Inspiring Women

Amanda Kerin talks about changing the mindset when runnign a business

Amanda-Kerin-200x300Creativity comes out of pain – for me at least. I’ve figured this out now I’m 37.

I’ve had two life changing experiences up until now. I was 24 when the police knocked on my halls of residents door and told me my mum had died. Life has not been the same since. At 36, I hit burnout and I wasn’t able to physically move one morning as my body was a dead weight. I wouldn’t wish either of these experiences on my worst enemy, but without question, it has shaped who I am today, and created the work I produce for my business.

I have more strength and courage to take risks than ever before, and that’s because I know first hand, that life can be taken away from you in a heartbeat, and that is painful. So we really do have to live it purposefully.

The working culture in 21st century isn’t healthy for us humans, yet we’re the ones that have created it. We are constantly on high alert with various channels competing for our time. Employers want their pound of flesh, and we do what it takes, as there are plenty of younger, harder working, talented, and cheaper resources on your heels wanting that job.

I realised I’d had enough of this working culture when I went back to work after burnout, so I decided to change it. The negative mind chatter went around my head – of course. Logically, practically, and financially, I should not have been taking this step, but there was a burning sensation in me that knew I had to, or I wasn’t going to live my life fully.

On 1st August 2013, I took the huge leap of faith into the unknown and left my steady secure income and created AJK Events, a corporate event management agency, and two weeks later had secured clients. I was on a steep learning curve of Professional Development during the first 6 months of my business, learning about marketing, social media, websites, cash flow, strategy, tax…the list is endless! I thought I was fairly experienced given that I had worked 20 years in various pressurised environments. Believe me, producing a radio show and touring a national exhibition is easy compared to running your own business!

Whilst I was off sick from burnout for several weeks, I reassessed my life. I read articles, watched various videos and discovered Personal Development. That started with my mindset, which led onto meditation, visualisation, mindfulness, and spirituality. I discovered how important it was to my physical & mental health & wellbeing, and more importantly, how it has changed my life for the better.

From my time off sick, and starting my own business, I realised that there is value in connecting the dots in our personal and professional worlds, and taking a pro-active approach to mind, body & spirit, and aligning that with business. It’s about making a conscientious effort to maintain, grow and develop your physical and mental wellbeing, and I genuinely believe we need to do that to lead a purposeful and fulfilling life, both in our business and personal worlds, and so, Inspiring Women LIVE! events were born.

amanda1Year two and I am still in business – wa-hoo! I am fortunate enough to have some great clients. I keep taking steps forward with Inspiring Women LIVE!, and I’ve now started Tweet Up Bristol. (come along and meet who you tweet!). And whilst I may lay awake some nights with worry and anxiety, I can honestly say I wouldn’t have it any other way. Of course it would be easier if I worked for someone else, but who wants easy? Where’s the challenge in that? I wouldn’t feel truly alive, happy or free. I’ve made the conscious decision to make compromises, sacrifices, and it pains me to say no to half the events I get invited to, due to lack of time, funds, resources or working away, and it won’t be like that forever, but for the short term it’s doable.

I am living on purpose, being creative and making a difference. Has it been hard? Hell yeah! Has it been worth it? Absolutely. Do I regret taking the leap? Definitely not. I can honestly say I’ve not looked back since. However, the reality is tough, really bloody tough some days. So be prepared if you want to run your own gig, I call it business bipolar! I stay strong, move forward, even if it’s baby steps, and keep the faith. I’m driven, passionate, believe in what I do – for my own events and my clients’, because l genuinely love my work.

If you are stuck in a rut and trying to change something at the moment, get past those fears in your head (fyi – they only live there). Take some action today, find the time, cancel that engagement you don’t really need to be at, and take a step forward towards your vision. If you want it, go after it, don’t let anyone stop you. It’s your life and no-one else will do it for you.

Inspiring Women LIVE! events take place every 6-8 weeks and offer a platform for working women to learn, share and inspire – each other, and from both speakers, each covering a professional and personal development topic. It’s important that it’s a live interactive event with a networking opportunity, and not online. We are all connected digitally enough as it is. Let’s keep things real!

Whether you are a business owner, entrepreneur, have aspirations of running your own business, a freelancer, working mum, stuck in a corporate rut, looking for a change of pace, come to the event and try it out. I offer 100% satisfaction guarantee or your money back! I promise that you will leave the event with some tools and learning that will leave you feeling fired up, and wanting to move forward with your goal, whatever that is. You will also be part of a movement that is trying to change the working culture of 21st century and making things work for us on our terms, that fits in with our lifestyle.

I passionately believe it is beneficial for everyone that personal and professional development happens together, and how we need to take care of ourselves first and foremost, and that starts with our thinking.

I have ambitious plans for Inspiring Women LIVE! – the next phase is bespoke retreats B2B, and pamper retreats B2C, both early next year. I’m aiming to roll the event series out nationally, and I want it to be a learning and networking opportunity, for working women who meet regularly and create a community, where we encourage and inspire each other. Join the movement ladies!

If you are interested in attending the events, speaking or partnership opportunities, please visit www.inspiringwomenlive.co.uk like our facebook page, and tweet @iwomenlive

Organising a corporate event? Please visit www.ajkevents.co.uk

Tweet Up Bristol is on eventbrite, @tweetupbristol #bristol #business #tweetupbristol #tub – come and say hello!

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