My first year in the freelance world as a Virtual Assistant and business owner has flown by in the blink of an eye.
Has it been exciting? You bet it has, but at times my adventure has brought some fear and uncertainty. I wondered if I would be able to meet my financial obligations or what the impact might be for my family, whilst also fending off those feelings of “imposter syndrome” for not knowing everything ‘about everything’.
“The key to growth is acknowledging your fear of the unknown and jumping in any way” – Jen Sincero
Of course, I now know that those doubts were quite normal for any freelancer and I was incredibly lucky that I found a great support network in my fellow VAs. In fact, I owe my new calling to the lovely Ann Read at The PA Portal who guided me through setting up and welcomed me as her Associate. Ann also introduced me to the VA Handbook and the amazing free resources and advice available from Joanne Munro, written for VAs. I am now a member of her Rock Stars group and enjoy the support, advice and challenge to grow my business.
In the early months as a business owner, I experienced the positives of being ‘my own boss’. I loved not having to juggle the demands of being an employee, with the dreaded daily commute or working regular unpaid hours and most importantly it was wonderful to be there when my children needed me. However, the elusive work-life balance I dreamt of was no-where to be seen. I know now that the two do not live in harmony; you will always feel the battle between work and your personal life because to be successful in both you need to focus on them individually.
If I could go back to those early days and give myself a little advice it would be to say that; it won’t be an easy journey with lots of highs and lows and not to be too hard on yourself. The mistakes will make you stronger and in chasing your dreams you will be the hardworking role model you want for your children. Oh, and don’t underestimate the importance of marketing yourself!
“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.” – Colin Powell
A year on and I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with some awesome clients and it is a wonderful feeling to be appreciated for the work I do and love. I have given them back over 900 hours of their time by ticking off their to-do lists or helping them work more efficiently. It always puts a smile on my face to receive their testimonials and messages of thanks.
“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.” – Steve Jobs
I don’t think I have ever learned so much about myself or developed as many new skills in such a short period of time. There is still so much I want to experience and my future goals are infinite. In fact, my business has now grown so much that I’m now outsourcing to my own Associates so that I can offer even more expertise to my clients.
I hope my journey will inspire those who have their own ambitions of setting up their own business. If you are reading this thinking and waiting to make that change, then just do it because someday isn’t guaranteed.
I’d like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have supported me, I am very much looking forward to the next chapter in my journey.