Today is Nyepi, the day of silence. Although I’m spending it in a place far from silent, in Jakarta, I somehow find myself on a reflective mode. This is Nyepi as I know it, spending time with family not going out of the house, not distracting myself with TV, social media, replying whatsapp and email. I took the time to unwind and reflect on life, or parts of my life to be exact.
On an interview with Tokoh, a local Bali newspaper a few weeks ago, I was asked how I moved to Bali and left my job in Jakarta to become an enterpreneur. I wished I had a grandeur answer, that I went to become an enterpreneur in Bali for a bigger purpose, but the truth was for me it was kind of fate. I never imagined to become an enterpreneur all my life. I did Accounting for my undergraduate and then Banking and Finance for my Masters degree and I felt comfortable working in HSBC, the world’s local bank. I developed myself with knowledge over the financial sector and aim my goal is just to advance in my career in the financial industry. Not once I imagine of leaving a job that I liked, in a company that I loved, to pursue something outside the financial sector and especially to live in Bali. Yes, I am a Balinese but I have never lived in Bali before. Bali have always been just a holiday destination for me.
It was after having my first child that there was an offer to start a travel agent. I jumped at the chance at the thought that I will have a more flexible time to spend with my first born. So that was how I started. No research, no anticipating of any kind to what life would be like as a business owner. After that, life was just like a roller coaster of emotions, of financial insecurity, of everything. It felt like my world has been turned over in a split second. But with so much going on, I never took the time to stop and think through what my life has become. After 9 years being an enterpreneur, I have to admit that it certainly is not easy. It is a constant struggle, especially in the beginning, it felt kind of lonely since I was used to working in a big company with lots of people around and suddenly it was me and just a few staffs. I didn’t have a lot of friends that were an enterpreneur at that time. The loss of financial security was also a big challenge for me. Each day is filled with lots of new things to learn. We have to be a generalist instead of a specialist, and we had to do it fast.
One thing for sure though, there is never a boring day. Despite all of the challenges, there is an upside to all of this. We grow, we learn and we develop ourselves. I’m exposed to people from so many backgrounds of which bring new meaning and experience in my life. It has made my life richer. Don’t get me wrong, I still have those days where I question myself of whether I want to wake up the next day still wanting to be an enterpreneur. Being an enterpreneur is an everyday decision for me, but I’m more comfortable with the uncertainty of everyday now. Looking back, I like what my life has become and I hope it will bring more good things in life, not just for me but for the people around me as well.