Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Getting The Hump and Thirteen Creative Goals for 2013

Seems a little early to be making new years resolutions doesn't it, but I'm feeling like I need to make some changes. I have big creative plans for 2013 and my homework from bootcamp was to write a list of goals, I thought no time like the present to start planning ahead. Maybe if I make a start on some things now I'll have half a chance of achieving them by the time I get to the end 2013!

I've found over the last few months that I've not really been enjoying what I do, I've felt really overloaded and bogged down with my job, working into the small hours for my clients to the point where I'm just churning out work with little consideration just to try and get everything done. I feel like Miss Creativity has gone, her duvet days have become more regular which doesn't help me when I have deadlines to meet.  As much as I love my job, when I returned from my holiday a few weeks ago, it was the first time EVER I've dreaded coming back to work. This really concerns, it's not like me at all. I was born to be creative. I've realised it's time to take a check on what is going on and why I'm feeling the way I do.  

So what have I concluded? That I take on too much, I find it hard to say no, always tricky as a freelancer when you have bills to pay and you don't like letting people down. I'm too flexible on my rates, even if work at a reduced rate, I don't work reduced hours! This results in me feeling undervalued and unmotivated. I mostly work from home so it's easy to sit at my desk for 12 hours a day without even venturing into the outside world and only speaking to people via email, all a little bit soul destroying really. I need to change my strategy and fast, start doing what makes me happy and stop doing what's not!

So, here are the new goals I want to achieve in the hope they will bring Miss Creativity back! Some I have started as I couldn't wait until 2013...

1. Be more selective with the clients I work with, choosing only projects and clients I feel inspired and excited by and who appreciate what I am worth, taking on less but producing more quality work I feel proud of.

2. Put together a rate sheet and stick to it!

3. Re-do my CV/credentials and update my design portfolio...it's not been updated in 3 years! The purpose of my blog was to share what I am working on and so far I haven't really shared anything. Being able to see what I have done over the last few years will be a great sense of achievement. 

4. Launch my stationery business. This has always been my dream and now more than ever I want to embark on that journey.  First I need to come up with a name (#5 on the list!) and write a business plan. I'm making a start by attending The Paper Girls workshop in Manchester next week (led by Abigail Warner and Lucy Ledger) which covers all you need to know to start and run a stationery business.

5. Brainstorm a business name....any suggestions? Write a business plan.

6. BLOG, BLOG, BLOG! I've always loved creative writing and really enjoy posting on my blog....make more time to do it, plan and use it constructively to grow my business... and myself. (Hoping Holly's Bootcamp will give me a head start on this) Anything you'd like me to cover on my blog?

7. Start collecting ideas for and launch my e-mag. I've wanted to do this every since Jeanette Lund's wonderful lessons in BYW2 in June. I think I'd get so much out of producing this.

8. Get organised and PLAN it in to my schedule each day to take time out and find new inspiration rather than grabbing 5 minutes here and there and getting totally overwhelmed. Take a day out each week to wander around and visit new places or sit in a cafe and read a magazine, and as a result....

9. Fill the beautiful scrapbook my Sister gave me for Christmas last year!

10. Collaborate and meet up with like minded people and share creative thoughts and inspirations. I've made a start by becoming an admin on the London Bloggers Facebook group and taken on the organising of the monthly meet ups. Really looking forward to meeting everyone at Holly Becker's book launch next week.

11. Start using my sewing machine. I've had it for 8 months and used it twice! I 'd love to combine my design skills with sewing extending my creativity into other formats. Already attending sewing classes at Sew Over It and have another this Friday 'Free Machine Embroidery'. Time to put them to good use. 

12.  Switch off at the end of the day. Go to bed earlier and read a book......can't beat a good story to escape from it all! Any recommendations?

13. Free my mind and start doing what makes me happy and stop doing what doesn't. Believe in myself and stop trying to be someone else's perfect (I pinched that bit from the poster below but it's a great piece of advice).  

I could go on but these will do for now. I feel excited by my list and will report back on my progress as it happens. Watch this space!

I finish by sharing this great motivating poster with you.

Images 1 | 2 | 3


  1. Anna, this is a great post.

    Only earlier on today I was talking to a friend of mine who feels exactly like you do... only he is a bloke, has no tools to help himself out of the rut. A lot of freelancers have the same dilemma...

    I think your list is wonderful and no doubt you'll be going through it with great intent.

    See you Tuesday x

    1. Thanks Tina! Think it must be the time of year......

      See you Tuesday, looking forward to it. Anna x

  2. O boy... We seem to be quite alike by the sound of it Anna... I know EXACTLY what you're talking about it when it comes to rates, customers, computers..... And your goals, with a few small adjustments, could be exactly copied to mine. Mmm, maybe we should start kicking each others butt when not applying our own rules right? Lol.
    To keep myself inspired I also sometimes accept a job that pays nothing at all. Sounds weird but right now I am working with a group of people on a cookbook which features the local product in our area. No one of us gets paid but it's great fun to work on and I can do my own thing rather then having to conform to what the customer wants. Ofcourse there is always the fine balance between having to pay the bills and stuff you really love but I'm sure you know all about that. Thanks also for your great comments on my blog scribbles and notes... I'll be back! ;)

    1. Thanks SImone, good to know I'm not the only one who feels like this sometimes (although don't mean it's 'good' to feel like this!!). We can definitely give each other a good shove :-)

      The cook book sounds fab and a lot of fun. I'm hoping I will achieve something similar with my own e-mag.


  3. Hi I'm Ella from BYW Bootcamp!
    It gets overwhelming, so much to do...
    You need an ART DATE-some free time to wander and look!
    Have you read the book "The Artist's Way"-Julia Cameron
    Make a date with yourself to wander, walk and window shop, go
    to a museum, see what attracts your attention :D

    ATB 2U

    1. Hi Ella, no I haven't read that yet but I'd like to....should have added that to my 13!
      Thanks :-)

  4. Great post Anna. You take on a lot of work these days. However I totally understand the bills have to be paid.

    I've been feeling quite run down too lately. My brain has switched off in the last two weeks. So now I wind down in the evenings, or some evenings with a book.

    Keep up the fab work. Your stationary will be great I can't wait to see it.

    1. Thanks Jade, you will be one of the keepers :-)
      Take is easy x

  5. Hi Anna,

    this post really rings a bell with almost every free-lancer, I think. Well done!
    Take good care of yourself.



  6. Hey Anna
    I really love this post,it's really inspired me to make a list like this!I think its a really useful and inspiring thing to do! And its a fab way to reach out and realise you are not alone! Can I join your bloggers group..or is it Londoners only?
    And thank you so much for the interview on your blog,I loved your answering your questions and reading the comments!

    1. Thank Silkie. Of course you can join, not everyone in the group lives in London. If you are on facebook just request to join the group and I'll add you x

  7. Hello from a BYW classmate :-) I love your post, it's inspired me to think about my own goals for 2013. And I love the motivational poster - thanks for sharing! Jenni

  8. I really love your blog (makes sense as I am a Londoner having lived most of my life there, currently in Melbourne, Australia). I too need one of those lists to get back to my creative self, interestingly though I just did a course called 'Change Anything' that was really about the environment you are in making it more likely you will succeed rather than having the willpower, worth investigating. Looking forward what more this journey brings, especially post BYW, I need to navigate a move to Wordpress.org.... gaaaaahhhhh


Well if you are here then you must have read my post, so a big THANK YOU for visiting and for taking the time to comment. Your words bring a little bit of sunshine to my day (if they are nice) and I look forward to reading them. Thanks for supporting me. Anna :-)

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