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how she did it

Case Studies // “My Job Was Too Small Fo...

“My Job Was Too Small For My Spirit”

Woman of the Week 23rd January 2012

Catharina Bruns decided to quit her job and start a business after she set up an anonymous blog to illustrate her work, which got lots of amazing feedback! Read her story below. 


What does your business do?

workisnotajob.com is a creative studio and movement brand dedicated to creative inspiration, design and visual communication. We design with the hopes to inspire you to live a creative life and work on what you love. The mission is to create a paradigm shift in the definition of work not as your 9-5 job but how we individually contribute to the world by pursuing our dreams and committing to our personal calling – workisnotajob.com

The studio offers creative design services like illustration/editorial design, print design etc and we love to collaborate on projects that change the world via creativity. The workisnotajob. web shop is full of motivational prints and wall art with powerful statements and friendly reminders to get busy and love your work. There is also a workisnotajob. clothing line with tees and hoodies in limited editions – workisnotajob.com/en/shop

We speak at events, spread the workisnotajob. philosophy through inspiration and action and hope to ignite the spark to live the dream in you as well.

Contact: http://workisnotajob.com/en/contact or tweet @workisnotajob or @cathibruns

What made you decided to start your business?

My job was too small for my spirit. I had a fair share of corporate jobs that looked fabulous on the outside but offered very little self-fulfillment on the inside. I didn’t feel i was able to contribute in the right way and started an anonymous blog to share my illustrations and artwork according to my belief that work is not your 9-5 job but how we individually contribute to the world. Soon after launching the blog, I received amazing feedback from all over the world and quit my job to launch my own creative business.

What have been your biggest challenges?

To do anything entrepreneurial, I think most of the battle is having the persistence to break through all the obstacles, not being impressed by impediments, trusting yourself and continuing to believe it’s the right thing for you. As i was doing everything alone, I had to take care of all aspects of the business, from administrative stuff to accounting, promotion, social media as well as production/fulfillment – all on top of being the creative designer responsible for creating all the artwork and content for the studio. It is a lot of multitasking but I learned so much and am now very happy that I have a good understanding of the different areas that need to be taken care of.

How did you overcome these challenges?

Learning by doing. If you are passionate and care enough about something and really want to get it done, you’ll educate yourself about the necessary steps. Also, I wasn’t afraid of a healthy trail and error approach, basically “failing forward”. But I would recommend to get help where it is needed and involve people to help you in different areas of the business. You can’t do everything alone.

What advice or tips would you give other business owners?

Dream big and don’t be discouraged by anyone or anything. Network and collaborate. Share your passion and listen to other people’s stories. Every minute is an opportunity and the more you share your work and inspire your surroundings the more opportunities will come your way.

What’s your favourite quote?

“Not failure but low aim is sin” – Benjamin Elijah Mays. The full quote is quite long but well worth reading and it resonates with me greatly.

Who inspires you?

Life. I am inspired by everything – wandering around aimlessly and public solitude are important parts of my creative process. New things and new people. Walking the earth with open eyes.

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