{How I quit my day job.}

Earlier this year I started dreaming of making Gussy my full-time job. I knew that one day I didn’t want to work two jobs anymore, I just wanted to be Gussy girl. It’s no wonder that people want to know, Gus, how did you do it? Because c’mon, it is a dream for so many of us to have our own business. And while there is no one simple answer, I do believe it is an overall simple process because it involves being who you are. And I know you probably hear that all the time, but that is because it’s true! Think about it, if you aren’t yourself then you have to be someone else. And how long can you act like someone else before your mask breaks {and how hard would it be…}?

So just be yourself :]

However, it may be a long process, or a short one. Every person’s story is unique. But I believe it can be a simple process, too.

So today I’d like to share with you a few things that helped me make my largest life dream to-date become a reality. Right now, as you read this, I am on Day 1 of being self-employed. I’m out shopping for fabric, sewing orders and new items, and reading my email. Zack surprised me with a truly amazing celebratory weekend so I was offline for 2.5 days — the first time in months. I’ll share all the details tomorrow :] So I hope you’ll be back to celebrate our fun weekend with me. Actually, all week I have fun things planned, so maybe you’ll stick around a bit longer?

The following are some things that helped me start a hobby, but also helped us to know when it was time for this to be my exclusive job. {For more blog/business posts, please read through my blog/biz 411 category.}


5 things that helped my business bloom:

1. Find a trade you want to learn and study it
  • It’s important to figure out your learning style and find tutorials/books that teach in that style
  • Whether you get stuck or just want to know more, never stop asking questions and learning

2. Transform your blog into a personal and professional tool
  • The sooner we realize we are not alone, the faster we can succeed in life {partnerships are priceless}
  • Find people and help them. Share your life with them. Teach them and be taught by them. Allow yourself to learn with them
  • Spend some serious time mapping out goals for your blog: What topics do you want to cover? Where do you want your blog to go? What can you do to make it a resource for others? How can your blog help you?
  • Find blogs that you can connect with as a person and a business

3. Try. Fail. Try. Mess up. Try. Fail. Try. Succeed!
  • If you give up you won’t ever know your maximum potential
  • Each time you “fail”, take it as an opportunity to make it better for the next time. And doesn’t practice make perfect? :]
  • Have faith in yourself and the talents you’ve been given

What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail? -Robert Schuller

4. Set major goals: The Count Up / Family Goal:

One night, about 8 weeks ago, Zack and I sat down and talked about what we could do to make quitting my day job to pursue Gussy full-time a serious reality. Since Zack and I are both salaried we know exactly what our paychecks are going to be every month. We mapped out our bills in two week increments {we get paid every 2 weeks} and took ALL LEFTOVER MONIES AND PUT IT IN THE BANK. I had to put that in caps because that is how extreme we were in saving. Some times we slipped, I’ll be honest, but we were always moving forward.

Do you know why this is important? If you don’t tell your money where to go then it will disappear. Tell me you know that, too?

We wrote down what we could pull from our paychecks to save, along with what I could pull from Gussy income. I even set some serious goals once I realized I was able to save more Gussy income than originally planned. {Yeow!}

Roughly 8 weeks later we have saved nearly 3 months of my salary as emergency fund back-up funds for Gussy. That is our Family Goal. Right now we are at 89%. We are short 11% of our savings. Yeow! How’s THAT for an accomplishment?! We are so amazed over this goal. I am a big “security” girl — I like to know how things are going to work out before they even happen. Hah! So leaving a salaried job to pursue my passion was a leap of faith. But really, how could I not take that leap?!

The incredible part of this is that this Family Goal is going to just be sitting there, waving at us saying, Hello. I’m here looking pretty but you don’t need me at all.

And Zack and I are sitting over here, saying, Hello. Thanks for sitting pretty for us, but we don’t need you. {OK, fine, Zack is really saying, Thanks for being a security blanket for my wife.}

So please watch with us as we scrape to pull together the last 11 percent and thank you so much for helping us get this far :]

5. Find people that will encourage you.

Zack and I are oh-so blessed to have great families and friends. As soon as we told them our desires for Gussy and showed them our plans they were immediately on board. I remember one conversation specifically. My mom was visiting and we had asked her, What do you think about Gussy? Should I try and pursue it full-time? And she answered, I think if you don’t do it soon you’re going to miss your chance. That was just so huge for me to have affirmation from a very important person. I know this was God’s plan all along and recognizing that, coming up with a plan — it all fell right into place.

