I've been wanting to blog about this for some time but couldn't until I'd made an official business announcement. But now I have. You can read it here.
In short, I have sold my PR business. From August I will officially be unemployed. Stretching before me is a blank canvas, just waiting for me to colour it with something exciting.
My challenge is, I don't know what that something is.
Here's my CV: I studied PR for three years. Then I studied small business management for 6 months. Then I studied marketing for another three years. I have worked in PR for about 18 years in South Africa, the USA and the UK. Frankly, I am over it. I need to do something new, I just have no idea what.
Several people have suggested I write a novel. I'd love to. But I really don't know if I have the talent and I'm battling to find a story. I don't want to be 'another writer'. Sure, I'd love to be JK Rowling or Stephanie Myer with multi-billion pound franchises. But I reckon that's what most novelists aspire to. Not many make it. I'm not trying to be a pessimist. Just a realist.
Then I look at my other interests and passions. I like to cook. I like to bake. I have always envisaged running a little tea room filled with girly pink bunting and decadent cakes. But the reality of that dream is working almost every hour in every day to make a pittance. I want to earn enough money to make the hours worthwhile. And I want to be able to see my children.
I like sailing and the outdoors, walking, treasure hunts, organising children's parties, using my imagination and being sociable. I wish I was better with my hands - making things. But I suck at that. I have lots of ideas for other people's businesses. And I've had a few ideas of my own. Nothing that sets my pants on fire enough to want to invest blood, sweat and tears into it.
And that's part of the problem. Having run my own business, I think I'd find it impossible to go work for someone else unless they were radically flexible about hours. So I think I'll have to run my own business but I also know what that means. When I set up my PR business, I had no idea that running your own business meant such long hours and a feeling that you could never turn work off. I know that if I set up another business, I will need to be really passionate about whatever it is so that I don't mind making those sacrifices.
I would also like to do something worthwhile, that makes a difference to people, rather than just trying to flog the next gadget. But I'm too much of a capitalist to work entirely selflessly for a charity. And the charity begging is almost as noisy to me as the PR and marketing 'Me Me Me' cacophony is.
Finally, I am tired of working alone. While I love working at home (hence the blog title), it does get lonely. It would be lovely to have someone to team up with, to share the highs and the lows. To take on the scary bits together. To brainstorm and be creative and think we can take on the world. But finding that person is hard.
So help me please. Inspire me. Throw suggestions at me. I welcome all ideas.
If nothing comes to me, I might just have to take some time out, put my feet up, gaze at my navel and be a kept woman. I can think of worse things....