My favorite part about being a brand designer has always been the part when I get to know someone—like REALLY get to know someone—from the inside out. A complete stranger would be strong enough to be completely open and vulnerable with me because they needed help—they had a problem and they believed I had the solution.
And while I had the skillset to pull it off (from an artistic standpoint), they had all the answers already inside them. I saw it time and time again. It only took a few carefully crafted questions in a safe, creative space to pull out why they already knew.
Which is why I believe with every fiber of my being that we all possess incredible, unique gifts (or combinations of gifts) that we can always use to benefit our lives.
If you ask me NOW what my favorite hobby is I’d say “interior design and decorating!”… a little more tangible and 3-dimensional, but not much different from then (except I won’t accept $ for this). And having spent 94.8% of the last year in my home I can’t tell you how many times I’ve moved things from one room to another. Curtains, plants, furniture, area rugs. I love “shopping” my house for things I love and repurposing them in new ways! It doesn’t cost a thing, all you need is a little creativity and a fresh perspective.
I use the same principles for interior design as I do for graphic design: balance, composition, personality, and considering how I want myself and others to feel when they encounter it.
Once I noticed the correlation between my past and present guilty-pleasure pastimes, I chuckled… because I realized I actually do the same thing with my SELF.
I’ve gotten into the habit of taking a good look at my life to see what needs more balance, better composition, a little more color… what needs to FEEL better. Is it my health; my role as a parent, wife, daughter, friend; how I dress, do my hair, and embrace beauty? No matter the area that feels off, I realized I can apply the same principles I’ve honed for DECADES to fix it—to redesign it.
And just like I can shop my house to redesign a room, I can shop my life to redesign different areas of it! And SO CAN YOU! You don’t need to have a design degree or be a visual thinker to apply this in your life, either.
You can’t solve a problem without knowing what it is. (Actually, I don’t believe in “problems”—that’s such a negative word—let’s call them “challenges.”) What needs fixin’?
Nothing is going to ever work if you don’t start here. (If you’re really struggling with this, aim higher. Look up. The same God that created the UNIVERSE made you. On purpose. mmmmK?)
What makes you really good at it? Is it your ability to see both sides of a situation? Get scrappy? Organize? Plan? Tell a story? What skills were you born with, or practiced more than 10,000 times, that you can’t even fake yourself into believing you’re not at least decent at?
Ask yourself the same questions you would ask yourself before doing the thing you’re really good at (#2). Answer in relation to the challenge (#1).
Apply the answer of #2 (the thing you’re really good at) to #1 (the challenge). It’s as simple as moving your fiddle leaf tree from the living room to the office.
I hate going in there because I can’t find anything and it stresses me out. I wear the same thing all the time because I don’t even know what I have. I feel like a frumpy, basic, mess. And it starts my day in a shitty way.
How do I want to feel inside my closet? Empowered with choice, excited for the day, simply beautiful.
What would help me feel like that? Organization. Better lighting. Clear out the clutter and donate clothes I don’t want anymore.
Empty shoeboxes and line up seasonal shoes, organize clothes by casual/professional, bag up clothes that don’t make me feel like a billion bucks (because “million” doesn’t seem high enough anymore), fold what needs folding, buy better lightbulbs and hangers, clean the mirror, bring in a step stool. Viola!! Glam squad… out!
Now, what if your challenge was MUCH more complicated (honey I’ve been there, too)? Well, then you might need some help. Someone outside of yourself, someone not living your life, someone with a new, fresh perspective to help you see your way through. Someone to remind you to believe in yourself. Someone to help you see what is possible for you on the other side. Someone to hold you accountable for getting the job done. And that’s the perfect job for a coach.
“A well-designed life is a life that is generative—it is constantly creative, productive, changing, evolving, and there is always the possibility of surprise. You get out of it more than you put in.”