When you feel you can't

At one point, the tagline on my business cards and advertisements was:

Success begins with a single step, I believe in YOU!

I still totally believe that it does!

Saying I Can’t is easy, taking the first step is harder. I do believe in my clients and in the job seekers I interact with daily on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. You can do it!

Perhaps you think I sit in my comfortable office chair with not a care in the world?

How can I possibly know what you face if you are struggling in your career or presently without a job? I assure you that life has been bumpier for me than many people’s lives.

As someone who has faced many bouts of feast or famine because my husband and I have chosen to be self-employed for more than 20 years, believe me, I understand fiscal challenges.

In addition, I was blessed with two strong-willed sons, one who is still struggling with his choices at age 24 and the other who rebounded better but still hits his share of bumps.

As I admitted in last week’s post, I have had issues with the wrong kind of helping.

This year, my husband had hernia surgery that we procrastinated because we don’t have health insurance right now. The bills for that non-elective surgery (the hernia had grown to the size of a grapefruit) are starting to come in, looks like those will total $11,000+. We explored options for help and completed paperwork in advance but we don’t qualify. The bank called last week in a marketing call so I thought we would explore some new financing options there but in the end, underwriters don’t understand self-employment.

Oh, and son #2 was t-boned by an uninsured and unlicensed driver a couple weeks ago so now 3 of us share one car and it is gone from about 7am to 7pm 6 days a week as my husband cares for his dad. (sandwich generation)

All this fun news should have set me into a spiral of despair.

But I decided I am done with that. I was sharing some of this with Melissa Cooley yesterday on Skype and I told her:

I am just going to tough it out… find clients. keep writing. find passive revenue. build alliances. and then stick my tongue out when someday before I am 97, I am debt-free…

That may sound silly but I have decided that I am in control of my future. I may hit another hundred roadblocks but I believe that I can do it. I share all of this because I want you to know that when I tell you you can do it, I have walked in your shoes.


  1. Kimba Green on August 6, 2010 at 6:10 am

    Yes, Julie I can relate. Our struggles are many, perhaps different but many. It is never good for us to assume that someone has had a free and breezy life.

    Looking forward to being 97 and debt free!

    • Julie Walraven on August 6, 2010 at 6:12 am

      We’ll be there together, Kimba… hopefully much sooner!

  2. Christine Livingston on August 6, 2010 at 11:32 am

    One of the things I so love about you Julie is your sheer determination. You live life in the raw, taking the rough with the smooth, but always finding the upside and the opportunity, and always finding the way through.

    It shows how switched on you really are, lady, and that’s a talent I’m sure you give in spades to your clients 🙂

    • Julie Walraven on August 6, 2010 at 2:11 pm

      I love that Switched on phase! As I was talking to your referral today, I read him your comment and told him only from my UK friends do I hear that switched on and in spades phrases. He was laughing. He was already smiling about your passion for rugby… Small world, my good friend!

  3. Ed Han on August 6, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    Julie, you’re so right. Not to beat it to death but something we can all learn from actors: if you can’t convince yourself you can, who the heck are you ever going to convince?!

    • Julie Walraven on August 6, 2010 at 2:12 pm

      Exactly, Ed! And you know I’m not going to get any further by moaning about what goes wrong either! Thanks for YOUR positive voice in a world that so needs one!

  4. Brent Pohlman on August 6, 2010 at 2:45 pm


    Cool Post and Great Message! The Video is also very cool too. Keep up the great writing. Have a Super Weekend!


    • Julie Walraven on August 6, 2010 at 3:13 pm

      I love that video! I found it through friends on FB this week. Inspires me every time I watch it. I even watched it with my Vancouver client this week! Thank you for the encouragement! Blessings, Brent!

  5. Kelly Welch on August 6, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Hi Julie, your post displays your emplathy, compassion and never-say-die spirit plus your wonderful sense of humour! It’s a delight to know you as a colleague and friend!

    • Julie Walraven on August 6, 2010 at 5:03 pm

      Hi Kelly! A privilege on my side as well! I so enjoyed getting to know you better in Baltimore and on Skype! It’s been a rock and roll year for sure but it is what you have to do these days.

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Julie Walraven

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