So, another year is upon us. In a post I wrote just before Christmas, I said that 2014 had been a good year. On reflection, that wasn’t entirely truthful.
The end of 2013 wasn’t great and 2014 started quietly. It seems that was the right way to go for me. The year has had its ups and downs but I managed to find Joy in the little things and continue taking baby steps towards my big dreams.
Endings and Beginnings
Then, in June, my role at work was made redundant. This could have been a disaster and to say that I didn’t experience quite a rollercoaster of negative emotions around this time would be a lie. I didn’t blog about it because other things were happening at the time and I needed to process all of it. I didn’t know how I felt about any of it and didn’t feel ready to share… So I simply took some time out.
Taking time out was (and so often is) the best thing I could have done. Within a month, I had made my decision. Rather than look for another similar job, I would see this ending as a new beginning, an opportunity even, to start being even more authentically me; to take the plunge and start out on my own. Full time. I decided to be more Present.
That was scary. It still is! But so far, so good. I felt the fear and did it anyway and I have learned a lot. Actually, the learning never stops… I have learned many things in the past few months – about myself, about how I work and who I am.
I love my work now. I mean, I liked what I was doing before but now? Well, I don’t love the admin but everything else really does make my heart sing. I’m a recovering perfectionist so I’ve had to learn to let go of the need to make everything perfect before putting it out there but as I’m learning to embrace my imperfections I am also helping others do the same. My biggest problem now is that I want to do all of the things… All at once! So, in 2015 I have a few big projects coming up, the first being a series of coached workshops for parents of young children; Proudly Imperfect Parents, which starts with a workshop for working mums.
In order to give this, and other upcoming projects, my full attention, I once again need to review my commitments and rethink the amount of time I spend on social media (more on that in a future post) but I think it’s safe to say that no matter what I decide to do next, authenticity will be key.
Keeping it Real
Being authentic isn’t easy. My first meeting with a potential major client left a weird feeling in my belly. In my heart I knew that feeling was a “no” but who says no to their first major piece of work as a freelancer? It’s crazy right? Well, as it turned out, it would have been even more crazy for me to take on this work. It just wasn’t right for me. And I’m glad that lesson came early. It’s so important for me to be honest in my work and when I really believe in what I’m doing that passion shines through.
And that authenticity isn’t just important in my work. Take the redundancy for example, I hadn’t mentioned it before now because I didn’t feel ready but even as I sat down to write this post I had planned to leave it out. To offer a sanitised version of the year that would have looked like I just found the courage to live my dream and got on with it. I mean, in the end I did. But. It took lots of little pushes (some positive, some less so) and this big kick up the backside to get me really moving and it’s not always easy. Fulfilling? Yes? Rewarding Yes? Real? Yes. But easy? No. Sometimes it takes for a pretty big door to slam shut before you realise just how many windows are still open and how much motivation you actually have to climb through one. By ‘you’ in this instance I mean me, of course. Unless the same applies to you, in which case let’s talk!
I don’t really make resolutions any more. Not that I don’t want to grow but I see growth as a constant, not a once a year, thing. So I’ll continue with last year’s promise to Be Kind to myself and add/step up to Be Real, as well as adding more rolling resolutions as I go.
Finally, I saw something on Facebook before Christmas, asking what you want to see more of for 2015. In my response, I said ‘Joy.’ I think I’ll stick with that. Here’s to more Joy, for all of us. *raises glass*
How about you..? What are your reflections on the past year and what do you want more of in 2015?