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Ditch Your Day Job

Lesson 12 of 24

What's The Worst That Can Happen?

Michelle Ward

Ditch Your Day Job

Michelle Ward

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Lesson Info

12. What's The Worst That Can Happen?

Lesson Info

What's The Worst That Can Happen?

let's dig right into the worst case scenario, right? So hopefully the light bulb has gone off a little bit, and you could just recognise when a limiting belief, which is like a life coach e term has taken ahold of you, right? It's a belief that you have that that limits you. So I feel strongly that just speaking it out loud and calling it out just allows you to feel the freelancing, fear and do it anyway. So what also helps us do that is to actually go through our worst case scenarios now before they happen, which is what we're gonna do right now. And you when you think, you know, here's Michelle, this hippy dippy, overly optimistic life coach like, what's gonna be the good that comes out of our worst case scenarios. But I think the good that comes out of it is that it's very freeing. And it's very empowering because if you know how bad things could get on, you know that along with that, what you need to do to combat that you're just more aware of it. As you take this journey through d...

iction, your day job and do you know that you could survive. So it's so greats. All right, well, this poor kid is so sad s So I want you. If you have a workbook, Page 29 there's a spot for this. Otherwise, just write it down. And whatever sheet of paper were document you're using when you envision yourself in the lowest of the doldrums, What do you see? Are you working at McDonald's and living with six roommates? Are you a bag lady? Uh, like what? What's in your head? I want you to just write it down. Liz, what's in your head right now? I envisioned that. I can't focus on anything. And I'm having trouble delivering anything. Getting anything, hug something, a judge day over and over. OK, so you like you have the clients or you have things coming in New York, just not able Teoh make it happen if it all just doesn't work out. So let's let's say that let's go even further because this is just what we're digging into. Let's say you don't deliver and all your clients go away. What's the worst thing that's gonna happen in your head? Um, that I'm gonna have to figure out I'm gonna have to figure out what I want. What if I want to go back to my old career or try to find trying new things? So the worst thing that could happen is that you have to have toe the drawing board and you have to give it up. I think that's a really big thing, especially because our creative businesses that we're looking to start are so connected to are what's important to us and what matters to us. So that's just huge feeling like, You know how important this is to you on having to let that go right? It's a big thing. I'm gonna I'm gonna throw it over to the chat in a second to hear the worst case scenarios. But I want to hear from you to Heather. So you've already had your worst case scenario. I'm Yeah, I I've but because it's important for me to be a good role model for my daughters and for my sons, but for my daughters as women, also, for them to see that all of that that I went through wasn't the end, but there's still more and that I can still be successful and that, Um so the idea of failing or or not being successful and disappointing them or not being a good role model for them? Um, that's hard. I want to give you a hug. Give me. Oh, I know this is scary stuff, right? This is scary stuff, but we're like, we're like, getting it. We're getting it out. So that's that's a really important thing when you feel like and I hear this a lot, especially from from mothers, that it's like we want it. We want to show our kids that you could do work that you love and that you could be happy and you could be successful. And you want them to see you being happy and successful and not stressed and not, um, you know, at the whim of other people and just more in control of your own life. And so I feel that, like, deep piece of you know, that image you have of potentially disappointing them and not being able to show that to them and having toe go back to work in the way that you don't want Teoh, I hear it. We're gonna cut. We're gonna talk about combating and soon everyone don't run away. I want to give a hug to everybody in the chatter they talking Worst case scenarios. What people who haven't been with us all day might not know is because some of people's biggest fears are being homeless alone. No money, no food, no car, no nothing. So remind us what your story was being homeless. Um, I had had a business that I loved, and tragedy happened and, um, lost the business, ended up homeless, divorced, bankrupt, everything. And, um and that's peoples. And that's where way on and you know, I mean, yeah, that's hard and scary. But, um, you know, here I am two years later, and, um, I've survived, and I'm like, OK, now I'm ready to just go forward and do something big, you know? So do you think that you had to go through that in order to, um, made a place where your you've already been in the low, so excited truly lived what your second happened? Sometimes I think that and then other times I think that I because I've already been there, I kind of take the safe route. Yes, rather than saying, Oh, I've already been there, you know, let's just go. So it kind of varies depending on who knows. Like, you know what What happened that day or whatever. So trying to find the motivation and the the path that