A number of years ago a door opened for me, a door that led me away from the unhealthy, long-houred, unappreciated corporate life that I had been leading.
The door that opened for me was not one that led me down the path of enlightenment. It didn’t guide me towards an easier life, a more in-flow existence. Quite the opposite, to be honest.
But what it did was take me by the hand and has been helping me, encouraging me, and supporting me to fulfil a life-long dream and belief to do something that matters.
Because why else are we here? Why else do we exist if not to, somehow, in our own unique way make a positive stamp on the world? How can we leave this world feeling fulfilled if we have not used our gifts and talents to the benefit and advantage of others, be it fellow-humans or the non-human animals we live alongside on this planet?
But I’m jumping ahead of myself. My path ahead wasn’t so clear when the door first opened and I was ushered away from my former life in corporate.
Because, you see, life can be and (usually is) messy. It certainly has been for me. Things happen, and for a long while we may not know why they happened or what lesson we are meant to learn.
Some 14 or so years ago I was working damn hard. I was pulling long hours in my job and I was seriously unhappy. But I was stuck in the mindset ‘better the devil you know’ and, so, was too afraid to look elsewhere.
And that’s when life stepped in to take control.
I became ill, seriously ill.
And when you’re ill and working in the corporate world you eventually realise that you’re an unwanted, unneeded and unsupported burden. So we parted company. And I had to decide: do I jump out of one corporate fire and directly into another? Or do I jump the corporate ship completely, hoping never to return?
I chose the latter, more difficult option (at the time it didn’t seem like the more difficult option… it just seemed the sensible option).
And that’s when I started to walk along my true life’s path and do something that matters.
At that time I followed a new-found passion of designing and creating skincare, a passion that was to become my first business. Now... you might think that creating skincare might be kicking the crap out of the concept of doing something that matters and a desperate attempt to take the proverbial. I get that. After all, skincare seems a million miles away from the selfless act of creating a positive change in this world, the whole idea of doing something that matters.
But let me ask you. If you look beyond your own personal checklist of what a skincare product should be and what it should do for your skin, what is, and will always be for a long time to come, the hottest topic in the skincare industry?
It’s the unbalanced, unhealthy and, quite frankly, abusive and inhumane relationship that exists between many large skincare brands and animal testing. A relationship that is still, sadly, prevalent today.
And after years of soul-searching to find my ‘something that matters’, to uncover how I could make my tiny but relevant positive mark on this often unforgiving and uncaring world, I realised that it had been staring me in the face all along.
Why I fell so ill all those years ago, why I felt pushed to leave the corporate world altogether, why I seemed to stumble, quite inelegantly, into the skincare world… finally it made perfect sense.
Through my new life as a skincare entrepreneur, a skillset that I loved, I could marry my entrepreneurial life with my lifelong love of bunnies and create something truly beautiful, unique, and special. I could create my something that matters.
So I did.
The days of Simply Skin are now behind me; it was quite a journey which, like many, consisted of many ups and downs and attracted a number of challenges and obstacles along the path. But what shines true is that one of the primary principles of that brand, my brand, was to shine a positive light on the darkness that still remains so prevalent in the skincare industry: animal cruelty in the name of vanity. And I feel I did that, albeit on a small scale.
What I discovered, through my business, was the joy I felt when I realised that I could turn a passion, my passion, into something truly positive because I craved, and still crave, to create a definite and positive change in this world.
So whilst the days of Simply Skin are now behind me, as I begin to tread along a new and exciting path, at the forefront of my mind is "how can I continue to make a difference through my business or, simply, by inspiring others?"
I haven't (yet) found my answer (my move from Simply Skin to whatever this new path before me shall be is still too fresh and new) but one thing I do know is I shall continue to do something that matters. So... watch this space.