2015: The Year of Growing Authentically

Of the past several years, I've had some fairly memorable ones. Years that turned out nothing at all as I'd imagined they might when I looked ahead in December to another twelve months filled with possibility and potential. Years that can be defined, with hindsight, by simple phrases: 'The Year of Separation', 'The Year of the eBook', 'The Year of Pain', 'The Year I Lost Myself'... (though not in that particular order). There were at least a couple of years there where I swore to my bestie that 'this' would be the year that I'd finally make it happen: start living my dreams, creating the amazing biz that existed in my many, many notebooks... One year, my only goal was to get to the end of the year having 'Become a do-er, not a gonna'! Sadly, that turned out to be the year I lost myself. I wanted to write about The Year I Lost Myself. Which is kind of how my quirky year-naming habit came about. "Mmmmm... 'The Year I Lost Myself'... there's a meaningful title for a blog post." And so the year-naming began! But I couldn't write that blog post. I was too sad. And words don't come easily in sadness. At least, not words that I felt I could share. After The Year I Lost Myself, there was The Year of Pain. An entire year spent in one appointment after another: the doctor, my physio, a hundred podiatrist appointments, a naturopath, acupuncturist... and finally, a counsellor. Trying desperately to figure out what was wrong, with me. I guess it's not surprising then that the next year was a big one: The Year of Separation. That was the year my sixteen year marriage, held together mostly by hope and optimism and every ounce of energy that I had to give, fell apart. And the year I finally realized that, despite the pain that I've held onto for too long, there really wasn't a whole lot wrong with me... At least nothing that couldn't be fixed by me choosing to believe in my own self-worth. I probably shouldn't have had any expectations at all of 2014, but did hold a little hope that my year might be spent working on 'The Not So Shabby Home Project'. That still may happen. It may just take longer than I thought to get to it. As 2014 came to an end, I could only define it as 'The Year of the eBook'. GGSCoverSalesPageThe Gorgeous Green Smoothies ebook began as what I thought would be a three month project. Instead, it took eighteen months - along with every ounce of determination and focus that I had throughout the year. (Or at least, every ounce that wasn't required for damage control following The Year of Separation.) No year - ever! but certainly not over these past several years - has turned out as I imagined at the beginning that it would. Many of these past years have involved pain and struggle. Every one of them has involved growth. And progress. Even slow progress. And although 2014 is now my Year of the eBook, it could just as easily be 'The Year I (Finally) Became a Do-er, Not a Gonna'. That momentuous goal slipped in sideways there - by the seat of it's pants! A worthy goal ticked off my Worthy Goals list!!! So as 2015 begins, I can say with a fair amount of certainty that I'm sure it won't turn out exactly as I plan. But regardless, as with every year, I will begin with a plan. And perhaps this year I may stick a little closer to my plan than other years. We'll see! Over the last several weeks, I shared on Facebook that 2015 will be my 'Year of Raw Desserts'... and the year I really get back to reading... and... and... !

But here's what I really want for 2015:

The one thing that truly matters to me as I look towards the possibility and opportunity that another year brings is that I begin to discover/reclaim/uncover/GROW my 'authentic me'. And that I start living my life fully expressing everything that is important to me, both in the choices I make each day, and especially in what I bring to creating my dream biz. I don't want to spend any more years hanging around on the outside of the truth of who I am, of what I value. I don't want to spend another minute afraid to stand up for myself and the things that are so important to me, afraid of offending someone, afraid of rocking the boat, making waves...

And here's a glimpse at the journey that living authentically in 2015 might take me on:

Wanna-be Raw Foodie... & Barefoot Beach Hippie!!

