Fashion photography by Michael Biro
Beauty photography by Nathalie Martin
It’s June and I can’t believe we’re halfway through the year already. In a lot of ways, I thought I’d be further along in terms of blogging and life goals but I’m learning that I need to chill out and stop being so hard on myself. I recently picked up the book In The Company of Women by Grace Bonney. It had been on my wishlist since it came out but I only just bought it now. I’m glad I finally did because it’s helping me get back to my roots. (I’ll explain that in a sec.) Almost as soon as I started reading the book I was hit with a wave of sadness. Reading about how these highly creative women define success made me realize that I’ve totally derailed from what I love to do and want to get back on track.
Like a lot of people, I have a tendency to be really hard on myself and don’t take enough time to enjoy and celebrate my accomplishments. I mean, I do to a certain degree but I have a tendency to focus more on what I don’t have versus what I do have. For example, Geoff and I would love to have a family one day but we don’t. I probably think about that more often that I even admit to myself and to some degree I feel guilty that we don’t have kids and yet, it’s just the way life has rolled out for us. In terms of work as a freelance blogger, I often wonder why my blog hits aren’t as high as they are and yet I should be celebrating that my metrics have almost doubled since last year!
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not an ingrate and trust me when I say that everyday I wake up and thank my lucky stars that I’m able to blog for a living. I absolutely love it and I’m incredibly proud of how far along my photography and writings skills have come since I first started. Yet here I am, battling my inner demons constantly.
Come on guys. Don’t tell me you haven’t been there!
So here’s where the book In The Company of Women comes in. Reading about how these creative, successful and fearless women approach lives and their businesses makes me realize; I miss making shit with my hands and I define success with monetary value. (Yikes when did that happen?!)
When I say I miss making shit with my hands I actually mean that I miss being a hands-on artist, not a digital content creator. When I was younger I used to paint and when it was time for college I was enrolled in graphic design in hopes of getting a job at a magazine like Vogue when I graduated. Instead, I went into business for myself, hand-making iPod cases and selling them all over the world with my business partner, Diana, BFF extraordinaire and now WoahStyle's beauty contributor. We closed the business after a few years and soon I was back at it again, illustrating and screen printing on textiles this time sewing my designs into tea towels. Fast forward to eight years later and I can’t remember the last time I painted or sewed anything.
I read about six interviews from In The Company of Women when I realized that not a single person had defined success by how much money they made. Maybe it’s taboo to admit in print, I don’t know.
When I was younger I remember thinking that I’d be successful in life if I had my own business, if I was an artist and if I made enough money to shop at the Gap full price. Ya, I said that!
It makes me realize the two points are connected. Somehow putting so much focus on my annual income means I’ve lost sight of what makes me happy and what makes me me and that’s my art.
Crazy how it took a book to make me realize that. I’m hoping that my creating art again and bringing my paints out of storage that I’ll start to feel more balanced in my everyday life and who knows, maybe one day not be as stressed out and actually have a family.
I urge you guys to take the time to celebrate your accomplishments in life because damn, life is crazy and we have to pat ourselves on the back right?
Founded by Nathalie Martin in 2014, WoahStyle offers compelling content and thoughtful features which are designed to bring you the latest from the world of beauty, fashion and travel.