When I started realizing how much I liked creating materials, I had just finished up my CF year as an SLP (in non-speech terms, this is basically the end of my paid internship year). I liked making cute things for my classroom, like labels and posters, and even some flashcards for things I just couldn't find "out there." My coworkers would always compliment the things I made, always telling me how creative I was. I even started getting requests from coworkers for things for THEIR classroom! It felt really good to know that someone else valued my handiwork.
Fast forward a whole school year, and I started really perfecting my craft. I even started making invites for school showers and family members' events! I was the "go-to" creator for all things digital at my school: banners, posters, handouts. Randomly one day my sister (a special education teacher and fellow TPT lover), said to me,
"you should totally start a TPT store and sell your stuff, I think you could really do well on there." ....And that was it. I was completely invested!
I absorbed everything I could find online, from copyright, to PowerPoint tricks, to Adobe, to email marketing. I joined Instagram as a business account, and started connecting with other TPT sellers. I read blog posts, joined FB groups, scoured through the TPT forum. I poured over my very first TPT product for months, while also creating some valuable freebies.
I can vividly remember hitting 700 downloads on my first every freebie and literally squealing with excitement as I told my sister and friends. I felt disbelief that someone out there (other than me or my sister, lol) would be using MY resource! All along as I plugged away, my family and coworkers kept encouraging me. I don't know that I would have pushed myself as hard as I did without their support!
When I finally was ready to post my first paid resource, I freaked out. What if no one wants this? What if I get negative feedback? What if this is a pointless resource? But then... I hit a few sales. Then I hit a few more. And some more! I received my first gold stars. I even got a couple tags on Instagram showing how other people were using my resource (!!!!). And suddenly I just couldn't stop creating! I had so many ideas (and so little time!). I plugged away every night and weekend, and slowly built up the products in my store. I took a break for about 5 months because I hit a total slump (60 minute commute to work ONE way took a lot out of me by January), but summer came and I was fired up again.
Two years later, I'm proud to say I've managed to work full time as an SLP, AND turn my "little" TPT store into a six figure yearly income. And to be honest...I STILL can't believe I get to say that. All because I had a few people in my corner encouraging me to keep going, keep creating, keep dreaming.