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Sunset Social Happy Hour 12/1 at Establish

I am more than thrilled to announce the 4th edition of Sunset Social at one of my favorite local businesses, Establish! Come hang out Thursday, December 1 from 6-8pm at 3811 Noriega St (@ 45th) with the city's most creative and hustlin ladies including store owner and aesthetic genius Erica Maver.

RSVP on Facebook 

This event is BYOB, free and open to all. Things you can bring: friends, business cards, good vibes and creative juice for a special art activity to be unveiled soon.

 

 

P.S. awesome flyer design by Alex Michelle Gray

Come to Sunset Social at 3 Fish Studios 10/19

Join us for the third edition of Sunset Social: a happy hour series bringing together creative and entrepreneurial women of SF. We will meet at 3 Fish Studios (4541 Irving St @ 46th Avenue) on Wednesday, October 19 from 6-8pm to enjoy drinks, make connections and build community among likeminded ladies.

RSVP HERE

Bring a drink to share and get ready to show off your drawing skills at the 3 Fish Studios communal art table. If you know any rad creative professionals, entrepreneurs, and movers n shakers - bring them too! This event is free and open to the public. All friends of the Sunset welcome.

(Can't make this one? Join the mailing list to hear about future gatherings.)

What Is Sunset Social?

Sunset Social is a bi-monthly happy hour series bringing together creative and entrepreneurial women of the Sunset and beyond. Come meet a new business owner each month as we rotate around some of the most creative and unique female owned or run spots in the neighborhood. This event was created out of the need for a common meeting place for likeminded women to make connections, share ideas and get inspired. We all follow each other on Instagram anyway - let's hang out IRL!

Who's 3 Fish Studios?

This edition of Sunset Social is hosted at 3 Fish Studios, one of my favorite businesses in the neighborhood. Eric Rewitzer and Annie Galvin are printmakers and painters, husband and wife, and founders of 3 Fish Studios. The Outer Sunset hub is home to their workshop and studio, where art happens daily and visitors are always welcome; they love collaborating, making, and sharing creative projects with cool folks. More at the 3 Fish Studios website and Facebook

Credits: Flyer art work by Annie Galvin, graphic design by Orlie Kapitulnik

 

Summer Office Hours

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In honor of longer days and sunnier skies, I'm now offering FREE summer office hours twice a month!

These are potent 20-minute consultations around your #1 burning question when it comes to getting your voice out into the world. The details:

  • Offered twice per month (usually Friday afternoons PST)
  • Three 20-minute time slots available
  • First-come, first-served basis
  • One session per awesome dreamer, please
  • Upcoming dates released in my email newsletter (sign up below)

Topics covered include how to clarify your vision, define your message, get stuff done and launch your creative gifts into the world.

Schedule Now

 

How Do I Know Which Passion Project or Business Idea to Invest In?

How-Do-I-Know-Which-Passion-Project-or-Business-Idea-to-Invest-In

Throughout my 20s, I always had this feeling that some creative endeavor was calling to me. I wanted to invest my energy into something substantial, meaningful and passion-filled: but what?
My inner artist was seduced with dreams of taking up ceramics, jewelry making, graphic design, photography and film. My curious mind desired higher education in psychology, marketing and business. My big heart craved explorations in yoga, meditation and love. Frozen at the intersection of so many beautiful visions, I sat in the middle unable to move. It became easier to act in the direction of other people’s dreams because I wasn’t sure which of my own was “the right one.”  

A long process of self-exploration and experimentation followed, eventually landing me on the heartfelt conviction to write my first book and launch a new coaching business. Investing in these ventures meant hours upon hours of unpaid time for goals that promised no sure result, all while sacrificing my other dreams. How did I know it was the right direction? Internal and external forces showed up to guide the way. In fact, once you know the signs they are impossible to miss.

On the fence about which passion project or business idea to commit to? In my experience, these are the characteristics to look for in your “right” project:

Fear

Lots of it. Fear can be a useful compass showing you the direction toward what you have to do. Does it scare the shit out of you? Good. That’s where you start.

“The more fear we feel about a specific enterprise, the more certain we can be that that enterprise is important to us and to the growth of our soul… If it meant nothing to us, there'd be no Resistance.” – Steven Pressfield

Motivation

No one’s making you do it. In fact, no one would ever know if you just let it slip by without putting your creation out into the world.

Money

You would love to get paid for it, but even if you never make a dime, it would still be worth doing.

“Do not depend on the hope of results. You may have to face the fact that your work will be apparently worthless and even achieve no result at all, if not perhaps results opposite to what you expect. As you get used to this idea, you start more and more to concentrate not on the results, but on the value, the rightness, the truth of the work itself.” -Tomas Merton

Self Denial

This is how you feel when you don’t give time to your project. Busy? Procrastinating? Doubtful? It doesn't matter the reason: when you leave your most important project in stasis for too long, it starts calling to you. You feel plugged up, twisted up, pressure building. Manifestations can be mild to severe.

Relief

This is how you feel when you close up a good focused session working on your project. A good old-fashioned release of energy, emotion, caring and brainpower. An intuitive pull that says, yes, thank you for coming. You did the right thing.

Intention

The drive comes from within, not from outside pressure. This work feels true to your heart. It feels aligned with who you really are and what you really care about. There’s nothing manufactured, manipulated, or striving about it.

