Thinking back to 2018…. My husband and I were both working full time in very responsible jobs.
Simon was a Director looking after risk, fraud and money laundering working long days and I was a Branch Manager running a busy care recruitment office.
We have 2 children Emily 12 and Thomas 8. Our life was nice but we were time poor and had say no to the children a lot when it came to sports, clubs and play dates which are all so important at their age and you don’t get this time back.
I must admit we were coping but the cracks were starting to show.
Then came my dad’s dementia diagnosis. He had been showing symptoms for a while and mum and I had suspected but this kind of diagnosis not only majorly impacts the individual but hits family members like a tonne of bricks along with the worry that Frontal Temporal Lobe Dementia can be hereditary.
Dad is an entrepreneur and successful businessman. A talented builder who was always able to design, build and fix things with a great interest in computers. His condition started to deteriorate quickly.
So picture this … I was extremely busy running office, managing 3 members of office staff and 100 care staff, I’d grown the revenue from £5k per week to £20k per week and doubled the profit margins. I had built a team and a business, I was working silly hours and looking after a busy on-call phone. But it wasn’t mine!
By this point towards the end of 2019 I was realistic about the situation:
- My children needed me therefore I needed flexibility
- My dad’s dementia was only going to get worse – he needed me, and my mum needed support
- The business I had built was not mine
I’m welling up writing this as I’m telling my story. Something had to give!
I was headhunted but it did not work out. I know now that it was because I already knew what I was destined to do.
Then came the day. I drove to the office and put my keys through the letterbox.
The emotions of overwhelming relief, excitement, guilt, worry set in and I cried as I drove home.
I didn’t know exactly what I was going to do, and Simon wasn’t happy as you’d expect.
The next morning bleary eyed after lying awake all night I had it. The first idea.
I was going to become a Virtual Assistant and my business name was ‘At the Drop of a Hat’. My mission was to help busy business owners.
Writing this in October 2020 I now have a thriving business. ATDOAH is now a VA matching service supporting many busy business owners with over 100 VA’s and I am mentoring and training new VA’s on our VA Academy – Logo to Launch course.
My mission is still to support busy business owners with the added desire to mentor individuals who what the same freedom of becoming a VA.
I am now able to manage my own diary which means that I can spend quality time with my children and support my mum and dad when then need me.