I recently shared in a Sundaze post that I’ve gone through a bit of a career shift and update. You see, back in November I made the decision to step back from my business – a half step, really – and take on a part-time position in-house at one of my (now ex) clients. I’m not going to sit around and say it was an easy decision, but it also wasn’t difficult either. Today, I’m going to dive deep into the idea of taking leaps and why I did just that.
My freelance journey began in November 2015. By that point, I’d had a good five years’ experience in the industry (I work in copywriting, editing, feature writing in the retail industry) and almost two years of doing that same thing abroad in Hong Kong. I was experiencing some career dissatisfaction in a way that I still can’t really pinpoint. I was tired of commuting, tired of bright office lights and itching to do something more, something that would massage my brain. As though by magic, the next week a well-known high street retailer invited me for a coffee, which turned into a month’s freelance work, which monopolised into the founding roots of my freelance career.
Because of my floundering thoughts around career dissatisfaction and, mostly, because my Granny was suffering greatly with ill health and was battling two types of cancer, I made a snap decision over Christmas that same year. I was going to move home. I was going to look after my Granny. I was going to pursue the freelance opportunities that’d been knocking for months.
If you’re a longer term reader, you’ll know that shortly after I made these decisions, I sadly lost my beloved Granny. I’d fly home, yes, and it’d be by some insane coincidence that my booked flight home landed on the morning of her funeral. And when I arrived home, I did three things: a) I did a reading at her funeral where I sobbed like a baby and was already jet-lagged from a 13-hour flight; b) I began finding incredible comfort and strength in seeking the petite joys in my everyday because to me there was no great joy; and c) I devoted myself to executing at least one of my plans – freelancing.
As such, I’ve never been more committed to anything than my freelance career. In many ways, it was all I had whilst going through grief that completely consumed me and my whole family. It gave me some sense of permanence when I began to doubt all of the decisions I’d made and when I felt like I’d let my family down by not getting home sooner. Thankfully my sheer determination, excellent roster of contacts garnered through years of networking and being in the industry, and non-stop work meant that I forged an incredibly successful path for myself.
This year, something shifted.
I’m a big believer in stars aligning and in the law of attraction. On the evening before my best friend’s wedding whilst I ran myself a bath, I received an email from a potential client. They were the brand of the bathing product I was using right then. I tapped out a response and two weeks later, I’d nabbed a shiny new client. Throughout 2019, I’ve battled with myself and what my future might look like. Huge curveballs changed my mindset completely and I found myself thoroughly enjoying the humdrum of London office life, which I slotted in around my existing work schedule. I began to enjoy the busy chatter of the city, of bouncing ideas off colleagues, of catching up on weekends past.
I suppose what I’m trying to get at is that things are quite different right now. Originally I felt like I needed to justify it – read my Sundaze post and you’ll see! – but actually I’m so glad I’ve taken these leaps to get to where I am now. I’m not any ‘less’ for stepping back a little from my business and I’m not any ‘more’ for choosing a more traditional route. For now at least. I feel empowered for taking leaps and for pitching – and getting! – my dream work week. I feel so enthused and positive for what’s to come.
Have you taken a great leap before? How did it make you feel?