My Dream Job – Work Out What it is From Your Past.
There has never been a better time to sit and reflect on who you are, what you have done to date and how this can help you in creating or finding your dream job.
As a child growing up, I spent a lot of time with my grandparents. My grandparents were my absolute inspiration. I aspired to be like them, do what they did and have what they had.
They worked hard all their lives. My grandmother started life as a mill worker in Bradford, West Yorkshire and saved hard and bought a shop to sell second hand goods from. Before long it turned into 5 shops of which Social Services would provide their clients with all their furniture for a new start in life.
My Grandfather worked as a train driver and liked nothing better than getting home from a hard days work and having a glass of cider. They were little characters who loved sharing their stories of nutty people who lived on their street, Westminster Avenue in Bradford and their early days of courting.
Although they worked hard and had money, for some reason they loved a bargain. Whether this was buying things from a jumble sale or getting whoopsies (discounted close to sell by date) from Morrisons.
Some people may have been extravagant to show off the fact they had money, but they valued every penny and liked to make sure they got value for it. They understood that true wealth doesn’t come from show casing it to others but from quality time with family and their local community. These values are now cemented in the core of my being too.
In a world where it’s believed that everything that glitters is gold, they taught me that true wealth lies within us and is often already surrounding us in the form of creation, nature, family, friends and our connection to people and our authentic self.
They set me on a path of gratitude. The message is for me, be grateful for what I have now because if i don’t appreciate those things, I do not deserve anything more or anything else.
My Grandmother would say, “Jennie-wren, find something you love and create a way to get paid for doing it. Then you will never work a day in your life”.
I heard her loud and clear and from a very early age I was intent on finding out what I loved and why. I volunteered at a Leisure Library for people with learning disabilities, this lead to a job as a community care worker which involved shopping, cleaning, cooking, taking them to the toilet and supporting elderly/disabled people so they could be cared for in their own home. I did this whilst studying Health and Social Care, so I earned an income whilst training. This role helped me to realise that I loved working with people solving a problem.
Once I qualified in Health and Social care I volunteered with the Prince’s Trust, which was based at our local YMCA (Young Mens Christian Association). This was a 12 week Personal Development programme and it really had a positive impact on my life. The teams were made up of 16-25 year olds from every walk of life. It taught me presentation skills, team building exercises, communications skills and so much more. I was asked after this programme to come back as a paid worker and assist with the next team.
I later got the opportunity to go on another youth programme called Raleigh International. This was a three phase expedition over three months in Namibia. I tracked elephants, built a school and did conservation programmes. This experience was life changing because I had to raise £1500 to support my place and this taught me that I am motivated by Challenge and when a target is put in front of me, I will achieve it. It also introduced me to a whole new set of people such as lawyer’s, doctors and expedition leaders. I learned that we are all people with different aspirations and ambitions but really the key to happiness is giving back and feeling valued as an individual.
On my return I was asked by the Prince’s Trust if I would like to be a Team Leader. This role would involve recruiting 12 young people, taking them through the programme, finding work placements and taking part in a 5 day residential in the Lake District. This role showed me that I love recruiting, I am good at motivating people and I adore the outdoor experiences such as climbing, canoeing, hiking and orienteering.
Whilst working for the Prince’s Trust, the YMCA asked if I would consider being a Global Representative for the YMCA. My role would be voluntary with all expenses paid and the job involved creating a platform and a voice for young people in Europe within the YMCA. This role lasted 10 years are took me all over the world. I learned from this experience that I love travelling, making a difference and working as part of a team to achieve challenging goals that make a difference.
I later went onto work with the Duke Of Edinburghs Award and developed activities to get ethnic minorities involved in the Award. My title was Community Cohesion Officer. I learned, when researching for this job, that I had in-fact gained a Gold Award from doing all of the above. This role taught me that hobbies and interests are really important for balance of life. “Work hard, play harder”.
It was when I worked at the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, that I found out that I was pregnant with my first born Daniel. When I gave birth to him, I felt in total limbo, this was my beautiful baby and was going back to work the right thing to do when he was only 9 months old?
When on maternity leave I decided to do Avon cosmetics to get us both out of the house. I really loved this experience as introduced me to people in my local community and I could provide a service to them and earn a little extra money.
I Loved spending time with my baby and found this to be the most rewarding job I have ever had. I loved taking Daniel to our local Sure Start Centre so he could play and I could do free courses such as First Aid, Health & Nutrition and language & Communication skills with toddlers. It was at this time that the Sure Start Manager asked if I would like to sit on their Board of Trustees. I quickly agreed and my commitment lasted 6 years and resulted in me being Chair for the last 2 Years of service.
It was whilst I was at Sure start that they suggested I became a Childminder. This was like a light bulb moment for me as it would mean I would get to be a full time mum whilst earning a living. My husband also joined me in the profession and we thoroughly enjoyed providing a service to over 100 parents within this 7 year period. I absolutely loved supporting and empowering the children and I adored helping parents with challenges they faced regarding parenting. I still see many of them 4 years after we stopped Childminding and we have long lasting relationships with them.
As an extra hobby for me while having the nursery, I started as a Temple Spa Consultant. Templespa is an Award winning skin care company. My role is to share these products in private homes and create a Home Spa Experience. Still to this day I am sharing these beautiful products and have a team of over 33 people.
It was when my youngest started school that I realised I wanted a change of career. So I had to dig into the well of advice my grandmother gave me, “Jennie-wren find something you love and create a way to get paid for it. Then you will never work a day in your life”.
So it was at this time that I had to reflect back and learn about all I loved from the jobs I had previously done.
- Love people from all walks of life (elderly, disabled, young and old, all ethnic back grounds)
- Motivated by Challenge
- Love motivating and encouraging people
- Working with a joint Goal in mind
- Travelling, fitness and the outdoors
- Providing a valuable service
- Supporting and Empowering people (mainly women)
- Building positive Relationships
So with all of the above in mind, I decided to retrain and become a Personal Trainer and Life Coach.
I can honestly say that all of my previous work experiences has lead to this point in my life, where I earned a good living, I work part time and have the privilege of watching my children grow up into lovely little humans.
The moral of my story here is my past experiences have had a lot of clues to help me choose a future that I love.
If you need help finding clues to your life’s purpose, “ find something you love and create a way to get paid for it. Then you will never work a day in your life”.
Answer these questions to guide you…
What jobs have previously done?
What skills did you gain?
How did they help bring a service to people?
What did you learn about yourself in these roles?
What skills could you transfer into another job where you get better paid and offer services to people?