. (The trap is VERY humane; otherwise, we would not use it. The Husband is careful that no raccoons will be harmed in this movie.)

And so we wait. A little more prepared.

Last year, when I quit my job as an executive administrator in order to dedicate most of my time to the caregiving aspects of helping my mom during the most vulnerable stage of her life, I wasn't prepared either.

I jumped into the world of freelancing with both feet but not much of my brain. Sure, I could do the work of editing and writing, and I quickly garnered some great clients I'm still working with.

I tried to learn as much as possible independently and from my mentors.

I have a business name and a website, I work with a couple of software programs to make things easier. I keep track of my projects, income, tax obligations, and expenses. And I write this blog hoping that one person will benefit from just one thing I share.

But I haven’t been able to wrap my head around the actual process of growing a business.

The other day, I had an epiphany when I was offered a project, and I didn't want to take it. But, because work had been scarce and income lean, I felt I couldn't turn it down.

And then I started really thinking about what I wanted to be doing. And that type of project, isn't it. I know now what direction to go and am ready to chart my course to success.

And now, I'm prepared.

I'm so excited for October 15.

In just a week, I'll embark on a 30-day framework to build my freelancing business. A legitimate one. One that can really grow into something sustainable. I’ll be learning about how to do tasks like these:

  • Payment setup

  • Creating an intro video

  • Making proposal templates

  • Create a client onboarding process

  • Draft an SOP for client management

  • And more!

The cost of the program is mere pennies. I honestly don't know why the facilitator isn't charging more, considering how she has used the exact same process to build her own six-figure freelancing enterprise.

In truth, she probably would have given me the program for free, considering our collaborative relationship. But I wanted to invest in her business and my own. I thought by having a financial stake in completing 30 days of goals, I would be liable to gain more from the experience.

The past year has been a journey of surprises, from unexpected raccoon guests to the twists and turns of freelancing. As I gear up for a 30-day venture to boost my freelancing business, it's clear that being ready for whatever comes my way adds a layer of growth and success to my adventure.

I think I'll go reapply my lipstick and see if Marty would like to join me for tea. Before the Coyote gets him.

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