When I was a kid, I remember a family member talking about how terrible it was to be in entertainment or hospitality because “then you’d give up your weekends working.” I think we were either talking about being performers or restaurant owners or both, but deep down I think it was a way to dissuade me from becoming Gloria Estefan!
Well, it stuck. What a shitty view to put on a young person. Do you see how we unknowingly self-sabotage ourselves sometimes based on other people’s screwed-up belief systems?
Subconsciously this taught me two things:
1) You shouldn’t follow your passion
2) You can’t work on the weekend and enjoy your weekend at the same time
I enjoy food and singing, so I have no doubt I could have been a successful performer AND restaurant owner like Gloria Estefan. Instead I studied finance and became a banker because that was the “right thing to do.” It was safe. It was boring. And eventually I became dissatisfied and unfulfilled.
It’s not surprising that I struggled financially when I finally became an entrepreneur following my passion and working in something I enjoyed (at all hours of the week and weekend) because of underlying belief systems including that damned weekend killer.
But so many times I’ve proven that statement wrong. For example, I worked as a publicist for theaters and entertainment venues in the evenings and weekends and loved it!
Today I love working with Missionpreneurs.
This week, after long days of work, I’ve spent extra time in the evenings coaching mission-driven startups who are pitching their businesses this Thursday at a pitch competition at Venture Cafe Miami (@VentureCafeMia). Even though I’m doing it pro-bono, I enjoy it, I’m excited about it, I love helping them and I feel invested in their success. It doesn’t feel like “work” (and in this case, I’m not even getting paid).
I’ve often asked my clients and colleagues, what would you do if earning income were not necessary. After the usual “travel for a year,” most people want to do what they love and contribute. For me, I’d be doing what I’ve done today AND tonight — mentoring, empowering and supporting other mission-driven entrepreneurs and leaders.
Follow your passion and do what you enjoy even if you have to work during the evening, during the weekend, during lunch breaks, during your mani and pedi, or giving the mani and pedi…
This is your life.
If it makes you feel good, you certainly shouldn’t live your life by someone else’s standards.
By the way, it isn’t too late to course-correct and start on that path now. I did it at around 30. You can do it at any age.
Shoot, now may even be the right time to become the next Estefan.
Do you have a problem working evenings or weekends? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Alexandra’s mission is to inspire, empower and support you to #BeTheMission! She is Founder & CEO of Latina Founders and Mission Based Branding Institute communications agency and training platform for impact businesses and entrepreneurs. This reformed banker turned “Missionpreneur” is also a speaker, author, writer, arts and culture lover, traveler (5 continents and counting!) and citizen of the world! Follow her musings at @OnAMissionAlex.