my word for the year

my word for the year

When it gets to this time of year I often look back over the previous twelve months and assess what I’ve achieved with my business, whether I have achieved what I want to, looking at how successful my various selling events have been, whether I got into the shows I had applied to, what I have learned through the the ups and downs of the creative business journey and then I start to think about plans for the coming year and in particular my word for the year

Reflecting on 2015 I think it has been a very different year for me and my creative business. The first three years of my fledgling business were a maelstrom of activity, working with mentors, endless to-do lists, trade fairs, selling events and taking up the opportunities that came my way, culminating in a big exhibition with two other artists.

Since the beginning of 2014 things have been a bit more sedate and less frenetic as I reexamined what I wanted from my business and in my life. The full-on pace had taken its toll a little and combined with a stressful job I knew I wanted to gain a little more balance in my life, after all it’s not a dress rehearsal is it? I started to explore other media and directions, following my love of the landscape and the great outdoors and also enjoying a slower pace which fitted in with how I was feeling. As part of this process I decided on choosing a word (or theme or feeling) for the year and started to live by combining this into daily life as much as I could.

My first chosen word was patience, something I am still consciously trying to master, but something I have improved at all the same thanks to this word the the year philosophy.


For 2015 my word was sustenance, as I was feeling the need to work out how I could sustain forward motion and momentum while sustaining my enthusiasm and energy for my creativity and business, balancing work and life (with a new job thrown into the mix I knew it was going to be difficult to balance all the new learning with everything else). It has been a slower year as a result, I have done the necessary things to be able to sustain what enthusiasm and drive I still had. I feel I have out the right ingredients in and taken some of them out of the mix. I pared down the stuff which was draining me (the blog, the endless selling events, which usually involved travelling big distances and exhausting hours, the saying yes to all opportunities, the social media, tweeting, facebooking etc etc etc). I learned to say no and not feel guilty about it and I learned to let go of the things that I didn’t like or want any more to make way for the new.

As a result I feel sustained, I feel happier, I feel more balanced, I have more time to do the things I want to do. It has been a good year. I’m taking all of this with me into 2016 and have decided I will be having a year to explore, to go places I’ve never been before and to try things I haven’t tried. I’ve read lots of inspiring quotes about exploring and exploration and I’m going to try to incorporate it into all aspects of my life….

Each month I will blog something new I’ve done, read, place visited, technique discovered. Hope you can join me. And my exploring begins in January with a new expressive landscape painting ecourse and a pottery throwing course in February. Watch this space for more adventures coming soon!!