How did you get where you are today? What inspired you along the way? What almost made you give up? What surprised you the most, either good or bad? Who encouraged you to never give up? Who always kept telling you that you’ll never make it?
Share your story because in the same place that you once stood, wondering “How can I do this and where do I begin?” is another woman asking herself those very same questions! Be her motivation and inspiration. Be the reason that someone starts something new today. Be the reason that someone doesn’t give up today. Be someone’s reason to move and motivate!!
Share your story, your passion project, your breakthrough moment, your fork in the road. Whatever you feel can help someone learn and live, than believe me, it’s worth sharing.
REACHING YOUR DESTINY
by Melissa Dorion – MD Web & SEO
I remember being 13 years old (this was back in 1997) our family got our first personal computer. We had a dial-up modem and it took a day or two to download one song (man, kids today will never know the struggle lol). If someone needed to use the phone, you got booted – didn’t matter what you were doing or who you were talking to – bye-bye internet. If you weren’t on AOL, ICQ and MPlayer – you were a nobody. There was no social media, no Facebook or twitter. The internet was a much different place back then. It was quieter, simpler.
At that same time, my interests in Wicca began to stir. But information on the internet was minimal at best. The concept of networking didn’t really exist back then (not like it does today). I was desperate to want to connect other like-minded people. I’ve always been a creative person, so I thought, if I can’t find the proper resources, I will create it instead. That’s when I started to teach myself basic web design (which back then was very simple). The first website I ever built was called “Wiccan World Web” – it doesn’t exist anymore. I had it hosted on what was once the mighty empire called GeoCities (which has long since been dissolved) Anyone remember Angelfire? Oh my god, those were the days! Anyways, it was a beautiful layout of deep purple and gold. It had over 50 pages of information on Wicca, as well as a lavish networking section where people could connect with each other based off their interests and their country of residence. People flocked to it. People loved it.
I bet no one ever thought it was produced and maintained by a 13 year old girl. It was my pride and joy.
I maintained that site for 2 years, until 1999, when Yahoo bought out Geocities… and that was the end of the mighty empire. That was the end of my beautiful website. Forever lost amidst the sands of time.
As I grew older I always had a very entrepreneurial mindset. I hated working for “the man”. I knew somehow, some day, I would be working for myself. But what? I couldn’t decide. I didn’t truly realize what I was passionate about.
I admit, over the last 20 years I had taken many courses and started many businesses that failed. An online “adult toy” store was my first big one, then a nail salon, photography, a cleaning business, a dog walking business, a landscaping business, a courier business, a nutritional coach… I’m sure there are others I just can’t think of right now – my family, my friends – they all thought I was crazy! “There she goes… on a business idea rampage!” The point is – they all had one thing in common… They all had beautiful websites designed by me. But still, it never clicked.
I mean, by this point I was a pro without realization. I knew my HTML, my PHP & CSS, I worked with MySQL databases, and Perl. I worked with WordPress, Wix, Weebly. I’ve done it all at this point.
I never realized that I got more joy out of working the websites for these businesses than actually working the businesses. Until one day…
We had moved from our nations capital to a very small town about an hour away. I had taken a job that I absolutely LOATHED! It was horrible, the pay was shitty but I thought we needed the money so I swallowed my pride and took it anyway. Needless to say, I didn’t last long. After 5 weeks of bitching and complaining every day to my husband, he turned around and told me to quit. WHAT?!?!?!?
“You love making websites babe, you’re always doing it – even for no apparent reason but to make one. Did you ever stop to think that maybe that’s what you should be doing with your life?” My oldest son who is 14 then chimed in “Ya mom, you’re REALLY good at it, you should do it”. Then my husband repeated “Why don’t you quit your job? Stay home, take care of the kids, the house and focus your time on creating something that you have been passionate about for over 20 years already?” Only then did it finally click. It took my husband and my son to make me understand that I have been doing what I love now over 20 years. I just never realized it and I’ve just been doing it for free!
Fast forward to today… I’m focusing on my business now, and so far it’s thriving pretty good. I’ve got a good customer base already and I love working from home, but I work damn hard too. Last week I put in almost 100 hours and damn near burnt myself out. It was a clear reminder that I have to manage my time better and learn to take breaks. But what can I say? I absolutely love what I do.
It’s amazing how easily we can be blinded sometimes. The answer was sitting in front of me this whole time and I didn’t even realize it. So take a minute… stop and think about the things that you really love to do. Can you make a business out of it? Because once you start doing what you really love, you’ll never work another day in your life!