A Year Can Change A Lot: Part 9

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Meet the new holiday Glo Bar….called PRESENT.

 IMG 6231 thumb   A Year Can Change A Lot: Part 9

IMG 6207 thumb   A Year Can Change A Lot: Part 9 Cranberry Pumpkin Spice and so festive. It smells like Christmas!

Present, to me, is all about living in the moment especially during the holiday season. It is about taking a moment for yourself each day.

The new Glo Bar Variety Packs are now up for sale and are 10% OFF!

This is the first variety pack to feature two completely new flavours- EMPOWER and PRESENT!

The first 10 orders will receive a free Heaven Glo Bar. As always quantities are limited…so first come, first serve.

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With Doubt Comes Motivation

Missed Part 1, Part 2, Part 3Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, or Part 8?

Last night, Eric and I were driving each other nuts.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the guy, but sometimes living with the opposite sex can drive a person a little bonkers, ya know? ;) I decided to go our separate ways last night- I went up to the bedroom to write. I instantly felt so much better zoning out and typing away on my laptop while covered in comfy blankets.

I believe it was Part 6 where I left a cliffhanger. I left my job and then Part 7 and Part 8 were sort of abstract posts, which did not really continue the story. So let me get back on track, my friends.

Grab a Green Monster or stale office coffee, whatever you have on hand. ;)

So I left the job.

I drove the final, 2 hour, horrid commute home.

The drive home especially sucked that night and thus solidified my decision of why I was leaving.

I came home, put the keys down, and brought in my boxes from work. Ikea paintings- which I had hung on my cement office walls to cheer the place up. One of which was a dock looking over the water and another was a beach with footprints in the sand. They didn’t really work, just as they didn’t work in my grad office either. The paintings only made me wish that I was on vacation, really. The paintings are now buried away in our basement. I don’t like looking at them anymore as they remind me of two unhappy times in my life.

I want to say that I threw a big party when I got home that night, but I didn’t. I actually felt quite empty inside.

I felt like a huge and utter failure.

I spent 7 years in university and another year busting my ass for that job, and now here I was.

Jobless, unhappy, depressed, and unsure of my future.

I believe I came home and cried. Tears of joy and also what-the-hell-am-I-doing tears.

I honestly wished that I could go back in time and re-do my university career. I would have done things differently, but that is life. None of us can foresee the decisions that we make. We need to let go of the guilt, live, and hopefully learn from our experiences.

I can now tell you with 100% confidence that I am not meant to have a career in academia. I didn’t know that before! See??? Progress! ;) Baby steps, people….baby steps.

I felt very scared after leaving my job. I had some very dark moments lying in bed at night and wondering what I was going to do with my life.

Luckily, I had Eric’s support to leave my job. We did a lot of number crunching and figured that we would be ok….for about 6 months or so and then I would have to sell my soul to the devil and beg for my job back (only joking). I had saved a lot of money from my job so I had that cushion to help get me back on my feet.

I instantly started looking for a research job…I mean, that’s what researchers do, right? I sent out some resumes, but the truth was none of the jobs appealed to me in the slightest bit. None of them. They all sounded so boring and I didn’t feel excited when I pictured myself doing that for a career. This is when some alarm bells started to go off inside me. I told Eric that none of the research jobs sounded like something I would enjoy doing. He said, ‘Well, apply to the ones you think would be fun then.’ Sounds easy enough right? I ended up sending out several resumes, but I can honestly tell you my heart was not in any of them. The pickings were very slim during the recession, that is for sure.

During my first month off work, in February 2009, I started to ask myself some hard questions.

For the past several years I had been on autopilot. I didn’t so much as stop to ask myself what I ENJOYED and what I actually wanted to do. I just did what I thought was right. Successful students got accepted into grad school, so I wanted that too. I was doing it for all the wrong reasons and trying to impress people in my life.

In Feb 2009…jobless…I asked myself, ‘What would make me happy if money didn’t matter?’

I have always been money focused. I always dreamed of a job that would have me making a ridiculously huge income. I researched the fields in psychology and decided that I would pursue the ones that made the largest income (I/O consulting can get you 300K + a year!) and this was a huge mistake. One of the biggest lessons I learned was that if I pursue a job for the salary, I will never find what I am looking for.

Because the truth is, the money really doesn’t matter if you are unhappy. And if you are HAPPY, it still really doesn’t matter.

