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To ask you for advice and bluntness to help me out of this slump and make up my mind?

(32 Posts)
JamAndClottedCream Mon 20-Jul-15 16:03:51

Hi all. I am currently not working at the minute. Due to mental health problems and a nasty breakdown at work, I decided I couldn't cope any more with it and left. As a side note, I am taking ADs and have had counselling.

I am really in a slump. I am so miserable and feel isolated, not to mention ashamed and stupid for leaving my job because of having a breakdown. For the past few months to keep myself occupied I have taken to baking. At first it was just something to keep my day filled, but I have actually got really good at it. I have tried baking more and more news things, given myself challenges and I enjoy it. I give my baked goods away to family and friends and they all remark on how lovely they are. Some people have even made requests for birthday parties, and yesterday 2 family members squabbled over the last caramel square!

Anyway, I enjoy this so much and I keep having a niggling feeling that I should work towards making a career out of it. I have looked up a patisserie and confectionary course in my local college starting in September for one year. There is something in my minding stopping me from going for it. Fear. I have no confidence whatsoever and fear I will muck up this course and not be able to perform the practical assignments (ie the actual baking in the classes) while I am being examined. Therefore failing.

The other thing is as well, when I mention casually to other people (usually when they comment on whatever treat I have baked) I am thinking of going for this, some of them will give me raised eyebrows and a funny stare, as if to say "why??". And sort of mumble a "Oh right, great..." Before either going silent or changing the subject. My dp is chopping and changing his mind about how he feels about it. Sometimes he will tell me to go for it, it makes me happy and I'd be great at it, other times it will be "I would focus on getting a job for which you have qualifications and experience for" (I'm doing this anyway), and sometimes it will be "I don't know, it's up to you"

I know it shouldn't, but the lack of support puts me off doing the course, as well as having no confidence. I am looking for a new job that suits my qualifications, but I think I desperately need a career change too and this could possibly be a chance to do it, and make myself happier in the long run.

I guess what I'm asking for is either a kick up the arse to go and do the sodding course and fuck everyone else, or be handed a grip to just stick to what I know, concentrate on that rather than following a pipedream.

Cabbagesandqueens Mon 20-Jul-15 16:07:30

Stop worrying about what everyone thinks

Do what you want to do - no regrets

Sidge Mon 20-Jul-15 16:08:22

I think you should go for it - even if it doesn't become your new career, even if you do fail the course (and I doubt very much you will) at least you DID it. You felt the fear and did it anyway.

Think of it as 2 fingers up to the naysayers, and think of it as therapy. You'll be expanding skills, doing something you enjoy, you may suck at it but you may shine. And even if you don't end up making a career of it you will be more proficient in it as a hobby. Another bonus is you may be mentally in a better place which could make you more able to tackle a new job.

Good luck smile

StripeyTee Mon 20-Jul-15 16:12:51

Go and do the sodding course! grin


You have had some time to recuperate I'm assuming? (I was 'out' for a year after my breakdown. It took me at least six months of counselling and pretty much hibernating in my house to feel anything like approaching OK and another six months to start rebuilding some sort of life for myself).

Now maybe it really IS time to do something different and new. If its something you're passionate about, go for it! You'll gain confidence, new skills, meet people - and, as you said, it could lead to a new career. I am sure that it will be good for you on many levels. Don't let fear hold you back. The saying 'feel the fear and do it anyway!' springs to mind....bit of a mantra for me, too grin.

Good luck x

littlegreen66 Mon 20-Jul-15 16:21:57

Definitely go for it.

What if this is your niche, your talent, and your chance for doing a job you truly love that will make you happy, and you pass up on it?

JamAndClottedCream Mon 20-Jul-15 16:31:06

Thank you everyone. I get what you mean about feeling the fear and doing it anyway. I wish I was one of those people who doesn't give a fuck and just does what they want. Unfortunately I am not that way inclined sad

I have left work about 3 months now. People are starting to ask me about getting a job (why they feel it's their business is a mystery to me). The thought of going back to work terrifies and makes me feel ill but I know I need to get a job. I am looking and trying my best.

I really don't know. I am a nightmare, I do know that! grin. I keep thinking it's a silly idea and I should forget about it and just go back to the daily slog that I'm used to. I know I'll be unhappy, but at lease I will not be worrying about money. On the other hand, this is how bakers and chefs and cooks etc. start off their career- by learning!

brainwashed Mon 20-Jul-15 16:31:32

Do it. I am about to do a course that will enable me to hopefully have a completely new career.....6 years after I first considered it. I let what other people may have thought put me off until now.No more.

dingit Mon 20-Jul-15 16:34:12

Sounds fantastic. Go for it!

junebirthdaygirl Mon 20-Jul-15 17:53:24

Marian Keyes the writer has great articles about getting through severe depression by baking. I think it's brilliant as it's so creative and practical at the same time. Don't overthink it. Just take it a step at a time. You don't need anyone's permission or approval. Just do it. Is there a market nearby where you could sell small amounts first. I don't know about food permits or how any of that stuff works. DO IT!!

MrsTerryPratchett Mon 20-Jul-15 18:31:42

I wish I was one of those people who doesn't give a fuck and just does what they want. Fake it 'til you make it. Seriously, I talk for a living. I used to loathe and detest public speaking. Now it's basically all I do. People refuse to believe that I used to shake and blush and get the runs stuff. I just did it until I felt better.

