My friend Kathleen told me Altitude Summit was like summer camp for bloggers. She was right. With it came the nerves of meeting new friends along with the excitement of finding those few that you’ll forever feel connected to. I felt so thankful to share a room with a local Okie and get to know Allison with Shopcrawlr, spent a night perusing mini-parties with Jana from Wyoming who makes organic soda, had a real heart to heart chat with a diva stylist from New York, and shared concepts of design with an architect/blogger in San Francisco.
I can’t say I’ve come away stuffed full of inspiration and ready to take on a whole bunch of new projects (I’m overwhelmed as is!), but what I did come away with is that there are individuals all over the world who are making their dreams happen. They are figuring out that thing inside of them that makes them tick and that satisfies their inner most being and they are going after that thing. Some of these people are big name blogs but a lot of them are people you have never heard of. Some of them are married and have additional financial support, while some of them are trying to develop a foundation so that they can make that full-time financial move. At Alt. there were people who balance their creative outlet while being moms and dads, husbands and wives, there were business women, artists, entrepreneurs, people who’s whole goal is to be on TV (and that’s ok!), photographers, stylists, writers, illustrators, and more. What I, personally, came away with is that I have something unique to contribute to that group of creatives and the best way I can do that is to simply be me. To stop trying to be “BIG” and looking at our blog like it’s a formula. Do we want more traffic, of course! But what I came away with is that if you truly do something unique and creative that people will notice. They are looking for something fresh. Something new. Something relevant. And those are all things inside of Cale and I screaming to get out so in reality all we have to do is be true to those things, those voices and the rest will come. It’s funny because the blogs I truly love reading… they are just themselves. They do and say what they want and that means that there are times I may not agree with them, but I love that they are their own person.
I’ve come away inspired but most importantly re-focused and re-connected to the “why” behind Green Couch Design. I’ve realized that as our business has grown we’ve started to establish our home life around our business instead of building a business around our home life. For Cale and I we want to run our business at home with our kids. We don’t want the big corporate office and tons and tons of employees. We want to do what we love while enjoying time with our kids day in and day out. So the questions I’m asking is how do we re-establish that in our family culture today? Sometimes I don’t feel like we are the expert in this thing but realizing we’ve been at it successfully for two years makes me have to face myself and admit that we’ve gotten used to a set of systems and habits that I’m not proud of. It’s little things but those little things will add up to big things if we don’t recognize them now and do something about them.
It’s time to re-direct this ship, slightly, and make sure our core is about sustaining a family through our business and setting up structures that allow us to work within those areas and be successful at both. See, we believe you don’t have to choose your career over your family or vise verse. We believe you can have both. And that’s exactly what we intend to do.
2012, I’ve got lots of plans for you. Stay tuned.
From the Farm
* Special thanks to another new friend, who I did not mention above, that so graciously let us use her photo of our jewelry in our photo collage. Thanks Chelsea! Please check out her lovely blog: Lovely Indeed.
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