top of page

If you could do anything, what would you do?

Most people have a 'secret' dream that they are nurturing. It may have started in childhood or just last week. Mine was to be a scientist, largely I think because they wore white coats, looked like Moomins and seemed to know what they were doing.... I wonder what Freud would make of that?!

For one of our fab Spark community, it was a dream to own a B & B by the sea, but not just any old B & B, oh no! Read on to hear Jo's story

Having grown up the youngest, by some margin, in a family of high achievers; Dad was an Engineer, Mum a GP and older brothers destined towards careers in medicine and banking, Jo felt a fairly hefty weight of expectation on her to be successful. She worked hard at school and when the time came to decide which A levels to take, she was 'talked out of' following her dream of studying Art and chose subjects her family perceived to be 'more useful'. She studied Maths, Physics and Chemistry and went onto University to study Biochemistry.

I met Jo when she was already 17 years into a fairly successful career as an Analytical Chemist, she got in touch looking for coaching, as she felt her career was stagnating and she had lost her passion for what she was doing.

It was during the course of our first conversation that I asked her to tell me about a time when she had felt happy, energised and fulfilled and she laughed and then joked that it was probably when she was at school. I wanted to explore this a bit more as those secret dreams we have are often hidden behind a joke. This is when Jo shared her desire to study at college and the different choices she had made and why.

It became clear that she yearned to do something creative but couldn't see how that would be possible. To make a life change like that would mean giving up her job, which would have lots of consequences such as less money; she still has to pay the mortgage of course, letting her family down; they are always telling her how proud of her they are and letting down her colleagues and the company she works for who have all really supported her development into her current role.

As we talked about her long term life goals and what she would do if she could do anything, the idea of an Art based B & B by the sea started to materialise. I could tell Jo was a bit awkward and embarrassed and when I asked why, she said she didn't feel she had the right skills and experience to even talk about an enterprise such as that, but it became clear that this was a long held dream that she brought out and dusted off when she felt unhappy with how her life had turned out.

So I asked Jo to act as if that long term goal really could be a possibility and if she was going to go for that, what are the steps she would need to take to make it happen, including what skills and experience she would need to acquire to feel like she could do it. Once we had this list of things that would need to be done, we then talked through how many of the steps she could complete alongside her current role. Jo was really surprised how much she could do, so we made a step by step action plan that allows her to develop her artistic skills and experience utilising some training and some voluntary work which means she gets to flex her creative muscles and maintain her income with an eye on her long term goal of owning that Art based B & B.

She's already a year into her plan and she's still on target to achieve her dream and live the life she wants to live and she is much happier in her role as she has extra curricular fulfilment and her sight firmly fixed on the goal ahead .

Note: This is a summary of a wider coaching session and some details including Jo's name have been changed to preserve confidentiality.


bottom of page