I’ve always been a secret entrepreneur.
I say secret as I didn’t identify with that word when I was younger, but I was being one!
Having lived and travelled across California, Sydney and Cape Town I’ve created my own opportunities to give me the freedom I wanted, making money as I went, and living life to the fullest.
I set my sights on what I wanted and I went after it, following my dreams and goals, even when life got in the way. That approach took me across three continents, living life my way and loving it.
It saw me work and succeed in the newspaper world, build a therapy business, thrive in national corporate sales and run a publishing company producing a popular, thriving monthly magazine.
It brought me award-winning recognition for innovation, awarded me the Businesswoman of the Year title and, not least, an invite to Buckingham Palace.
And today it brings me here.
A certified professional coach bringing a strong business background with over 20 years in advertising, marketing and sales, years of experience and the wisdom of successes and failures to help brave, strong women like you achieve clarity and success.
Coaching and mentoring designed to help you get clear on your intentions, learn what you stand for, and to take the action to achieve the business you want and live the lifestyle you desire.
SAY YES TO YOUR DREAMS. THEN FIGURE IT OUT.
I remember clearly the moment my entrepreneurial spirit was sparked. I was 18. I was all set for a top-calibre university life. But it felt like I was on auto-pilot.
I travelled to California on holiday that summer and my heart was instantly stolen by the beaches and mountains, the vibe, the sunshine, the people, the opportunity.
I felt so alive. I didn’t want to go back! I was staying put!
But I needed money. I had to get creative. My travel partner was up for staying too. So we borrowed a motorbike, bought some equipment and built a car valeting business from scratch. It was great fun, it was lucrative and it gave me the funds I needed to live, and then some… when the time came to leave, we sold the business for a profit.
California was a true education for me in life and basic business acumen: it taught me so much about going after what you want, following your dreams, being creative with your talents, seizing opportunities and making money.
That’s when I knew life on full beam is the only way to live
Alas, the Californian adventure had to end sometime. Back in the UK, I began a career in advertising sales and media – I loved the fast pace of newspaper life, the fun and excitement of producing something people loved to read that helped their business too.
And I loved selling. Yes you read that right! I loved selling!
Life was grand. Alongside my sales career I trained as a holistic therapist and studied counselling which satisfied my deep desire to help others. I had balance, money and happiness.
Fast forward a few years… my world turned upside down.
I’d risen to management, left the newspaper and was in another ‘same but different’ high-pressure sales job.
My relationship had gone horribly wrong.
I crashed. I became ill from overwork and was suffering anxiety and emotional burnout.
I ended up in hospital.
Lying in that hospital bed, I wasn’t clear on how I had ended up there – all I knew was I didn’t want it.
I had to make a change and, for me, change is usually big.
A business acquaintance I had recently worked with from Cape Town called me.
“Why not leave it all behind and come over here.” they said.
“What am I going to do there?” I thought?
But then, more to the point:
“What am I going to do HERE?”
I felt hope and excitement again at the prospect of something new and unknown. And so, off I went.
California had given me a taste for a life in the sun yes – but the leap from hospital bed to South Africa without any support network felt like a massive gamble. It was – and it needed taking!
I WAS A HEARTBEAT AWAY FROM GETTING OFF THAT PLANE. SEEING IT THROUGH CHANGED MY LIFE AGAIN.
That flight was the beginning of massive change and self- development for me.
South Africa. A beautiful and complex country, I loved it from the moment I arrived, in a different way to California. Africa touched my heart and soul. I had no idea that I would feel that way and this time I had a real chance to live there and run my business.
I met my daughter’s father, made wonderful friends, travelled, made strong business connections, and finally got my work permit to run my therapy business. Life was good.
When I finally came back to the UK, I felt whole again, no longer lost or frustrated. I knew what I was capable of and I had been successful in recovering from pain, moving forward and achieving my goals.
I was staying in the UK and I had a taste for success.
I landed a corporate media job in a well-known advertising industry. I began earning a lot of money and living ‘the dream’: fancy car, fat salary, bonuses, awards. I was a consistent top sales achiever, in the company’s top 100 Salespeople Exclusive Club and I was being pushed to rise higher, do more, earn more…
But as a few years went by, I started to remember that this wasn’t my dream, however well it was going. By this point I was also solely parenting my baby daughter. All the responsibility was mine and I was heading for burnout again.
TIME FOR A VALUES CHECK…
My daughter was now my world. I wanted to create a life that put her first. Us first. What would that be? Wasn’t clear at that point. But I knew I had to be the one to act to make it happen.
I walked away from my corporate job. I took on a part-time home-based sales role with a magazine. It was a terrifying drop in salary but I had planned for it and could be with my daughter and start to rebuild.
And then, life happened again. We had major tragic family bereavements. And on top of that the news that the magazine no longer needed me.
When life pushes you to the limits, you still have choices.
Choose to turn it around.
Recognising our choices makes the difference: and sometimes it takes someone else to show us
The day my boss came round with the news, he said, “Why were you doing this anyway? With your experience you could easily run your own magazine.”
Woah. Really? That got me thinking. He was right. I had the chance to align my values, skills and experience into a business of my own. What was I waiting for?
I planned and researched, I drew on all my experience in sales and media, networked endlessly, wrote copy, articles, sold adverts and four months later launched my own magazine, Community Life. The first edition made a profit as did every edition after that.
By 2014 I had received countywide recognition, winning The Federation of Small Businesses Innovation Award and receiving the title ‘Bedfordshire Businesswoman of the Year’.
I built my connections in the community and business world. I also joined the police force and trained as a special officer, giving my time to serve the public.
And in 2015, I was invited to The Queen’s Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in recognition of my commitment to the community on a work and personal level.
Back in California as a young girl washing cars I would never have imagined being at Buckingham Palace eating sandwiches and drinking champagne on the lawn!
Just goes to show you never know what can happen…
There is always a next step and a way forward
VALUES ON TRACK – BUT NO STANDING STILL
After successfully growing the magazine through a merger and setting up a new publishing company with a business partner, I could feel that urge to develop and grow again. And I had a desire to see others grow and succeed too.
It was time to expand again. I researched, found an accredited coaching training programme I was very excited about and I began training in London while still running the business.
Which brings me to now. I sold my shares in that publishing company to give full focus to my coaching.
All my expertise, knowledge, energy and experience is now in one place to support my clients to achieve what they want in their businesses and lives, allowing me to achieve my dreams at the same time.
My dream is still the same, to live in the sunshine and run my own successful business.
To have freedom. To live my life on my terms.
What’s your dream?
If you’re still reading this, I’m really excited. Because you have a dream and you know you have choices that you want to make. Leaps you want to tak
You’ve likely reached a crossroads between what feels safe and what feels scary. But comfortable is no longer comfortable. It’s no longer an option.
You don’t need to settle.
You can get the confidence you need.
You can be empowered.
You can take brave action.
You can build a successful business by being YOU.
You are ready. You are enough.
Remember: say yes and figure it out later!
The clock is only ever ticking one way…
Life really is short
There will never be a ‘right’ time to start.
So start by taking your opportunities – today
What is your story?
Book a 30 min FREE call with me now to talk about your story and how it reflects in your business and how it can be even stronger.