I started my first business in my early twenties alongside full-time employment. That hard work and graft at a time when people ‘didn’t do things like that’ was to set my future up quite nicely. This business was an immediate success and I was able to raise a substantial deposit for my first home.
That was a big thing back then for a young single girl like me as I didn’t come from a family of home owners. But I had within me a huge desire to move forward and continually self-improve. More importantly, I had the courage to do so.
A long career in the corporate world followed but my entrepreneurial and ‘have a go’ spirit never left me. In fact, it stood me in great stead when constantly having to reinvent myself as a mother of a young daughter in trying to break down doors back into the workplace when no one did the flexible working thing and career gaps were met with a suspicious glance and a brick wall.
I really had to dig deep at that time. I had nothing to give. I didn’t have the energy or confidence to start a business but I still threw myself at it. At the time, it felt like it was all I had. And here’s the thing - remember that courage I talked about as a young woman starting out in my 20s - it had disappeared completely. Along with my confidence.
Except that it hadn’t just disappeared. It had been constantly chipped away at over the years and as often happens to many of us, we are encouraged to brush these things under the carpet. But I also realised that I’d supressed so much over the years, that I had a fair bit of work to do to find that girl.
And, of course, when we live our lives from the perspective of not being quite ‘enough’, we become unwittingly complicit in staying stuck with what we don’t want. Our mindset dictates our circumstance.
Yet with all of this in mind, I still gave everything I had and I found myself working with other small business owners and, in turn, supporting CEO founders and entrepreneurs with their business start-ups and growth. This also led me to another venture - my Lifestyle Blog and subsequently being asked to coach people. In fact, throughout my career, I had often been asked to coach and support others in an ‘unofficial capacity’.
My choice to start my official coaching journey enabled me to start challenging some of the old stories and beliefs that I’d been carrying around. Because some of these stories had become my truth, and the excuses I made as a result had become my protective armour. It is only when we sign up to facing our fears and back stories head on, that we are able to move forward.
I also believe that we all have choices. And it doesn’t matter who you are or where you have been. The most important thing is where you are going. We may well have taken a few wrong turns and made some bad choices but that doesn’t define our future.
It is through my own experience that I have chosen to work with women on their mindset and confidence.
Initially, I thought my coaching forte was in the world of small business owners, but I very quickly realised that those who came to me for coaching did so for another reason. It was nothing to do with what they did for work or where they came from. Their desire to work with me was because they all realised that something was holding them back. And they wanted to do something about it. They had the feeling of being stuck and they knew that they wanted something different but didn’t know how to go about getting it.
Being willing to get up a close and personal with ourselves and our feelings is when everything changes. And although we cannot control external circumstances, we can choose how we respond to them.
Once we realise that we have the power of choice, it opens up a whole new world of options for us.
And it is never too late to find that girl.