Shaking & Stagnation: Feelin’ Out Growth

This is where the rubber meets the road.  After a year of blogging, reading books that rocked my world (see sidebar) and interviewing, drinking with and chatting it up with entrepreneurs that shook my paradigm, I can’t reaffix my gaze on where it was.

Now that I’ve finished my M.A. degree and decided not to stay in academia, my life has been released from the preplanned 4 years of dissertation work I had set out for myself.  I can work from anywhere and want to make a life doing just that.

So this is where I stand- with nowhere to go and with a pair of glasses crafted from some of the greatest entrepreneurs, bloggers and free thinkers of our generation.   I have no one telling me where to go or what to do and the freedom is oddly uncomfortable-  but I have all these notions of location independence and adventure floating around in my head.

(This is what happens when you spend your spare time reading Seth Godin and Danielle LaPorte.)

Truth is though- I’m scared.  I want to move to New York and I want to see what opportunity awaits…yet, you might have figured out that I’m a frugalpreneur because I’m broke, and don’t want to stay that way.  Going to NYC and starting a business is going to be a lot of work and it’s going to be expensive.

No, I don’t want to sell off everything I own.  No, I don’t want to live in a co-op. I don’t want to live on rice and beans either.  I simply want to do work that I value that will translate into more value:  both of the monetary and time-well-spent type.  

[highlight]Anyone have a big decision to make and no idea how to make it happen?[/highlight]

[highlight]If not, take my advice- don’t ask everybody, ask the right people. [/highlight] I did some crowd sourcing on my personal blog and some message boards I frequent.  For every person that gave a delightful nod to my dreams of NYC, there was a person that told me it’s too expensive and hard to live there.


I have a feeling I sabotaged myself by not trusting my instinct.  When you’re living a non-conformist life and blazing your own trail, do not resort to democracy.  Do not tally the votes to see what the majority says.  Though it’s comfortable, it’s too late for that, you’ve already broken off into your own nation state and you’re commander in chief.


I assumed asking others would be helpful- but they looked at it from all the lenses except my own- the lens of their own experience.  Without knowing my finances, they said it would be too expensive.  Without knowing my passions, they said it would be too hard.  Having lived in NYC and hating it themselves, they suggested that Austin or Seattle, or even San Diego would be better.  Maybe it is, but I already knew my answer.

Where I’m at feels like it will lead to stagnation.  No inspiration, no excitement and no opportunity to achieve what I want where I’m at. Dream death.

Where I want to go could mean unnecessary burden.  Living beyond my means.  Where I want to go could mean getting a day job just to get by.  Living in a situation that’s harder than the cushyness I could find elsewhere.  Going broke before I have the tipping point.  It could mean getting burned out or cynical.


[highlight]As a frugalpreneur- the point of this site, and my whole life philosophy is to craft a method to make more out of less.   To create big venture for little capital, starting from broke but not staying that way.  I’ve gotta practice what I preach especially when it’s scary.  [/highlight]

I’m at a point in my life where I have no excuses but the ones I create…or the doubts (a.k.a. the advice) I’ve crowd sourced.   What’s the point of working around your values if you ignore the big ones?  

That freedom scares me- but I’m grappling with it.  It scares the crap out of me.  I know I’ll survive in Brooklyn- I survived the roughest years of my life and got through it.  I don’t want to just survive, I want to thrive.


 The other aspect of being a frugalpreneur isn’t just about surviving with your work, but thriving because of it.  

Your work sustains you, body and soul.  It grows your assets and your develops your soul.  It’s both good money and good karma.   The hours of creation tear your down and your art builds you back up.  When your work is really good- it’s like and evolution and revolution that is constantly flowing in and out of your life.


That’s what I want… I’m still learning how to get it.  I’ve put on a shoes that’s a size too big, hoping I can grow into it- and I’m standing here shaking in them instead.

I made the mistake of crowsourcing my “shoulds” instead of going with the internal expert- my gut instinct.  Really, all I wanted to know was if someone else could tell me how to be happy, how to be successful, how to rock at what I do.  I asked all of that in a simple “what should I do?”

It’s easy to hide behind the advice of others.  What’s shaky is standing in your own knowledge…when the shoes you wear are a size too big so you can grow into them but don’t know how.

The only person who can answer your “should,” is you.  Everyone else is viewing you through the lens of their own experience.  The only way to get to the core of the matter is to go directly within the core that’s within you.  No sidestepping, no crowd sourcing.

Crowd sourcing the answers to your internal longings is amplifying the shadow of doubt that was lingering among the bright light of truth.  Asking the “should” puts the focus on shadow, not the illumination within your heart that shows you the way.


[highlight]The truth is simple.  Asking for advice gets complicated.  Stick to simple.  Stick what feels good.  When you create the work around your values,  it translates to monetary value.  When you’ve got monetary value,  you get to do more of the stuff you care about.  Prioritize your values and live by them, instead of chasing them.  [/highlight]

One Response
  1. May 27, 2012

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