|Dial House in summer.|
They usually leave some of the grass to
grow, meadow-like, these days.
"This weekend just gone I went on a short residential course at Dial House in Essex, "Ditch Your Day Job, a Permaculture Approach to Quitting the 9 - 5". The more time goes on, the more desperate I am to escape, so I booked myself and Husband (with his agreement) on the course, and we got back last night.
|Freeform beret, made for a friend's toddler |
grand-daughter, subsequently passed on to her sister.
Another consideration - so much of my spending actually supports my ability to do my eight to five. That's potentially money I don't need to earn. My car, for example. I've been taking notice lately, and I doubt that I do 5 miles per week that isn't to work and back (80+ miles each way, thankfully not every day!). I have a bike, and for the odd occasion (maybe once a month if that) when a bike won't do, there are always taxis. How much do I really need a car if I'm not commuting? That has to reduce my outgoings by £2-3,000 pa, and that is taxed earnings, so I can probably afford to earn £3-4,000 pa less gross if I don't run a car.
We were encouraged on the course to take stock of our talents and experience in things we actually like to spend our time doing. On from this, the one point that set off rockets in my head was the concept of multiple income streams. I have mulled for many, many hours over recent years, ways in which I could earn money that would involve me in activities that I already enjoy rather than sitting at a computer from 8am to 5pm each day. But none of them would provide a living wage, even a modest one. So, why not do several? See what works, what doesn't, and whilst I'm going through this learning period hopefully the things that don't work will become obvious quite quickly and the ones that do will prop up my optimism whilst I develop more ideas. If I can accumulate a number of revenue streams then I will never be dependent upon just one which may collapse at any moment. I've been made redundant once in my life and although it wasn't the tragedy for me that it is for a lot of people, it left me with no income and led me into a job that not only did I not enjoy, but which swallowed up 4 hours of each of my days in sitting either on a train or behind the wheel of a car. Awful, awful. I'd panicked, and taken the first job I was offered. I wish I'd had Tom's foresight then.
|My first commissioned piece - a cloche with a tiny brim, |
freeform scrumbles and beads attached. Great fun to make,
and I am told, well received.
I dabble in crochet, (also freeform knitting and crochet), and I have a number of ideas surrounding this particular subject, including making things for sale, maybe running short courses on freeform (bit ambitious, that), and preparing kits for sale with materials and an instruction booklet to give newcomers to freeform a head start.
I have also cherished a desire to write for publication - mainly fiction although I'm open to suggestions - for many years. Since my teens, really. I have had one timid effort at submitting a story for publication (rejected), but now I'm going to push at that door more firmly. That is so scary. (Note - have tried again twice since. Both rejected. Getting used to it now!)
Which brings me to the barriers, of which fear is of course the biggest. Fear of personal failure that may diminish me, but also fear of letting Husband down and leaving him the sole breadwinner - I am BAD, I am LAZY, I am living off SOMEONE ELSE, I can hear the gremlins shrieking in my head, and I've not even started any of this yet. The next worst barrier is a dreadfully unhealthy attitude towards money. I'm fine with my employer putting a lump of credit into my bank account each month. We don't talk about it at all, and usually each January it rises by the inflation percentage of the time - although not for the past 2 Januaries due to the credit crunch. But taking money from individuals for my time and efforts makes me cringe.
|Gordon, my toy baboon, fetchingly modelling the beret. |
I'm told it looked a lot better on the child!
So I have some big hurdles to haul myself over if I am ever to make the break with full-time employment. But my mood post-course is positive and warm inside, which is a big improvement on my average mood of the last few years. I am so sick of whingeing. I don't what to moan - I want to idle."
I still do!