Discover How an Ill-stricken Conference Interpreter Went from Jobless and Homeless to Reclaiming Her Life!
Do you want to start working from home, and reclaim your health and life?
I’m Noriko Hasegawa. Let me share with you the reason why I decided to learn how to build an online platform and start a business online.
I was living an exciting and fulfilling life, and the last thing I expected was isolation.
Not because of fault of my own, however, I was left with health conditions that prevented me from going into majority of workplaces. I still had to be making a living and had to figure out how.
So I looked into many options and opportunities, and as a result, I decided to educate myself how to work remotely by starting an online business. I am still in the process of learning, while working on overcoming the chronic condition. But since I was able to set up an online platform through an education program that I am enrolled in, many new opportunities started to show up and I can say that my life is turning for the better.
I am not in the position to say that this would be the best solution for everybody, nor can I guarantee that it would solve your situation. And I am sure there are many other alternatives out there to choose from.
But if you are like me, who need to work from a safe and isolated environment for whatever reason, who are born sensitive and/or need sufficient alone time to recharge your energy, who can connect with yourself better and be more creative and offer value to people by spending more time by yourself… then this may be helpful for you, too.
I was born in the suburbs of Tokyo, Japan a few decades ago.
At the age of 6, I moved to New York because of my father’s work, and lived there for 5 years. Exposure to a diverse mix of people and culture earlier on in my life was eye-opening, even ground breaking. The experience taught me that all sorts of possibilities and opportunities are out there.
As a result, I became more unconventional, bold and intuitive. I was no longer able to resonate, think and live inside-the-box with limiting beliefs like most of the people in my neck of the woods. So spending my teenage days and onward in my “home” country was quite a challenge.
After graduating from a Japanese college with a degree in English Literature, I started working as a flight attendant, something I had always wanted to do as a child. I enjoyed working in the hospitality industry and flying to many places around the world, some of which I would not have gone on my own. So this was my first dream-come-true work experience.
However, smoking was allowed on board then until the mid 90s, and I soon started getting sick from secondhand smoke. As much as I loved working at cruising altitudes, I had to quit for health reasons.
Inevitable career change
Next, I started working as an interpreter and translator, which was also my dream job. Immersing myself in international settings and utilizing my English skills were intellectually stimulating and rewarding. It also took me to various places both domestic and abroad. However, once again, most workplaces allowed smoking on premise, and secondhand smoke was unavoidable.
After having worked for 20 plus companies and quitting because of the environmental smoke, just within the course of 2 years, I was exhausted.
I decided to try what I had always been passionate about; photography. And I enrolled myself in a creative school in the U.S. and studied commercial photography. After that, I looked for photography assistant positions, but once again, environmental smoke got in the way. I auditioned for a theater troupe in Tokyo, got accepted but alas, once again, studios were filled with secondhand smoke.
My savings were running out. So I went back to what I was doing before to make ends meet, but this time, on a freelance basis. Working as a freelancer enabled me to be selective and take on assignments that involved zero or near-zero secondhand smoke.
Finally, I was able to work care-free of the environment factors for the most part. I got to work with prominent figures and experts in various fields: private fund managers, investment bankers, lawyers, litigators, judges, multinational corporations, fashion houses, ad agencies, artists and athletes, racers, governmental agencies, etc. The job paid well and was gratifying… until one day, all of a sudden, when I felt a sting in my heart; the passion I used to have for the profession was fading.
Onset of sensitivity to smells and things around me…
Meanwhile, I started developing sensitivity to chemicals in the environment about the same time I started working as a freelancer. This was when diseases like Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) or Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) were still rare and unknown.
I first became sensitive to chemicals emitted from furniture and building materials. Over time, I started reacting to just about any chemicals used in households and in public places: insecticides, air fresheners, deodorants, perfume, detergents, fabric softeners, shampoo, hair spray, hand cream… you name it.
I had already moved 45 plus times at the point, and was no longer able to find an apartment or a house free of chemicals. Thinking the air would be better, I tried to relocate to Vancouver, but alas! Scented products there were just as or even more powerful; I moved three times within a month there before taking refuge at a hotel. Thus, back to square one.
This was when I became officially homeless, when I started hotel-hopping, not out of luxury but out of necessity. I was still able to tolerate the environmental fragrance, so I continued working to pay the hotel bills.
But my sensitivity continued to get worse as scented products in general became stronger and stronger; I was physically, mentally and spiritually depleted from fatigue, various symptoms and helplessness.
And slowly but surely, I was taking on lesser and lesser work, eating off of my savings.
Moved to Iceland in hope to secure clean air and a roof over my head…
Finding a chemical-free apartment or house in Japan seemed impossible, and I had nothing to lose, so I moved to Iceland, hoping that the air is clean and that I can find a place to live.
I became a full time student at the University of Iceland and started looking for an apartment. However, I ended up repeating the same vicious circle; whenever I found a place and moved in, the room or the furniture would smell like fabric softener, detergent or formaldehyde and I was not able to rest or sleep. I ended up moving 7 times, or once every month, during the 8-month stay there. By then, I had moved 53 times in my life.
The air outside was heavenly and the northern lights during the winter never ceased to mesmerize me. The landscapes and nature there were absolutely breathtaking. However, once inside classrooms and commercial establishments, I was distressed by scents and fragrances from the products that people were using. I was not even able to attend classes because not only the students but also teachers were smelling like scented products.
So I had to request for a special arrangement and self-study somewhere outside the classroom. I also was permitted to take exams alone under the supervision of a supervisor, who often times smelt like fabric softener or hand cream or something along those lines which got me sick.
I ended up taking refuge at a hotel again, and felt that living in Iceland was not going to work for me, either. So, once again, I back to square one.
I had to come up with “Plan B” to generate income, something that I could do alone without being around people physically.
I started researching furiously over the internet and came across SFM: a digital marketing education program on how to build an online business from scratch, enabling you to work from wherever, as long as you have a laptop or an Iphone. A completely new possibility was presented before my eyes.
My gut feeling was, “This is it!”, and I immediately signed up for the free video series, and began the training upon watching the videos.
IT had never been my forte and in fact, I was always intimidated by it. Moreover, building an online business was something that had never occurred to me. But I was at a point where I had no other alternatives but to take the plunge on educating myself online marketing.
Even if it was not for my health conditions, my gut feeling was telling me that it was about time that I paid attention to my inner voice and began reinventing myself. I felt like it was time for me to remind myself of that sting in my heart that I had felt before, and move on from the interpretation profession to something else that would truly inspire me and make my happy. In that regards, my Sensitivity to Multiple Chemicals must have been a blessing in disguise in hindsight, a wakeup call for me to really take a close look at my life and question myself what I really want to do and achieve in life.
And this is when I became serious and proactive in trying to figure out how to deal with my chronic conditions of Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, and was blessed with the opportunity to attend a life-changing event. And upon attending this event, I am actually, miraculously becoming desensitized to chemicals in the environment! (Please refer to my blogs for details. )
If you are suffering from a chronic disease and are compelled to change your life whether you like it or not, perhaps you may be getting a wakeup call from your voice within, or your higher-self, too. It is never too late to make changes in your life and learn new skills that can transform your life in a way you had never imagined before.
Your may be feeling restricted by your circumstances at the moment. Or, you may be feeling frustrated or hopeless from the workplace stress or your chronic symptoms that seem incurable. I was in your shoes, so I can relate.
If you are someone like me, I would suggest that you check out this online marketing education; this may be a way out and a door to a new possibility for you, too.