I want to actually take Teoh I don't know it. It's just I feel like there definitely were some very valuable lessons that I learned during that time I call Those are begrudging life lesson. You like I didn't ask you learn these life lessons, right? Yes, I gratingly learned. Now I wish I didn't have to go through what I went through in order to learn these life. Hopefully I learned the lesson and don't have to go back and learn it again, right? Way talked this morning about like, what? Are you willing to let go up? And I and I know this is all All this stuff is easier said than done. But if you just start saving yourself, I'm willing to let go of that being my defining story. I'm you know, you're embracing rewriting your story and starting a new chapter and having that experience behind you. Um, and knowing that you came out the other side like that you're not doomed to repeat that, and so letting that go releasing that sort of baggage that we have is a process. But it's really good piece. Any other worst case scenarios having in the chat? Absolutely. And a number of them are around letting other people down. So whether that's worst case scenario is hurting my family. Um, is what Sandra says and sassy as well, afraid of letting my husband down, family, um, losing my confidence and giving up on my passions. Worst case scenario. So like not being willing to try again if you fail once, um, and they go on and on and on. And lots of virtual hugs. Pretty mother, thank you way love everyone in the chat. So no. Okay, so let's just go right away. The hippy dippy life coaching stuff. Let's shake out the worst case scenario. Take about right. And let's, like, take a look at the worst case scenario and then write down Why can't it happen? Uh, right and or what do you need to do to prevent it from happening? So I know for me, um, my my family is not going to let me, um I don't know. Just, like, be out on the street by myself like it's not there. I just can't There too many people that love me and I'm gonna own that. And I hope you own that to the things that you know and the things that you trust about how taking care of you are and also what you trust within yourself. So having my 20 jobs in seven years, that kind of mentioned at the very top of the show. I know I could always get another job. I'm really good at cover letters and interviewing and like saying what they want to hear and eso so I could say, You know, my worst case scenario isn't gonna happen because I'm not gonna like it, But I could always just go get another job. So let your own truth take over How loves, You know, you are the strengths that you could capitalize on what you know and trust for yourself and write it in page 30 of your workbook. Get it down in the chat. We're gonna want to hear it. You could always put it out online if it's not too vulnerable with the with the day job, Dick hashtag Um, how how can you How can you avoid How can you avoid this or prevent its lives? Any thoughts based on what you wrote before from the chat is, um, losing confidence and what I dio and so finding a way to, um, reconnect with that in talk with a support, have a support group or community, or like a mastermind group that I can work with. And when I'm feeling down on what I'm doing that I could get input from others who have expertise. I love that. That's fantastic. Help Help me figure out what to do to build my confidence up and improve on things. I love that. And that made me think of to that. Maybe you could have your own projects that you're working on, no matter what. That. Maybe don't rely on the clients or customers coming in the door, but you know, if there's a slow period in your business, which there will be, there will be a slow period. You're not just freaking out thinking everyone's left, you know? Oh, this is the time of year that I really put the pedal to the metal with my marketing plan or let's come up with my new product offerings and start making things for the holidays. Like, What is it that you're going to do in your downtime when when the fears and the vampire voices are all, like very loud in your head because you think everyone's gone, the big one. Anything come up for you, Heather, About disappointing your your kids? Um, well, in the middle of all of this that I've gone through. My my kids have always supported me and encouraged me and loved me through the whole thing. So I know realistically, that wouldn't change. Um, and I think that with everything I know, I'll survive. I know I'll get up again. Um, and as faras preventing it, one thing that is hard for me is communicating with people that are close to me, what I really need and what you know when I'm feeling scared or depressed or anxious or hurt or whatever that I tend to sort of isolate rather than which is not my normal. Norman usually have very people person, but when it's something that's really hurting me or difficult, I tend to isolate. So for me, making a point of communicating or letting my network know that, Hey, if I stopped calling or stop emailing or whatever, that's cause I need you, you know, on. So you know that's amazing. Do something, Teoh. You know, let me know that you're there. And you there if I can, If I need to talk or just so you hang out a little bit, you letting go of needing to carry the burden and needing to be alone in your pain is what it sounds like. And being able Teoh to counter act that by reaching out, especially as if you couldn't tell. I'm in extreme extrovert, But like especially as an extrovert, knowing that you get your energy from connecting with other people, it's like, even more important