Happy me! Photo by Kirsty Mattsson.
At the end of last year, I anxiously scribbled a creative plan down on paper for myself and blogged about the process HERE. A liberating act and one that was utterly necessary in helping me to focus on what mattered when it came to my creative work goals and dreams.
You see, freelance life was becoming a little overwhelming at the time, I felt like I was drowning in deadlines and balance was slipping through my fingers.
I was grateful that blogging had become my career in the last two years but the never ending juggle of freelance writing, raising kids, co-writing a TV pilot in development, and trying to clean the fridge now and again (worst job ever) was truly draining me.
So I sat at my desk and put pen to paper (not fingers to laptop) and restructured my work life, filtering the work I felt passionate about, saying no to more things (leaving room for other goals I wanted to say yes to) and then one by one, I listed my dreams and aspirations.
Some I thought were a little silly (but fun), unlikely even, others I’ve been consistently working towards for a long time and wanted to put them out there, reminding myself and the Universe (get it out there people) of what I want to achieve.
It felt freeing. Affirmative. It made me more confident, determined, fearless even, the latter I attribute mostly to having kids.
Suffering a difficult pregnancy with pregnancy liver condition OC (ICP) and a traumatic birth with my first son, Oliver was tough, it took time to heal….making this film to help other women in a similar position helped as did having an easier pregnancy and tranquil birth with my second son Alexander.
These experiences offered me valuable lessons on fragility and of course strength and the importance of health and happiness.
Raising kids undoubtedly and trying to do it to my best is empowering too. It puts life into perspective and of course those kids are my purpose in life, my joy… yes family life is full on but and as with all artists, despite the limitations, be it time, energy etc, creativity can be born and thrive within restrictions (ie. blogging)…
I also strongly, emphatically believe happy parents equal happy kids (whatever happiness is to you)… for me personally that means working, being creative, doing what I love and all credit to my childcare (parents and pre-school) making that possible.
…Kids have also made me look at myself differently. I used to compartmentalise myself-I’m a working filmmaker (director) and can’t possibly be anything else. Rubbish. I, you, we can all be whomever we want to be and that can mean taking on lots of roles, jobs-more so now than ever with the internet of opportunity right here for us at the touch of a button. We can redefine ourselves, today.
Want to write a cookery book, you can, want to get on camera, head to You Tube, want to learn online, change direction, it’s possible….
I started this blog here in November 2010 to find my voice again after my first baby. Lost, hurt, low on confidence, lonely, it gave me a new creative space I deeply craved after leading sets of a hundred plus and much much more: friendship, a community, a career that rivaled and inspired my former work and many, many open doors I never imagined possible.
Yes there are tough times (we grow in adversity, right?) but it’s worth it…
So since December, I’ve taken more calculated risks, I’ve approached people I admire and want to collaborate with, grown my businesses, felt more confident and happier in me than ever before (trying not to sweat the small stuff) and importantly, I feel I’ve achieved greater balance to enjoy my biggest successes of all: my sons. Taking time back and re-evaluating did me the world of good.
Oh and those doors I keep mentioning, have continued to open through sheer hard work, those dreams I penned, many have materialised, such as more on-camera work as I featured in parenting films for Yahoo, a TV pilot I co-wrote has been deemed laugh out loud funny by my TV giant of a producer and then of course I was asked to model worldwide for designer baby bag company Nova Harley that came out of the blue thanks to being discovered on my style blog Mummy’s Got Style (something I set up feeling brave one day a year ago).
Ultimately though I feel happier, content, free in my freelance choices, like I can truly be whomever I want to be .
So thank you creative plan, hard work and dreaming big is paying off, so thank you very much.
Will you write your plan today?