I was making decent money at my job, but I was so depressed that I didn’t even care. I just put it into savings hoping for a better future. I didn’t have much of a desire to go out and have fun because I was unhappy on the inside.

When I pretended that money didn’t exist, that is when I really started to find some answers.

If money didn’t exist, I would:

1) Open a bakery

2) Write, write, write

3) Blog, blog, blog

4) Learn photography

5) Help women overcome disordered eating, self-hate, etc

6) Rescue animals

These are the things I truly ENJOY to do. I could do these things above and not get paid for it, and I would still enjoy it.

Now of course, I did need to find a way to make my passions turn into something lucrative. We just purchased our first house, and our money was quickly going to run out if I didn’t start making money.

So that is when I started to think about opening a bakery…seriously.

I am the type of person who, once committed to an idea, will dive headfirst into the idea and give 110%. I fear failure so I give my entire heart into projects that I commit to. I try not to look back. I work, and work, and work. Giving up is not an option for me. You can see why leaving my job was so difficult.

My days were filled with bakery plans. I decided that if I was going to do this I was going to do it right and professionally.

My only problem was that I failed to clearly communicate my intentions with Eric. In my mind, I had, but when I talked to him, he told me he was a bit upset that I had just decided and not talked it over with him. In hindsight, he was right and if I could do it over again I would have him more involved in my decision process.

First came the name ideas. Oh there were a lot. GLOW conflicted with too many other business names so I went with GLO. I ended up liking it better anyways. Seems a bit fancier. ;)

Then I applied to have my business Federally Corporated. In Canada, this is the highest level attainable for a business and it is also the most difficult to get. The application process was huge and very technical/legal, but I did it on my own. I had no money to hire a lawyer and still haven’t to this day, even though it would have made things much less stressful for me.

Once my business was corprated, this was my green light to proceed with serious planning. Since February, I have logged 60-90 hour work weeks. People in my life have asked me why I don’t take a break or time off, but to me that isn’t really an option during the start up phase. So many business ventures fail, and I do not want to be a statistic.

The hardest part was dealing with all of the doubt that comes with starting up your own business. I had to deal with serious doubts in my own mind and others in my life. I also had some wonderfully supportive people in my immediate family who really helped me through. My mom and sisters were very supportive and encouraged/helped me as much as they could. Eric helped me even when he was tired after a long day of working.

I remember one comment my mom said to me in March, ‘You know Ange, I really have a good feeling about your bars. I have a feeling that your bars are going to take off and really be the driving force behind your business.’ (Note: This was before I had even created my Glo bars!)

At the time, I didn’t really share this vision with my mom, but lo and behold she turned out to be right. How do moms do it? ;) She still has mother’s intuition to this day.

While I was building the bakery, I also poured my heart into my other passions: writing, blogging, helping others, and photography.

I made a checklist with my passions and how I was achieving each goal:

1) Open a bakery- recipe formation + testing, safe food handler certificate, research, etc.

2) Write, write, write- I wrote a lot on the blog with a focus on my Hot Topics/series

3) Blog, blog, blog- OSG + created Green Monster Movement, and Glo Bakery websites

4) Learn photography- Started to learn and use our Canon 30D SLR camera late Spring

5) Help women overcome disordered eating, self-hate, etc- Kept writing about these topics and being open about my experiences

6) Rescue animals- I haven’t done this directly, but I think I have started to indirectly with education about slaughterhouses, Food Inc, etc.

It felt amazing to do things I loved. It is a huge myth that it really isn’t work if you enjoy it. I disagree. It has been a ton of work and yes, it often feels like work when I am baking for 10 hours a day or being responsible for my business paperwork, taxes, receipt tracking, baking, etc. The only difference now is that I have motivation to do it and I enjoy the creative aspect of it.

Writing is one of my favourite ways of connecting with others. I think it is nothing short of amazing to be able to type words on a page and create an emotional charge in someone reading it. I still get a kick out of writing posts and having readers comment that they were in hysterics laughing or getting a tissue to wipe a tear. The power of the written word is so intoxicating!!!!!

Even though I was filled with doubt, overall I was much happier.

I was my own boss. I called the shots, and for once in my life, I had the creative control of my life. I am not a believer in fate. I firmly believe that we create our own experiences in life.

Our actions, every single day, add up to what our lives will become.

I made every single decision about my business.

It was one of the most fulfilling, yet extremely fear-provoking, feelings I have ever known.

