It’s time to let go of the sides

Warning: this blog contains some swears.

When I’d go swimming as a child, and even as a teenager, I’d cling to the sides of the pool. And if I let go for a little while to make my way up the lane, I’d panic, splashing my way back to it. I’m not too sure where this fear of the water first started, I’ve never really been a fan of getting my face wet but there was a time in the sea where my swimsuit came undone and I was knocked over by a wave and I was dragged along the sea bank. I was already an unconfident swimmer, but that probably didn’t help.

Why am I telling you this? Because I’ve been clinging to the sides of my life. I think I’ve probably had an above-average number of brushes with death for my thirty odd years on Earth, and every time it’s changed me. And I absolutely believe life is too short for living anything but your best life, probably from this constant death in the face thing. But over the last few years, I’ve found myself clinging to the sides.

I’ve spent the last 15 years developing a career in marketing & copywriting. I got my first byline when I was 15, my writing has won awards, I’ve worked on international marketing campaigns and people say lovely things to me like ‘I knew that you wrote this, it has that dusting of you all over it!’I’ve also spent the last 15 years struggling with my mental health. I didn’t really feel like I was building a career because I never expected to live beyond 25, so I was just doing what I was good at to make money in the meantime.

Until I got to a point where I was sort of resigned to being here. I was still sad, but I was here, so I started focusing on each day as it came. When I went freelance six years ago, I had no f*cking idea what I was doing. But what I was doing, wasn’t working; I had to make a change. I was struggling to keep hold of my mental health, I’d just found out that I had cervical cancer and I’d just started my masters degree.

So, I started my own business working as a Marketing Consultant and Copywriter, and I tried to take control of my happiness and mental health. I jumped with no security net, no savings, I lived in a house share in South East London and there was no option to move back in with my parents or family, I had to make it work. In six years, I’ve had one £10k month. I don’t make six figures but I make somewhere between £2-£6k every month. I’m extremely proud of myself, I’ve built this from scratch.

By taking tiny steps in one direction, I just kept putting one foot in front of another. And then I poked my head out when I was 27, and realised that I think I might be happy? And at 30, I realised that I was pretty content.

But although I was finding myself, something was missing, I wanted to help people. I wanted to show people that there was a way through that intense sadness that I experienced all those years ago. So, I did a diploma in Life Coaching and Positive Psychology, I trained as a Mental Health First Aider, and become a Happiness Facilitator.

I wanted to spread some joy around. I wanted to show other people that happiness is in the every day. I had learnt that happiness was in comfy socks, hazelnut syrup in your morning coffee & burning the fancy candles that you’ve been saving for a ‘special’ occasion, and I wanted to show other people how to lean into those tiny blobs of joy.

I qualified as a life coach earlier this year, and using my background in Mental Health, Positive Psychology, and Happiness Facilitation, I’ve started to work with clients who need support prioritising themselves in their lives, who have gotten stuck in a pattern of people pleasing, who’ve found they have no habits or routines to lean on, who are lacking in confidence or just aren’t sure how to get from A to B.

And honestly, I f*cking love it. I’ve never felt the most myself as when I’m coaching. I’m good at this. I know instinctively how to do this. My sensitivity is my superpower and I know when to lean in and when to let things breathe. But I’ve been clinging to the sides, worrying, will I get enough clients to make this a ‘thing’, should I keep marketing in the meantime, am I worth what I’m asking strangers to pay me? All of these limiting beliefs were incredibly loud in my head, and they were keeping me frozen.

I support my clients to stop making themselves small, to take up space, to become the main character of their lives so they feel like themselves, and my clients that are seeing results and changes in themselves within just one or two sessions is telling me yes, I am good enough. I can make this a thing. But I can’t make this a thing whilst I’m clinging to the sides, half in, half out. It’s time to stop living so small, afraid to live my best life.

I’m good at marketing, I’m naturally creative with endless ideas always going round and round in my head. But it doesn’t bring me the joy it once did, and it definitely doesn’t light me up the way that coaching does. So, from August, I won’t be taking on any more marketing clients. I’ll continue to have a few of my marketing clients on retainer, and I will be continuing to offer my 90 minute content sessions but for the rest of 2023, the only way that we’ll chat marketing is in a consultant/coaching space, I’m not taking on any more done-for-you projects.

I’m letting go of the sides.

If you’d like to find out more how I could support you as a well-being coach and to see if our vibe is a match, why not book in a free discovery call with me? I’m all in, shall we do this together?

Published by Saloni Chamberlain

Turning words into stories with feeling.

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