How I turned my passion into a successful career
3 min read. In this article, I share some of the beliefs I cultivated on my journey to transform my passion into a successful meditation teaching career.
It takes a blind leap of faith to embark on a new course or career path. Not knowing what lies ahead can be daunting. For many, the fear of the unknown that this concept induces is enough to stop them dead in their tracks. We can’t see what’s ahead so we close our mind to it. As the principal of the Australian Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness, I invite you to think differently by sharing my story with you about how I came to be doing what I love.
Eighteen years ago, I never dreamed of a career doing what I love. At that time, I was going through a divorce and each day felt like a series of massive obstacles to overcome. Whilst all this mayhem was happening around me (and inside me), there was a little flame burning somewhere inside that lit my way. Here are some things that worked for me in bringing my dreams of being a successful meditation teacher into a reality…
I committed to inner transformation
I enrolled in personal development courses, sought counselling, expanded my meditation (what I could manage at the time) and all of this was my sanctuary from the stormy turmoil outside. Perhaps many of you can relate to what I’m saying in your own way. We all have a story of what brought us to do the inner work and look for more creative solutions.
I made these courses and interests my first priority. They came first in my budget. I don’t even really know how I managed to afford it, but somehow I did. Then, as soon as I was qualified I started practising as a counsellor and offered meditation groups as well. Becoming a facilitator and helping others changed how I perceived myself and I started to lead myself to a better place, as well as others.
I followed the path of least resistance
The meditation groups were my most enjoyable and effortless endeavour – there’s a clue! They were fun, they felt easy, I loved the gathering of like-minded souls. It was amazing to witness the growth of other people who attended regularly. Being able to create such a supportive space led to my business expanding – not only by running more groups, but by feeding my counselling business as well. It is my belief that whatever you are most aligned with and drawn to, is a clue towards what you should focus on developing.
I was open-minded
I tried other things along the way, but I always came back to meditation. There were two main areas that I focussed on. They were counselling and meditation. I also enjoyed Reiki and intuitive work but they supported the counselling and meditation as well. I enjoyed experimenting with different practices and focussing on doing a few things well rather than doing too many different things. If there’s one thing I love it’s an expert, and I strove to become an expert in one field. The meditation groups also allowed me to combine my skills into one offering. Having said that, at times, I would foray into something new and find that I learnt something that I was able to bring back to my core activity. So my intuition knew best.
I had realistic financial goals
I learnt not to put an undue financial strain on my business. Whilst I took a leap of faith, it was not without a safety net. All businesses need space and time to grow and prosper. And, all businesses have peaks and troughs when it comes to profitability. I had made the decision when starting my business, to keep up a side income from other work. This supported me when I needed to smooth out the bumps.
I wasn’t attached to the outcome
I decided that I would always do this work no matter what the outcome. Whether or not my business was a success, I knew that I would always teach meditation and personal development in some capacity. I loved doing it and it was a huge part of my life. Having this personal commitment to my work helped me maintain creativity and joy in my work through the journey of building a business. At the same time, there were certain financial realities to be faced. When something is not working it can be foolish to carry on with it. The things that didn’t work were things that were not really meant to be a part of my business anyway. However, sometimes it can feel difficult to let them go.
I worked from a place of gratitude
Once I made a living from my work I never took it for granted. Cultivating a state of gratitude was the fertiliser for the growth of my business. As I change and grow, I believe my business needs to as well. Whilst the core of my business is like a strong tree, the branches of the tree can flower and bear all kinds of fruit according to where my creativity takes me; innovation is an important part of ACMM. This keeps my interest strong, makes the business dynamic and maintains its relevance to my students and potential students.
I continue to be grateful for whatever comes my way and the people that help me on my path. As Jack Kornfield beautifully says, “Gratitude is the gracious acknowledgement of all that continues to sustain us”.
I hope sharing my journey has provided you with some perspectives to help you on your journey to turn your passion into a successful career.