“I’d love to work for myself. But I can’t”.
Yep. I said this to myself a few hundred times. I questioned the insecurity of it all. I have always had a steady paycheck, medical insurance and a retirement plan. Was I crazy to take this GIANT LEAP in working for myself? I thought about it. A lot.
One thing about me you should know….I have a BIG faith. I always believe that opportunities present themselves, not by chance, but on purpose. And if we aren’t listening because we are too busy in the chaos, we miss them. I always keep quiet enough to hear the whispers.
Enter the chance to start anew, and I TOOK it. Sure, I had questions. I had doubts. Everything and anything that comes with a typical school SLP job would be different now. But maybe, just maybe, it would be a GOOD kind of different. I let faith lead the way. And I’m VERY glad I did.
I get so many questions since I have begun this journey. And I want you to know that I have yet to be able to answer each and every one that comes my way. I’m still learning and growing on this new adventure. But, I do have some advice to offer if you are considering similar changes for yourself, whether you are thinking about teletherapy, or simply looking to be in business for yourself.
Sooooo, what’s holding YOU back?
“But, I need the steady paycheck”. This is a very REAL truth. We all need a steady stream of income. We have babies and daycare. We have unemployed spouses. We have kids in college, or parents in nursing homes. Yes. We NEED to earn a living. What I will tell you is that I’ve found myself becoming more resourceful. Teletherapy, in my case, has brought in a pretty steady income. I can work as much, or as little, as I want. Holidays and long breaks can create inconsistency in my income, however, working for myself has created new opportunities. I now provide private therapy to local kiddos, own a TPT Store, and have been asked by local groups to teach people what I’ve learned about teletherapy. I would have never considered these opportunities before, even if they would have landed in my lap. Today, my courage is growing with each new step I take. And the income has followed.
“But, I need medical insurance”. Again, a real truth. Most of us have families, or are single and have to provide our own medical coverage. What I will tell you is that more and more private clinics and teletherapy companies are beginning to offer these benefits. Things are changing. Don’t assume that private policies are out of reach. They are often more affordable than you think. I’ve been lucky. We have medical insurance through my husband’s company. But every day I’m hearing about more companies that are willing to offer benefits. Keep asking questions. If you are interested, I encourage you to check out the link here. It provides information about coverage for people who are self-employed: https://www.healthcare.gov/self-employed/coverage/
“But, what about my Teacher’s Retirement”? I’m here to tell you that, in most cases, you would be better off putting your money in an IRA. How many of us are going to be able to work a FULL 35 years before we collect that pension egg? I’m sure the way education is going, not many of us. Companies like Fidelity Investments NOW offer 401Ks for people who are self employed or own an S-Corporation (I created one earlier this year). Once this business of mine is in full swing, and I’m certain it will be successful, I’m pulling out my current contributions and rolling them over into a place where it’s going to make me money. Instead of sitting there collecting dust. Or, in Illinois, you never know what can happen to it (Yeah, we have a lot of crooked politicians here). Then, I will add to it. So I can retire when I’m ready. Not when the government says I can. I really don’t want to be doing speech therapy from my wheelchair.
“But, there’s SO much to learn. Am I up for it?” Yes. You are. My most favorite quote is “If you never learn anything new, you’ll never be anything different.” I read it in some random book in my 30’s, and it stuck with me. Alas, how TRUE this is. Every NEW step I have taken has been scary. But it’s also been exhilarating, and has led me to a greater sense of freedom.
I always KNEW I was a good therapist. I knew, deep down, if I had the tools, the “therapy” part of breaking out and being my own boss would be the easy part. But, what I have learned about technology, marketing and my own creativity…..Well, I know I’ve set myself apart from my peers (I’m 42, you know….). The sense of accomplishment I feel each day makes me proud. And I’m setting a great example for my children, who see me learning and growing each day. Know that there are many people out there- in social media and via the internet- that are available to guide you. I have found many people are willing to answer a question or lend advice when you ask for it. My passion for this field and my thirst for knowledge has grown exponentially because of this opportunity. And it feels REALLY good.
If you are considering teletherapy, or even just a clinic in your home….keep thinking about it. Draw out a plan. Do research. Ask questions. Don’t tell yourself it’s out of reach. In fact, it’s really a lot easier than you think. If I knew then what I know now...I would have taken this step a long time ago.
“We can do hard things”, as Glennon Doyle-Melton would say. Yes. We can.
If you'd like to know MORE about Teletherapy, click here https://www.thewhimsicalword.com/single-post/2017/03/17/Teletherapy-Through-the-Eyes-of-a-Seasoned-Therapist