I “went fulltime” 5 times

July 13, 2014
This story is part of a movement – the Busting The Overnight Success Myth: Community Blog Tour, where 21 ladies who have made their dream business a reality (in a variety of different niches) share what it really took for us to make this happen.  Including the not so pretty stuff.  
When Allison Braun (The Business Joyologist) shared her vision for this blog tour with me, I knew I wanted to be a part of it because I want to share the behind-the-scenes truth of what it takes (and keeps taking) to make a business go.  So here is my story. It’s raw, real and includes things I’ve never shared before!

This is a story about handling your money stuff so you can create the space to grow your business from a place of focus and creativity, instead of scarcity and desperation.

I quit my day job 5 times.

Yep.  I have announced my full time work-f0r-my-selfness, to myself and my family 5 times.  And after 4 of those times, I found myself back in an office job.

The first time I quit my day job, I was so nervous about it, my boss thought I was announcing that I was super sick.  I started crying before I could spit out the ‘I quit’ part.   I was about 3 months out of finishing my coaching curriculum, and ready to take my life coaching business full! time!  I was on fire, passionate to help people change their lives.   I was quitting my non-profit job that until that point, I had thought was going to be my Career Path.  It was emotional, but I was ready.


3 days later, when my boss asked me to stay on part time, I was hesitant.  I wanted to be FREE to live my passion and build my business.  But, then I did some math.  And the life coaching clients were not as plentiful or consistent as I’d hoped.   So I said yes.    I worked part time there for about a year before I felt financially ready to go full time for myself.


Which I did!  But it was hard, and later on that year I got hit with a few unexpected expenses, which stretched my unpredictable income pretty thin.   A friend of mine was working part time for a law firm, and was going on vacation for a few weeks.  The pay was not great, but they needed help, and when I did math again….I needed the money.  So I said yes – but proudly explained that I had my own business so this would be a short term substitution only.

Fast forward a few more months, and they invited me to come back on a part time ongoing basis.  And again, looking to my trusty excel sheet, I said yes, because I needed to be earning more money than my business was providing.

Keep in mind that at this point I had a pretty solid roster of clients and was charging good money.   But things weren’t stable.  I was still engaging my clients in month to month, open ended coaching.  My savings were dwindling, and that was a problem.  I started to see people that didn’t book with me as ‘money lost’ instead of ‘better for someone else/not the right fit for me’.    I was getting desperate to book clients, and that became a client repellant.  I needed to make sure my bills were paid so I could start seeing people as PEOPLE again, instead of percentages of my rent.


So I worked for them for a few months.  And when that job ended, I was offered another job at a law firm – which I took.  Because seriously, having a steady baseline of income was the most helpful thing to me, to give me the emotional and financial space to develop my business into the thing I knew it could be.  

Because when you’re worried about rent, you’re not trying new things.  You’re not developing relationships with potential clients, you’re not engaging in your community.  You’re freaking stressed out, and you’re obsessing about money.   And nobody wants to hang out with, or work with that.

So I worked my 4th part time bridge job.  And I was HAPPY about it.  Because that bridge job gave me wings.  It gave me space to breathe, and to create what I so desperately knew I was capable of.

It was during that time frame that I got super specific about who I worked with and rebranded to EllenErcolini.com, and started owning the title, Money Making Expert.   Because I am good at making money.  Sometimes that means having a bridge job.  Sometimes that means coming up with incredible services.  Sometimes that means marketing the heck out of a program or product.


Making money does not always have to mean creating it out of thin air with your business. 

I stopped seeing ‘going back to work’ as a failure.  As a shameful thing to hide.  It gave me the freedom to build my business – I never would have gotten so specific, or ‘limited’ myself if I was so stressed out about money.  I would have kept trying to work with everyone, and gotten no where.

So when I quit that job, last November (yep, not that long ago) I thought to myself “I’m full time for myself!!…..unless I need to do this again.  Then I WILL.  Because I know how to get part time jobs and make them work for both me, and the company I’m working for.”

Yeah, it was kinda a long thought, but I felt great about it.  I was taking control of my financial reality, not feeling like a victim to instability, not feeling like a failure for needing to get so many bridge jobs,  it was empowering.  I was taking control of my life and business and handling my money needs like a boss.
If you’ve ever felt alone on your journey or like you weren’t as far as you “should” be, I invite you to check out more of these real-life stories by going here to join the Busting The Overnight Success Myth::Community Blog Tour.  
I know Britz Robins shared her story yesterday and Chela Davidson is up sharing her journey tomorrow.  
AB_CommunityBlogTour3 (1)

EllenFabulous043Want to beat the summer slump and strategize your Fall?  

I’m Ellen, Money Making Expert.  I help creative business owners make more money and revolutionize their businesses.

It’s my mission to help you boost your bottom line and start really creating the opportunities you want for yourself.  Ready to find out what’s possible when we work together? Book your power sesh here.  20 minutes, you and me, totally free.

If you have any struggle with being stuck or not knowing where to focus to make money in your biz, contact Ellen immediately. Best money you’ll ever spend.” Jessica Kupferman, Lady Business Radio

Put more you in your business

(regardless of your myers-brigg)

4 thoughts on “I “went fulltime” 5 times

  1. This is a really empowering look at bridge jobs, Ellen. Thanks for the alternate perspective on it! I’ve always viewed bridge jobs as failure, too, and you’re right — it’s not. It’s really not. It’s all about the situation you’re in and what you/your family needs.

    • Yeah! Also another element that I didn’t talk about in here that has REALLY changed my perspective, is that I can GET a bridge job if I want or need one.

      And that’s not the case in many parts of the world. So, I feel extra grateful for that opportunity too.

  2. Thanks for sharing this!

    I ponder quitting all the time, but stay because I know I’m not *quite* financially ready. I’m tired of everyone saying “there’s never a good time to start, quit now!”, but – as you said – you still need to pay rent!

    Thanks for being so honest and open, and you’ve inspired me to think differently about my current FT job, PT dreams.

    • YES! You gotta pay rent, and you need to feel GOOD about it.

      Sometimes leaping is helpful because it makes you work tremendously hard to make things happen. But if you have the opportunity to build your savings, invest in your business, and be more comfortable as you’re building your business, there is NOTHING wrong with that.

      Your ulcers will thank you in the long run 🙂

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