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It's about the little things
"It was about being intentional when it came to the small, as well as the big, things in life. ."
Katherine Thomas, Free Range Lawyers

When I moved to Australia from the UK, I knew I would work for myself. I wanted the challenge, the independence, the excitement and the control.

I wanted the buck to stop with me. To be in charge of my brand. To know that I would benefit directly from my own hard work.

I also knew that being ‘fresh off the boat’, with only two friends in Perth and three primary school-aged children to look after, it made sense to gift myself the space to become embedded in my new life.

I knew that, without working flexibly, it would be difficult to facilitate my children's new social life, let alone create my own. It would be hard to keep up with the admin that comes with moving to a new country. Forging connections in my local community would be a challenge.

I knew that, by working largely from home, I could be around for sick days and doctors’ appointments. I could use my lunch hour to prep a decent evening meal instead of grabbing takeaway after work. I could show up to assemblies and execute my primary function as children’s taxi driver without calling-in favours at work. I could – and here’s the biggie - put laundry in the wash during the week, instead of spending weekends frantically catching up.

You see, while the decision to set-up my own business was a well-considered, strategic career move, it was also about the little things. The day-to-day stuff that hums along for all of us. The evening meals. The admin. The assemblies. The cuppa with the neighbour. The little things that together, make each existence unique and worthwhile.

It was about being intentional when it came to the small, as well as the big, things in life.

Part of my job now is to speak to lawyers looking to change the way they work. Regardless of home situation, age, gender, seniority or location, almost every single one will, at some point, share how the little things have influenced their decision to make a change. I see or hear the relief as they almost whisper these words. It’s relief at acknowledging that their life outside work exists, sure, but it’s more than that. It’s the release of sharing that the way life is organized – the minutae – matters.

Whatever work you do at whatever level, there is power in acknowledging the importance of – and your right to direct – the little things in life.