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5 Irish people who gave it all up to chase their dreams

They followed their bliss. And so can you – it’s #TimeToPlay.

EVERYONE OUT THERE has a dream tucked away somewhere.

Maybe yours is to get away from the daily grind and open up a little café somewhere off the beaten track. Some others might dream of jacking it all in to trot the globe or make the world a better place. Hey, maybe you’ve got an app idea you want to get off the ground.

Many people’s dreams stay just that – dreams.

But these people? Well, these people actually went and did it…

1. Janet Newenham

Korean Bell Garden - Winter Blue HDR freestock.ca ♡ dare to share beauty freestock.ca ♡ dare to share beauty

It’s the dream and only occasional reality for lots of bloggers out there – writing being more than just a hobby on the side and becoming the real deal. And for many others, travelling the world for a living sounds pretty sweet. Lucky old Janet Newenham from Cork gets to combine the two, having quit her job in PR and media to become a full-time travel blogger. It all kicked off from one simple bucket list before her 30th birthday, and she’s now documenting her path across Asia. Lucky for some, eh?

2. Maria Ryan

Maria Ryan originally worked in finance in Dublin’s bustling and high pressure IFSC. After the birth of her first child with husband Andrew, the pair decided to up sticks to the countryside to a new home in Tullow. With that came another new departure: setting up her own company. Starting a family had given Maria a whole new appreciation for kids’ clothing and she broke out her sewing machine to make blankets and dresses for her daughter Aisling. Other parents soon took notice of her creations and her furnishings and clothes company Lollipops & Daydreams was born in 2012.

3. Clodagh Connell

There must be something about young ‘uns and clothes that sparks it off in people… For seven years, nursing had been all Clodagh Connell had known – until she set up Hello Bezlo last year and took a leap into entrepreneurship. Based on her experience of working in children’s hospitals and seeing how important fashion and good role models were to young girls, she decided to set up the STEM-inspired children’s lifestyle company.

4. Michael Kelly

GIY Ireland / YouTube

One ordinary day, Waterford-based Michael Kelly was shopping in his local supermarket when he clocked that the garlic in his trolley had been grown in China. It got him thinking – this was something that he could easily grow in his own background, so why was he buying it imported from halfway across the world? Thus Grow It Yourself or GIY International was born, an initiative to get people growing their own food. From his own green-thumbed hobby, the organisation has grown to amass over 50,000 supporters.

5. Jenni Murphy

There are a select few people in this world with the true grit required to work until they’re at the top. Jenni Murphy is one of those people. She may be the third best bodybuilder in the world, but she’s going for pole position in the World Championships in CityWest later this year – and nothing, not even a pesky day job, is going to stop her. Murphy only started bodybuilding last year but has since quit her seven-year ad exec position to pursue it full throttle.

What dream would you chase if you had the chance? Let us know in the comments – the more out there the better…

Tonight’s Lotto jackpot is €8m. With that kind of money, you could quit the daily grind and chase your dreams yourself – after all, there’d be no reason not to, right? Whatever your dream is, this could be your opportunity. What dream would you chase with that €8m? #TimeToPlay

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