Confession: This is my favorite week of the year. The world is articulating hope, dreams, and moving forward. This magical and feels different. The visual noise and clutter from the holiday season have died down and a season of new beginnings has come forth. Last year, my word for the year was risk. Indeed, it was full of risk, stepping out into the unknown, and embracing the wild adventure that came with it. (You can read last year’s post here.)This year’s word is focus.
Over the past year, my attention has been pulled in too many directions. At times it brought me to the point of physical exhaustion and a breaking point. While attempting to navigate the proverbial work-life balance, I multi-tasked with the best. It has yielded less than stunning results. There are items I have worked tirelessly to build toward a goal and vision, only to wake up one morning and realize that I never wanted the achieved goal in 5 years. I’ve learned that progress over perfection is invaluable as a creative. But more than anything, knowing what truly deserves my time, attention, and focus, will allow me to bring forth my best self.
As a creative leading a small team, I set the course for our creative direction and focus. What happens when I lack focus? Others tend to follow suit. In a world where there is constant content available, with our phones clamoring for our every spare moment, my focus was constantly torn away from what mattered. The importance of being present was invaluable. I’ve found silencing my phone and spending days off are necessary to meeting the needs of my creative heart. Here I find clarity, new inspiration, and the adventure my soul craves. As an entrepreneur, you learn over time that it is necessary to work toward time off. In the next year, I’m hoping to take regular days off, no longer needing to capture life for my job or additional content, but to experience it. (Over the past three years, time off was used to visit family. I’m ready for a change to this pattern.)
With focus and margin, I’ll be able to bring my best to the table. No longer treading water or feeling at a constant breaking point, I’m embracing the beauty that 2017 has already begun to offer. Full of passion, wholeheartedness, and living open. With the ability to focus, I know that production in this space will continue, but will remain inspired, not manufactured. It is easy in the world of blogging, like any other field, to produce quickly rather than with brilliance. I am the only person who will set the standard for my creative best. What does this look like specifically? I’m finding that routines are beautiful to help me move forward. I miss the quality time in my sketchbook, playing with hand lettering, and the tangibility of design I always love. I miss the days spent in my sun-soaked apartment kitchen, recipe testing, and inviting friends to be my taste testers. I miss the printed moodboards on taped to my window, filled with beautiful packaging, printing methods, and magazine layout inspiration. With 2017, I’m hoping to bring back more of the analog elements of the design and content process that I love.
With the start of 2017 brings other goals as well. Fitting in meal prep and workouts, finally purchasing a new-to-me car, and finding an adventure a month are ways I’m choosing to focus on self care.
What about you? Do you have a word for the year? What are you working on as you move into a new year?