“Back yourself. Hold your nerve. If things aren’t happening, but you are sure of the direction you want to be in, hold your nerve. There is so much work out there, so just focus on the work that is going to give you the most enjoyment. And don’t wait for things to happen!”
I’m delighted to welcome Darren Lawrence as this week’s guest on The Happy Healthy Entrepreneur Podcast, a recently new business buddy of mine so it was a so great to catch up with him in this way. Darren is an independent consultant specialising in the sports industry; so to give you some background, Darren left The Football Association after 11 years, last year, and has just passed his first anniversary as Darren Lawrence Coaching & Consulting. He has made the smart move of continuing to develop his niche in sport and has undertaken a number of projects this year (data analysis, strategy development, research, facility development, and event management) working with clients that include Governing Bodies of Sport (such as England Squash and The FA), Sport England and County Sports Partnerships (including Living Sport who cover Cambridgeshire and Peterborough). All so, without having to do crazy amounts of marketing, because he could draw upon his network.
A big fan of learning and development, Darren is also close to completing his Diploma in Personal Performance Coaching, a qualification through The Coaching Academy, which will be another skill to add to his toolkit, and is already utilising it in working with individuals and organisations.
So when I asked Darren to reflect on the three words that best describe his entrepreneurial journey over the past 12 months, he said:
Brave, Exploratory, and Proud.
What you’ll learn by listening to this episode:
- The first few months of self-employment were difficult in terms of not knowing how and when it would ‘happen’, and how trusting in his skills and experience played a key part in this (just six months later, he would have too much work on!);
- The constant ‘balancing act’ of doing the work and also generating new work has been a learning curve;
- To take advantage of the quieter times in business, to rest and replenish energy levels up again, before getting ready for the next push, because unexpectedly work comes in and then you’re busy again;
- Three things that keep Darren ‘sane’ are listening to music, running every other day helps with keeping a clear head, and staying connected to the ‘outside world’;
- Being self-employed means you have to be proactive in building your network, and being available to support and help others so that it comes back to you;
- How the self-limiting belief “I’m not good with change” has been proven wrong during the first year of self-employment through all the things he’s been able to achieve and accomplish;
- Things can’t be perfect all the time ‘progress, not perfection’ it’s about moving forward one step at a time.
Recommendations and Resources:
Where you can learn more about Darren Lawrence
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Happy Healthy Entrepreneur was founded by Sarah Swanton in early 2017 and is a movement dedicated to supporting purpose-driven entrepreneurs to achieve optimum mental health and wellbeing so that they have all the emotional resources they need to create a happy and profitable business, out there making a positive social, and conscious impact in the world.
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