Yes that's right, I have not always been a photographer. I left my job as a Sports Therapist to take up photography full time when I was 25.
At the time this must have seemed ludicrous to friends and family closest to me. After all, I went to University for 3 years to become a Sports Therapist and had racked up a heap of debt to get there and then I just wanted to make a U-turn and drop it completely.
So what was so appealing about being a photographer that it would make me leave my vocation behind? Let me tell you.
Put simply : Joy || Fulfillment || Happiness || Freedom ||
This next sentence may sound typically cliché but it's accurate. I realized that life is short and I wanted to spend it waking up going to a job that I love and enjoy. In contrast, being a Sports Therapist left me with a void, it was a good job with great prospects if I worked hard but I would be working a job that gave me no fulfilment or happiness. Is that how I wanted the next 45 years to be?
Absolutely not. It was a bold move. It was a scary move, but it was one I was willing to take. The idea that I could enjoy my work was enough to make me try and give it a shot.
At this time I was newly married and living in the UK. My husband was pursuing a successful career as a professional soccer coach and absolutely loved his job. We were considering moving to Canada for his work and photography allowed me to move without having to re-study, take exams and so on. Photography worked for me for not just happiness and fulfilment but also gave us as a couple freedom. Freedom to travel and move easily around the world. This was such an added bonus to my job switch decision.
So I can honestly say that I made one of the greatest decisions when I gave up my career as a Sports Therapist to pursue my dream of being a photographer. I chose happiness for my life. I tuned out the voices that made it seem an irrational choice and listened to what my heart deemed important in life.
Finding joy each day in my work allows me to be a better wife, mother and friend. I want my kids to know that they can make brave choices, to follow what makes them happy because mommy did it and succeeded.
I am not saying it has always been a breeze. I have had to work my butt of to build my business up from the ground. There have been tough times when I questioned my technical ability, my talent and my business know how, but I chose to push through and work harder, educate myself further and invest more.
Even dreams are hard work. Just because it brings you joy, doesn't mean it comes easily but the end result is overwhelmingly more rewarding.
5 years on and I am excited about my future. 2017 is going to be a great year.
It's never too late to be bold.