Bake, woman, bake.

DoreenLethal Mon 20-Jul-15 18:32:47

Many of my friends are in the food industry; jams, cake making, fermented veg etc...people gotta eat!

I am in the food growing industry; I teach kids and adults with SEN how to grow food and it has progressed that I also do bread making, cheese making and winemaking workshops. I have been asked so many times if I can supply cheese to venues as there is a dirth of local cheese suppliers round our way.

When I was inbetween jobs, and said I wanted to teach hort to kids people laughed, and one 'consultant' took a deep breathe and said 'you will never get a job doing that, please be realistic [and buy the £2k package to jazz up your CV]' and within a week I could email him back and tell him 'hey wow - I got the job you said I'd never get - hows about that then'. and I am still going it 5 years later.

Just do the course...who cares what they think. They will be the ones wanting you do do them cakes for 'mates rates' and you can remind them of their attitude then, can't you?

FinallyHere Mon 20-Jul-15 18:40:55

Adding my vote that you go and do the course.

I would ask myself, what is the worst that could happen? Can you afford the fees? Is there a chance you might find some other people who love baking?

A new skill would be a good thing. A support network would be a good thing. Its possible that there isn't anything left for them to teach you, if so, wouldn't it be great to find that out.

Hope it goes well for you, xx

BlueStarsAtNight Mon 20-Jul-15 18:42:13

Do the course!
Is it full time? Could you perhaps find a part time or weekend job to help a bit with finances? Perhaps in a bakery or something?!

Getuhda348 Mon 20-Jul-15 19:12:20

Go for it! It could lead to a job you actually enjoy. Could always do cake stalls for extra money

fearandloathinginambridge Mon 20-Jul-15 19:24:04

Do the course. Confidence is created when you challenge yourself. If you do nothing then nothing changes and you deny yourself the opportunity for self-development and personal growth.

LionsDontWeaveLentils Mon 20-Jul-15 19:42:30

I think you should do the course for yourself and your own enjoyment. If you get a new job out of it then even better, but as someone up thread said look at it as a form of therapy.

I did something similar (though not baking) after a difficult bereavement recently and can genuinely say that at my lowest points having something to go to every week that I loved doing got me through. Completing assignments really helped my self confidence and it gave me a goal to look forward to.

ClashCityRocker Mon 20-Jul-15 19:51:10

Do it for yourself. Baking obviously gives you a lot of pleasure - even if you don't end up having a career on it, it's nice to do things just for yourself sometimes.

I'm a firm believer in investing in things that interest you - there doesn't have to be a 'point' other than it makes you happy. Not only that, but I think it is invaluable to your self-image and mental health.

Plus, you could end up having a career out of it - so it's win win!

Not quite a kick up the arse, more a friendly prod in the buttocks, but go for it.

Butterflywings168 Mon 20-Jul-15 20:00:46

Go for it thanks brew
I know it's easy to say but try not to care what others think.
I can relate, had to leave high-flying job due to MH. I am hoping to train as a counsellor now. I have little support either.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Mon 20-Jul-15 20:06:35

Two things: it's still early days. A breakdown has about the same recovery period as a big physical injury like a broken leg or abdo surgery. Don't be putting yourself down.

Second: you know you can bake. The course will polish you, make your products more saleable and help you back into a environment where everyone WON'T be trying to stab you in the back.

Go for it.

Yarp Mon 20-Jul-15 20:14:10

Do the course

Do some sort of volunteer work to gently help you back into the idea of working and to get you out of your own head.

I've been there.

And when you find what you love, what others think will not matter (are you sure they really think what you think they are thinking anyway?)

And yes, be gentle on yourself.

Yarp Mon 20-Jul-15 20:16:51

I also left a job after being unable to carry on. It took years for me to get over the sense of failure. Please don't be like me.

Don't rush back into paid work if the thought is panicking you and you can afford not to. You don't not have to justify yourself to anyone else

chairmeoh Mon 20-Jul-15 20:19:10

Go for it! You've nothing to lose, and it sounds as though this could be something you really enjoy.

It might lead to a new career, or it might just enhance the pleasure you get from baking.

Either way, it'll give you something to aim for, look forward to and be proud of.

emotionsecho Mon 20-Jul-15 20:30:59

Yes, as everyone else has said, do the course you will gain valuable knowledge from it and it may well boost your confidence rather than deflate it.

Also, even if you don't set up in business full time baking you could always do it on a smaller scale alongside any other work you do, start small and then when you feel confident enough and have loads of orders/customers you can expand at your own pace.

I honestly think you will get more out of the course than just baking skills whether or not you use it as a springboard for a future business venture.

Good luckflowers.

SabrinnaOfDystopia Mon 20-Jul-15 20:36:48

Yes, do the course. Think of it as therapy, confidence building rather than new career, to keep the pressure off yourself for now. But there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn't pursue this as a career - many do.

I have a friend with a cake-making business (weddings mainly) - she started small on word of mouth, but now turns away business. Her partner was pretty scathing and unsupportive of it, but because the mark-up on a wedding cake is eye-watering she does very nicely out if it moneywise.

toffeeboffin Mon 20-Jul-15 20:51:35

Do the course. And please send me some of your caramel squares!

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