So all of a sudden it's been over three months since I started my own business.
My first observation is that it's gone by really fast. And when I stop to think about everything that's happened, I realise it's been quite a bit and that I have learned a lot.
Now, normally when I reflect on something that's happened and say "I learned a lot", it tends to be something very difficult or negative. Not in this case though! I can honestly say that my first few months of running my own business have been surprisingly positive. Things have worked out every single month – even the month when I took two weeks off! – and my two kids, husband and I are all better for it.
I no longer have the pressure to put in seven and a half hours of work every single day, and that is wonderful. I mean, to be fair, my former employer was as flexible as could be regarding what time of day those hours took place and where I worked (usually from home), for which I was truly grateful. I also really did enjoy the security of knowing that I would get paid a certain amount every single month. This security pulled me in despite all the required hours I felt burdened with.
Have I missed the regular payslip? The security of knowing I always have work? I will admit that the pressures at my old job have been replaced with a new pressure of making sure I always have work. And some days I do have brief moments when I feel that rather keenly and think, "What have I done?" But they are just that: brief moments, like a flutter. And then the facts speak for themselves: not only have I had enough work the entire time, I have not even had much extra time at all to explore new potential avenues of acquiring more work.
So I landed on my feet. I suppose I could have hit on some really rough months at the start of my journey, but I didn't. I guess some of this could be down to chance or whatever, but I am also confident that a) I know what I'm doing as a professional, b) I have many years of experience to draw on, and c) I really believe I was ready when I took the step.
And those are some pretty solid premises for building a business right there, even with the element of chance or the unknown involved. In fact, that might be the biggest takeaway from this whole little assessment: that knowledge, experience and solid confidence will actually go a pretty long way. So do what you're good at, hone your skills, believe in yourself, and don't be afraid to dream.
Next time, I might tell you about the art class I've joined.