Career pivots can be daunting but rewarding. Here’s how to make it work

Career pivots can be daunting but rewarding. Here’s how to make it work

From the age of 16, all I wanted to do was to become a Police Officer – not because I was really sporty, or fit, or loved fast cars even, but simply because it felt right, like it was the thing I was meant to do.

My family thought this very odd, after all I had always been a homely little girl, enjoying playing house and dancing and so on, but I knew without a shadow of doubt that the Police Force was where I was meant to be. And so it was, four weeks after graduating from Manchester University in Mathematics, Economics and Business, I joined the Greater Manchester Police Force. And it taught me so much, more than I could have imagined, that’s for sure!

But life took various twists and turns over the following years of marriage, and four children to raise, which led to me changing career several times in order to fit in with my growing family. Eventually, in 2005, I started my first business as a Jewellery Designer and Teacher. I loved it – truly loved it. It drew the creativity out of me that had been squashed during my school days when I had been told I had no imagination at all by a certain English Teacher and her colleague, my Art Teacher.

It was exciting to see just how wrong they were, as I started off on this completely different path. But what I didn’t know then, was that I still wasn’t fulfilling my purpose, I was simply completing part of the path I needed to follow, to learn the skills that would finally lead me to where I am today.

Then Covid hit, and I made the biggest mistake of my life!

My Jewellery Business, Creating Colour, pretty much closed overnight, and so did the successful weight loss groups I was running. So, I decided that I would open a new business, ShapeShifters and take my weight loss business online. After all, there are always people who want to lose weight, aren’t there?

But what did I know about running an online business? Truthfully? Absolutely nothing. So, I looked for those who could help me, and I spent countless hours, and significant sums of money, trying to find the help I needed. I believed all the fake ‘NLP’ sales techniques that sold me pretty much every time into programmes that were going to give me ‘all I needed to succeed’. Yet the more I searched, and the more I spent, made no difference at all – I still had only a few faithful clients and I was becoming demoralised and, quite frankly, poorer by the minute.

Gradually, it dawned on me that every day felt like walking through treacle, and the business I had launched was dragging me further and further down into feelings of complete failure. I felt like giving up and walking away.

However, it was only then that I realised, while I was trying so hard to earn a living from a business I no longer loved, I was becoming totally excited and fulfilled by helping others to put their own dreams into action. I was helping them shape their ideas;  build their technical skills; become visible through social media;  and most importantly, to confidently connect with their ideal clients. But I was doing that for free!

So, in January 2022, I said good-bye to ShapeShifters, and launched Succeed from The Start. I have never looked back. Why? Because now I can use my creativity and my business skills every day of my life. There is never a day goes by when I don’t help someone to come closer to their own dreams; to learn skills they never thought possible; and to become confident in moving on to serve those they will find joy in serving, instead of being at another’s’ beck and call in a job which gives them little fulfilment or joy anymore.

Meanwhile, the joy for me, is in helping others connect with their own passion, and instead of simply dreaming about it, opening their eyes to how they can reach it, and change countless lives in the process.

So, what does my story mean for you?

If you’re unhappy, or unfulfilled in your current employed position, or you’re an Entrepreneur but things just aren’t going the way you expected and you know that something has to change, then this is how you can make a successful transition.

Skills Audit

Ask yourself what skills you’ve learnt up to now. Look at everything you’ve ever done, even if you don’t think it’s relevant – my life in the Police Force isn’t directly relevant to my job as a Heart-led Business Coach and CEO, but I’ve lost count of all the little things that have come in handy from those days on the beat.

Categorise those skills in order, from those you are fully confident in, and enjoy, down to those where you may yet need some further training yourself, or you are least excited about.

Must Read The 5 C Framework: Building a Resilient Sustainable Business

Skills Evaluation

Ask yourself whom you can share those skills with; looking at your top skills, who is it that could benefit from your experience, and how would their lives be improved?

Be honest with yourself, look at which of your skills are most sought after, and which of them will not only bring you joy, because of the difference you will make, but will also see your income growing successfully.

Skills Management

Look at how your skills can be delivered to the market. Seek guidance and support from a Heart-led Business Coach who has been there and knows the pitfalls, this is invaluable and will help you gain the clarity and direction you will need.

Don’t try to go it alone. Outsource help with those skills you find tiresome or difficult to keep on top of. You will move forward faster and more productively!

Skills Marketing

Never be afraid of the money, we all need it, but don’t let it take over, that way lies only unfulfillment and stress. If you are doing what you love, and what you feel called to, the money will come, believe me.

And most of all, don’t give up, your own successful business, or transition is only round the corner – so what are you waiting for?

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