At the beginning of 2017, I attended a "New Year Desire Map" Workshop. I'm no stranger to workshops and retreats that focus on personal development, but this one gave me a new perspective on setting goals and intentions. Instead of focusing on the things we wanted to achieve, accomplish, or attain - our facilitator asked us to first think about how we wanted those things to make us feel. What is at the core of those goals and desires? How will achieving this goal make us feel? Excited? Empowered? Independent?
Once we gained clarity on that, we dove into our core feelings which paved the way for intention setting. (*This was a 2-day workshop so there is more to it than that but you get the gist right?)
This was going to be a big year of transition and personal development. I was just a few weeks away from giving my workplace an exit notice and I was excited but anxious. Ready yet feeling unprepared. I was in a tug of war with mind and spirit, and who was winning changed at every moment. I pushed that baggage out of my mind for the workshop and wrote down how I wanted to feel and my intentions for the new year. These were my conclusions.
"I want to feel brave, committed, aligned, impactful and confident."
- I will believe in myself as a creative human.
- I will commit to improving my skills in writing and photography.
- I will drop comparison and substitute support and encouragement.
- I will believe that abundance is TRUTH and that there is room for one more.
- I will kick fear out of the driver's seat.
- I will manifest and create the vision of my life I've had for years.
This year I felt the weight of my privilege, exacerbated by the fact that I was able to quit my job and go on a personal quest for meaningful work. Not having a full time job (which I had previously latched on to as 'my purpose') to go to every day played with my ego. Amend that- it's still playing with my ego, but I'm consciously working on it. I feel like I'm on the right track but I constantly have to check my inner saboteurs. They like to tell me I'm not good enough, that I will never make enough money freelancing, that I should probably go back to a steady 8-5......
Honestly, that has been the biggest challenge of the year wasn't quitting my job.
The biggest challenge was believing in myself.
Even in moments of self-doubt, I am reminded that there is so much to be grateful for, especially as I reflect on the friendships, community and experiences the last year has given me.
TRAVEL: The Universe willing, travel will always be a significant part of the year.
2017 Travel Itenerary
February: Cannon Beach, OR, girls winter road trip
March: Monterey, CA, to celebrate my mom's birthday@ | Olympic Peninsula, another girl's trip (this was definitely the year of building strong female friendships!) | Oahu, HI, to warm up, visit friends & swim with sharks.
May: Italy, Belgium & London
June: France, my best friend flew over from Seattle and we journeyed through Paris, Dijon, Annecy and Aix-En-Provence.
July: Wallowa, Oregon, one of my favorite backpacking trips to date | Salt Lake City + Bonneville Flats Utah, for Outdoor Retailer
August: Orcas Island, San Juan Islands for Doe Bay Fest | Lake Tahoe, CA for our annual family vacation
September: Lake Tahoe, CA | Tofino, BC
November: Yosemite, CA for my grandmother's 97th birthday! | Sunshine Coast, BC | Vancouver, BC
December: Ventura, CA, for a beachy Christmas with family
2 months in Europe was the highlight of my year. I got to travel with all of my favorite people (family, husband, and best friend) while making new friendships with host families and locals. There are so many places and cultures I'm keen to visit and learn about. Next up? New Zealand to kick off 2018!
A few of my favorite photos from Europe.
And back home in Seattle....
- I got a coach.
Shane Eubank is my work/life coach and we check in and chat bi-weekly. He has challenged me to define and live by my values, helps hold me accountable, quiet my sabetours and inspires me to dream BIG.
- I have a workspace that isn't my kitchen table.
Freelancing/working from home can feel ultra isolating and lonely. Thankfully I have enough friends that are also freelancers and a few of them decided that working together is way better than working separately. They started a co-working space called Treefort and it's a motivating and supportive space and community to go to every week.
- I joined the She Explores team.
She Explores is a website and podcast for "Inquisitive women in the outdoors, on the road, and besides." The founder Gale has built and nurtured an incredible community of women from all parts of the Globe and I'm thrilled to be assisting with content.
- I focused in on what I REALLY want to do with photography.
I explored with types of photography but found myself right back where (and why) I started. My inspiration always points back to outdoor spaces and people. Recently, I've been drawn to women entrepreneurs and creatives. I want to shine a light on their gifts and promote their talents. I'm also setting an intention to begin photographing retreats, specifically women retreats and those centered around personal development and health and wellness (like, a yoga retreat in Norway?! #manifesting).