I’ve had a little spring in my step lately and it’s all because I’m attending a free 10 week business course. It’s run by a local community charity called V-Cat and funded by Natwest/RBS. The course provides training and support to women who are looking to start their own business. It’s just what I’ve been looking for to help turn my doodle workshop dreams into reality.
I like to think that the universe handed me this opportunity, in fact, I’m pretty sure of it! You see, over the summer holidays I was feeling very low, lonely and lost. I couldn’t summon up my normal enthusiasm for anything; my business or my personal life.
Over the years, I’ve learnt that self-care can have a massive impact on my mental health so I booked myself in for sound bathing yoga at Kanti my local yoga studio and a reiki session with my good friend Emma at Escape in Manchester. I felt much better after the two sessions and it gave me the healing boost I needed to pick myself up.
It was then that I saw a post on the Facebook page for the yoga studio advertising a ‘tea and tarot’ event. ‘Something’ and I’m not sure what, why or who made me immediately respond and book a slot.
The reading was with a lovely spiritual healer called Marie Mulcahy who is also a trained herbalist. I picked out my cards and she proceeded to tell me all about the business I was planning to launch before I’d so much as muttered a word out loud. The cards were all saying ‘go or it’ and at the end of the session she handed me a leaflet for a free business course especially for women like me. She had been on the course herself the previous year.
I’m now three weeks in and I can honestly say it’s been the best thing I’ve done for a long time. I’ve been a single parent for 12 years and personal development has seemed completely impossible. It feels so good to be investing in myself and taking action to achieve my goals.
As mothers, I think we have a tendency to put our entire family’s needs before our own. We feel so much guilt for going out to work or missing the career and opportunities that some of us had to leave behind when we embarked on our motherhood journeys.
The course is run by two fabulous business advisors called Bridget and Val with years of experience and knowledge. It’s attended by the warmest and friendliest group of women from all walks of life with a wide spectrum of wonderful business ideas. We all share the common goal of wanting to create and build a business for ourselves.
The course is full of helpful information, advice and support by the bucket load. We have guest speakers coming in to share their stories of business and inspire us. We have a photographer coming in soon to take head shots, a social media training session and a market research trip to Manchester Central library to name just a few of the sessions. I’m learning how to write a business plan and devise a marketing budget and cash flow forecast. It’s simply amazeballs and I feel incredibly lucky to have been given such a fab opportunity.
I’ve also been reading some inspiring books from women in business. I’ve just finished ‘She Means Business’ written by the founder of the ‘Female Entrepreneur Association’ Carrie Green. Written in short, easy to digest, informative chapters this book provides inspiring case studies, downloadable worksheets and helpful guidance for the budding female entrepreneur.
This week I started reading ‘Playing BIG’ by women’s coach Tara Mohr which is aimed at women who have been playing ‘small’ and not reaching their full potential. By the end of the book, she guarantees we’ll be thinking BIG about our goals. Her website has some inspiring stories about women in business who have used her coaching tools.
I’ve also started listening to a Podcast series called ‘Great Women of Business’ from Parcast Network about female business legends such as Coco Chanel and Estee Lauder. Podcasts are my new favourite thing to listen to and I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to find them.
When I started my doodle business last year I never expected to fall in love with it so much. I adore creating bespoke, artwork that makes people happy. I have received so many kind thank you messages and wonderful reviews from my customers. Now I want to use my business to make a difference. I’ve always wanted to work with children and combining that with creativity and inspiring young minds really will be a dream come true.