than ever. So start the isolation. And then, yeah, if you're an extrovert and your bad Oh, that's right. I mean, and that's that's similar to what listed about support. So kind of putting structures and systems in place. Now, um, that you could say if you don't here from me or you know what I want to call you every Wednesday. If you don't here from me one Wednesday, could you call me and extractive. Okay, Maybe I won't be or finding those those people. That's really great. What's what's the people are I'm seeing themes in the chat rooms as well of that connection. So asking for help, what can you do to prevent it asking for help from people, cause that's so hard to do when you are in heading toward the crisis. Eso cats. Eso won continually communicating with your support system. Um, having accountability would be a way to prevent ending up in your worst case scenario. So what did you call your account of accountability? You're kind of l a buddy. Nobody. So building gems of joy designs, building a support group of like minded people who understand the struggles of being a creative launching north. Absolutely import support. If you want to find those other people go to when I grow up coach dot com slash day job, Dick and I will approve you to get in. My Facebook group of senators were tough today. You gonna all find each other, but yes, and we'll talk about support for a whole segment tomorrow. So I'm really excited about that. That's great. Yes, One question on this topic is it for you that for people just knowing, being aware of what all these things are? And then is that sort of the step to actually taking that action like one of the action items within this? Yes, it really. Oh, this is such an annoying life. Could she answer? It really depends on you, right? Some people are just happy to put it out there and know that it's here. It's in your work, Booker, in your notes or whatever that you could always go back and kind of revisit it on and just kind of hold it in yourself and and know what your emergency plan is should you need it on. But for those of you that have kind of pulled out more action items that you feel you you want to include as part of this whole process, you're gonna take those out and you'll put him in your snap. You put him in your safety net action plan on battle. Be part of what you know you need to do for yourself. So it really just depends on what you personally need on. And I have a feeling if you're asking the question about it being actionable, then you probably want it to be actionable. Uh, and you could do something today. You know, finding and accountability, buddy. Or joining my Facebook group. Whatever. Could really only take a few minutes, so don't feel like you have to wait on that. That's something really easy. That could happen really soon on hopefully getting that into place sooner rather than later. Rather than waiting and told, you know, you're in the red. If that's the phrase on having it now is even gonna prevent that sort of possibility from happening. So you get a little a little, uh, I want to say silly, kind of, uh, but I feel like this is a really powerful exercise. So see a chart in your work. Look, I'm case 31 it's also here somewhere. Let me get it. And on the left side of the chart is your vampire voice. And what it says to you on the right side of your of the chart is your rebuttal against a vampire voice. I watch a lot of law and Order s. So I like to see this as, um as law and order, you know, if my vampire was going up against, um against me, then you know, what would I say? What would I say to bring it down in court? And I don't have to believe it. Um, I don't have to believe it at this point, but I have Teoh. I have to at least come up with a response, right? So my example is nobody could even make a living as a career coach for creators, for Pete's sake, it's ridiculous. It's ridiculous that I make a living at this, really is and my rebuttal, which I believe now. But I don't necessarily believe back in 2007 is this will resonate with the right people. They'll see it as an investment to not spend the next 30 ish years hating five days of every week. I didn't believe that way back when I was still very, very fearful of their just being crickets out there and people not paying me for this work. And this was something that I found that I was passionate about. And what if it didn't work? Um, it was scary, but now you know, eight years later, I look at that and go Oh, Yeah, that happened. There are people that see this as an investment on something you know, really, really important work to Dio. So I want to hear first, just the vampire voices themselves. I just want, like, a few examples. And I love to hear him in the chat to as to what your vampire voice is specifically saying, Tell me like your loudest vampire voiceless. I won't make any money. I won't any money. Let's get a few more vampire voices and then we'll get to the rebuttals. What about you, Heather? What's your biggest vampire voice saying, uh goes back to letting people down? You know, people will be disappointed in me or, uh, that I just wouldn't be the kind of example that I would like to be for my kids. Anything in the chat yet similar saying from Sassy Seamstress, a vampire You will fail and let everyone down. There are so many other graphic Web designers that are better, so why bother is one from designer girl? So there are everyone else's better doesn't need to be another. Whatever you dio, um, Cheryl says, I don't have a business plan to make this happen and no one will buy from me. Photos kept alive. Your products are lame and