I know – no posts for AGES at the end of last year. Basically, life went a bit crazy. House move, puppy, the unending demands of school in the winter term and, of course, Christmas.
Speaking of which, I wish you all a VERY Happy New Year.
One other thing that almost happened last year was a switch of website and blog. I spent a bit of time on the new version and then put it to one side until I was ready to launch it. And, as uncharacteristic as it is for me, I waited…And I’m glad I did as I changed my mind again!
To cut a VERY long story a little shorter, I considered adding another business to my Stella & Dot activities which I felt was complementary and fitted well with my interest in beauty and style.
Here’s a bit more about it if you have a few minutes and a cuppa!
Encouraged by a very good friend I had a vision of a site called ‘Youer than You’ where I could, potentially, build a business offering women ‘like me’ style and make up advice, but more importantly than that, support to rebuild their confidence as they enter a new phase in their lives.
A site that would, hopefully, would be useful to other ladies navigating the precarious early mid-life and the ‘MEH’ that often comes with it!
You see, ever since I was a child I have had a yearning for my own business. I wanted to go into hair and beauty but ‘back then’ the beauty industry wasn’t what is now and I was strongly ‘guided’ to take a more academic route. That just wasn’t for me so I left college early, didn’t go to Uni and started working in a bank. And it was all fine, I moved up the career ladder, changed jobs, continued to get promotions, moved into the public sector, trained, progressed and so on. All was golden…. except I still really wanted my own business. Then I got made redundant….
By this time, I had married, bought a house and had a baby. I had responsibilities but I also had a little pot of redundancy money that, whilst not huge, allowed me to retrain. I needed to do something that was part time and, having been a frequent gym goer for years, I decided to take courses in fitness training, nutrition and eventually functional personal training.
I went on to build a pretty successful fitness business primarily training post-natal mums in a supportive environment where they didn’t need to worry about childcare – baby came too!
Whilst I loved running the post natal classes, the one to one training was much harder. I was working pretty unsociable hours (because people with the budget to have a PT work) and balancing everything got really hard. Then along came baby number 2 and before long it was evident that I couldn’t carry on my business. I didn’t earn enough to put both girls in childcare so I could continue the daytime classes and I was too exhausted with sleepless nights to increase my evening work. As a result I had also completely fallen out of love with being a PT. Yes, I loved helping people, especially Mums, but ‘this’ just wasn’t doing it for me anymore.
So off I went, back to a proper job. At this point I must stress, I am still in that ‘proper’ job and I have been blessed to be working in a company who value their staff and understand the nature of juggling work and family. My role has developed and I have learnt a lot!
But I still have this feeling that I could do something to help people. Not just any people, people like me. People whose lives have ebbed and flowed, shifted and changed. People who may have lost their confidence after giving their all to others. People who have gone through huge, life changing events and find themselves a little lost as they head into early middle age.
I am, in all honesty, talking mostly about women. After all, that’s a subject I know lots about! I’ve been through post-natal depression, raised kids, had financial and work worries, retrained, lost loved ones, seen friends go through their own versions of hell and had health issues. I’ve lost my confidence, had zero self-esteem and felt I had nothing to offer anyone. And the roller coaster of life means that all of those things still impact my daily life to a greater or lesser extent depending on the day, the hormones, the weather, the children….. or many other things! Not that I would ever claim to have all the answers and I would most certainly not claim to be any kind of expert.
What I know is that , middle age isn’t what it used to be, we are now living better lives for much longer and 40 plus is no longer over the hill! So let’s all kick ass, boss the day and OWN our lives.
Nobody’s perfect but each of you are You. You are unique. And, in the words of Dr Seuss – there is no one alive who is youer than you!
So – back to why it only almost happened….
Whilst I really believe in all that I write and love when I am able to help someone see their true power or potential – in whatever aspect of their life it might be – I continue to fight my own demons. I need to make 2018 a year geared at building capacity in my life – not cram it even more full!
So I am sticking with Stella & Dot – a company whose vision and values are closely aligned to my own. I am sticking with the day job. And I am sticking to ensuring that, this year, I make time for my family, my home, my health and my well being. And adding another stream to my business doesn’t support that action.
Sometimes recognising, and accepting your limitations is every bit as important as working hard and having ambition.
But… should you fancy a look at a, not yet publicly launched, prescription make up brand specifically designed on the well established Colour me Beautiful principles, let me know as I would be happy to show you!