I’d been thinking about my word of the year all through December and while several words came to mind, “space”, “growth”, “learn”, and the ever-elusive “balance”, none quite seemed to fit all I was looking to encompass in this new year. I craved a word that allowed me to create space between my business and personal life, but could also be applicable to growing the company to new heights in 2019.
I actually landed on my word after a couple of events that occurred over the holidays. Events that had a very different outcome because of a choice that I made, that could all be summed up with one word.
I had intentionally set aside time to do some holiday crafts with my mom while she was in town over Christmas weekend. And while making candles, I had a few choices. I could pick the color votive, the scent of the candle, and whom I would choose to gift these to. The all too familiar feeling of overwhelm started to kick in as I tried to figure out who should be gifted these precious candles, what color looked the most like them, and what scent they would enjoy the most. As I began labeling off the candles assigning them to their new owners, I felt a bit of sadness in parting with them.
You see in 2018, one of my goals was to do a new craft every month. I figured it was certainly reasonable to take a few hours a month for myself to try something new and to get back to the creative crafter I used to be. But, I didn’t do a single craft. It was heartbreaking when I realized that I never took time for myself at all this year. I let life get in the way. And that’s why I was so insistent on taking some time for myself that weekend with my mom.
It occurred to me that I didn’t have to always be selfless, I didn’t have to give the candles away. If I cherished them so much and was so in awe of the many wonderful scents that my mom had brought down with her (she makes the most amazing bath & body products and has all the ingredients on hand!), that I didn’t have to make things complicated. They could simply be for me and I could simply pick what I liked best.
These wonderful little votives (all four of them!) are now sitting in a row on my desk bringing me so much intense joy. They serve as my reminder that things don’t have to be complicated they can simply be simple.
The same went for Christmas Eve dinner. This was the first year we’ve hosted the entire family and typically with any party I throw I want to impress. I want to create the most memorably perfect meal that makes guests fall in love with the event and want to come back to our home time and time again. I typically make complex meals and almost always serve multiple appetizers over one meal. Things get complex fast. But this year I did something different.
I chose one appetizer (a charcuterie board – no cooking or oven time & only requires the joy of styling), one main meal (a standing rib roast with a very simple recipe), one side dish (potatoes au gratin – all cooked in one porcelain dish), and one dessert (my go to chocolate cupcakes). And then I did something immensely different than I’ve ever done in the kitchen. I delegated. I gave the charcuterie board to my brother who I knew would love the styling aspect, I gave the potatoes au gratin to my mother and husband (I knew my hubby would love trying out the new gadget, a mandolin slicer, and my mom is a whiz at peeling), and I took the main dish. We knocked it out in 45 minutes. (Sans chocolate cupcakes because those were done early that morning, but were a total breeze since it’s my go-to recipe.) For the first time EVER we were done cooking and fully dressed to the nines BEFORE people even started showing up.
I was in awe. I was able to enjoy the night without slaving away over a stove and the recipes were a hit, like deliciously-memorable-we-are-making-them-again-next-year-and-people-asked-for-the-recipe hit.
Done. I had found my word of the year and it was life altering.
Things don’t have to be complicated to be enjoyable.
This is my new guiding light when it’s come to personal life and business. It’s guiding decisions in processes, the structure of the two companies, even my office work hours. It allows me to create space between my business and personal life by eliminating non-enjoyable or time sucking tasks, and it allows me to grow my company intentionally without the added stress of unnecessary complications.
There’s already been an announcement of quite a few simplified changes, and you’ve probably heard of them if you’re on the KF Stock Studio newsletter list or follow @kfstockstudio, but if you haven’t, here’s a glimpse at what these changes look like stepping into 2019…
I’m so excited about the wonderful changes this one little word will be bringing to the company in 2019. The effects of just those few changes have already made my heart lighter and my mind clearer, ready to tackle the larger projects that I’ve had planned for months that I know will make this company soar.
Have you selected your word of the year yet? I’d love to hear yours. I’m a curating a little word bank of beautiful words for when we just need to be reminded that they exist.
Wishing you all the wonderful, beautiful success & joy in 2019!