Someone Else’s Advice Could Be the Best Idea You Never Had

Why Someone Else's Advice Could Be the Best Idea You Never Had | Not Dressed As Lamb

Announcement: We’re moving house (or are in the process of looking to move). The scary thing is that would never be happening at all if it weren’t for someone else’s advice and it becoming the best idea I never had.

Moving house has been pretty much the only thing on my mind this week. But I have to admit it was never my idea, or Keith’s – it was actually my mum that suggested it. And now it’s weird to think that neither of us thought of this idea because now we are DESPERATE to move house.

It goes to show that sometimes all you need is the seed of something planted in your head for you to be taken to places and prospects and ideas that you might never have had yourself. A little push or a suggestion or a You know what I’d do if I were in your position, don’t you… is all it takes to turn your life around for the better.

So, to backtrack: We live in a small, but cosy, two bed terrace town house. It was our first purchase together and we thought we’d take two or three years to do it up and then sell it on.

That was 14 (yes, FOURTEEN) years ago. Where on earth does time go?!!

The long-term plan that we then hatched a couple of years ago was to move back to the South East because we’ve realised (after 14 years…) of living in Devon that country living really isn’t for us. Both of us are born-and-bred London/South East kids so we rather miss the noise and the bustle of city living. And as much as we love our little home, we have really, REALLY outgrown it. We have no space: We want a bigger garden (for Riley as well as for ourselves), a third bedroom, a proper office for me now I’m a fully-fledged working-at-home professional, and parking at least in the vicinity of our house (rather than having to park two streets away during the day due to restrictive parking and getting endless parking tickets #grrr).


My mum was just making a suggestion, but to be honest what it really was was advice from one much older, wiser and more experienced than myself.


However those of you who know UK house prices will know that to move from the South West to the South East is the “wrong” way to go financially… it may have been our dream to go back but GOD KNOWS when we would ever be able to afford to move there – we wouldn’t be able to buy even a garage in the South East for the price we’d get for our house. So, a dream it remained. And so did our dreams of moving to something bigger because when could we afford it? Our heads were stopping our hearts from taking a chance in life and thinking of other solutions to the problem.

I’ve had a great year business-wise where the blog is concerned (probably a lot to do with my UK Blog Awards win last year) and so things were looking up in terms of savings and borrowing money. But in one of my chats with my parents – where I was probably YET AGAIN moaning about how long it might ever take us to move back nearer London – my mum said to me, Why don’t you just move somewhere down here in the meantime?


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The light bulb moment – the best idea I never had

And that was it – just a few words that made the light bulb go off in my head. She gave us an idea that for the life of me I don’t know why we hadn’t thought of it ourselves.

That idea made us think of all the possibilities that it could bring – a new town that we preferred (we’ve never truly liked the town we live in, but it was all we could afford as first time buyers 14 years ago), a three bed as opposed to a two bed so I could have a proper office, a bigger garden so that Riley will have space to roam in (and something with grass rather than just gravel and patio)… so many advantages. And it would be affordable to stay in the same region.

What I’m saying is be open to advice from other people. My mum was just making a suggestion, but to be honest what it really was was advice from one much older, wiser and more experienced than myself (who had recently just made the difficult decision to move house herself). We still don’t know why we didn’t think of it ourselves, but tomorrow I’m taking Keith to see a new build I went to see on a whim last Friday and FELL IN LOVE WITH. New builds were most definitely not on our radar, but they were having an open house day so my mum and I went along just to be nosy, to be honest.

And of course now I’ve seen the house of my dreams (well, my dreams in terms of affordability, at least) and I’m so sure Keith will love it too – we’re seeing it together at 9:30 tomorrow (Saturday) morning. Hopefully I’ll get it up on my InstaStories if you check them out within 24 hours after 11am Saturday.


All the best decisions…

We decided to move house after my mum that suggested it.

We can afford to move house because I’ve had a great year career-wise and that’s partly due to my UK Blog Awards win, and I only entered again because my lovely friend Michelle insisted I entered for the third year in a row. (That wasn’t even advice, it was a command 😉 .)

And I only blog full time because another friend suggested I have a go at it full time – before her suggestion there was NO WAY I was ever, ever going to become self-employed and lose the security of a 9-5 job. Funny how your opinions change when OTHER people suggest things to you.

All of these things (and more in my life) have come about because I’m always open to other people’s advice and ideas. All the ideas I never had, in other words. We may think we know the best way forward for our own lives but sometimes other people know us better than we know ourselves.

I just hope with all my heart Riley is still around when we finally move – it’s crazy to think that making life more wonderful for a very old dog who’s been given a few months to live is a reason to move as soon as possible, but my god would it make us (and we’re very sure him) really happy.

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– Why Sometimes You Need to Take a Chance in Life

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  1. 21 March 2018 / 7:52 pm

    You know, we have got 2 ears and only 1 mouth. Often though, we are so busy talking that the listening to others gets ignored. So happy you did otherwise. It sounds perfect for the 2 of you! Love, Lieske

  2. 19 March 2018 / 6:52 pm

    Such exciting news!! I hope the town you might be moving to will satisfied your need for hustle and bustle. I know the feeling so well. I am only half an hour away from Amsterdam, but I miss that city so much. But not the driving around for 3/4 of an hour at 11 pm trying to find a parking space… To name one disadvantage. Oh and the fact our mortgage would have been double.
    Good luck.

