Learning how to experience joy can help you in your career and your life

It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.

— J. K. Rowling


Life is full of failure, but without it, I wouldn’t have experienced success and would never have welcomed the feeling of joy that I feel today.

So how can 'joy' help you in your career, and your everyday life?

Joy is a feeling that I used to struggle to come to terms with, as it was something I thought I’d never reach again when I hit rock bottom in 2008 when I had to declare bankruptcy. I quickly learnt that I had to do something to turn this around, and it started with acknowledging and celebrating success.

Whether it's something as minor as fixing that door handle which has been hanging off for weeks, reaching out to a friend who you’ve been meaning to call for months, or launching a new business after facing bankruptcy, these are accomplishments which should be enjoyed.

It can be in the form of a celebration with friends and family, an inner smile and shoulder shrug, or rewarding yourself with that new sweater you’ve had your eye on all season. Acknowledging something great, no matter how big or small, will help you to experience joy – life is short, so start putting the spotlight on the positives and expose yourself to feeling joy.

Finding the joy in day-to-day tasks was another way that helped me in my career and my everyday life, and played a huge role in making me feel like me again.

Ask yourself this - why are you in the job or industry you’re in today?

Can you answer this with ease? Are you racking your brain to figure out why?

If the answer is “I don’t know”, then push yourself further… why don’t you know?

I can't stress enough how important it is, for you and your sanity, to be doing something that brings you some kind of joy or happiness. If you're not, it's time to have a think about what would change this, and what job you would rather be doing which would help you become a happier, more joyful person.

Even when things were going right for me, I was at the top of my career and accepting an alcalde of awards I felt so anxious I couldn’t feel the joy of the moment. It took a lot of hard work after acknowledging I was letting everything else get in the way enjoy my success.

Today, I ensure that I make the absolute most of everything and stop to smell the roses – celebrating the small things. I also am conscious that if something I do doesn't feel quite right, I ask myself "why am I doing this?" If I'm not enjoying what I'm doing, I then make changes to make sure I do.

Learning how to experience joy may seem easier said than done, however, starting small with celebrating the little things, and enjoying simple tasks, will help you on the road to feeling self-worth, and appreciate the feeling of joy.

"Sarah is everything a successful entrepreneur should be, creative, tenacious with a clear vision on how to develop her business. She never ceases to impress me with her energy, attention to detail and most importantly, is always comfortable leading from the front with her hands on management style..."

Nick Holmes - Former MD at Rockliffe Hall, Non Executive Director positions at Gisborough Hall, Swinton Estate and Ramside Hall

"Having set up my business when I was 23, Sarah's advice and experiences in the wedding industry were a vital part in the success of my Simply Bows and Chair Covers franchise. As a franchisor, Sarah has always been on the other end of the phone to help me with my dilemmas and pass on her experience and business advice..."

Joanne Smith - Simply Bows and Chair Covers Lancashire

"Sarah was asked to support the wedding product here. Right from the first meeting she was professional, personable and down to earth. She found out as much information as possible, including attending events to get a feel for our product first hand and give her the best insight..."

Ruairidh Taylor - Hotel Manager, Gisborough Hall Hotel

"I hope our paths cross again before too long because I think you’re a brilliant example to budding doubters like me and a flipping great individual too! Thanks again for the inspiration you are and always be aware that folks like me, who’ve had the good fortune to meet you, are better for it..."

Alan Green - Corporate Photographer

"Sarah is an extremely good listener and will look at projects from all angles and give help and advice from her perspective.
I would have no hesitation in recommending Sarah as a mentor and indeed will be back in touch with her soon with regards to my next business venture..."

Katie Lindsay-Brown

"I was so inspired by Sarah’s story, where she had been, what she had endured and the phenomenal success she made Simply Bows and Chair Covers I just knew I had to be a part of this great business model.
I have now been running my franchise for the last 4 years and I love it. Sarah is very supportive, knowledgeable and I know if I need advice she will always be there..."

Adele - Simply Bows & Chair Covers, South Wales

"I joined the team at Simply Bows & Chair Covers Northumberland in 2015, this was a big step for me but Sarah gave me some good advice and lots of support. This was the best move I made and I have not looked back. Thanks to Sarah's guidance and time that she has invested in me, I feel stronger and more confident not only in my work but in life in general..."

Debbie - Simply Bows & Chair Covers, Northumberland