Taking The Leap
PHOTO: Taking the leap to start your own business is risky but freeing.
One of the hardest choices we have to make in any aspect of our lives is to leave a place of comfort and security. As a single mom to two daughters, I had worked two jobs for as long as I could remember. I was working for a company that I loved and had a boss that was beyond amazing. I was happy for the most part and financially OK, but deep inside was always a burning passion to create my own existence.
One of the aspects of my job was to create, implement and manage the corporate travel program for the company. In doing so, my love for travel grew into passion – a passion I wanted to eventually become my existence. But how could I possibly add anything else into the mix? I barely had time to breathe, let alone start a travel agency.
Then one day my perfectly imperfect secure world was shattered. My boss told me he was leaving the company within the year. I wasn’t ready to divorce my work husband, or was I? Now I had a reason to bring travel into the forefront of my life, but how could I make it happen? I still had responsibilities and needed an exit plan.
I decided to help him at his new firm and stay at my current job with the new boss while working to build a travel agency I felt comfortable leaving my secure life for.
But how much headway was I going to make on my travel business with a full-time job and a part-time job while being a full-time mom? Not a lot – and certainly not enough.
The solution? I jumped! After sitting through a department meeting and hearing nothing but whining, I knew something had to change. I resigned and jumped into my career as a travel professional head on, and I’ve never looked back.
Was it crazy and reckless? Some might say yes, but to me it would have been crazy and reckless to stay. I had been working my entire life helping everyone else build their dream businesses. If I was serious about mine, I needed to move beyond my comfort zone and make it work. I believed in myself and when you believe in you, anything is possible.
Has it been challenging? You bet it has. Has it been fulfilling? More than anything else I have ever done professionally. If I hadn’t jumped, travel would be nothing more than a hobby and that is certainly not what I want out of this profession.
I started my agency in January 2015 and have been full-time since October 2015. I look forward to sharing with you my experiences as a new agency owner and as the new Working At Home columnist.
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A version of this article appears in print in the August 2016 issue of Agent@Home Magazine.
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