In late 2008 and early 2009, around the same time I discovered green smoothies, I also started to introduce delicious and amazing raw foods into my diet. Homegrown sprouts, zucchini flax crackers, big beautiful salads, kale and sweet potato chips, juicy mangoes, chocolate bliss balls, raw cheesecakes... If you've never tried green smoothies or raw food, that all may sound a bit crazy to you! But all I know is just how good I felt, and what amazing energy I had when I was eating so beautifully. I want that again for myself!! That incredible energy and feeling of vitality, aliveness. I LOVE how my morning green smoothies make me feel. Imagine that... x 10!... x 100!!! What I did find though, is what many others have experienced... that eating raw food or even just a diet that's high in raw foods can be something of an emotional and even spiritual journey. Six years ago, I wasn't ready for that. The circumstances of my life had me soon running back for the comfort of buttered toast and everything familiar. I don't know if I'm ready for it now! But part of discovering my 'authentic me' is to follow those sparks, do the things that light me up, and create a life where I'm living with the very best energy that I can. With food, I already know how to do that. It's just a matter of choosing to do it. And then choosing again the next day... and the next! And the barefoot hippie on the beach?! The beach is my healing place. It's where I can kick off my shoes, walk along the water's edge, and get 'grounded'. And with my favourite beach destination having a very awesome wholefoods cafe with amazing raw desserts... how can I not love to go there every chance I get?!? GirlWriting

Image Credit:  ynsle at stock.xchng

My inner {prolific} writer! I've always had a little envy of my lovely online friend Farnoosh's amazing writing ability. I remember reading Twitter updates during her holiday to Australia a few years back, when she managed to write an entire ebook in just a couple of days. On holiday! No 18-month ebook projects for Farnoosh. She is truly 'prolific'!! Me, I'm prolific too. In my 'Morning pages'! Hidden away in my many notebooks!! It's nothing for me to write two, three, four pages of a morning, to pick up my pen and pull out my notebook, and to look up an hour and a half later, oblivious to the time that's passed. But to write and share my thoughts and ideas? I find that SO much harder to do. Sometimes the words feel so stuck. When the truth is, they really do want to come out! I used to write poetry. A lot. I wanted so much to share my poetry. (Not all of it mind you, but some. The 'good' stuff!) And I did, once or twice. But not confidently. Since I was young, I've written journals and diaries, poetry and 'Morning pages'. In 1997 I stopped writing. And it wasn't until I read Julia Cameron's book, The Artist's Way, in 2008 that I picked up my pen again... and haven't put it down since! My inner writer is prolific. With a LOT to share. Some of it 'good', some of it not so good!, some of it funny, some inspiring, some maybe ridiculous... But there's no doubt in my mind, my authentic me will be found with pen and paper in hand. Very likely by the beach, a lake or the river. With a green smoothie by my side! And my authentic me will find a way to be courageous. To share my writing, not keep it fearfully hidden away in my notebooks.  

FabricHeart!Crafter, Fabric Lover & Would-be Home Decorator!

For so many months now, I've looked longingly at my patchwork fabric noticeboard, fabric hoops and 'Subway art' and wanted nothing more than to create something. Anything. With fabric. Something out of my head. Away from the computer. Not words, documents, or files... Curtains, cushions, more fabric noticeboards. Quilts for my kids. A quilt for me!! In January, or maybe February, this year, I shared with my beautiful, creative friend, just how much I was longing to start a craft project. At the time, she gently and innocently reminded me to not be distracted, to focus on the ebook, to finish that, and then to play with fabric. Sound advice! But she couldn't have known. I couldn't have known. It was meant to be just weeks until the ebook was finished. But turned into months. And so, I've sat at my kitchen table, for months, looking longingly at things I've created, at the beginnings of my 'Not So Shabby Home Project'. And I've felt that I was giving up, postponing something that was hugely important to me. In 2015, my 'Year of Growing Authentically', I'll listen to those longings. And I'll act on them, not push them aside. Because I suspect now, with hindsight, and in fact I'm really, REALLY sure... that doing the thing that truly calls in the moment will never take away from those other projects we're working on, but instead will only add... energy, spark, enthusiasm and, eventually. momentum!

