Eyoalha Baker’s message is “don’t underestimate the power of joy”, and she challenges us to embrace joy in our businesses.
I’m up for the challenge.
As marketers we can either market to others’ fears or to their joy. (Sadly both approaches can be successful.) Eyoalha’s jump for joy project in Vancouver’s east side was a way for her as a photographer to share her joyful photos in a place few would think that joy could exist. Her mural is visual storytelling at its best and included 200 pictures of people literally jumping for joy on the side of a three-story building in Vancouver’s east side. The effect on the community and Eyoalha herself was transformational. In this month’s edition of “Where Women Create Business”, Eyoalha says joy “is an emotion that inspires connection and open hearts. We have the ability to alter our own experiences when we view life through the powerful, uplifting energy of joy.” Who doesn’t want more of that?
We always have the choice to choose joy over fear, to inspire, to collaborate, to include. That in and of itself is worth marketing.
Caught up in the debate about work/life balance? It sounds so good doesn’t it, to keep everything balanced? But why are we always chasing this elusive concept? Judging by the amount of chatter about it – why do we keep failing at it? Maybe we need a shift in our thinking.
I am a fan of Pam Slim’s work and her book: Body of work. To me she gets at this concept in a way that validates what I have felt for a long time.
When we separate life and work we put them in competition with each other. Like all competitions, there is a winner and a loser (I like it better when everybody wins!) We are either working too much or not working enough. Not at home enough, or home too much. Rather than constantly trying to battle the balance between work and home life, what happens if we shift perspective and look at our lives as one big body of work and our gift to the world.
Imagine that the many aspects of your life are threads in your own masterpiece. We have a choice of what threads we pick up and which ones we don’t. If we only use one colour and one weight of thread, our masterpiece will be pretty dull. When we pull from all of our experiences we create a unique work of art – that is when we thrive and are at our best. Sometimes the beauty of our masterpiece will be compromised and only certain threads will be used, while others go untouched. Be ok with that. It won’t last forever and with conscious effort we can gently reach out again and weave with many fibers.
So, take the pressure off. Don’t chase the illusion of work life balance. Instead, live fully and surround yourself with the beautiful and diverse threads from all parts of your life. Silky, nubly, twisted, and colourful ones. Then weave your body of work with great joy.
It’s a ‘brand’ new year! Corny yes, but I just love the whole idea of a new year stretching out in front of us. Glimmering with possibility. I even love to write New Years resolutions and goals and post them to myself through futureme.org. Have you ever tried it? So fun, empowering and motivating getting an email from yourself and seeing if you are still on track.
Somehow the writing of your goals – committing to the words always feels like the first step to making them happen. And apparently that’s not just how I feel because I have never forgotten the stat I read in Forbes that you are 42% more likely to achieve your goals just by writing them down. I like the idea of being part of the 42%.
January is also my annual planning month. And I love doing that too!! I help businesses do their own annual plans and putting myself through the process gives me new insights and keeps the process fresh and vital. It also reminds me how vulnerable you feel when you lay down a plan and truely commit to a timeline to make it happen. It’s all a bit thrilling to put risk and reward all on the same page.
What lights me most about the process is how empowering it is and how it gives meaning to my business and my time which ultimately makes life in general pretty rewarding. I have eradicated the phrase “I’m so busy” from my life and replaced it with “I’m making things happen”. I don’t say things like “I don’t know where the time goes” anymore because I can tell you exactly where the time goes. I don’t say things like “time flies” because time doesn’t fly unless I’m the pilot. And all that feels good and gets me where I want to go.
Are you ready to make your plans for 2016? I’m getting started this week and I’ll keep you posted on my progress and if you are eager to do the same thing and don’t know where to start send me an email and we will see if my planning process is right for you.
Cheers to 2016 and joining the 42%!
Are you feeling a bit like procrastinating in this stretch of the year that is not quite Fall, and not quite Winter and almost the swirly, twirly holidays?
I get that. And I needed to snap out of it.
Like many, I have been inspired by the iconic Twyla Tharp, and her book The Creative Habit. I can pick it up again and again and there is always something new for me to hang onto and be inspired by.
One of my favourite passages in the book describes how difficult it can be to begin. The overwhelm of the blank slate. She describes that when she was a novice choreographer and she didn’t know how to get started she had a simple solution. She explains that “I stood up in the center of the room, took a deep breath, stamped my foot and shouted “Begin”.” *
I just tried it (and there is no question that the stomping of the foot was my favourite part) and look what happened. Blog done!
… Got it
* The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp