You go through life trying to figure out what you want to be when you grow up. You pick a major in college, find a job, get married, have kids and own a house all while going through the daily grind of your career. But it isn’t until someone slaps you in the face with a compliment that you realize the career you chose does not make you happy. That is what happened to me. I needed that slap in the face to get me out of my stupor and do something that truly makes me happy.
My husband and I bought a home that had an unfinished basement. We decided to renovate the basement so we could use it during the cold winter months. We planned out the 1,000 square foot space and got to work. Yes, we did most of the work after taking some classes on plumbing, framing, electrical and more. It took us over a year to complete it because we both had full time jobs and only had nights and weekends to work on it.
During that time, I loved planning out the layout of each area, picking the furniture and choosing colors for the room. I looked forward to it every chance I could get. At the time, I just thought it was something that kept me busy.
So what was it that opened my eyes? Family relatives came to visit and we proudly showed off our new living space. They loved the colors I chose and the layout and were impressed we did most of the work. And then it happened. My cousin’s daughter, Evelina said, “you should be a designer.” It never dawned on me because I thought everyone had the skill to decorate a space. I thought everyone could envision a room layout and see the potential. I thought everyone could take a blank room and imagine how it could be put to use. I was wrong and I hate to be wrong.
It turned out my cousin used my idea and furnishings to update their own basement. It was the best compliment I could have ever received. I was stuck in an IT career field I didn’t like anymore and it took someone else to slap me and change my life.
Little did my cousin know I was struggling with my career and trying to figure out how to be home more often for the kids. After her designer comment I did some research and realized an interior designer requires 4 years of school. I didn’t have 4 years and quite frankly didn’t want to wait that long! I then ran across home staging as a career field and I was hooked.
I took the first scary step and enrolled in a business class to help me start my home staging business. To this day I am grateful to Debra Gould for showing me the ropes to create a business that I truly love. I consider her a mentor and I think everyone who starts their own business needs one.
I started off slowly creating my new career in home staging and did it part time while still carrying a full time job in my IT field. I conquered every goal I set out to make myself a success. It started with little things like coming up with my company’s name. Then I hired a graphic artist to create my logo. Each new step made me grow as a small business owner and I had a steep learning curve.
If you are stuck in a career field you don’t love, find something that you do love. My new career in home staging will now allow me to be home for my kids and pick them up from the bus stop. It opens up opportunities for me that I didn’t have before. So what will it take for you to do something you love? Take a baby steps and listen to your gut, friends and family. That one phrase, “you should be a…” can change your life. I thank Evelina every day for planting that seed in my head and helping me change my career.