Uncensored

In the initial phases, working behind a closed door, your creativity is unfettered by outside opinions or obligations. The work is pure. It’s just for you. No feedback rounds, brand guidelines or target audience. It’s 100% the way you envision it, no holds barred. No watering down.

“When it comes to writing… the space can be humble, and it really needs only one thing: a door which you are willing to shut. Like your bedroom, your writing room should be private, a place where you go to dream.” –Stephen King

Recognition

People around you notice the momentum that’s building. Questions are asked. Curiosities are piqued. Something is brewing in there, some force is building, and it’s drawing attention.

Intuition

Your efforts start turning heads, but no one knows the full gravity of what you’re working toward (yet). Something inside you knows it’s important. Something beyond logic and reason tells you to keep trucking. You intuit that there’s more to be explored and it will be worth the effort. Follow the mystery. See how deep this rabbit hole can go.

Curiosity

You have endless investigative energy when it comes to your project. Beginner’s mind. Everything is exciting and relevant and revelatory. Your ears perk up when people talk about related topics. You listen closely when useful knowledge or advice comes your way.

“I want the opportunity to be different. Where do I get the confidence to be different? A lot of it comes from curiosity.” –Brian Grazer

Spontaneity

You don’t always have to be thinking about your personal project for ideas to come to you. Walking at the beach, talking to a friend, taking a shower and falling asleep are all times when they arrive. Ideas seem to arrive spontaneously, beyond your beckoning or control. (Write them down!)

Energy

Someone once told me that my whole body language and facial expression changed when I stopped talking about my day job and started talking about my new secret blog. Enthusiasm abounds when you’re plugged in to the thing you care about most. (In fact, my whole energy changed when I started writing my book.)

Flow

When you’re working on this project, you tend to lose yourself. Minutes or hours go by where you are completely enmeshed with your activity. Lost. Found.

If the majority of these characteristics ring true for your passion project or business idea, you’ve struck gold. Keep at it and the investment will pay off one hundred fold, inside and out. You can even start with these simple questions to spark that big dream of yours.

Three Questions to Spark Your Creative & Business Dream

Spark Your Creative and Business Dream web

Is there a creative or entrepreneurial venture that’s been tugging at your sleeve but you just can’t seem to pull it off? Maybe you want to flush out your documentary idea after work, or spend time with your oil paints while the kids nap. Or you could be itching to turn your love of shopping into a styling business or your crafting talent into an online store. Whatever the body of work that’s been calling to you, I guarantee it’s matched by an equally loud voice of resistance. You don’t have time to waste: there’s only one moment to speak your truth, share your art and put your ideas to the test. And I believe the world needs whatever’s inside that creative soul of yours.

Here are 3 bulletproof steps for developing your business or creative dream. In fact, each step is a question to put to your heart: WHY you care about this vision, WHAT is available to support the process and HOW can you take one baby step forward today.

1. Why do you want this, anyway?

I spent an entire year trying to write my book with little progress. My breakthrough? When someone finally asked WHY I wanted to write this book in the first place. It took 30 minutes of free writing to get past the surface-level expectations and encounter a more soft, raw place in my heart. I found a fierce longing to own my story and create dialogue about issues that I deeply care about. Once I connected with this immovable driving force, all the scattered ego-level motivations were obliterated to ash. Now I was ready to work.

So I challenge you to start with these questions:

  • What do you really want to do or make?
  • Why do you want to do or make it, anyway?
  • What is your most authentic guiding intention?

If you’re really scared to try something, there’s got to be a good reason for it. Get to the nugget of why you care. The answer may surprise you.

2. What resources are available to you?

For many years, I thought I had to meet huge business and creative ambitions with equally superhuman efforts. But going fast and hard always led me to the same destination: burnout. Every time I crawled back to that safe place of mediocrity, resistance raised its flag of victory. This cycle would have continued my whole life if I didn’t take a step back to build my foundation. I started with a yoga practice and then a daily meditation practice. Then writing classes, diet changes, schedule tweaks and accountability partners. As I slowly built up my resources for balance, clarity and community, I saw an increased capacity to sustain efforts toward a larger-than-life goal. And you can, too. 

Inquiries to ponder:

  • What’s stopping me from reaching my creative vision?
  • What tools do I need to get from here to there?
  • What resources and practices are available to help me?

Whether it’s creating a failsafe morning ritual or signing up for a class, start one thing THIS WEEK that supports your vision. There’s merit to investing in a strong foundation before picking up the nail and hammer to build that house. 

3. How can you take one baby step forward, today?

I’ve been meeting tight client deadlines to deliver market-worthy writing content to my clients for seven years, so why couldn’t I do it for myself? Once I started treating my passion project like a client project (with a real deadline, process and discipline) I was finally able to match the results. With a clear foundation of WHY I was writing, tools to help me along the way and a step-by-step plan for moving forward, I committed to writing the first draft of my book in one month. It may have been a shitty first draft, but I did it. 

Figure out your HOW with a few simple questions:

  • What are all the steps between where I am today and where I want to be?
  • How can I break this down into bite-size pieces?
  • What milestones can I commit to today, this week and this month?

Don’t tolerate disorder or distraction, cuz it’s time to work. You’re on a deadline, after all. 

So there it is, my foolproof 3-step plan to developing your creative voice. Hint: your saving grace is that one guiding intention from Step 1. It’s the compass that will steer the ship home, if you let it. 

How have you managed to pull off colossal passion projects, paid or otherwise? What are your biggest challenges in bringing a creative vision to life? I’d love to hear from you.

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