Thursday, April 26, 2007

Moving on

Hi Paul,

I'm feeling really good these days, comfortable with the uncertainties, and driven by my ideas. In prep for today's coaching, I want to give you a sense of where I am, and where I'm headed.

Sunday, Rocket & I had a wonderful dinner date at a local tapas bar. We got the chance to really talk through some of our hopes and fears, and most importantly to discuss what risks we're willing to take as we move ahead, and which things in our lives we wish to preserve. We came to an understanding that our bottom line financially is maintaining about six months' living expenses outside of retirement savings. Other than that, just about everything else is fair game to be invested in building a business.

Rocket is enjoying her work these days, and feeling committed to continuing a career, but the idea of freedom, the ability to take off if and when she chooses, whether to tend to a new baby, or what have you, is important. That untouchable six months or so in living expenses is a bedrock of sorts that will preserve that freedom for her. It also gives me a sense that it's okay to risk the overflow. Not, of course, that I'm heading to Las Vegas, or that I'll dump all the funds into hastily-executed trips or unreflective purchases of equipment. But it leaves me with what I consider a decent sum for moving ahead, while giving me a bottom line as a measure for when it might be necessary to change course. I'd say approaching that bottom line is at least a good year off, which frees me up to invest some time in bigger projects.

Also, I've been offered a part-time teaching gig at Lemon University, which will put a little more money in the coffers, and as I said before, give me the ability to test the waters in an academic career, build up more self-confidence in the classroom, and challenge me to connect these two aspects of my life (the academic and the applied). Fortunately, the schedule for teaching is light, and shouldn't be too much of a distraction.

I'm quite enthused about the current prospects. I've mapped out much of the next few months, through August. September I will begin my teaching gig just a few hours a week. My target is to have some demos ready for showing people at Industry Conference in New York in August. I've defined three specific projects that I'm working on at my startup firm. I've tentatively recruited my friend Eduardo Montana, a PhD candidate in [Field 2] at The University of Paradise to join forces with me once he files his dissertation this fall.

I've talked to Rocket about looking into some telecommuting, say one or two days per week. My hope is to move into a larger office some time in the next few months. We could set her up with a desk and a computer, where she could work when she's telecommuting. That'd save her about 1-1/2 hours commute each day, meaning more time with the family, which she wants, even without giving up time at work. There'd also be space for Ed to join us.

What I'm realizing these past few weeks, is that I'm regaining my sense of self. In a strange sort of way, while I acknowledge the great strides we've made together, and appreciate how much you've done for me in getting me unstuck, I think it's time for me to move on. What I most need now is simply to dig into the work, and rely on myself again. I begin to need less and less external approval, including yours, which is a wonderful place to be. What I'd like to do, after today's session, is take a hiatus from coaching for a while, to test the waters with my own buoyancy.

If you're willing, I'd like to keep open the prospect of getting back in touch in a month or so, to touch base, see how things are progressing, renew coaching if it seems appropriate then.

Let's have a great session today, and thank you!



Ivory said...

Awesome! You are sounding so much more confident - way to go.

What Now? said...

Wow, things are really happening! Congrats on the Lemon U. gig and on the clarity that you and Rocket Scientist have achieved about what you are and aren't risking. Sounds like you're in a wonderful place!