People sometimes ask me if I am afraid that I will fail and I always tell them that any fears that I do have are much less than the guilt I would have felt looking back on my life and doing something that I did not enjoy. To me, you have to take risks to be happy.

Now, 8 months later, I am finally feeling like things are coming together, but I also know that I still have a long ways to go. The only difference now is that I feel excited about the journey, instead of wishing I could derail off the tracks.

Angela Signature thumb12   A Year Can Change A Lot: Part 9
Never continue in a job you don’t enjoy. If you’re happy in what you’re doing, you’ll like yourself, you’ll have inner peace. And if you have that, along with physical health, you will have had more success than you could possibly have imagined. ~Johnny Carson

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{ 92 comments… read them below or add one }

Shannon November 11, 2009

I made the decision to leave my job right around the time you did. I am now back in school and loving the feeling of being on the right path now. It is really inspiring to see all of the comments above and all of the people who may be moved to change their life because of the story you told!

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Tina November 11, 2009

Beautiful post. I have a similar internal struggle. I’m only a freshman in college but I just know that I’m not meant for a job in academia either. I mean, I sit in history class or math class and am just constantly thinking and creating meals in my head, or remembering meals from the weekend, or thinking about traveling all over the world. This scares me because then what do I study? I’m currently a journalism major but I honestly don’t see myself as a journalist in terms of working at a newspaper or anything. I’m just not into that hyper-competitive world. I don’t want to be constantly fighting for a job. Sorry to just vent but I just agreed with so much of what you said! My dreams in life are to open a restaurant with my sisters and mom, write, and travel. Thank you so much for everything you said! It’s inspiring to know that we CAN have what we want, we just have to be willing to work hard enough for it.

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Nae November 12, 2009

It’s SO good to hear stuff like this.
I’ve been struggling to decide what kind of degree I want to go for, and there’s a fair amount of pressure here to do the right thing. I keep flip floppin between what seems more practical, and what I’m truly interested in. And then I’ve got to remind myself that we only live one life, and I need to focus on ways to be happy.

Hearing your story just confirms this. Thank you!

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Mandy November 12, 2009

Oddly enough, we have the exact same interests and I’ve wanted to have a vegan business of my own. I know you’ve said in the past that if you could go back to University you would do things differently. I am currently in college now and im stuck as to what major/minor and classes to take. Any advice? What would you have done differently in University? Thanks! You are truly and inspiration. :)

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'dee November 12, 2009

OK first, you did so rescue animals! You were the savior of two beautiful beta fish! :)

Second, how prescient of your mom on the Glo Bars. I remember looking forward to your opening up US shipping and at the same time wondering if they’d really be “better” than the packaged bars.

Well, they are not only better, I am tempted to order your entire inventory at one time to ensure an uninterrupted supply. Seriously. I’m on the road for work this week and put a few bars in my briefcase. I rarely have time for a real breakfast and always try to fit workouts in on the road and these have been PERFECT. I really can’t abide the taste of packaged bars now, I only want my Glo Bars.

PS, anxiously hoping the hubby picked up my latest order at the Post Office while I’m playing road warrior yet again :) … there were only 2 left in the pantry!

Awesome post – as usual!

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Katy @ These Beautiful Feet November 12, 2009

I feel like we are soul sisters. This is where I am right now..

“I can now tell you with 100% confidence that I am not meant to have a career in academia. I didn’t know that before! See??? Progress! ;) Baby steps, people….baby steps.”

I am finishing my full-time teaching internship and I just KNOW I am not meant to do it. I have a few very supportive friends/family but I get some flack for it. I have to put a happy face on everyday at my internship when really it just takes my energy from me in such a negative way!

I am getting a part time job next semester to really have time to relax and find out what I would do if money didn’t exist. I have a few of yours on my list..(: I am loving this community and writing. It really has given me my energy back. I love it. Reading this was perfect timing. I have to go back and read the other parts as well. Thanks for writing and sharing your heart. It’s inspiring.

Katy

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sarah January 12, 2010

Hey Angela
I have been reading your blog for the past few months and this is the first time I am commenting on your blog. I think you are such an optimistic person, you really give me the drive to start working out again. I also love the glow bar creations, however I live in New Zealand so I can only imagine how it tastes. I hope to see more of your entries.
Kind regards
Sarah

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Hannah April 11, 2013

Hi Angela,
I read this series of posts today (at work) and they really struck a chord with me. It means a lot to hear from someone who has experienced the same dilemmas I am facing now. Thanks for sharing and for your fantastic writing!
Hannah

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