How long have you been doing the Hustle and Juggle?
2 and half years.
What is the Juggle to your Hustle?
Single parent with 2 children aged 11 and 9.
Tell me more about your business?
I love helping people get their businesses organised so they can save time and money. I really believe that having well-organised systems keeps you focused and makes you feel calm and in control. I create systems that are specific to each individual client. Nothing is out of the box so everything is relevant and useful. I feel the greatest satisfaction when I’ve helped someone’s day to day business management become a little more effortless.
What is your Hustle and Juggle story?
When I separated from my husband three and a half years ago my world got turned upside down. At that point my life revolved entirely around my 2 young children; I was chair of my school PTA and I hadn’t worked for 7 years. Suddenly I found myself in a position where I had to work, do something else. It took me about 2 months to pluck up the courage to go and sign on and for a year I agonised about what to do with myself (all the while hating every second of having to go and explain myself and my attempts to find work to a stranger sitting behind a desk every 2 weeks). It felt utterly soul destroying every time I walked through those doors.
Eventually a friend told me they’d heard of a scheme that would help me set up my own business so I thought, why not. I’d been a PA before I had my children, had worked for regional managers and directors and maybe, just maybe I could become a VA. Use my organisational skills to help others while working from home. So I put myself out there, went on the course, took the leap and signed off.
It was one of the best decisions of my life. Utterly terrifying given I had never considered working for myself before. I had zero business experience and had spent a significant part of my life in academia. But I persevered, pushed myself out into networking groups and with the help of some amazing new friends have developed my business. I have now moved away from doing other people’s administration to helping business owners create effortless systems that get them and their businesses organised and profitable
Sometimes it’s really tough. No-one comes in at night to take over child care duties or help with the housework. My new partner has his own children and works away most weekends so me-time has to be scheduled in like everything else! But I wouldn’t change it for the world. I’ve learnt so much, especially about myself and what I am capable of and I know there’s still so much to learn. No matter how hard it gets I am still there to take my youngest to school and be there when they both get home; I get to do a job I love and I have met the most amazing and supportive people over the last 2 years. I am so grateful to be where I am.
What’s your message to anyone reading this to inspire them to keep going and remain visible?
You never know what you are capable of until you try. Forget everything you thought you knew about yourself, just take the first step and keep going. I truly believe that with hard work and perseverance anything is possible. You can do it.
If like Nicola you are Hustling & Juggling and would like to share your story with others please find out how you can do so here. I would love to hear from you.
If you need a daily reminder then visit the Justle™ shop for mugs of inspiration and join my “Buy A Mug, I’ll Give You A Plug” campaign!
Image in interview courtesy of Little Pip Photography!