Carolyn King had always worked in the administration and accounting field. It came easy for her. She loved numbers and was good at it.
But after suffering from depression for years, she started to choose a new path, one that involved kinesiology and holistic healing.
She no longer had the love for numbers. Her new love was now in helping others overcome depression and anxiety.
Today, Carolyn, 45, is running her Empowered Happiness business in a full-time capacity. Over the past few years, the business has grown significantly as she adds to her skill-set.
She is now an international author, corporate wellbeing presenter, mBIT and happiness coach, and a certified heartmath practitioner, as well as a kinesiologist.
Every day is now an adventure which feeds her soul. Every night Carolyn goes to bed knowing she has helped others bring more happiness and joy into their lives. She is a woman on a mission.
We caught up with Melbourne-based Carolyn, the latest subject in our Never Too Late series, to find out more.
Was there a lightbulb moment that inspired you to make a change?
I had wanted to make a change for probably 10 years leading up to the actual change. And then when I started studying kinesiology, the desire to change careers was even stronger. Seven years after starting my kinesiology business and working in that part time while also working as an office manager/accountant I finally burned out. I believe this burnout was not only the pressure that was placed on me in my corporate job, but also the inner desire to make a change and follow my heart. The disconnect I felt in my corporate job as opposed to the connectiveness I felt in my kinesiology business was vast.
What for you have been the biggest challenges so far?
There were 2 big challenges.
First, there was the financial impact of leaving a well-paying, secure corporate job. Secondly, I needed to become comfortable with my new identity. I was so used to telling people I was an office manager/accountant. I had to become comfortable sharing that I was a kinesiologist, as this was stepping outside of what most people around me at the time considered normal.
How has it impacted you financially? Was it a big commitment?
The initial financial impact was quite a pay cut but we had savings. In all honesty, I am still not earning what I was earning in my corporate job, but the gap is closing fast. In the end, my happiness was so much more important.
What are some of the sacrifices you’ve had to make and what drives you to overcome those?
The main sacrifice was that I couldn’t just go out and buy anything I wanted to buy. We also haven’t been on a family holiday for a few years. But my happiness, my excitement in my business and the impact I have on those I help are all my drivers. And a happy mum results in happier kids.
Were there moments when you thought, ‘oh no, this isn’t going to work’, and if so, how did you overcome them?
There were definitely moments that I doubted my ability to make this work. When that happened, I would look at what jobs were out there. I even took a few part time online admin roles, but I struggled to do them. My heart wasn’t in admin/accounting anymore. Over the years I have learned to upskill and diversify.
What have been some of the key lessons you’ve learned?
Happiness and fulfillment are so much more important than earning lots of money. In fact, when we find what fulfills us the money naturally seems to flow. There is a sense of satisfaction in that. That following my heart – and not what I think others expect of me – is vital for my emotional and mental wellbeing.
That we always continue learning. Life is an adventure that is constantly teaching us.
What’s the most rewarding part of this new direction?
That I get to live life on my terms and that I also get to help so many people change their lives. I no longer report to anyone else and my hours are not 9-5.
What are your messages to others thinking of pursuing their dreams, or a new career/work direction in midlife?
Prepare yourself both financially (have some savings) and speak to people that have done it before. They may be able to offer you advice on your new direction. But ultimately, you have one life to live and it’s never too late to make those changes. Life is an adventure… go for it!