business

Our Unique Voice

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Sometimes we can fall into the trap of comparison and forget our own unique voice.

Finding (and then retaining) our unique voice as a solo creative entrepreneur (and well, just as a human being), is very challenging.

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I was walking Mia (our little dog) this morning and had a heavy heart.  You know that sinking feeling?  That feeling where you get a little scared and wonder if you're good enough, talented enough, clever enough, everything enough?  Well, that was me this morning until...

...I heard bird song.

I literally stood for a few minutes in the middle of the footpath (with Mia staring up at me) and just listened.

I paused and listened to what God might want to tell me.

And you know what, looking up I realised each bird had a unique voice.

Their unique song and it got me thinking...

Firstly, this realisation was a gift from my heavenly Father and I slowly let it drip down into my waiting, aching heart.

unique voice alder catkins

We all have our unique song and no one else can sing it for us.  Yours will look and sound different to mine and that's okay.  We can all be heard - just as I listened to the very different voices of the crazy geese, the tiny wren and the beautiful blue tit.  It was a beautiful moment of realisation.  It's okay.  It's okay to be different - in fact, we're made to be.

unique voice

So my message to you dearest is this...

It's okay to have a quiet voice.  A voice that doesn't make too much noise over everyone else because there's still Someone (and someone) who's always listening.

unique voice

You don't have to have it all planned out.  You don't have to rehearse because your voice is just that - YOUR voice.  Your unique creativity will pour out of you come what may, also long as you let it.

Be kind to yourself.

Be gentle.

Be loving.

Hold your unique voice carefully to your heart and let it sing.

unique song

Your creativity/soul is just like that tiny little wren - making exquisite music and singing it's little heart out and once I tuned in, there was no mistaking it.

Embrace your unique voice and don't give in to the cacophony, all around you.

Stay open.

Stay true and remember to listen to Him.

 

 

 

 

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So long 2015, Hello 2016!

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I hope this year has been good to you dear friends as we say 'So long 2015 and Hello 2016'!

Lovely friends, I hope you've had a magical Christmas and will enjoy the New Year however you plan to celebrate!

so long 2015

I always find it exciting to welcome in another year.  I love to think think about my priorities for the year ahead - what's important to me, my goals, dreams and really, just have a jolly good think across my life as a whole - you know, business, family and personal etc.  It's a re-assessment of my life basically.

Possibly tomorrow or New Year's Day, I'll start filling in my new TDJ Daybook, making some tabs for each month and literally putting my mark and personality on this delightful planner, together with my 2016 calendar.  This year I've purchased the calendar that you see below - The Reading Woman and I just can't wait to start using it 'for real' - yes, calendars are really that important to me!

so long 2015

Talking about 2015 ending, I found my top nine posts on Instagram #2015bestnine and below are the images that made it to the top.  I'd also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for your support, encouragement and just genuine friendship - it truly warms my heart.

Below, you'll see quite a varying selection including; watercolour artwork, a sketchbook exploration (top right), the first of the Autumn leaves, a digital painting just for fun (bottom left) inspired by Ivy Newport and her Mobile Art Magic class.  Then, another sketchbook piece reflecting my emotions surrounding the tragic circumstances of Paris (bottom right) and lastly, some red berries spotted whilst waiting for my husband on one of his many visits to the hospital this year regarding his ongoing leg surgery.

so long 2015

Below is a piece I just created in my sketchbook last night using charcoal and I think this could be a new favourite medium to explore - btw, I used Derwent XL Charcoal Blocks.

so long 2015

Lastly, I've just finished the book below, Timeless Simplicity by John Lane (I can't recommend it enough) and it's made a real impact and got me thinking.  Hence, my word for 2016 will be 'simplicity', in large part due to the sad passing of my father in law and the fact that I'm very conscious that I wish to use my time with an increased reverence and gratitude because you never know what's around the corner...

so long 2015

Take care everyone as we collectively say: 'So long 2015 and Hello 2016'...

 

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Being Vulnerable and 'New Life'

Feeling vulnerable is not a very nice emotion and often it rears its ugly head just when we you are trying to bring to life something that is truly important to you...

I breathe your name... - journal piece from Delight Art Ecourse

That's what's happening to me at the moment folks and it's super yuck!  One minute I'm forging ahead, the next minute I'm wanting to retreat - does any of this sound familiar to you too?  Part of me is so confident that it will work out but there's that nagging doubt all the same that tells me different and it just depends what sort of mood I'm in as to which voice I will listen to.

I do know that it's at these times that I need to stay as rested as possible and to look after myself with extra sensitivity but that's often easier said than done.  For instance, last Monday I was so busy, busy with 100 tasks at a time, that I forgot about lunch until I was really hungry and instead of stopping earlier and making myself something healthy, I ate too many Bacon Rasher crisps (well I DID like them - it's put me off now, lol) and felt yuck after.  Then I ended up getting a really bad tummy ache and had to lie down for a little while which in turn stressed me out more because of all the things I needed to be doing!!! Agh.

When you put so much of yourself out into the world it takes resilience, patience and a deep inner confidence or knowing to see it through.  Then I get into the 'comparing' mindset of other business owners like myself and boy, does everything go down hill rapidly from there...

The other thing is that my 10 year old (soon to be 11) will be finishing his last year of primary school in July and heading to high school in September.  It feels a really big deal and I have some stuff to work through with all that I think.  That's for another day Friends.

Anyhoo, I was walking Mia this morning and thinking about all this stuff and suddenly found the empty eggs shells (that you see in a couple of these photos)...

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Mia dog - such a cute profile

It really struck me that sometimes you have to 'shake off your shell' and even though you feel as vulnerable as a newborn tiny chick, you still have to do it.

So, I've kept right on and put out my new art ecourse Delight and opened up enrollment for the second session of Embrace because I care so deeply about helping others find their creative calling in a way that feels right for them so as to capture the highs and lows of this crazy life.  To make sense of what is on their heart, to grieve for the low points and celebrate the high points because life is a combination of all of that and so much more.

I could easily be the rabbit that freezes in the car's headlights (and sometimes I totally am that rabbit) but something keeps pushing me to carry on.  Call it God (I do), my soul, Spirit or whatever but sometimes (well often), I feel like I'm carried on the back of this benevolent, loving force and I'm given the strength, courage and conviction to carry on when I think I can't go any further.

You have my heart - journal page from Delight Art Ecourse

Yes - those little egg shells really resonated with me this morning - maybe seems a little silly now [blush] but it just made sense to me and I hope you?  Feeling vulnerable is part of life and it's not a reason to stop - in fact it means you're on to something because it's your head's way of saying to tread carefully because there is so much at stake.  Well, yes - I don't plan on stepping on any egg shells - I'll just tiptoe through them and notice their beauty at the same time.

If you're experiencing any of this as a small business owner, please share in the comments or drop me a email - I'd love to hear from you.

Oh, yes - I've re-started doing short podcasts that you can listen to via audio - kind of breaks things up for you if you are an auditory girl or just fancy the change of media (so to speak - ha, ha).  Anyway, click here to listen.  You can also 'follow' the posts, 'like' and comment - so please stop by and visit me.

 

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Receive my 'Heart Letters' & + enjoy optional extras: Free access to the 'Inspiration Library', 20% off online classes, Free prints, art videos + more...