Wednesday, April 24, 2013

WAHM - O! The Perilous Options of Staying at Home

I am continuing to investigate ways of staying home.

The first way is the obvious. I stop working and make no effort to gain any kind of income. The result is probably loans on deferment (ouch!) and perhaps losing some services that would frankly make writing, blogging, and entertainment less than ideal. We would be strapped to meal plans and frenzied discount grocery shopping. Likely we would have to save up pittances in order to purchase things like shoes and cover unexpected maintenance costs.

It's not a pretty picture.

It's one that gives me heartburn (and I already get enough of that) and a horrible sinking feeling in my gut that I have had for the few months when I've been jobless after every move in the last 5 years.

Frankly Kemo Sabe, thinking about this potential situation makes me scared shitless.

The second option is to continue trying to get a remote job. There are a lot of options here actually, but not many that I really want to do or am excited about doing. I would prefer to do something related to a university or school because education is exciting to me, but it seems there are limits to the positions for which I'm qualified. Then there are things like virtual assistantships and customer service gigs that involve using the phone (ick!). I've done the assistant thing and I suck at it. I've done the call center gig and it stresses me out to no end. That's one of the reasons why I worked to become a manager at the last call center gig I had... so I wouldn't have to talk to as many customers (and the ones I did have to talk to, were challenges that sang my praises to the sky when I fixed their lives for them).

Another remote job option is to do editing, proofing, and or writing. There are a bunch of jobs like this out there, but there are just as many aspiring writers hoping to get them. Even though I have a ton of experience teaching writing and I write every day several times a day, I don't really have SEO knowledge, nor do I have any real web language expertise. I fricking break technology - literally. I have broken all kinds of things just by touching them. Even if I got through some kind of online training module about SEO or whatever, I'm not sure if it would work for me or make me want to jump off a cliff. This is probably is a big no-no for a lot of potential employers because everyone wants to optimize their search terms blah, blah, blah.

I'd rather write or edit for someone who actually has something to say as opposed to some bullshit article just to try to lure people to a lame-o site. Ugh. The idea is vomit inducing.

The third option is one that I am just now beginning to really bring to boil. It might be just as scary and crazy as the option of doing nothing at all, but at least I'd feel better trying something. That is, I could actually work at my own business of sorts.

I've been thinking a lot about this and reading a lot about product lines, ecommerce, and all kinds of business sites. As I sifted through the endless waves of business buzz words and advertisements for private label companies, a few things spoke to me.
  1. I've done a lot of stuff in my 30 years.
  2. I've written how-to manuals for companies and not gotten one cent beyond my hourly even though I'm sure those have been in continual use since (even though at least one company had them reworked).
  3. I like writing manuals and guide books.
  4. I know a lot of random stuff...
  5. I could write a bunch of how-to books based on my experience, knowledge, and skills.
  6. How-to books make money.

One of the things that wages war with this business idea is the fact that I have to do things with purpose. I can't do just anything. It has to make the world a better place than if I had done nothing at all. Yes, I want to make enough money to support myself and my family, but I want to do it ethically and with a servant's heart.

I also don't want to abandon my creative writing. I like writing stories and novels, but they're just not making money fast enough for me. I need, as a mommy-to-be, to have a secure revenue source to take care of my kid. Christian thinks I should keep working at it and put my whole heart into it, but how can I when I'm worried about being able to buy basic necessities in the very near future?

The fear I feel about not having enough money is a real one. And just as I'm afraid I won't have enough money, I'm afraid my fear of not having enough will set up a situation where it will become impossible for my dreams to ever be realized.

I have been getting more of what I want when I want in the past 5 months than I have in the past 3 years. And that's good. But I'm restless. I want more. I want some success now. I want feedback now. I need some little ray of sunshine to keep me on track or I know self-doubt is here to stay. I need just enough to keep me afloat so I can spend all that heart energy on things that I love and that matter to me (even if it turns out to be a few how-to manuals mixed in with the stories and novels).

So what do you do to keep the self-doubt at bay? If you work at home, what do you do and how did you land your gig? Did you set up a business and why? or are you steadily pushing away at a dream that you refuse to give up on? Tell me your thoughts. I'm looking for inspiration.

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