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Today we feature a guest post by Tracy.  Many thanks to her for sharing her inspiring story of career fulfillment:

This past July, after taking a self-improvement course, I realized that I was wasting my precious time on earth not doing what I love. For the previous three years I had been doing a job that I hated. Most people would consider it a dream job – I made lots of money, I could work from home most days, and I had loads of free time.  The problem was that I had slipped into the job.  It was never something I wanted to do and I was never passionate about it.  The more time I spent working, the more I forgot who I was and what I want to do in life. In July I realized I needed to take ownership of my life, and so I quit my job. And then I ran into a wall. My whole life I had been very ambitious and I always had a plan. After three years of suppressing myself, I didn’t know what I wanted to do anymore. I read all these blogs about people who were following their dreams, but when I tried to think of what I would want to do my mind was blank.

That’s when I decided I would write a blog about figuring out what I wanted to do. The main mission was that whatever I was going to do, it would have to fulfill my *he*art and my *so*ul. That’s why I called it The HeSo Project.  I made a list of things that make me happy and started doing them. I took renewing vacations, I read inspirational books, and I started volunteering more. My goal was to work on myself as a person, and I hoped that the career would follow.

Just when I started to doubt that my project would get me anywhere, and my savings were starting to dwindle, my new career hit me. (I’m sorry for being vague in this next part, but I’m still working on a patent.) I was hanging out with friends, and they were complaining about something. I thought of an obvious solution and then went online to see if I could buy it for them. That’s when I saw it didn’t exist. Now here’s where the project comes in. If I had had a secure job and I had not been thinking about what I wanted to do in life I probably, would have said, “Someone should make this,” and then forgotten about it. But something felt so right about it. I thought, “Hey I can make this!”

Since then, I started taking business classes, designing the prototype, and getting a patent. I just filed my LLC and bought my domain name. I’m speaking with manufacturers all over the county to get the best price on plastic molding. It’s a huge, overwhelming endeavor, but I’m taking it one step at a time. I have highs and lows. There are days that I think I can’t do this, and there are other days when I know I’m going to be on the cover of Fortune Magazine. The important thing is to keep moving forward.

I never set out to start my own business. But I love my idea, and I want to see it realized. I don’t think it ever would have happened if I didn’t have the blog. It helped me to verbalize the mess that was going on in my head.  Making my goals public gave me a sense of accountability. It also drove me to read other, like-minded blogs, such as yours, and they have been a huge source of inspiration and motivation.

I know not everyone can afford to quit their job and take time off to focus on their HeSo, but the one piece of advice I would give everyone is to take yourself seriously.  I’m sure you have come up with a great idea already, but you wrote itoff right away. You are capable of more than you could ever imagine.


Do you have a career story to share?  We would love to hear it.  No matter where you are in your career — content or unsatisfied, settled or in transition — we want to provide a forum for you.  Contact us at bill@figuringoutfulfillment.com and margaret@figuringoutfulfillment.com!