This one is personal – but I know it happens all the time to entrepreneurs who are the first in their families to start a business. So I’ll share what happened, as well as the lesson I took away from the incident.
Among my family, I talked about my vision of my future as an international EFT coach, and about how I want to give up my day job. It felt good to explain how carefully I plan for this, how many safeguards I have in place and how I’m learning to do all these exciting new things in my life. I was happy showing them my glowing vision of my own future, even telling them I want to move back to the area where they live.
And my family proceeded to try and talk me out of it. In fact, they suggested that I should try to land a position as English teacher – I actually passed the first of two necessary exams 20 years ago – rather than do something as risky as running my own business.
I barely managed to rein in my disappointment. Of course, I had been hoping for support. Instead, I ran into a wall of misunderstanding and well-meant but completely useless advice. It seemed that nobody valued all the expertise I had gained in the last six years, let alone all the coaching I’m still getting. Quite to the contrary, I was told to fall back on something I learned twenty years ago.
It’s a classic situation:
Members of my family have held jobs – even teaching jobs – for at least two generations, and most likely even further back. There are no entrepreneurs among them, let alone successful ones. My vision simply seems incredibly risky to them, and they cannot understand that careful planning and marketing can eliminate most of the risk. My goals are not acceptable to them.
Ultimately, my family members are mentally caught in their model of a good life which is still centered on getting a good job – like teaching in school – and being satisfied with what that job earns them. Underlying the discussion was an additional belief: Earning more money than a normal job pays is greedy and morally objectionable.
So, how does an entrepreneur deal with such a situation? And an EFT practicioner and therapist at that? First of all, it helps to stay calm to avoid a completely futile argument. And then it helps to see that most people use their own lives as role models, and try to push their decisions on their loved ones in an attempt to help them. We can acknowledge the love behind their actions and then go ahead and ignore the inappropriate advice.
And of course, we can tap.
Even though I was devastated by the lack of support from my very own family, I’m okay the way I am and open to the possibility that their mindset simply does not allow for my vision.
Even though I wanted support so much and didn’t get it from my own family, I’m okay the way I am and I’m open to the possibility that it may be better to find support from like-minded people.
Even though I felt betrayed and attacked when my vision of my future was rejected by my own family, I’m okay the way I am and I’m open to the possibility they were acting out of love and trying to protect me, even as they hurt me.
So, what are your dreams and visions? And what does your family think of them?
Image Source: F. Moebius