It has taken some serious work to get to this point. And by work I mean mental and emotional work. I’m asking for help. That’s usually akin to pulling teeth. But I realize there are some things I cannot do all alone. Starting my own business is one of them.
You see, I have this big dream of using goats and other grazers and/or browsers to clear land. It is an eco-friendly means of removing unwanted brush, shrubs and weeds without the harmful chemicals contaminating our soil and water; without compacting the earth–which promotes more weed growth–such as rototillers and brush hogs do; and actually leaving the soil a lot healthier than when we started (goats make a nice, earth-friendly fertilizer while they eat all that vegetation). But it takes a lot to get something like this going and, while I am overly-proud of my ability to do less with more (and this will certainly help when starting said business), it does take some capital to start it. It also takes a lot of confidence, something I am often lacking.
No, I don’t have any doubts that I can make such a business a success. Though my methods might be a little unorthodox and have more business-minded friends shaking and scratching their heads over sentiment, I know I can take those rescued goats, those free-to-good-home cases, those “seconds” that are not “show” worthy but merely “pet” worthy, and even a few auction victims, and give them a forever home, while still clearing land to keep that home intact. What I have confidence issues with is, well, worthiness. I fear that there is some strange karma out there that says I’m not worthy to follow my passions, my dreams. I fear a barrage of naysayers all coming at me with pitchforks, telling me, to quote Mick Jagger, “You can’t always get what you want”, to suck it up, ‘go get a 9-to-5 that you hate–like the rest of us–and deal with it. At least you have your health’. I fear the echoes of my childhood and on through my high school years of being that outcast, laughed at, picked on and put down out of the typical spitefulness and cruelty that some children and teenagers often display. I hear echoes of my childhood hearing I’m “stupid” and “selfish” and how dare I stand up for myself, or anyone else, for that matter. I’m different. I’m odd. I don’t fit in. It’s a crazy idea. You’re a woman, for goodness sake! You can’t run a business…
Okay, now..breathe. You’ve got it out of your system.
I’m fine. Really.
And I’m starting my own business. I’m also writing a novel but that’s a whole other ballgame, and one that doesn’t require any help at this point, except maybe an accountability partner who keeps my ass in gear with writing each day, whether I feel like it or not.
And, yes, I am digressing. I am also dragging my heels, still afraid to ask, still afraid of getting my little witchy fingers burned. And, no, I am not really a witch. I am an ordained minister struggling to take that proverbial leap of faith into the unknown. I can ask for help for others; it is myself that I struggle with. Maybe it’s not so much unworthiness as feeling, well, selfish or conceited. Yep. I’m letting the mental tapes play along as I type. Lucky the reader who gets to weed through (no pun intended) my mental neurosis.
And place all these insecurities into God’s hands now. Yes, Lord, I trust You. Thy will be done. I now step out of my comfort zone and ask. Ask and it shall be given. Seek, and you shall find. Knock, and the door shall be opened unto you.
I have done so much research. I have talked to others in this field…and in similar fields. I have folders full of information, everything from price quotes to business models. I have my notes from the Master Gardener program at UConn, my certification as a Master Gardener. I have my notes and certification from Apollo Herbs. I know plants. I know goats. I know dogs (herding dogs would be a requirement here). I can do this. But it takes land and equipment, the latter being a 3/4 ton truck, 20 ft livestock trailer, portable fencing and a generator to run it on site. I have just under an acre and this is rapidly developing into a commercial zone. In fact, though I have grandfathered use, when this is eventually sold–as it must be for more acreage (less house)–it will sell as commercial property.
So, back in December, I dipped the first toe into these unfamiliar waters and found a business coach. That part wasn’t so bad actually. I was asking for help from someone I didn’t really know, on a professional level, and that has helped tremendously with getting my feet under me. So, when those angry voices start to ask “who am I to think I have a right to follow my dreams?” I can answer back with “who am I NOT to?” And I really have been tweaking that business plan left and right so that all of my ducks are in a row. But, what is stagnating me, is the necessary capital needed to get this off of the ground.
And then it came to me…funny how life does this sometimes, drops potential answers into your lap when they are needed. I was reading an edition of Treehugger News and there was a mention in an article about someone who used a Go Fund Me campaign for something. I had never heard of Go Fund Me before so I looked them up. It took a little time, getting the courage up to ask for something this big. And it may never see fruition but, as the saying goes, if you don’t ask, the answer is always “No!” So I am using everything I know to promote this, to cast my net as wide as I possibly can, asking friends and family to share my link on their Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages.
Which is why I wrote this post–a shameful display of swallowed pride and hopeful begging: GoFundMe.com/akt2hu9s And a big “thank you”!
God bless you & keep you!