Finding your thing
Becoming your own boss is the perfect time to create a unique business that suits your skills, strengths and personality. You don’t have to follow a standard job description as long as you’re confidently able to do everything you say you can. Now is the time to follow your passions and carve out the life you’ve always wanted. Want to do more than one thing? Go for it! Don’t limit yourself to just one thing if you enjoy many.
I definitely stuck with what I knew when I first started my own business. As I had years of experience as a PA it seemed natural to become a virtual assistant, and to me it was the best of both worlds. Work I enjoyed doing and was good at, plus the freedom and flexibility of self-employment. However there were parts of my old job I didn’t enjoy, so I made sure I didn’t offer those as services to my clients.
I remember the first week of self-employment very vividly. That sense of freedom was unreal. No more asking to go out for lunch. No more asking colleagues to answer my phone while I was away from my desk. No more holiday request forms!
But as time went on I realised I was capable of a lot more, so I began to take on a wider range of tasks for my clients and moved into a sort of business manager type role and project manager. My strengths are definitely my organisational skills and my attention to detail, so I’ve really made the most of those. Since having a baby I realised that yet again I was capable of more, and I now help women find alternatives to the 9-5. I find it so fulfilling. It allows me to be more creative and also makes the most of my teaching skills (I’m a qualified teacher too).
So, how do you go about deciding what ‘your thing’ will look like? Here are some tips to get you started:
Have you always wanted to help people? Become a VA or online business manager and support those who run their own business
Are you a great listener and like to find solutions to problems? Become a coach and show people how to excel in the area you specialize in
Are you uber creative and love to make things? Open an Etsy shop while you build your own website following
If you have a craft under your belt that you love then there’s no reason why you can’t take your skills from standard employment to self-employment - if you’re a graphic designer for example. You might want to use your skills and qualifications but niche by working with a particular group of people. And once you’ve got the ball rolling you can think about ways to expand your offerings and revenue streams.
So as you sit down to think about what your thing could be, try this. Close your eyes and picture yourself in 5 years time. Allow yourself to imagine doing what you love to do and getting paid for it. Think about the feeling you would get as you wake up on a Monday morning. Imagine enjoying what you do every single day. Just because you find something easy and enjoyable, it doesn't mean that everyone else does, and that means there's a market for your skills.