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Change and New Beginnings

I am soon to be self employed full time. This is not a sentence that I ever in a million years thought I would say. In my head I would have always thought myself too insecure, lacking in confidence, motivation and belief to make anything like this happen but anyway, it’s happening.

I don’t know if it’s age, experience, the pandemic, some new found self-belief, I honestly don’t know but something has changed in me and I’m happy about it.

I’ve worked for my current employer for 6 happy years, I’ve felt valued, supported and welcomed there but the fact remains that I log off every day and I happily forget about it. This has been sufficient for most of my working life (except when I was teaching) but now that isn’t enough. The change is that I have realised how many hours a day I spend doing this and that no longer satisfies me.

Word has got out that I’m leaving and many people are asking. I am sharing my story more and more times and it is becoming more and more real. I have noticed that I still have a caveat though… “if it doesn’t work out then in 12 months, 18 months I could be looking for employment again but if I don’t try then I won’t know what my full potential is.” I’m still not 100% confident enough to say, “yes, I’m out there, doing what I love and will be making a successful living from it!” But I’m a lot more confident than I was.

And yet, a large amount of people have told me that they feel inspired by my journey, feel that I have something and also (perhaps most importantly) have told me that they too have/had a dream, but didn’t pursue it.

I’m one of the lucky ones, I know this. I begin each day expressing gratitude for everything that has helped me get this far… my family and loved ones, my friends, my support network, my followers, my customers, my promoters, the fact that every working day I have spent in my life so far, whilst maybe not as exciting as I hope my future ones will be, have got me to a position where this is a risk I can now afford to take.

Last Monday I received an order for a hand made piece from a film production company for use on a set. The feeling I had when this email came through was a feeling I have never experienced before in my working life. This wasn’t the first time either, the day I was asked to speak on the radio, the day I opened the paper and saw my story, the day a piece of my work was shared on social media by an account with 50K followers. These events are amazing when they are of your own making and if nothing else happens, I will still retire fulfilled based on just these few alone.

It’s scary, it’s unpredictable, it occupies a lot of my time, my energy, my thoughts, it can be challenging and lonely. I have no doubts though and I’m no longer scared of the changes that are coming. I’m ready… to learn, to grow and to be the best I can be.

This is something I wrote in my diary on 28th April 2020. I was encouraged to do so by a book I was reading at the time. I can remember how fed up I was with my mindset at the time but at the same time the fear of changing it was preventing me from actually doing anything about it. By writing it all down, and forcing myself to look at how much it was holding me back, I experienced something of a paradigm shift which changed my life. It was an upsetting process to go through, but it was necessary to address in order to move on. 16 months later I am in a completely different place and if I can do that by myself, then so can you!

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