I’ve realized that I’m not quite used to the idea of having my own “business.” “Self-employed.” “Solo-practitioner.” “MY firm.” “MY business.” Tese are all words and phrases I can’t quite pronounce yet without wincing.
Weird, right? Most people would probably thrive on this, and love introducing themselves as an entrepreneur, or their own boss. I still feel really uncomfortable with these titles. Then again, I still feel uncomfortable with the title “attorney,” and it’s been a little over two years since I acquired that title.
I think part of it is that I never envisioned myself as the self-employed type. I always saw myself working for a nonprofit, an NGO, or a government agency. The idea of working for myself never crossed my mind. I mean…NEVER. Not until about a year ago.
So what I’ve come to realize, as Jeff has encouraged me to do multiple times, is that I just have to own it. I have to believe in myself. I have to believe in myself as a business owner, as my own boss, as the solo-attorney of my firm. That’s what I am: I meet with clients, I send out invoices, I talk to opposing counsel, I draft strongly worded letters, I put files together, I go to court, I pay bills, and maybe most importantly, I have my own letterhead!
On the other hand, I love the idea of being my own boss. I love that I can cater my services to low-income clients, because I don’t have to charge a $5,000 retainer, or a $400 an hour rate. I can charge what I want, and cater my services to those I think may need my services the most. I know I wouldn’t be able to do this is many places, so I know I’m lucky to have the opportunity to pursue this on my own.
So, 2012 is the year of rising to the occasion, and owning it.