  3. 18 March 2018 / 7:15 pm

    I just did a post on me really listening to some good advice lately! Love this!

  4. 18 March 2018 / 6:05 pm

    I am in the process of doing that right now. Basically changing jobs. All of the people at my current job have left over the last two years and they have replaced them with people who not the best. A former supervisor said to me, you got your retirement locked in and the medical locked in and your talents are being wasted so leave, you can easily find another job somewhere else because these new people are not worth it.

    So, I did and at the end of May, I am history at my current job and found another job in the field somewhere else.

  5. 18 March 2018 / 2:54 pm

    Good luck with the move!

    We have been talking for about five years about moving to the coast, but we were never proactive until recently when several events made us consider it much more seriously.

  6. 17 March 2018 / 9:28 pm

    Love this post! How is it that our parents–and others–can so often see what we can’t, even though it is right in front us! I guess that’s what friends and relatives are for. We just have to be open-minded enough to listen. Which you did! Best wishes on the move.

  7. 17 March 2018 / 4:18 pm

    I know people always says that moving house is one of the most stressful things you can do, but I think it’s one of the most exciting things you can do!! I absolutely love it! I’m really excited for you, Catherine. I hope the house you found is perfect for all three of you. I can’t wait to read more about it!
    We’re actually building our dream house soon – we’re hoping to get the go ahead from the architect within the next couple of months. The plot we bought is literally right next door to our house now (because we love living in this area). But properly in the Algarve is a bit cheaper than in the UK!!

  8. 17 March 2018 / 3:24 pm

    I think that is so exciting, Catherine! I think moving is a great way to get rid of stuff and start over. Hope you find exactly what you are looking for. – Amy

  9. 17 March 2018 / 3:16 pm

    So very true! I think when something is staring me in the face I often look past it if you know what I mean? That’s why it’s always good to talk to the people you trust the most. They tend to know what you need better than you do 😉
    Btw how freaking cool is that wall! Awesome shot babe xx

  10. 17 March 2018 / 1:51 pm

    That’s awesome Catherine! I wish you the best of luck in your move

  11. 17 March 2018 / 1:43 pm

    When we bought our previous house (just before Isobel arrived) we only moved a few streets away – we loved the area and fully expected to be there for years. We gutted the house and spent loads of money on doing it up. But I hated my job after returning from maternity leave and Pete wasn’t enjoying his (we worked at the same place), so he suggested we move north and get a job at MediaCity in Salford. It was very stressful and meant living apart for 18 months but when we finally settled we knew we’d made the right decision. I’d never have thought of relocating again but I’m so glad we did. Good luck with the house hunting 🙂

    Emma xxx

  12. 17 March 2018 / 12:36 pm

    Good luck with the house Catherine. From what I saw in Stories it is lovely. So want a house now…hahaaa…Happy weekend and thanks for hostiing. xo Sabina

  13. Lucy
    17 March 2018 / 10:45 am

    Good luck with the move!

    Best decision I made was when my boyfriend suggested dumping my husband and kids. I’m so glad I did- they were a millstone around my neck!

  14. 17 March 2018 / 10:33 am

    Yup, this is how I’ve ended up doing a PhD, it was somebody else’s throwaway suggestion!

    I’m really excited for you. Let’s hope Keith likes it as much as you do!!

  15. Judy
    17 March 2018 / 8:30 am

    Oh how exciting! I will be thinking of you and Keith in an hour at 9.30 when you see the house and hope he falls in love with it too, New beginnings, new opportunities, wonderful!

  16. Danish Pastry
    17 March 2018 / 5:30 am

    Somehow other people’s suggestions don’t sound as crazy as if they came from yourself, it’s advice and validation in one when that light bulb appears!

  17. 17 March 2018 / 3:15 am

    Oh absolutely!! When I was in New York, my photographer and I were discussing the merits of podcasts versus YouTube videos, and all of a sudden, she said, “Why don’t you do something like this in a talkshow format??”.

    Light bulb moment.

  18. 16 March 2018 / 11:20 pm

    We have down sized a few years ago, but before that we lived in a new built. It has so much advantages! Exciting times for you and Keith!

  19. 16 March 2018 / 11:03 pm

    I’m in the south-east and yes house prices are crazy high! We are hopefully building a new house within the next year or so, and I can’t wait. I’m one of those people who loves moving, it’s new beginnings and exciting times to look forward to. Thanks for hosting. Jacqui

  20. 16 March 2018 / 10:59 pm

    Oooh so exciting good luck xxx
    we live in a new build, but I’m yearning to downsize to an older cottage with land. We are going further west so I’ll meet you in the middle !! Xx

  21. 16 March 2018 / 10:41 pm

    I love house moving! I think I’m one of the few that actually loves it. So many people find it stressful but I never have. Exciting times ahead for you. I will be catching those stories for a nose tomorrow!
    Laurie xx

  22. jodie filogomo
    16 March 2018 / 10:35 pm

    I know it’ll be full of stress, but it’s also so full of possibilities and new beginnings. We actually downsized 2 years ago and couldn’t be happier!! Not that it was easy, but totally worth it!!
    Can’t wait to see your adventure on IG Stories!!
    Yay for moms!!!

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