The Demise of My Corporate Career
Updated: Mar 3
My story starts a long time ago. It actually seems like a lifetime ago now or something that existed in a parallel universe.
I completed my studies at University scoring myself a double degree and Masters Degree in a grand total of 5 years. I went on to follow the well worn path of applying for a spot in a graduate program at one of the big four accounting firms and ended up staying for the next 5 years.
It was fine. There was nothing wrong with the experience. Yet, I was restless, uninspired and unfulfilled. Whilst my work was being recognised at a company level, I found it disheartening that this recognition and influence simply vanishes into thin air the minute I stepped out of the office bubble. I knew that my work didn’t really matter outside those walls.
Wanting to make a larger impact on communities and on people, I had my own aspirations that I knew that I needed to attend to. I’m so glad it didn’t take me longer than those 5 years to realise it.
It wasn’t easy leaving my secure, acceptable job. I was young and according to my life expereinces to that point, I was apparently promising. My parents were definitely sceptical, if not a little resistant, of my decision. My work colleagues thought I was crazy.
In retrospect, I totally understand. It’s a big decision to jump ship into dark waters.
I wasn’t too sure what I was going to do or how I was going to do it, but I knew that I had something to hold on to whilst I weathered the storm. At the time, I had casually decided to get a few fitness-related qualifications because I loved it so much. I was a qualified Group Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer, so I decided to use these avenues to keep me busy while I figured out what I wanted to do.
It turned out that I enjoyed the dynamic industry so much I ended up staying. More than a decade on, I'm still there. I managed to build a successful business within the fitness world, and even managed to have a couple of kids in the process. It’s been truly amazing to be able to raise our kids with the flexibility that every parent deserves. I’ve been able to take time off when I needed it, and as the kids have gotten older, it’s been awesome to keep my toes in the fitness industry while also being present for them.
Enter the food co-op
When I had my son, I exited partially from the fitness industry to focus on him. I knew my husband was absolutely capable of running the business on his own.
It was great spending lots of time with my son whilst he was really young, but I could feel my energy brimming at the surface again as he started to shift out of the newborn baby stage. It was at this time that I was probably unconsciously putting a call out to the universe for a challenge to come my way.
At the time, I was part of the local food co-op. The lady who was in charge of it all lived a few doors down from me. It was awesome – we were getting really fresh produce each week, supporting local farmers and buying sustainably with no packaging and low food miles. Out of the blue one day, she asked me if I wanted to take over her role, as she was moving to Europe for a year to take a sabbatical.
Looking for a fresh challenge, I willingly accepted and was given ten local families to tend to each week. I eventually built this up to fifty families and expanded to a second day to accommodate fifty more! It was phenomenal.
Fitness and wellness has always been such a huge part of my life and I was thrilled to be working with fresh produce and knowing I was bringing healthy sustainable food to our local community on a weekly basis. The community buzz was strong. It was nice touching base with neighbours and friends on a regular basis when the kids were young (sometimes getting out of the house and arranging a time to meet was impossible!).
And so goes the beginning of my food co-ops, which continue to run strong today.
I have now evolved this into a business concept and have embarked on a brave and long journey to build an App to make food co-ops more accessible and convenient for local families. Enter Minifarms Australia! You guys will have to watch this space.
Sometimes I have a hard time explaining to others why my weeks are so full. I do so many things. I am a Personal Trainer, a group fitness instructor, a food co-op owner, a business manager, a mother.
I am able to do school drop off and pick up, spend my afternoons with the kids and also continue to maintain a healthy lifestyle in terms of food and exercise. I spend a lot of my time in the kitchen prepping and cooking our meals and take so much joy in doing so. I also place my own fitness and wellbeing at the top of my priority list and make time for myself on almost every day of the week. It’s taken a lot of discipline, trial and error, drive, energy and tenacity in order to achieve and maintain a high happiness factor for myself and the rest of my family, and I know that I have to credit a lot of that to the extra time which came from dropping my corporate career.
I have been able to lead my own decision making. I have been able to lead my own projects. I don’t deal within the walls of bureaucracy. I am passionate about all that I do. The corporate world may be ideal for some because it’s fast, furious and stable. For me, taking the plunge into a self-managed world was the best thing ever – and I am so excited about my start-up, Minifarms Australia. I can’t wait to keep writing this story, with all of you by my side!