Zack is also a huge factor in all this. He helped me in 3 big ways: First, he literally helped me with the chores that were hard to find the time for. Secondly, Zack has always been positive and perfect with his endless encouragement. Lastly, he helped me to see what’s most important. Sigh… I’ll be honest: many nights Zack did the dishes after dinner, he did most of the chores, and some times our apartment didn’t get cleaned for 3 weeks in a row. Eww. I figured those were all little things, considering the big picture. Right? Zack helped me to see the the big picture.

What is the saying, No pain, no gain? {Like not doing housework was painful…} But the weeks where I worked until the wee hours of the morning definitely were.

I’m sure those days aren’t over for good, but it’s just a soul-bursting experience to be here today sharing with you in my first day as Gussy girl.

And I’m sew not looking back!

In addition to our families, I must thank those that played a key role. Much love to you all:
The Nester
Darcy {my blog designer}
Lindsay @ Paint Me a Pic
Lindsey @ The Pleated Poppy
Lisa Leonard
Leigh-Ann @ Freckled Nest and
thank you so much for coming back to my blog every day and leaving little bits of encouragement.

Please continue to pray for us as we begin this journey. This community I’ve been blessed with makes me weak at the knees. I am so excited to see where God brings this business and our lives. Let the celebration begin!

[photo credits: weheartit.com]

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  1. 119

    Leslie says

    Totally encouraged by your blog -just found it tonight, as I was surfing some DIY blogs. Thanks for spelling out the importance of dreaming big, having faith in your abilities, and allowing people to speak into your life.
    As someone who is starting on this creative journey it was nice to hear others have done it and not only love it, but are successful too.
    Thank you

  2. 120


    Sewing is something I was taught at a very early age (like around 5 years old). I will never forget at around 12 years of age, sewing my first pencil skirt without a pattern – just wrapping the fabric around myself and fashioning a waistband, adding darts, etc. based on my logic. It actually fit and I fancied myself a fashion designer. Unfortunately, I think that was the last inspiration I ever had and always used patterns after that. I was always too afraid to “just do it” and risk ruining some pretty fabric on some crazy idea I had. I am awed by you and other bloggers who can make their passion into a full-time job. I’ve been trying to do that for decades now and still have not succeeded.

  3. 121


    I keep focusing on your story to keep me motivated. I desperately want to accomplish what you have accomplished and I am determined to do so. I’m still in the planning and learning part of my journey, and I keep looking forward to when I will be able to work from home doing what I love. Right now, I’m working 40+ hours a week at my “real” job and spending my “extra” time on sewing and being creative. Sometimes it’s tough, but I keep focused on what I want. Thank you so much for being an inspiration. Truly.

    • 122


      hi lesley! this is such a bittersweet time for you! you are balancing so many hats and i want to encourage you to hang on and not feel frustrated. as business owners we go through all kinds of seasons, all the time. here are a few things that have always helped me get through the crazy season:

      * keep an updated to-do list so your focus can be kept
      * make sure you are working on your most important tasks ONLY during your most productive time of day!!!
      * when you’re feeling discouraged, take a minute to look at how much time you’ve spent online/comparing yourself to others. (this is often the #1 way for me to feel discouraged the quickest.)

      keep your head lifted high! you are a rockstar — XO!

  4. 123



    I just found your blog through Soul Detox and am so inspired!! The truth: I just drug out my sewing machine last week! Intimidation met determination and I sewed for someone. Basic, basic sewed. My real passion is desserts and details. I look forward to following your blog:)

    Jessie Lynn

  5. 127


    When some one searches for his necessary thing, therefore he/she needs to be
    available that in detail, thus that thing is maintained over here.

  6. 128


    This is a great tip particularly to those fresh to the
    blogosphere. Brief but very accurate info… Thanks for sharing this
    one. A must read article!

  7. 129


    Being your own boss is a dream of many. Sewing is a nice way to start your own business.
    Blogging is another way that I like for making money.


  1. […] the trade, he told me. You can totally do this! Suddenly we were discussing attending conferences, quitting my day job, hiring more help, traveling to Tanzania, speaking at this conference {yeow!}… I could go on […]

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