others are way better. Why buy from you from sassy? You like that's part of everyone else's better. Yeah, that's kind of part of everyone else is better, but But I like your lame. These vampires are so mean. They're so mean, Your lame. You know, I I came up with a vampire voice title based on a song called Die Vampire Die. That's part of a Broadway show called Title of Show. You guys should google it and just listen to it on YouTube because it's all about these voices that we hear that prevent us from doing the creative work that were meant to be doing. And she talks about how she gets really quiet on DSHEA talks about, you know, these voices that you hear that if it was a person on the subway or on the street saying these things to you, you would immediately say that person's crazy and mean, and what a jerk and like, stay away from that person. But when you're saying it to yourself, you're like, Oh, this is the truth. But hearing your lane, I mean mean, mean, mean, mean, mean So So, man, do we have one other that we haven't said before? But both from Ashley Brooks and Rocks T um, and things about your own self worth or how you see yourself So no one will hire me for work because I'm a minority or because I'm overweight or because I'm old, I feel like I'll be judged kind of kind of encompasses all of that. I'll be judged. Yeah, Okay, so let's go to the rebuttals. Let's write again. Think of law and Order, Big of you know, I like s for you Think of you know, uh, Olivia Benson and whatever goes to court like, what do you What can you say? That doesn't have to be true yet, but it's just a really good rebuttal. So your vampire says I won't make any money or you won't make any money and you say, Oh, yeah, well, I think that I will make money because why no cricket? Cricket? Do you have cricket sound effects? I won't need, huh? But I'm experienced work and have done the work. I love this. And maybe to, you know, you've been asked about selling this stuff, you know, maybe it's something that people short. Maybe no one's bought it yet, but maybe they said, Can I get you? Make this for me? Can you Do you sell this anywhere? Um, done the work? And so you could say, you know, and people have been and I've been complimented on this many times before. That counts accounts. Even if money hasn't changed hands, Liu says, I will make money because I will follow through on the work I will follow through. I love that I love that. That's something we could trust, right? Sometimes we can't trust the universe and what's coming to us, says the hippy dippy life coach. But we can trust our own control and power over the situation. So I think, um, I will find my audience eyes really important that fear of not finding my audience or my audience not finding me find my audience. I love that I love that. Okay, let's move onto the next one. I'll let people down. Heather, when you hear that vampire voice say you're gonna let people down, What could you say? That vampire, too? Put a minutes. Place well, the vampire voices really loud right now. So I'm having trouble coming up with that. I could come up with something based on what you said. Okay, um, you're you can't disappoint your kids because they love you unconditionally. Yeah, that's true. I mean, that's it. So I've loved unconditionally, and you can't let them down e gonna love you no matter what. Anything else come up with that? Um, it doesn't have to mean. I think that's a good robot with that one. I think that's a really good rebuttal, right? I remember that was that was a turning point for me as an actor. I remember a few years before I decided to walk away from it. My mother, like, read my mind. We were in the car and I had a really tough audition weekend. She just turned to me unsolicited and said, No one will be disappointed in you if you don't do this anymore. And it was such a release for me. I think because I felt that burden of like, you know, what I put my family through by pursuing When I pursued and I went toe y you and it was like it was I just assumed that that they would be disappointed in me. And so hearing from them, hearing from my mother that she wouldn't be, I think gave me the strength that I needed also to make the decision that I made and find something new for myself. Yeah, We've also learned a lot from your past experiences, and I think you can. You can take that knowledge and use it to your advantage. Thank you. I trust my past lessons. Experiences. Great. You're lame. The vampire says your lame. What do we say to the empire? Well, you know what you said earlier about? You don't wanna have 60 year old businessman as your I think that every person has people that they will connect with. And so it doesn't matter if someone else seems to be better than you. You have your own unique voice and your own unique audience, and that will help make you successful of that. So I'm writing this as my right people will resonate, and I have a unique voice and audience on, and I think to maybe we could add with this that that's only one opinion. It's only one opinion. Um, when Rose is people often Seymour value in our work than we dio. Uh, what else is better? That's your comparing so much. But you're not saying how people are seeing you. Oh, wow, that's that's deep. Good stuff. Uh, so other seeing the value So you're lame, especially if it's your vampire voice. This is coming from you. So you are lame. If you're telling yourself that you're laying and so be able sell the vampire You know what? You're not seeing what you're doing and the way that other people are going to see it again. Thats whole process is just such