Was it worth quitting a well-paid job? Or …Insanity

Last year in January I quit my job as a paralegal, which I was for 17 years and decided to dedicate my time to the n*Studio full time. Do Art and teach workshops. If you would have told me 10 years ago when my ambition was still to be a successful lawyer one day, that this would be my future, I would have told you that you are NUTS!

Recently one of my former lawyer-bosses and I had coffee together and he asked me how I was doing with teaching workshops and “Was it worth quitting a well paid job?”. He didn’t mean it in a disapproval way -quite the opposite – everyone in my former law office supported my idea although they are still telling me I should come back. (if you read it…sorry Dudes – the answer is still NO – LOL)

This was an excellent question -I am sure there are people in my family and friend’s circle that wonder about the very same thing. And it is a good question to think about and put it in words.

Now let’s be honest and state the reasons that are not part of WHY I teach – let’s get over this first:

I do not teach because it is such an awesome money-making machine…quite opposite – LOL. I will not deny that it is my living and that it is important for me to make some money, but I do not in my dreams expect this to be something that will make me rich. I sweat as much about bills and spending as any other person that probably reads my blog. It is also a big risk if you do not know, if you will teach next month, next year, if the sign ups will be well for the next class etc. And yes …it sometimes leads to a bit sleeplessness. But you know what ? All the reasons below for why I teach make it worth it!

I do not teach because I work less than in a law office. Yep- surprise huh? Even with all the stress in a law office and all the deadlines I was not working as much as I do right now. Yes I worked over time there too a lot but my weekend was a weekend and when I finally went home, I closed the door in my mind to that office and didn’t open it till I was back there. But…believe me…I smile way more now when I did working at the law office;)

I do not teach because the traveling takes me to all those different countries. Yes, I do see a lot of the world and that is awesome, but I traveled before a lot too and that was just for pleasure. There is many many times were I just fly in to a place, see maybe a tiny bit of the neighborhood and then the store, my sleeping place and the airport and that is it. If I would add more days to see the area, I would not make any money at all. Traveling for a job is tiring but it also makes you appreciate everything you have at home even more.

Here are the reasons why I enjoy teaching:

When I teach I do what I love …playing with paint and paper and other media

I love meeting so many different people. I can truly say that I have enjoyed every single class I taught .When I was working as a paralegal I saw people non-stop too but they weren’t there because they were happy. There is rarely someone going to a law office because they have a really really good time right now and just wanna hang out with a lawyer. But in a class I have people who want to do something creative and on top they are generously spending their precious time with me, because they want to. That is quite amazing and I am so thankful for this!

I am so giddy about all those possibilities to be creative – I want to share them. I mean really why would you not share them?

I truly believe that EVERYBODY is creative and that this creativity just has to be free-ed. I thought for the longest time of my life I wasn’t creative and I am so happy I was proved wrong.

My Students never cease to amaze me and inspire me to no end. I learn constantly something new in my workshops through my students. Seeing their creative take on my lessons is the best of all. Even in an Online Workshop seeing the work of my students is my favorite reward.

Teaching pushes me to do new things, get out of the box, check out things thoroughly.

I was never as happy in my entire work life as I am right now. I feel so full filled like never before. I am curios of every single new workday and what it might bring, what projects might get done, what people I will met .



So, was it worth quitting a well paid job?

What would be your dream job if you could choose (think no boundaries) or if you love your current job, what do you do?

huge hugs


Comments (47)

  • Shawna


    I just googled jobs travel scrapbook classes and was scrolling through a bunch of nonsense and stumbled upon your blog. I am a paralegal and literally LOL’d reading your post. I am wanting to turn this paper crafting hobby of mine into a career (as you may note from my google search phrase I have no clue where to start) and loved reading your real life perspective on the fantasy vs. the reality of making your living off art and teaching. So thanks for this post!


  • lisa


    Love you Nat!!
    I think it’s takes a certain person to make these things work. When people ever use the work ‘luck’ to describe when you have made your own business work, I believe that little luck goes in to it. It’s down to hard work, perseverance and determination.
    You rock Nat and totally deserve what you have achieved xxx


  • Maria


    Wow!! Natalie hi! I am a new follower on your blog and I am in a phase in my life that I am wondering exactly the same. Stop being a lab doctor- which was my dream- and follow my heart discovering the world of art, painting, paper- creating. But, as you mentioned, I have to make some money and in my part of world people don’t appreciate art so much. In one hand I have to think my family, my 4 children and on the other hand I can’t live without dirtying my hands with paints and inks and all this stuff that makes me a full person!
    Maybe I have to find a way to combine both! If something like this can be done!


  • Connie


    Good on you! Always great to pursue your passion and share your talents and gifts with the world.


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