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15 Apr 15

Taking The Leap: Kate Bacon’s Story

Kate Bacon: Taking the leap into self-employmentToday, Kate Bacon‘s sharing her story of taking the leap into self employment. Kate helps small businesses connect with their perfect clients through her creative approach to web design. Her coach training combined with a decade of experience in online business are the foundations of her work: Helping her clients dig deep into who they are, why they’re in business, and how they can express that authentically online.

I’ve found my biggest challenge to be self-belief (or periods of lack of it) that can trip me up if I am not careful. Some of this stuff I have carried with me since I was very young.

I remember my parents signing me up for a secretarial course when I was 18 – as it was always “something to fall back on”. It took me years to let go of the belief that “I have to earn my living doing some sort of administrative work” and allow myself to believe I could do something else.

I now see that setting up as a Virtual Assistant for the first 7 years of my self-employment journey was a stepping stone to my work coaching and training others to become VAs, and led to my current work creating websites for heart-centered solopreneurs.

Work you love can be all-consuming

I’ve found it’s essential to completely switch off from your business for a while as it can be all consuming if you let it.

A yoga retreat here helped Kate Bacon in taking the leapLast year I did a yoga retreat at Silver Island Yoga and this year I’m doing an acroyoga immersion on another island in Greece. Every year since 2003 I’ve done at least one Buddhist meditation retreat (in the UK, Paris, Singapore, Brazil and Portugal).

I really look forward to starting my day with my connection practice – which is doing 30 minutes of yoga at home. It allows me to ground myself and work from a place of calm, even if I have lots of tasks to complete. Working part-time means I need to be really focused; I can’t “faff around” and be unproductive during the time I work on my own business.

The highs and the lows

About 18 months ago I had a real dip with client income and the savings that had been my “cushion” were fast running out. I hated the idea but I started looking for a job.

I couldn’t believe after 10 years of being self-employed I would have to return to working for someone else.

I had a mix of feelings – looking forward to being paid a salary again and feeling like this would bring stability to my life (an illusion I am still working on, as I know that this can only really come from a peaceful mind!) and the dread of losing the freedom to work in my own way with clients that I love.

In the end, I interviewed for a job with a business coaching company and they offered me part time hours, mostly working remotely from home.

This was invaluable – it allowed me to take time off from my own client work, really take stock of where I was with my business and clarify the direction in which I wanted to go.

“I can’t afford it” – is that true?

Often being self-employed means you can be on a bit of a tight budget due to uneven cashflow and it can be easy to use the “I can’t afford it” excuse to not invest in your own business development.

Kate Bacon: Taking the leap into self-employmentI’ve learned over the years to be picky in the training I take, as it can be easy, especially with self-study courses NOT to take action and finish the course.

I had taken Blog For Clients back in 2013 and just a day revisiting the course material early this year got my blogging practice kick started. I have an editorial calendar of topics through to July this year and have been posting every two weeks without fail.

I really resonated with one of Corrina’s blog posts last summer that described a really easy way to clarify your ideal client. After struggling by myself for months trying to figure this out, I was hooked and signed up for P2P as soon as registration opened!

Passion to Profit gave me the structure to completely reinvent my business based on research into what potential clients wanted – a revelation for me. Accountability (including Buddy Calls and the Facebook Group) helped me stay on track and I worked hard to complete the exercises during the course. I was ready to re-develop my own website shortly thereafter, re-launching my business in January.

Amazing opportunities

A surprising aspect of working for myself? The amazing opportunities that present themselves. One of my first clients as a VA was Coaching Development who run face-to-face, ICF Accredited Coach Training Courses in the UK, Ireland, and other parts of the world.

They wanted me to understand from an experiential point of view what it was like to be on the course (so that I could represent them well as their Virtual Course Administrator).

Who knew that I would be lucky enough to have free coach training and use this in my own business afterwards!

As told to our Community angel, Madeleine Forbes

Over To You

Have you worked part-time at any point on your self-employment journey – whilst setting up your business, or while taking some time out to rethink what you’re doing? Do you resonate with Kate’s experience that mindset is everything – and how you start your day sets the tone for what you do when you’re working? Leave a comment below, let us know.

Let your perfect clients connect with you

If you’d like to be sharing blogs that inspire your perfect clients to sign up to work with you straight away, then I’d love to welcome you to the next Blog for Clients course.

Click here to leave your name and email to get front of the queue. I’ll let you know as soon as enrolment opens, plus you’ll get access straight away to a free bonus guide: You’re in Great Blogging Company.

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© Corrina Gordon-Barnes 2015

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9 Comments

  1. Carisa Montooth

    I loved this post! Kate’s practice of starting the day mindfully – what a great reminder. I try to start out my day by thinking of all the things I’m grateful for. If I have time (and my 3 y/o daughter is still sleeping), I listen to Louise Hay’s morning meditation. With so much going on, it makes a huge difference for me when I can start my day with gratitude and intention instead of leaping out of bed and checking Facebook. Thank you for sharing this! 🙂

     Reply
    1. Kate Bacon

      Thanks for starting the discussion @Carisa. I’m impressed by anyone who is a parent to little ones and still manages to start the day in a mindful way.

      You are so right that having a good intention first thing really shapes your day 🙂

       Reply
  2. Nela

    I was thinking about a part time job, but so far the right opportunity hasn’t showed up yet. I was in an interview for an adult education institution, and still waiting for them to call me back and let me know if they will take me or not. I was looking forward to getting more experience in teaching, which would definitely help me in the direction I’m looking to go forward.

    I agree with Kate, I’ve noticed on myself that if I start the morning in a quiet, centered way, my entire day is better. If I start fiddling with Twitter as soon as I open my eyes, it all goes to Hell pretty quickly 🙂

     Reply
    1. Kate Bacon

      I love that @Nela (starting fiddling with Twitter making your it goes to Hell pretty quickly!) Same with Facebook I find 🙂

      Good luck in finding a part time job that is a good fit. I think the clearer we are about our intentions for what we want the more likely we are to find something that works for us.

       Reply
      1. Nela

        Ah, luckily I uninstalled Facebook app from my phone so it’s not as tempting for me personally 🙂 Twitter is my drug of choice.

        Thank you!

         Reply
  3. Miriam Linderman

    Kate…I’m such a fan who you are, what you do and the way you want to be in this world to make a difference. I was thrilled to get to know you as a buddy in Passion to Profit and beyond, and being together is what being on this path taught me. Do it with others. It’s the only way. Love being your friend and part of this community. xo

     Reply
    1. Kate Bacon

      Hi Miriam

      Thanks for the support. You are right, community is such an important part of the self-employed journey – through tough times and when we are celebrating too.

      To our continued friendship!

      Kate x

       Reply
  4. Kamini

    Wonderful to read your story Kate 🙂

    Your web service is such a great offering thats so needed. It was great to buddy with you on Passion2Profit when all this was in the dreaming and seeing it now ‘in the flesh’.

    Yes, I’ve done the part-time job thing when I have needed to but its always been a ‘stop gap’ till I can be my own boss again.

    Kamini x

     Reply
  5. Kate Bacon

    Thanks so much for commenting Kamini – I love that the support and sharing of success continues with our community!

    Funnily enough, I’ve just turned my “part time job” into a part time “VA client” and re-negotiated my rate. The shift has changed my energy in a palpable way 🙂

    I hope all is going well with you too.

    Kate x

     Reply

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