a big catch 22 because in orderto quiet, these were these voices never go away. I'll tell, you know, but they get quiet, they get quiet when when you do your work and you keep showing up and you get the results that you're looking for and even just small wins build up, build up, build up so that when the vampire voices come in like you discount um, so much earlier, you didn't before, like so much earlier. Uh, let's go toe. I don't have a plan, so I don't have a business plan which also equates to me like, Well, I don't know what I'm doing. Or maybe I don't have the education or the knowledge that I have. Look, everybody will be. I want the rebuttal be like, Well, then make one. Business plans do not have to be, uh, these really dry, 100 page things that you think of business plans being right. And I think that what's so great about being a creative entrepreneur in the age of the Internet is that we don't have a bit of banks for loans, and so we don't need to come up with these big, dry documents. But I would say, if this is you go out and not don't even go out, go to the Creativelive library and by Jennifer Lee's right brain business plan, because that's gonna take you through all the steps that you need to consider. You know you are. You are market and your audience and and your products, and it's going to make it very creative and fun. So, like if you don't have a plan and you feel lost, well, number one, you'll have an action plan. By the time we're done, tomorrow s O, that will be rectified But if you want to dig MAWR into the overall business plan of your business, then let Jennifer Lee's right bring business plan guide you to that. I feel like that's good for now. Way told that vampire you'll be I'll be jugs, right? Your vampire says, Well, all you're gonna be judged, they're gonna judge you. And there it sounds like from what you were saying, like, they're gonna be nasty, gonna be nasty. And I hear that a lot in terms of fears that come up like we're afraid of the of the trolls that we think just live online. And for the record, in the eight years that I've been online and blogging and doing this work haven't had a single troll. Please don't start now. I haven't had anyone I've had maybe one person that has written me something a little nasty, But other than that, that's it. Eso I feel like a rebuttal here is like, I'm not gonna let this stop me from putting myself out there and finding my people. I'm not. Neither were Bottle, I think is that Appel you repel and attract that you're different types of customers and clients and And so the right people are, are you'll find and the wrong people they could be wrong. People finding the wrong people will go away. It's not to care about, absolutely. And I think to when. If there is that situation and where you come across something nasty, then I hope that you could trust that you handle it in a way that makes you proud. That's all that you could dio that could be part of the rebuttal to You can't control others actions or reactions or responses to your work. Um, you could only control how you respond to them, so that could be part of the rebuttal as well. So that's their thing. They judge me. That's their thing. I can't control that. I could just put my work out there and do what's important to me. Um, so that's big. So I want you guys to just take this chart. Obviously, that has your own stuff, you know, to use all these examples that they don't apply to you. Unlike I said earlier, the vampire voices are not gonna go away. Uh, so, as you go through your day job, diction, journey keep adding to the spreadsheet. If you have the workbook, you could just print out that page over and over, because again there's something so powerful about articulating this and getting it out of your head. I feel like it's almost if there was, you know, an action movie about these vampire voices. The whole thing would be like, Well, once they get it out of out of my head, the vampires will die These deaths, you know, as long as they live in you and they eat at you, they have all the power. But in order to take their power away, you need to get them out on. Then they're gonna go. I'm melting, and it'll be a great Wizard of Oz moment. It's also worth mentioning, and I want to put this just in big, bold letters that when I hear from my clients that their vampire voices are getting louder and louder and louder. I get really excited on. I think that's because the closer you are to doing your work more freaking out because the vampires Onley exist to keep you away from doing the work that you dio. If this is resonating with you, go read the work of Art By Stephen Press Field It's all about resistance with a capital R, which is really about the vampire voices. It's a really quick read, a za bonus, and I think it's really true. What he talks about in the book is that, you know, the closer you get to the thing that you're gonna dio, the more resistance is like Oh my God, she's doing it. She's not gonna have a use for us at all. And so I better just, like, throw procrastination in this thing in this fear and like, let's get her away from the thing that she wants to be doing because to they want to keep you safe, right? They want to keep you safe. So smile a little bit when you hear that the voices are getting louder and louder cause that shows that you're doing your work shows you're doing your work, and it shows that you're probably getting closer than you ever have before on. And I think like the voices yelled the loudest when they know you're just about to, like reach that milestone. So I think that's really, really important

