Want to be Self-Employed but No Idea Where to Start?

Creative PursuitsSometimes I make the mistake of thinking I’ve heard everything. No sooner do I do that than people turn up to surprise me. This week I met a very sensible Creator. Who even knew they existed when we thought they were all head in the clouds? Turned out she did have books full of ideas somewhere, ideas on the back-burner, she had just parked them for a while. I told you already, she’s sensible. Phew! My world went all topsy-turvy there for a bit.

Then I met someone who had had the spark of creativity lit within her Starry self (by me, on our previous call) and this was the first call when we were due to start working out how to put that into motion. Quite a bit of amateur psychology was called for there, from both of us, since she had manifested a severe case of cold feet since our earlier call. She was proposing to go back into her box. At least its confines are familiar.  Yup, I know. But not on my watch, Love.

So, my client is self-employed but no idea where to start.

I was a bit flummoxed to begin within and I ended up doing all the work, which is fine, but I am at great pains not to impose my ideas on my clients. I want my brilliant ideas to spark your own as I am sure they will with this Brilliant Bird.

But here’s the thing… you have to start – anywhere, sometimes without necessarily much of a plan. We co-created a plan of sorts and I am pretty sure we generated enough energy and excitement for my client to start experimenting outside of her comfort zone. But many want a plan. A Formal Plan. A Proper Plan. “I need to know where I’m going before I set off.”

Increasingly I am seeing – and have come to really know – that mostly it doesn’t work like that.

You have to be prepared to set off first and see where it takes you. You have to decide to experiment. You just have to be willing to play in the magic. Life doesn’t go like we expect even when we do have a plan, so what does it matter?

But you do have to get out of the house.

When we were little, people would come to the house and say “Can Judith come out to play?” That doesn’t happen when you are grown up. You have to get out of the house to have experiences and adventures. Things happen – if you let them – when you are in the supermarket and the bus queue and the library and the car wash. Creative ideas are sparked when walking in the rain or at dance class or yoga or curry night. And in the park.

And some of us can even make a business out of that, as I feel my client will, exploring and telling her story. She won’t be the first or the last. I envy her writing up her adventures and there’s plenty of precedent for that as a business model too which I was able to share with her; illustration from my own client base and inspiration from the media.

Don’t know where to start? Leave the house, follow your nose, get in amongst interesting people and things, try new stuff, see what unfolds, see who you meet, say yes more, have a go. Have an artist’s date with yourself.

Just start, basically. With anything. You’ll soon know if it’s right or wrong and if it’s wrong then all you do is take a little diversion. And eventually one of these roads will lead you back to you, the authentic you, who discovers who she really is and what she wants to make a business out of.

As they say in personal development and reality TV, it’s all about the journey.

Be prepared to learn to love the journey. Become the explorer of your heart.

[This doesn’t just apply to self-employment, obv.]

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3 Responses to “Want to be Self-Employed but No Idea Where to Start?”

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  1. Frank Jurga says:

    As usual, a brilliant article. I decided self-employment was for me when, 30 years ago, I accidentally came across a booklet about Prospecting and it explained where one would find one’s clients. By the time I had browsed through it from cover to cover, the realisation came that every person I came across was a potential client. I didn’t need much more motivation after that.

  2. You are welcome, Cristina. One of the things I love best about coaching is what I learn from observing my clients.
    I see this working therefore I know it works.
    x

  3. Cristina says:

    Thank you Judith for this great post!
    Being a coach myself, and knowing that one of the important aspect of coaching is to “have” a plan, I noticed through my clients, that a plan does not come until we are ready for it; and you have explained so nicely…just do it, start somewhere, go out!
    I often have this dilemma myself and wonder if I should push for the plan or let the journey of “just doing it” start first and the rest will follow…I have seeing it happening, to me, to others, but this article make it clear!
    thanks heaps,
    Cristina

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