Case Study: One Woman’s Journey

AI generated image of a person walking down a hilly, windy path towards a brighter future

One woman’s journey (mine) with entrepreneurialism, traditional workplaces, and ADHD

Case study 1: First try

Case study part 1: First try

If you’ve read my bio, you’ll know that I failed as an entrepreneur.  

But first, I held a few office jobs which I was good at, but I wasn’t making the impact I desired.  I’ve wanted to ‘save the world’ for as long as I can remember.  I had been toying with ways to do that since I started college.  

Into Entrepreneurship-I can do this!:

I had a few stops and starts, and then it came to me.  I loved gardening and I loved being outside.  I hated pesticides and the monocultures that made them necessary (think large fields of crops or large manicured lawns).  I was going to start a sustainable landscaping business!  I did lots of research, wrote a business plan, quit my job, and bang, there I was.  

I started this sustainable landscaping company in 2004. It was mostly great when it was just me, my truck, and an occasional day laborer. I was designing gardens with native plants, creating pollinator pathways, using recycled materials, and best of all, getting rid of lawns. 

Behind the scenes, though, I was so disorganized.  I was poor.  I couldn’t follow up with clients well.  I couldn’t handle the rejection of someone not hiring me.  I REALLY couldn’t handle the rejection of someone who didn’t like the work I did for them.  I had no idea how to make the finances work. 

Oof- but it’s harder than I thought!

After a couple of years I was maxed out and my body was telling me that I needed help.  So my husband at the time quit his job to work with me.  Then I REALLY couldn’t make the finances work.  We paid our staff a living wage, and we only took profits (of which there were very few).  I couldn’t keep track of the calendar.  I couldn’t make my relationship with my then husband work.  We (the company) spiraled out of control, crashed, and finally declared bankruptcy in 2017 (three whole years after closing the business).  

It was devastating.  Our relationship never recovered.  I said never again.  I don’t have the willpower to get all the boring shit done that needs to get done. I’m too weak to handle the conflict.  Too insecure to stand up for myself.  I don’t have the discipline to get things done on time unless I’m doing it for someone else.  

We were in financial shambles, marriage on the rocks, did I mention we also had a kid during this time?  How was I going to raise our kiddo and work full time out of the house?  What was I going to do?

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