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Fiona Redding
Photo: Beth Jennings

Victorian woman Fiona Redding was 37 when she decided her life had to change. She had two small children, was drinking everyday and was overweight. She decided only she could change her life and to focus on one thing: happiness. She stopped drinking, began mediating and walking every day. And that's where the seed of her business, The Happiness Hunter, was planted. Here, Fiona tells Lifestyle News her story.

The day I decided to stop drinking and turned to Hello Sunday Morning (HSM) for support, I had one simple, profound desire – to be happy. That decision marked the beginning of a transformative journey that I couldn't have predicted.

As I logged into the HSM website, I was asked to name my avatar. This was a novel concept for me, as I had never been part of an online forum before. I found myself in a strange place, hovering over the keyboard, contemplating what name to give myself.

The question reverberated in my mind: "What was I here for?"

I chose the name 'Happiness' for my avatar and uploaded a picture of my children. They served as a constant reminder of the "why" behind my decision.

My introduction read as follows: "I am 37, a mum of two divine and challenging souls (in just about equal measure), have just launched my own business, am in the process of a separation which I am trying to keep amicable, ready to give up the booze and take on the world!

"I am choosing a life of good health and well-being, to be an excellent role model for my kids, and to embark on a much more respectful and loving relationship with myself. Alcohol is not invited on this next stage of my life journey."

With that declaration, my journey began. I started meditating, stopped drinking, embarked on daily walks, and made the tough decision to leave a relationship that had brought unhappiness to both me and my partner.

It was during this time that I planted the seeds of what would become 'The Happiness Hunter,' a venture that would evolve over the next decade, guiding and inspiring many on their quests for happiness.

So, what led me to start this business?

It all began when I had been searching for work for over a year. Countless job applications went unanswered, and the lack of responses was disheartening.

I eventually asked myself, "How could I think more laterally about this situation?" This led me to ponder, "How could I match my skill set to self-employment?"

Starting a business wasn't a lifelong dream; it was a practical choice. I sought meaningful part-time work that aligned with my qualifications.

Little did I know that this decision would provide a glimmer of hope, a chance to create a future vastly different from what I had feared.

My choice to focus on happiness was unwavering. I set a grand vision for my life, defined the person I wanted to become, how I wanted to live, and the direction I wanted my life to take.

Since then, my life has transformed in every conceivable way, and through The Happiness Hunter, I now share the lessons and experiences I've gathered throughout this incredible journey.

Alcohol had been a significant part of my identity for all my adult life, serving as my coping mechanism for the challenges I faced.

My experience emphasises that problem drinking doesn't discriminate. It transcends age, gender, income, and parental status, and my journey has shown me that I'm not alone in this experience.

Today, I have found my own happiness, and I've dedicated my life to helping others discover their paths to well-being. I share my wisdom and experiences through The Happiness Hunter, touching the lives of many who, like me, seek happiness and transformation.

My story reminds us that it's never too late to choose happiness, to take control of our destinies, and to make transformative choices in our lives, regardless of the challenges that come our way.

The day I decided to stop drinking and turned to Hello Sunday Morning (HSM) to help me achieve this goal, I had just one simple desire – to be happy.



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