Eight years ago today I moved to Ireland – 30th December 2004. I lived in Swords until July 2008 when I moved to the countryside which I so love now. Living in the middle of fields, no noisy neighbours next door, peace and most importantly freedom for my dogs and cats. My little piece of heaven. It’s a huge change from my previous London life but I’ve finally found my happiness.
In those 8 years I was successfully selling for a UK company – 020 London – to start with, then invested in a company which I now realise was a big mistake but went on to set up on my own just over two years ago. However it’s in the last year that everything has fallen in to place and the most amazing things have happened to me in my professional life.
I’ve made some mistakes but have learnt from them. I’ve made many more over the years – the secret is to learn from them and I hope I have…..until the next one 🙂
This year a company I invested in went into liquidation and I lost all the chances of getting any money back – not that I thought I had much chance of that after I left anyway. That business is still going but not under the limited company I invested in – clever! What that has taught me is don’t rush into anything, especially when it involves a lot of money and someone you don’t really know that well. And don’t personally guarantee anything! Lesson learnt.
I had a small health scare this year – nothing big and everything is fine. However I worried alone for 3 months. I’m not going into detail as I’ve written a post for Marie Ennis O’Connor about it. After everything I realised that I had been silly not to tell anyone and it taught me the lesson that talking to others really does help, whether it’s a close friend, family or even a stranger that will just listen.
The Good Stuff
I started up Sian’s in 2010 – mainly doing accounts and writing. I mentioned previously how this had grown but 2012 has just been madness with good news constantly happening.
I still have my two main accountancy clients and they are so different but both very successful and a joy to work for. Henparty.ie run by Kate Hyde (remember Dragons Den) is so dynamic and taking that business to new heights year after year. And Clearwave, run by my neighbours – Rory & Deaglan Moloney – is always working at heights setting up the communications between all the counties (I think that’s what they do – it’s very technical so I just do the accounts) – they are doing brilliantly. I’m also always working with Tom Holmes of Ballymount Accounts and he and his family have become great friends too.
At the beginning of 2012 the amazing Anita Campbell asked me to become a Moderator on Bizsugar.com. I was stunned to know Anita even knew my name but apparently she had been following my blogs on Tweak Your Biz. Bizsugar is the place to go for business blogs and I now read several blogs daily as part of the job. I have learned so much about writing styles and blogs in this time plus my involvement with Bizsugar has also extended my network extensively overseas and in Ireland.
And another incredible business woman is Nellie Akalp of Corpnet.com. I came across Nellie through the blogs I was reading on Bizsugar and asked if I could interview her. That then led to Nellie asking me to write for their blog which I have done weekly since May 2012. I still find it unbelievable that I am writing for a company in sunny Los Angeles whilst sat in my cottage on a windy and wet hill in Ireland. Nellie is an amazing business woman and mother too, as you can see from my interview. I love writing for them.
My Kids Time
Yet another brilliant business woman but back here in Ireland is Jill Holtz running the successful My Kids Time. And she forgives the fact I don’t have children but I’m able to chip in with blog posts for them from time to time. If you are a parent check out My Kids Time to find out what is going on in your area for families plus it’s full of great advice too from other parents.
Tweak Your Biz
I’m sure all those that know me will already know that I took over being the Managing Editor of Tweak Your Biz at the end of September. I cannot begin to explain how chuffed I was to be asked to do this job. I have written for them since the beginning and I have learned so much about writing since then. Being an editor has broadened my mind even more.
The community is so brilliant to be a part of – lots of help and sharing is always available and I have made some good friends there too. We reached record traffic recently and I can’t wait to see how it is going to evolve in 2013. You too can write for Tweak Your Biz you know?
The Ahain Group
I was asked to join The Ahain Group in the summer and couldn’t believe my luck. It is a group of very talented individuals working together to solve your social business strategies. Since I joined my role has been nonstop writing, reports, blogs, research and social media. And I am loving every minute of it.
Again I am learning from some great people who really know their stuff. I know that in 2013 I will be spending more and more time for The Ahain Group as it becomes even more successful than this first year has, which has been pretty unbelievable to be honest.
And finally there are a lot of people I need to thank for all of the above – Anita Campbell, Nellie Akalp and Jill Holtz as mentioned; the Moloneys, Kate Hyde and especially Tom Holmes; the community at Tweak Your Biz and the great folk at The Ahain Group, especially the founder John Twohig for his friendship and excellent advice.
A massive thanks to Niall Devitt because the majority of the above has been due to him. Niall has given me back confidence which I had lost and because of his belief in me I know I can do even better in 2013 and beyond. I really value his friendship and will be forever grateful for his generosity this year.
Family and Friends
My family are still amazing as my brother’s recent 60th party showed when we all got together – it was a fantastic night. I’m so thankful that my three older brothers and Mum still have good health and my nephews and nieces are just all brilliant people, and I’d like to think their “old” young aunt is a friend to them too. My adopted family in Ireland are the Fitzgerald’s just up the road who have all become best friends too.
And really finally this time I am so thankful for my friends – whether on Twitter, Facebook or face to face. Frederique Murphy for her inspiring chats, the Cliff House and Déise crowd are fab and not forgetting my best mates – Mel, Lynne, Siobhan, Jane Moloney and my sisters in law, Nicola and Jane.
Most of all my loving animals who have that unconditional love you rarely get from anything else – they are the loves of my life.
So 2012 has been pretty good to say the least. I sometimes think of myself as a phoenix rising from the ashes of the bad past – it’s still being paid for but moving on up will take care of that. Bring on 2013.
What has happened to you in 2012 to be thankful for?