Almost nine years ago I started my hair bow business when my youngest daughter was only six months old.
Since that time, I’ve run an online business – it’s changed and grown and morphed over the years, but it’s been my focus and passion for the longest I’ve ever held a “career position.”
My expertise at making bows, then writing tutorials about making bows, led to my book, 50 Ribbon Rosettes & Bows to Make: For Perfectly Wrapped Gifts, Gorgeous Hair Clips, Beautiful Corsages, and Decorative Fun!, (an Amazon affiliate link) published in the fall of 2014.
But my life after bows has felt kind of scattered.
As a quilter since before my hair bow making days, I knew I wanted to get back to sewing. I dabbled in writing sewing patterns for children. I’ve studied sewing with knits and am becoming more confident about my garment sewing skills.
I also enjoy sewing small projects and have started teaching. I love writing.
But over the past couple of years, I’ve felt that I’ve tried to dabble in so many areas that I haven’t been able to focus on just one. And keeping a strict book schedule one year and then a strict blogging schedule the next, along with all of the trappings of running an online business – social media, reading others’ blogs, guest posting, etc., has made me feel like I’ve lost my creative self.
So I’m setting aside six weeks – taking a short break to reflect…and focus. To decide what I really excel in and what I really want to do.
One of the books I just finished reading, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, (that’s an Amazon affiliate link), describes how being torn in too many directions results in being a master of none. And to be a master of none has caused me to lose some creativity.
This means I can’t achieve some of my main future goals: Creating projects for magazines, writing another book, and teaching. I’ve been torn in too many directions. Because if I can’t find my creative zone and can’t narrow my passion, it’s hard to develop a new skill to the point where I can truly excel.
And it also means frustration in general – the feeling that I’m never content, that I can’t get everything done. It means I’m sometimes wrongly cross with my family and always living in my head, rather than in the moment.
I’ve also had a few disappointments and challenges in my business since the fall that individually aren’t a big deal, but taken together as a group have caused me to pause and wonder where I’m headed. I think they’ve affected my mojo. Know what I mean?
So I’ve decided to take the next six weeks to refresh, relax, and create. To live in the moment. To decide where my true sewing passion lies and how I can make a maximum contribution. To be a good teacher. To be a more present mom. To be more purposeful in my Catholic faith during this Lenten season.
I’m going to sew. I’m going to give myself permission to randomly create “things” without the pressure of feeling like I need to make money from them. I’m going to read (I just picked up another book, The Little Spark – 30 Ways to Ignite Your Creativity from my Amazon affiliate that is already inspirational). I’m going to write. I’m going to take a vacation to visit my cousins and hopefully sink my feet into some warm sand.
I think the time to “let go and let be” is long overdue for me. I’ve been so tightly wound for so long that I suspect I’ll have a hard time doing it at all!
I might have a post on the blog here and there during this next six weeks, because writing calms me and helps organize my thoughts. But the focus is on recharging. Of course I won’t come back in six weeks being a master of anything, but I hope the sabbatical will show me where my true passion rests.
I’d love to hear from you about whether taking a break away helped you in the past! And please stay tuned. To keep up with my projects in which I’ll be dabbling, please follow me on Instagram – that’s mainly where you’ll see me for the next six weeks.
Deanna McCool writes for sewmccool.com. If you enjoyed this post, you’ll enjoy I’ve copied. And I bet you have, too. To make sure you don’t miss a post, please follow SewMcCool by e-mail (the link is at the top of the right-hand column) or join me on BlogLovin’ – the button is just below the e-mail feed box! 🙂