Meet Andrea Witt. Andrea had a successful corporate career in a London based production company but has changed all of that and is now building her own therapy business specialising in supporting mums with Post Natal Depression. Read her story about how she made this happen and how she feels a “million per cent happier” for having made her change:
“All throughout my adult life I have done various volunteering roles in the counselling sector but as
with a lot of people I then fell into a corporate career working for a London based Production
company. I progressed through the company and loved it. When I was 39 after being there for 10
years I became pregnant. I took a year maternity leave and during this time began to struggle with
Post Natal Anxiety. I was referred for therapy via the NHS but it wasn’t particularly effective. What
actually helped me was going back to work when she was 11 months old. But this lit a fire in me. I
felt that there should be something more, something better available for women in my position.
Once back at work I began to struggle with the commute. I had agreed with my boss that I could
start at 10 as I couldn’t drop my daughter off at 8 and get to work any earlier than that due to the
commute time. I was getting three different trains and nearly every day something would go wrong
and I would be late. I was becoming more and more anxious and more stressed.
I needed a way out. I began to look at counselling courses. I was desperate for a quick fix. I found a
course that was online study that I paid a hefty four figure amount for and then realised that actually
it was not worth the paper it was written on if I wanted to get insurance and actually see clients and
make a business.
I felt lost and deflated and I couldn’t see way out. At this point I had a friend who
referred me to a life coach. I had a session with her which was transformative. I came out with a
plan, a goal and a realisation that this wasn’t going to happen over night.
It was going to take work.
I found a course in Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy which is a form of CBT. It was a lightbulb
moment for me in many ways. I understand my own anxiety more clearly. What drives it and what I
needed to do to get better. I talked with my partner about what this would mean if I signed up. It
was one weekend a month at University in London for 4 years. I told him I had a clear path and he
agreed that we could make it work.
My first day I was terrified. I was a 40 year old woman with a one year old baby going back to college
but it was brilliant. I have made some amazing friends. Most people on my course are adults re
The work load was hard and it was difficult to be working five days in London and then one
a weekend a month I would be away all day Saturday and all day Sunday which meant on those
weekends I barely saw my daughter.
But I kept my eyes on the long game.
How-ever the work stress was still there and eventually I asked if I could work flexible hours.
This was refused but they offered my a pay off to leave. After 13 years employment. I spoke to an
employment lawyer (which my work paid for by law) and agreed to take the money.
I took a part time job three days a week in the town I live in so my commute was now gone. We took
my daughter out of nursery one day a week so I spend that day with her. And now on Fridays I am
building my private practice and seeing clients. I have had to have a website built, learn about how
to use social media to promote myself and all other aspects of running a business but its been slowly
done over the last four years.
It was hard going at times, we have to watch our finances now and money is tight but am I happier?
A million percent happier. And when I sit in my therapy rooms and hear clients tell me that they are
starting to feel better it feels amazing.”
Find more about Andrea and her therapy practice here: www.thepndcoach.co.uk
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