It is six months since I left Durham County Council and half a year since I started my own business. The time has passed so quickly. Looking back it may look like a crazy idea to have given up the relatively stable world of paid employment and to venture off into the unknown, yet I have not missed my former life for one minute. I especially have not missed the drive around the Metro Centre each morning and evening.
Yes, there have been times when working for myself has been hard but the freedom to pick and choose the work you do, who you work with and the places you go is immeasurable. In many ways I am still confined by the need for some paid work yet in other ways I have been truly liberated.
As I have said in a previous blog I have had to justify myself in a completely new way. I cannot take it for granted that people understand what it is I am trying to do. Every conversation is an opportunity to learn and to pitch. I have shed a skin and am growing nicely into my new one.
I also have had to think about the pipeline of work to come. When I was in my last role the work stream was relentless and now, though there is potentially a lot of work to do, it does not come to you. I find myself balancing my time between maintaining my contacts, looking for upcoming opportunities and delivering on the stuff that has been agreed. Like a shark, I must keep swimming forward.
My venture has also taken me into new experiences. Learning to try and market myself, juggling multiple different work streams as well as the intricacies of value added tax have been fascinating, if at times frustrating and have called upon all of my organizational abilities.
I am still here though, twenty six weeks older and wiser. Progress has been good so far. There is no going back.
If you are interested in what I am up to then look here.