Pinnable12DigiMagsSharer of Awesome Resources!!

I have big things planned for 2015! For the last few years I've written about wanting to share resources to help women grow their dream biz (and dream life!). To some extent I've been slowly doing that. But in other ways, I know my fear, and lack of clear focus, has held me back. Sharing books, ideas, inspiration... connecting the right person with the right book or resource... it's the thing I love to do more than anything else. It's absolutely and definitely where the sparks are for me! Who knows... it may even be my superpower!! This year, it's time to really make this happen. Not to just write about it, dream about it and talk about it... So when you start to see posts like the 2015 Reading List I hope to share next week, and '30 Awesome Resources for Your Dream Biz', know that I am without a doubt travelling my authentic path. And that in doing exactly that, I hope too to inspire and support you as you do the same.

Finding some balance between biz and life!

There are many entrepreneurs who will say there is no such thing as work/life balance, and I tend to believe that's true. Creating my dream biz is super-important to me. But after eighteen months of being focused totally on creating my ebook, to the exclusion of so many other things that are also important to me, I feel like it's time now to deliberately not focus solely on my business. I don't expect to discover that elusive work/life balance. But I do have a really good feeling that as I get back to finding my green smoothie loving, raw dessert loving, pen-to-paper, not so shabby home decorating, barefoot beach hippie... my authentic biz will emerge right there along with the authentic me. At least, that's the plan!! What about you? What do you have planned for yourself in this new year filled with opportunity? Leave a comment and let me know! Wishing you a year of authentic growth! And whatever else you need 2015 to be for you... Signature3

8 thoughts on “2015: The Year of Growing Authentically

  1. Wow Brigid, what a journey you have had. I may not comment, but I read every post you write. I think this year will be a good one for you. Just my intuition.

    xx Liz N

    1. So good to see you here Liz! So much time has passed since we last caught up in QLD.
      It’s definitely been a journey these last few year. I’m due for a really good one, so hopefully that intuition is spot on!!

      Thanks for being here, quietly reading! xx Brigid

  2. You r really inspiring Brig and my year is embarking on a new career which I studied for last year and being positive about all the things to learn about a new work environment and the ins and outs.And of course experimenting a little more with Green smoothies to give me energy for those mega early mornings I m about to embark on.I look forward to reading more of your blogs

    Love Lois

    1. Hey Lois! Sounds like a great year ahead for you, starting out on your new career. Look forward to hearing about it!
      Good luck with the early mornings. Green smoothies will be a great way to start your day to keep the energy going. Let me know how you go with the experimenting, and what your favourite recipes are!

      Hopefully many more blog posts to read this year!! & another catchup. It was so good to see you after so long!

  3. Hi Brig, I thought I would just put out a friendly hand and say hi! My name is Veronica but I am a lot like you I keep saying gonna, and it never gets done but I decided last year to write and not stop. I am a new member of the A-list bloggers, and I hope to learn a lot from the experts here. Your blog is truly inspirational, and I shall do my best to keep on writing maybe one day get paid for it. Thanks Brig. Veronica

    1. Hi Veronica, and welcome to The Inspired Notebook! Great to see you here.
      Sounds like you had a great year of writing last year. With regards to one day getting paid for it, stick with it, persist, persist and keep persisting… and I’m sure you will! We’re fortunate that there are so many great bloggers and online biz owners to learn from, and so many models of how to make it work.
      I hope 2015 is the year you make it all happen too!!

  4. Hey there Brigid… love your notebook comments and entries (and also your honesty and integrity). I understand the pain of grief and loss, but through facing our trials in life, we come to a deeper knowledge of who we are (as our authentic selves). One day I look forward to the publication of your book(s). You are a brilliant and natural writer, and it is a real gift. Keep up the good work. You inspire me to write my own story. Thanks once again, and keep me posted. The poetry is a gift of life only for the few and you have it. Keep punching those lines out!!! Love Peter

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