The Challenge

“I’m going to suggest something and see how you try and get out of it” were the words that started all of this. For some time, meeting with my friend Dean for a drink and a catch up lead to an uneasy combination of feelings for me, namely excitement, fear and guilt.

You see, Dean is one of a small number of talented and creative friends in my world and I have to confess that I’ve always been a little envious of my talented and creative friends, especially when ‘talented and creative’ is what they do every day. Like many people, I have followed a career path for the last 11 years that albeit successful, wasn’t really planned, and I’ve reached a point where I can’t shake this feeling that there is something potentially ‘talented and creative’ that I should be doing instead.

So, sitting in the pub with Dean I ask how his work is going and he tells me about the themes and inspirations of his current work, the opportunities and interactions he has through his painting and the future plans and direction he has decided to take. For a brief moment I start to drift in my own mind, living vicariously through my friend, feeling the excitement of such creative freedom knowing how different this is to the Monday to Friday corporate world in which I operate. Then comes the return question “so how’s work for you?” and try as I might to muster the same level of enthusiasm as my friend, I just can’t. There’s shared frustration in our conversation as we both know that I want to be working more creatively, and ideally working for myself …… but neither of us can pin point exactly what that looks like.

We chat through my options; I have an eye for interiors and I’m good with a paintbrush, but does that make me an interior designer? I’ve worked for years as a Training Manager, but does that mean I can be a personal coach? I know retail fairly well but could I set up my own retail brand? Talking through the options is great, the possibilities are exciting but the fear quickly creeps in. Can I really do this? what about the mortgage? I can’t just switch career, I don’t really have a clear discernible talent to hang my hat on and neither do I have the time to re-train, this is just fantasy and I should probably consign the whole notion to ‘hobby’ and be done with it. And then I feel the guilt for wasting Dean’s time and being such a defeatist.

Then came the idea of setting up a blog. A way of talking to others about the things that I enjoy doing, primarily interiors and seeing where it takes me. “I’m going to suggest something and see how you try and get out of it …….. let’s go back to my house and set you up with a blog right now”. I agreed.

It’s taken some time to figure out what this blog will be about, but I think I’m there. I’ve decided to learn a new skill, and see if I can make it a viable business option in the future. For now at least, this blog will be about my plans and my progress and seeing where that takes me.