More About Hayleigh

September 18, 2022

 The Journey To My Own Mountain Top

I remember when I was in the fifth grade, my whole class had to do the classic, “What do you want to be when you’re older” assignment. We had to stand up in front of everyone and make a speech about our big, lofty ambitions (despite being 10 years old and knowing little more than what we wanted in our sandwiches –Vegemite for me, thankyou!).

So, I did what any directionless 10 year old did and spoke to my grandma about it. I knew I never wanted to fill any of the traditional doctor-teacher-lawyer-nurse roles, but I also knew school was important and I needed to turn in something.

When the time came for our speeches, little old me stood up in front of the class and proclaimed that I had no idea what I wanted to be. I needed to live more. I needed to travel more. I need to see and experience more in the world before I could answer that question, and that was that!

I probably didn’t get a great mark for that (even though it was pretty profound for a 10year old, if I do say so myself!), but it’s something I always reflect on when I look at how far I’ve come.

Primary school Hayleigh knew she needed to live life before settling on a career, and when I look at my journey to where I am today? That’s exactly what I did.

In this blog, I’m going to tell you all about that journey, giving you an insight into the Hayleigh you see dancing around on Tik Tok (and, of course, working to help make small biz life easier!) today.

Let’s jump in.

“Nurses are born, not made.”

That’s what my grandma always used to say, sharing her belief that I was born to be a nurse because of my caring and helping nature.

While I considered this career path for at least 60 seconds, I knew deep down I didn’t want to spend my life in a hospital ward. But I also knew I was caring, I was helpful, and I was born to make a difference.

That’s where the VA industry sparked something inside of me. I could use my creativity, my organisation and my super helpful nature to make a difference to small businesses. But do you want to know a funny tidbit about the Hayleigh before Hali Helper?

I didn’t even know what a VA was.

“How to turn an idea into a business.”

Originally from up in the far north of Australia, I moved all the way down to Melbourne for a change of pace. About four years after the move, I attended a business workshop/presentation/low level TED talk about how to turn an idea into a business.

That’s where the idea came to me.

I finally knew what I wanted to be when I grew up.

I wanted to help make the lives of small business owners easier, using my already flourishing skillset of graphic design, admin and biz ops. I knew there would be a market for it, so I rushed home, jumped on Google and found that there was already a term for this kind of work.

Virtual Assistant.

Finally. This was what I knew I wanted to be.

But I also had bills to pay and a bucket load of imposter syndrome, so I stayed in my corporate job until I got made redundant in 2020. 

“Having the right people in your corner.”

When I was made redundant, I didn’t think I’d have the courage to start a business. Sure, I could do all the tasks required to become a VA (and I could do them well!),but there was so many other things to consider.

How do taxes work when you’re self employed?

Am I actually good enough to do this full time?

How am I going to get clients? How do I market myself and my business?

The list of imposter-syndrome-filled thoughts went on, but that’s when I realised the importance of having good, supportive people in your corner.

Without my support network back in 2020, I don’t think I would have had the courage to take the leap into full time business ownership. This, combined with all the hard yards of personal development I’ve done (because if there’s one thing you need to know about running a business, it’s how much you need to grow as a person to be able to grow as a biz), made it so much easier to take that step into Hali Helper.

“I’ve finally found my place in the world.” 

And I feel so comforted knowing that 10 year old Hayleigh gave me the space to work it out on my own. I was never pressured into any one career path. I was supported with the decisions I made that got me to where I am today.

Yes, I agree that nurses are born, not made. But I think we’re all born with innate skills that steer us in the right direction. We just need to listen, and not be scared to explore, to live and to take time finding a career that works for us. 

And if we’re jumping into full time business ownership? It’s time to get the right people in your corner who you know have your back.

That’s me, ladies! That’s my journey to where I am today, running Hali Helper and making a difference to small businesses around Australia.

I’d love to know what your journey was, so head over to my Instagram @halihelper and tell me all about your adventures. I can’t wait to read all about them!

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