Class Description

You don’t have to commit your life to a soul-sucking day job. In fact, you can drum up the job of your dreams if you have the right mindset and an action plan to back it up. In Ditch Your Day Job, career coach Michelle Ward will show you what it takes to go from bored-at-work to satisfied and self-employed.

There was a time when Michelle was wasting her days working in finance. She was miserable at work and needed a change. Over the course of two years she cooked up her escape plan and has been perfecting her approach by helping others for the last five years. In this class, she’ll show you how to prepare to leave your day job for a career you love. 

You’ll learn how to:

  • Create a simple plan for getting your business started
  • Establish an emergency fund
  • Identify your existing sources of help and support

Michelle will take the mystery out of starting your own small business and help you zero in on the details that will make it happen. You’ll develop a savings plan that will give you a good buffer before making the leap and get tips on exactly what it takes to make your new endeavor profitable.

If you are done with counting down the minutes at your day job and want to launch your own creative business, Michelle is ready to give you all the inspiration and insights you need to set yourself up with a life and job you love.

As a bonus when you purchase this class, you'll get:

  •  1 Year Membership Free to Bidsketch
  • 2 Free Hours on Breather, to apply towards booking one of their beautifully designed workspaces.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials


Bidsketch Discount.pdf

Bonus Materials

Amazing Discount Codes.pdf

Ditch Your Day Job Workbook.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes


a Creativelive Student

Fantastic course! I highly recommend it. Michelle is a wonderful teacher: energetic, passionate, funny, and encouraging. Kenna is also a great facilitator; the most natural and genuine host I've seen so far on Creative Live! Great job both of you. And a well-deserved shout-out to the in-class participants, who were engaged and candid about their own situations. Best of luck to both of you with ditching your day jobs. This class has given me the structure and several practical tools to facilitate my own transition to creative entrepreneurship and out of a soul-sucking job. Michelle shared many supportive messages that made me look more confidently at my "uniquity" and its value in the creative marketplace; as a result, I am now eager to take the action towards building my art business. I will use my S.N.A.P. to comfortably and confidently get to where I want to be, so that I don't snap at my day job in the process ;-)

Becky Pennington Arce

This course is truly AMAZING! I've been in hyper - forward motion since the first day! Thank you Michelle! This course was honestly different then any other! It gave actionable items, where to find support, and tons of yummy resources (which if very time consuming and somewhat impossible when you have a DAY JOB!) My Day Job is actually "ditching" me but by having a plan (which Michelle gives step by step details how to do), I'm totally comfortable and even EXCITED to be DITCHED! Several items that she shared I've already been able to implement into my creative business plan AND my personal life! Double whammy! I ended up buying the course to make sure I didn't miss anything! Super excited to continue and wish everyone luck on their own creative journey! ~Enjoy!

Heather Young

I was one of the fortunate studio members of this class. Wow! So much great information, step by step instructions, enthusiastic encouragement and fun! Michelle takes you through the baby steps needed to form a solid foundation to get ready to ditch your day job and do it with a plan, a safety net and a support network. A common sense guide to doing something uncommon and (to some) seemingly nonsensical. The videos will teach, inspire and encourage, the workbook will make it real for your own situation and the resources that are provided will be invaluable as you prepare to ditch your day job. You will be so glad you purchased this class!