September 28, 2013

So you wanna be a Consultant, eh? (Part 2)

Making The Mental Leap

Part 1: Why Contract Consulting?
Part 2: Making The Mental Leap
Part 3: The Most Important Rule To Follow

Working as a Contract Consultant requires a very different mindset than working as a FTE (Full-Time Employee).

In a traditional FTE arrangement, your days are structured, someone is telling you what to do, where to be, and when to work. As a Contract Consultant, things are quite unstructured. You are typically being brought into a project because of your expertise and experience. So there isn't anyone to defer to if you run into problems or if you're venturing into an area you've not worked in before. Oftentimes, you're it - you're "the guy" who is directing your area of the project and you don't have a manager to constantly specify how things are to be done.  This is a concern I hear about all the time from people who are considering contract work - "What if I have to figure something out that I don't have direct experience with?"

Let me assure you - if you're at a point in your life where you're considering doing contract consulting, you're probably smart enough to solve most problems that come your way, and find information about things you know nothing about!

Making the leap from a traditional FTE arrangement into the world of Contract Consulting seems quite daunting.

And honestly? It IS daunting!

Our education system and current FTE work structure descended from the Industrial Revolution… And so we've all been conditioned to follow a factory-style structured work day. Someone is telling us when to work, what to do, how to do it, and that there is only one right answer to a problem. One of the wonderful things about getting into Contract Consulting from a personal growth perspective is that it forces you to "deprogram" what you've been conditioned to believe when it comes to how much power and choice you have in your own life and how capable you really are.

September 26, 2013

So you wanna be a Consultant, eh? (Part 1)

In this multi-part post, I will talk about how Contract Consulting can be a welcome change from a more traditional Full-Time Employee job... And I will share how Contract Consulting can allow you to lead a more balanced, happier, engaging life of variety. I'll also get into some of the nuts and bolts of getting started. Enjoy!

Why Contract Consulting? (Part 1)

Part 1: Why Contract Consulting?
Part 2: Making The Mental Leap
Part 3: The Most Important Rule To Follow

When I quit my full-time software consulting position at the beginning of the summer and began road tripping and farming, I kept getting one question from people over and over:

"Oh - wow - you quit your job? You're going to be farming all summer? Are you going to become a farmer?"

At first, it seemed like a perfectIy logical question. But the more times I was asked this question, the funnier a question it became. Why? Because asking this question implies that we're only allowed to do one thing in terms of work… People assumed that if I left my software consulting job and was working on farms… That must mean that I'm going to become a farmer to the exclusion of all else.

It occurred to me one day… Why limit myself to just ONE type of work? In fact, why should YOU limit yourself to one type of work?

When I left my job, I'd maintained a good relationship with the consulting company I'd worked for, and they offered me a crack at a project with one of their clients in Minnesota. I went into it thinking that it'd be a good way to make some extra cash to support me on my next farming and/or other adventure. But when I started the project, a funny thing happened…

Goddammit, I actually was enjoying the work!

September 10, 2013

Thank You, My Sweet.

In times past, men rode horses to travel. And over time, horse and rider would form a strong bond that would last a lifetime. I don't have a literal horse, but I do have a Mustang. And so - here is a letter of gratitude to my horse, my Mustang. 

I knew we were meant to be when I first saw you, your shiny tail lights and chrome exhausts appearing from behind the opening garage door of your previous owner. In fact, it was only when I found you that I realized that I'd been looking for you since I was 12.

I've had many others over the years... And all of them, without exception, were fraught with problems resulting from neglect they'd experienced at the hands of their previous owners before they happened upon me.

But you... You were perfect. Even with your imperfections - I was ready to accept you 100% as you were. That's how I knew that this was it - that you were my horse. 

September 4, 2013

I Got What I Wanted.

It's been a little while since I've posted - I've been busy with family, friends, and some surprises that have come up in life. The summer may be coming to a close, but the Gay Mustang will keep right on driving! (-:

When I had my breaking point in April, I now understand that it happened mainly because I was so disconnected from my loved ones and because the guiding principles and values of my life didn't make sense anymore.

My life had become robotic, and I felt completely lost - but I had no idea how to change it or even what form my life could possibly take.

And therein lies the chicken-and-egg problem. I wanted to change my life, but I wouldn't be able to change my life without changing my life first. As in, in order to change things - I had to take a leap of faith without knowing what would happen and just trust that everything would work out.

And now... This crazy summer is already almost over. I thought that I would have everything figured out by now... That I would know what to do next, I would know how my life would be structured, and that my exploration would be over.

Far from it. The exploration of a different way of structuring my life isn't over. It's just begun!