Hi, my name is Christie and I am a serial entrepreneur. In just under a decade, I have started and/or researched countless businesses that I was interested in running. I’ve been:
- A virtual admin assistant
- An event planner
- A business document creator
- A relocation consultant
- A residential space planner
- A small business consultant
- A writer
- A life coach
And that’s just the list of the things I actually did and generated income. I am still doing the last three on the list today. This list doesn’t even include the attempts or the mere ideas that I have had. But, why so many? Couldn’t I have just picked one and stayed with it? Um … no. What was wrong with me? Actually, nothing.
The Relocation Consultant is the job that I stuck to the longest. I owned that business for six years, which proved to everyone (and myself) that I could start something and see it through to the end. You see, I knew when I started that business, it would end. Mostly though, I had made it my life’s work; what I would retire from when I was forty-ish. Deep down, I knew this was just “one of those things” I tried and it worked. I am surprised I stuck with it for as long as I did.
To the outside world, everything was perfect. I had a successful business that I ran from home. I had a flexible schedule and could be there for my family at a moment’s notice. I was making good money and everything was going so well. Why on earth would I give that up? I struggled with that for a couple of years. I loved my work but I hated my work. Why? I came to the conclusion that it just wasn’t fun anymore. And like a kid at a play date when she gets bored, I packed my toys and went home.
I love having my own business. Working for myself was the best thing I ever decided to do. And I know without a shadow of a doubt, I will always work for myself no matter what that work is. When I decided to hang up my relocation hat for good (along with the many other hats that came before it) and launch my new business (and therefore a new and improved me), I knew that I would eventually have to tell people. It has been hard for me to “come out of the closet,” so to speak, because I have done so many things and tried so many things and I am always talking about ideas that I have and businesses I would love to start. To the point where I thought that those who know me well would doubt me, criticize me, say, “Oh brother, here she goes again with another idea,” and I was afraid.
I went over and over in my head how I was going to break the news to my friends, family, and former clients about my newfound career path. I mean, the book I published was bad enough, right … who knew I could write or even wanted to write? I searched and searched for the right words, the convincing words that would make everyone believe that I was for real and not off on yet another one of my favorite short-lived career tangents. And yet, I was still empowered by the fact that this was what I really wanted to do, and I am not perfect, but imperfect and inspired. And so, I became a Life Coach.
I picked a few people to tell. My mother, as always, is supportive of everything I do and wishes me well. It helps that she is very much into self-help. My husband is on board but I can sometimes hear a little skepticism in his voice (one of my new skills as a life coach). He has that “I’ll believe it when I see it” tone, but with an optimistic lilt to it so it is still supportive. The truth is, with our second baby on the way, I think he’ll be happy when it earns money. The rest of my friends and family … well, some have made active inquiries and have given me referrals to potential clients. Some I think are still in “wait-and-see mode” based on the past.
Some are still baffled as to why I would shift 360 degrees and let go of a promising, thriving business to do something so different. The only way I could describe it is to put it like this … It’s just like trying on shoes. You don’t always buy the first pair you try on but the point is you try. You look at your feet, you walk around to see if they might be comfortable, you think about what outfits they will match, and you roll your pant leg up to see how your entire leg will look with these shoes. You may feel like these are the perfect shoes that will go with so many things, and you will wear them until the soles run down—only to get them home, wear them once, realize that they hurt, and into the closet they go for all eternity.
I’ve tried on many shoes. Some of them worked for one or two occasions; some I have worn “forever,” but I never felt like I had the right shoes for me. For the first time in years, I finally feel like I have the best pair of shoes on. They fit perfectly and I even have a bit of room to grow. They keep my feet warm and I feel so comfortable. They’re my favorite color. They match me and my personality and my desire for what I want and need in my life. I can wear them and hold my children in my arms and not fear that I will break my neck walking in them. I am now wearing the shoes I was meant to walk in for years to come. The funny thing is, these shoes have always been in my closet! I just ignored them. Maybe because they were not the shoes everyone expected me to wear, or maybe because I was afraid you would not understand why I was wearing them or support my decision to wear them. Maybe I doubted or suppressed my own feeling about them or doubted my own ability to pull them off.
If you stop to think about it, these new (but old) shoes are not too different from all of the other shoes I have worn—they all have a common thread that led me to reach back into the closet and rediscover this perfect pair. If you look back at the list of shoes I’ve mentioned, what is the common denominator? In those shoes, I was helping others to achieve something in their lives or business. I realized I had to have the same conviction that you have about your favorite shoes: they’re mine, I own them, I love them, and I am going to wear them proud! As far as money, I am adopting the Field of Dreams philosophy of “If you build it, it will come.”