Turning Your Hobby Into A Business

With so many people being made redundant in this economic climate its no wonder that more and more people are starting their own businesses and oh yes I have personal experience of this having gone from a two salaried household to a two business household.

It seems that turning your hobby into your business is a popular choice, much as Brett my husband did with his photography.  We knew it wasn’t going to be easy and of course mistakes get made along the way, but here are my 5 top tips for turning your hobby into your business.


  • Before you even think about investing in it, you need to figure out whether its the right choice for you.  So get serious about your hobby, but put a framework about it.  Set yourself some goals and see what it feels like.  Still enjoying it?  Great – then it could be for you.
  • Go out and do a bit of market research – is there a market for your product.  If you don’t know where to start with this enrol on a start up business course.  Some organisations offer this for free others charge a small fee.  Check out WIRE, business initiative and the chamber of commerce but availability varies according to area so get googling.
  • Unless you’re forced to leave work, then stick with it and have a go at your business part time – but do be official about it and register with the tax man.  It’ll save you money in fines later on AND if you’re already paying tax you may be able to offset some of your possible losses.  Plus you’ll have the security of the income coming in.
  • Start to network.  There are some great books and blogs out there to help.  Check out this blog.  You’ll find lots of people willing to share ideas and support.
  • Have some fun.  It you stop enjoying it – you won’t put as much into it. – And remember its within anyone’s capabilities – you just have to start somewhere.


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Facing Change – Learning To Dance In The Rain

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass;

it’s about learning to dance in the rain.” –  Vivian Greene

This has to be one of my favourite quotes.  It makes me think about situations in my life and the lives of friends.  I have two friends that have faced major change in their lives in the last couple of years. Both very different circumstances and both have really struggled to come to terms with their new circumstances and accept them.  In order for them to move on with their lives they have needed to accept what has happened to them.

As a coach, my instinct is to reach out and help them, question them, challenge them, however as any coach will tell you, people need to want to make the changes in their thinking before they will take action.

Imagine if Olympic potential Oscar Pistorius had given up hoping to achieve in his life.  Oscar is an inspirational example of determination overcoming challenge.

It was understanding that I needed to overcome my challenges that helped me get through my own redundancy.  My coaching knowledge made me realise that redundancy gave me opportunites I ‘d not had before and the sooner I accepted the situation ahead of me the more headway I could make in planning my future because for certain if I hadn’t have learned to dance in the rain, that storm would not have passed.



What challenges have you overcome and how did you learn to dance in the rain?




Redundancy – 2 common responses and how to deal with them.

“I’m sorry but your team is being relocated!” – these were the words I heard – and I knew then that meant for me leaving the organisation I‘d worked for for 20+ years.

I’ve heard different expressions “your role is being deleted”, “you’re redundant” being amongst the worst.  It’s a fact of life.  With a struggling economy and worse happening in Europe, companies are being forced to make cutbacks and there is rarely anything personal when managers make such decisions as to who stays and who goes.

Its very easy to sit here writing a blog post and making that statement. Its quite different when you find yourself in that situation.

Two common responses are:

“Why Me?”.  This is a natural response to any kind of change.  The Reflections Coaching Change Curve © demonstrates the responses we go through when we face a change and is useful in understanding the range of emotions that go with it.

 “I’m redundant”.  Frankly this statement stems from what we choose to say, or what others have wrongly phrased it.  Redundancy is not about you or me its about a financial decision being made about the role that you currently do.  The individual (you) are not redundant – in fact quite the opposite.  You have a huge range of transferable skills and knowledge .

But here’s the real conundrum – right at the very moment you need every ounce of confidence, someone has possibly dealt you one of the biggest confidence knocks of your life.  And right at the time when you should be investing in YOU – someone has removed your financial safety net.


Coinage (Photo credit: Simon Greig (xrrr))

If you’re looking for another job, getting some help with CV writing and interview skills is a must.  Times have changed and as I’ve discovered recently CVs need to be much better and good networking skills a real must in finding work.

Whether you’re looking for work or thinking of starting a business then networking and confidence skills are paramount too.

I’ll be covering more of both networking and interview stuff in  future blog posts, however if this has sparked your interest then coaching could help too.  Why not visit Reflections for more information.


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