Tuesday, April 24, 2012

working it out: parts VI & VII

I was going to post this last week but time got away on me and it never happened. Last time I posted an update about my job was back in February and I was still struggling with things. I just didn't know if I was ever going to feel like this house cleaning thing was for me.

But then, slowly, bit-by-bit that began to change. And then a few weeks ago I sat back and said to myself, "Now we're on to something."

So what changed?  My clientele. It kept changing over the past few months - sometimes I was upset about it, sometimes I was happy about it. Sometimes it was under my control and sometimes it wasn't. But I finally got to the point where I was happy. I didn't have as many clients as I wanted as far as finances go - but I was willing to let that go if it meant that I had my sanity. If it meant that I was finally happy with who I was all working for.

I no longer had clients whose homes made me uncomfortable or grossed out. I didn't have clients anymore who were super picky and made me insecure everytime I went to their home. I no longer felt that I was being scrutinized and perhaps even tested. I felt absolutely 100% comfortable in each home I worked at and I also felt appreciated and confident in the job I was doing.

And it was such an amazing feeling. Even when there was just one client who I wasn't happy with (for whatever reason), it made me dread my job every day. Even on days when I wasn't going to said clients' home. And even on days when I wasn't going to ANY home. It just became a dark cloud over me and affected every part of my job.

So to finally be able to say that those were no longer issues for me anymore? To be able to wake up each morning actually content with what my day held? Well, it was really amazing. It just felt so great to have peace and contentment finally after all this time. I was very thankful to have gotten to this point.

And this concludes Part VI, what I was going to post last week.

Moving on to Part VII...I woke up yesterday morning continuing to feel amazed at the newfound peace with my job. It had been two whole weeks where I had had the perfect clientele and where I had not had any feelings of dread, anxiety or stress over my job. It was Monday morning and I was heading off to work. To one of my favorite clients, one where I just recently was asked to go to every week instead of every other week. It wasn't my regularly scheduled morning to go there though - I usually go there on Tuesdays. But I had been asked the week prior if I could switch to Monday this week as they were hosting Bible Study on the Monday evening so they wanted their house clean for that, obviously. Now, normally switching things is not something I enjoy doing, as I like to keep things routine and consistent. But with the new feelings of peace and contentment, it didn't bother me an ounce.

So, as I was getting ready for the day yesterday morning, I was once again reflecting over how far I have come in the past few months and how happy I was that everything had turned out the way that it had. I had the perfect clientele and I didn't have any thoughts that anyone was going to be "letting me go" anytime soon. I felt secure, relaxed and confident.

Half an hour later, however, as I walked into the house I was about to clean, that all changed. Everything that I had just been so happy about came crashing down around me.

There was a long note left on the counter, and before I even read it I knew it wasn't going to be good news. And I was right. This wonderful couple who I had been cleaning for were changing their minds about what was important enough to spend money on and what wasn't. After reading a book about finances AND a book about home organization, they had decided that as much as they loved having me come, they just could no longer justify it.

And right then and there in their kitchen, I started to cry.

Now what?! I had taken such a big step forward only to take two steps back again. Now I had lost my favorite client - who, essentially was TWO clients as I was now cleaning there every week instead of bi-weekly. I knew that financially we couldn't afford to just lose them and have me not replace them. So now I need to go through the whole rig-a-marol all over again to find two new clients.

How long will that take before I find people to fill those slots? And not only that - how long will it take before I find the RIGHT people to fill those slots? The people who will bring me back to that wonderful feeling that I had for such a short amount of time.

Heading back into that place of unknown and insecurity is a terrifying thought for me. To put myself at risk of feeling inadequate and/or uncomfortable yet again...until I once again find the right fit for me. How many times will I get fired because the homeowner isn't happy with me? How many times will I have to come up with an excuse to not return to yet another house because I just can't stomach it?

Just when I thought I was going to be able to post a conclusion to these "working it out" posts, I got hit with another twist and turn. I should really all these segment "As the Toilet Bowl Turns" or something..


pam said...

A friend of mine recently told me about her job cleaning new homes for a builder (she goes in and cleans up all the construction dust and makes it all shine before the new owners move in). Have you considered looking into something like that? It probably wouldn't be as reliable, but maybe better for your sanity, since you're not really dealing with homeowners. Just a thought...

Samantha Steg said...

I had all the same thoughts and insecurites as you do now when I had the daycare. There would be kids I clicked with but parents I didn't, parents I clicked with but kids I didn't, or I clicked with both, or neither, which was the worst. Hopefully everything will work out and you find clients that you like and feel comfortable with.