My Story

Hi, I am Isla.

For those who don’t know, this name is pronounced EYE’LA (silent ‘S’) and not IS’LA as may be expected when reading this name phonetically.

Nothing simple, heh?

Whatever your reasons are for getting to this webpage, I’m glad you’re here so that I can share my story.

 

So, who am I?

I was born in the west of Ireland in December 1979.

I grew up on a farm with 1 brother and 2 sisters. My parents separated when I was 17 which, at the time, I struggled with. Luckily for me it coincided with a move to third level education which meant I was moving away from the family home anyway. During the summer holidays I found myself grabbing any opportunity to travel and so I didn’t have to be at home for long periods of time!

Over the years, I spent my summers working in Cape Cod, Vermont, Atlanta, and The Netherlands.

Somehow, in 2001, I managed to successfully complete an honours degree in chemistry, a subject which bored the living daylights out of me. But from this I got an opportunity to work in a research & development lab in Switzerland for a massive pharmaceutical company on a 12-month contract.

I loved Switzerland but not surprisingly, the job sucked!

On finishing the year, I needed a working visa to stay in the country but at that exact point in time, uncertainty hit the stock markets, the company put a freeze on all hiring and so I was out!

Being a perfectly sane thing to do, I decided to move to Spain. I wasn’t in too much of a rush for the ‘real’ world yet. I wasn’t too picky at what I did and easily found work in bars, restaurants and even did a stint in property sales.

Making a profitable life in Spain was tough and after 18 months I returned to Ireland with a small amount of money, a huge amount of guilt, and set about finding a ‘real’ job to get my ‘career on track’!

Like, seriously …

What do you do with a Chemistry Degree when you hate lab work?

To this day, I shudder at the thought of cooking, it reminds me too much of working in the lab!

And I am not ashamed to admit that only my husband has experienced the joys of (or lack thereof) my cooking! I would not share this experience with anyone in case I accidentally made them sick! If, on the very rare occasion, someone comes around for tea, he cooks!

So back to my story, I am now living in Ireland after returning from my Spanish adventure and was looking for a job that wasn’t in a lab. A recruiter suggested I apply for a vacancy in a sales support role for the scientific industry. I never knew that such a job existed, this sounded great and I was willing to try anything that would keep me out of the lab!

A month or so later in 2004, I triumphed and found my first ‘real’ job, this was with JVA Analytical Ltd who supplied laboratory equipment to the Irish marketplace.  The team were hugely inspiring and the people were great . At the outset I worked in the office and very quickly moved into a successful field sales role. The MD and Sales Director were fantastic mentors knowing exactly how to get the most out of us and continuously encouraged us to grow in our roles.

In 2008, JVA got bought over by a large corporation and from then on, it was never the same. I bounced around in various roles within the industry and moved to the UK. I left sales in 2013 to work in a less stressful role and begin my MBA studies.

Like a MBA would solve things, heh?

Oh boy, I must have been crazy!!! Basically, I’d replaced a stressful job for a life where personal time was non-existent and I had signed up to 5 years of this!

After 8 months & passing all my 1st year exams … I’d had enough and for the first time in my life, I became a drop-out! Life was crap!

The only silver-lining I could take from this period was that I was now toying with the idea that maybe it was not the selling part of the job that I disliked so much, could it be ‘what’ I was selling?

Of course this could have just been desperation too, as the monthly paycheck from a sales job was also very enticing. Regardless I needed to give it another go.

So, I took another sales role but this time in a different industry, now I would sell ingredients for cleaning detergents.

Okay, I know … most people may find this a bit boring, but you see … I love my home being clean and tidy. I’m not particularly gone on the cleaning part itself, but needs must and this was right up my alley!

My interest in sales was reignited but I kinda’ knew that eventually the interest would fade … and it did. I was back to slogging the 10-12 hour days, my lifestyle was stressful but at least I got well paid for the privilege and I did have weekends to spend with my loved ones (usually).

Breaking Point

In 2018, my husband got a job which relocated him back to Ireland and I was left to live on my own in the UK.

Every weekend we saw each other, either one of us would travel, but during the week working from home alone was extremely tough and lonely.

In my spare time (which wasn’t a lot) I forced myself to work on my personal happiness and personal development trying to keep my spirits up.

During this time, I came across a company offering to teach me how to have a successful business online but the timing was all wrong!

All the woken hours in my day consisted of …
     – getting through the day job
     – trying to stay happy
     – convincing my employers that I could work just as effectively from Ireland
     – selling our home &
     – getting the house packed up

 

Considering an online business too was out of the question! Nevertheless, I signed up for the newsletters and watched the videos and made a mental note that when I had any spare time, then this was something I would do.

The payoff from staying positive !

Every day, I worked hard on visualisations and staying positive, and like magic, everything that took up my time folded together.

A first time buyer made on offer on our home and decided she wanted to buy all of our furniture too. My employer agreed to changing my employment to a 12-month contract to test if the relocation was a commercially sound option for them. And I was in a good place emotionally, it was amazing. In the space of 4 months, I was back in Ireland living with my husband.

True to the promise I made myself, with this extra time I was now able to start (or least consider) setting up my very own online business … and the rest is history!

Every day I wake up inspired and eager. I look forward to putting my few hours into my online business. From being in a place of having ‘no clue’ about what I wanted to do, or how I could earn a living online … now I have the know-how with a clear path of the avenues available!

There are endless opportunities and not just ‘one way’ to do it!

The training and support I get from the community is changing my life! I am learning the knowledge and know-how to work from wherever I want, whenever I want and however I want!

Interested in considering the path I followed?
Check out my ‘Start Your Online Business…’ tab to learn more.
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