I had a hard time getting to sleep last night. Not because I am middle aged woman suffering insomnia or night sweats. Not from drinking caffeine past 5 pm. Nor was my mind racing due to stress.
Instead, I was anxious and excited to pick up my scissors today at the salon and work my magic with clients – for the first time in over a year.
How is it possible that at 47 years old I still get excited like a kid in a candy store about a job I have had for almost 30 years?
Just 17 months after selling my spa and launching my new business, Beautiful You by Victoria, I announced my return (on a limited, part-time basis) to hairstyling. I suspect there are many people thinking, “Why did she leave only to return? Why wouldn’t she have built the new business while winding down her old one?”
Believe me, even I have spent time questioning my rationale behind my decisions!
Did I turn 360 degrees? No.
Rotating 360 degrees, or going “full circle,” suggests a person ended up where they began. I did not.
2016 sent me on a journey that was crucial for my personal growth and development, as a woman and entrepreneur. My guess is that if I hadn’t left the comfort in the salon, I would have given up on my new dreams!
I was excited about the new venture, yet fearful of the unknown. Not only was I about to change careers but I also moved to a new town. I experienced panic attacks (new to me), crying fits, many highs and lows… was it hormones or stress?
One thing that kept me going was this quote from Seth Godin: “If it scares you a little it might be a good thing to try.”
My mission (purpose) is helping women build confidence, discover their beauty inside-out, reach their true potential and live an authentic life. So, I jumped in with two feet and with these two thoughts: Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Feel the fear and do it anyways!
I am nothing if not consistent, persistent and intentional!
This is what 2016 taught me, all of which were outside of my comfort zone:
1. Why networking is important.
I had to get outta the house!
Having a great website, social media presence and blog is great, but without getting out and meeting new people (networking) my vision for my image consulting business would have phased out before it even began.
I had only ever been to a couple networking events in my past and they made me so nervous. Even as an extrovert, I became anxious. The term “networking” was where I got caught up… but lo and behold I now LOVE networking events. I feel (mostly) at ease and it has been pivotal in building my clientele and building new relationships both professionally and personally.
2. The value of saying YES.
Saying yes to what excited me even if I didn’t feel ready or have any clue how to get started opened me up to a whole new world of experiences.
I wrote about this more in-depth last summer, and it continued to be true for the rest of the year.
3. Speaking gigs rock!
Speaking professionally had been a dream of mine for years, but I had no clue what I would speak about what or even how to get started.
With some coaching, I learned the anatomy of creating a talk, presentation or speaking gig. Next, I said yes (see above), over and over again, to different types of speaking opportunities (big, small, virtual and podcasts – 16 engagements in total!!!!). With my stomach in knots, hands shaking and heart pounding, I took to the stage! Now granted there wasn’t always a stage, but still the nerves were there.
Speaking has been the #1 key thing in building my business, by sharing a piece of me and my story.
4. Align myself with strong, powerful, likeminded women.
I have a wonderful diverse group of friends who are positive, inspiring and caring! I was fortunate to align myself with a group of very strong business women in a coaching and mastermind program. I am not gonna lie…. a couple of them scared the crap outta me and I was intimidated initially thinking I was out of my league in the group! But as Brené Brown says, “If you aren’t in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.”
These gals are in the arena, taking risks, pushing their limits and sometimes getting an ass kicking. The movers, the shakers and the actions takers get things done! We had each other’s backs, and continue to do so. They challenge and support me.
After all the excitement and growth I experienced throughout the past year, I still felt like a piece of the puzzle was missing: the salon atmosphere, the day-to-day hustle, and working with clients longer term. I thrive on that stimulation, plus the requests for hair services were plenty!
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
Did I fail? No.
Did I give up? No.
Did I learn? Absolutely!
So yes, I am behind the chair again; this time as a new and improved version of myself! I’m loving the ability to combine these services with my image consulting, and my life experiences will enhance the quality of service I am able to be to others.