I can't help wondering what I did to deserve to be continually packing things up and moving but somewhere along the line in the last year or so, it has been something that has become almost second nature. So much so, that I don't think I had time to unpack everything.

Four hours of checking to see if I have everything, and packing up my most valuable possessions, I am finished. My dog is looking at me scared about what possibly could be next. Moving still isn't something she is use to and I realized early in the piece that it is what brings her the most fear. For that matter, it does the same to me, however my New Years Resolution this year was to put myself in "uncomfortable" situations and I have certainly lived up to that.

You may be thinking that I am plain mad. What is a 40 year old woman doing moving around like an unsettled teenager? Well, its simple - I have a plan and it requires my undivided attention and for now, I have to keep living out of a suitcase - and its not fun, nor easy and it certainly isn't comfortable in any way.

It's time to move again - but where?

I miss having my place in St Kilda Road Melbourne, backing onto the beautiful Faulkner Park and going for morning walks to get real coffee and croissants. For now, that is like a favorite memory in the past that I hold onto like a treasured possession.

Being in Atlanta has been great for my personal development and having employed people here who are talented, full of life and engaged team members has been critical to developing a business that has run more successfully than I ever imagined. There is no goal that can not be achieved with the team I have as the core foundation to business expansion. 

The lessons I have learned from this whole exercise has been lifelong and extraordinary, as without expanding the business, and pushing the envelope, I may never have had the opportunity to learn them through my somewhat cushy life in Melbourne.

5 Things I Have Learned Through Business Expansion

1. If you feel comfortable, than you are not trying hard enough.

2.  The first people you employ are the most important.

3.  Being a startup again is exhilarating to say the least and gives every company an opportunity to improve the way they do business and build a culture by design, rather than one that was perhaps put together by accident.

4.  Write a business plan and try to stick to it as much as possible, taking into account things that are out of your control.

5.  Fall in love with your clients all over again and treat them like they are the most important people on the planet. Make sure you connect with them in a way that leaves them with "happy thoughts" on your company and brand.

I continually profess to not be ambitious enough, yet I am sitting here writing my last blog in an apartment that I rented in the heart of Buckhead, Atlanta, and I look back and have to ask myself, "what possessed me to do this?" Was it ambition? Was it fulfilling a business plan? Was it because I was bored?

I don't necessarily have the answer but I do know that what keeps me here is something that is more than ambition and transcends any plan I ever had. It is the constant, unconditional support of people around me and the love I have been privy to from family and friends. Every single day I receive a text, email or call from someone who says that they are proud of me or gives me some encouragement to keep going in the direction that I am heading.

The accumulation of these things and the lessons I have learned are the biggest reward that I have received this year. It's been a momentous year, one that I will remember and share for the rest of my life. #grateful 

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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert with more than 20 years experience. Having founded and built two successful marketing companies internationally, she is well recognized as a industry thought leader and innovator. Mellissah started her career working with technology and professional services firms, primarily in marketing, public relations and investor relations, positioning a number of successful companies to list on the various Stock Exchanges around the world. She is a writer, technology developer and entrepreneur who shares her thoughts and experiences through blogs and written articles published in various media outlets. Brag sheet: #2 marketer to follow on Twitter (2003), Top 150 Marketers to Follow (2015), Top 10 innovative marketers (2014), 60K+ followers on Twitter with 97% authentic.

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