BOLD. BRILLIANT. BEAUTIFUL. YOU.
When I first heard about the #BoldBrilliantBeautiful project from Amy of This Heart of Mine, I immediately wanted to participate. And then some inner thoughts took precedence over my initial excitement to be more bold and be more of me, and I questioned everything. But you know what, I am ready to quiet the negative voices that have been holding me back from trying new things, from being true to my passions, for being ME. Some of these voices are from people I know (some I know very well) who have been critical or negative in the past or uncomfortably silent, and some of these voices are internal. Either way, I am moving beyond them. About six months ago, I decided to challenge myself to ignore the negativity and associated actions of others. I decided to not allow the negativity around me to consume me, change me or affect me in my day to day living. I guess the next step would be to finally get those thoughts and voices out of MY head. There are plenty of supportive people in my life and their encouragement is steadfast.
So how am I going to be more BOLD, more BRILLIANT, more BEAUTIFUL this year?
QUIET THE NEGATIVITY
I am going to look at my past (both personally and professionally) and see the GOOD, and I am going to say OUT LOUD:
I am proud of myself.
I am proud of my roles as wife and mom. I am a great wife and mom!
I am proud of my commitment to my boys and their food allergies from day one when that meant things like giving up entire food groups for a year or taking a financial loss to stay at home with them.
I am proud of my inner strength to get through hardships like financial strain from starting a business, moving to a new city for a new job, stress, illness and poor family relationships.
I am proud of my faith and my values. It is because of my faith in God, in my husband and kids that I know we can do and get through anything. We do it together, we always have.
I am proud of having a creative idea (or many) and having the guts to start a company! I am proud of learning the ropes of product design, manufacturing, PR and running a business all by myself. I am proud of all the customers who LOVED our product, the magazines who continuously wrote about joyababy and all of the stores around the world that carried it.
I am proud that when I need to put my family first, I do it without even knowing. I am proud of myself for trusting my instincts.
I am going to look for the successes ahead, and take the failures or mistakes in stride.
I am going to surround myself with family, friends and fellow creatives who are positive people. People who encourage others to do their thing, whatever that may be.
I am starting to believe finally, that we don’t all have to agree, we don’t all have to be the same, we even don’t have to place the same value on something, to be supportive.
All of this will take time and I will practice. But saying it all out loud is the first step.
BE BOLD, BRILLIANT AND BEAUTIFUL
Thinking about Rajovilla and this space here has me shuffling things around. I dabbled over the last year with different types of posts, never really finding my rhythm. I also have spent the last 9 months creating something new behind the scenes. But I have hesitated for whatever reasons in sharing it with the world. (Negative voices in my head?) I have been asked to collaborate on projects with other amazing creators and entrepreneurs, and yet I have been slow to say yes. (Self doubt?)
I think I know why now. Initially, I thought that the timing wasn’t right, or thought “look how rough our fall season was” with illness and other issues. And those are part of the picture along with the negative voices. But really after serious reflection, I realized that I couldn’t fit “being creative and sharing it with the world” in my top priority of “mothering” three boys and taking care of my family life. I wondered how those two could coexist at the top.
And that is when I had an “aha moment” through a conversation with my older two boys at the dinner table this week. I was visibly upset and annoyed that I recently saw a blatant copycat out there of joyababy. The boys asked to see the copy and responded “how can they do that?” and we talked about design and patents and the importance of being original and honest. And then my ten year old said “Well Mom, let’s just start a new company! We have so many ideas and you have so many ideas.”
And you know what? It may be as simple as that. My boys (and my husband) know me, they know I love to create. They know I love to paint and sew and design. And they love to be a part of it all. My kids want to be mini entrepreneurs themselves. Last summer when I made a new pie recipe, they wanted to sell pie slices at the local farmer’s market. They got out paper, pens, did research and planning. Another dinner table conversation was about opening a family restaurant and bookshop. They even sold decorated ROCKS for charity from our front porch.
My husband and my boys are my biggest fans! They get me, they share in my enthusiasm.
I can be ME and keep my top priority of taking care of my family. Because I am part of my family. We need to nurture each other.
Rajovilla is more clear to me now as well. It is my new brand. I will be finishing that collection I mentioned above and releasing it fearlessly into the world, (or somewhere close). My Rajovilla portfolio will share my ongoing projects and dare I say it- freelance opportunities and collaborations to paint, create and inspire. I think I will say YES moving forward. The Rajovilla journal will be a little different. It will not be full of tutorials, party ideas, DIY recipes and crafts. I love making, crafting and cooking. And I will still be doing these things as usual at home and sharing some photos here and there, but it doesn’t come natural to me to write it all out, all the time. There are many amazing and wonderful creatives out there that do this SO WELL. At church last Sunday, on the Feast of the Epiphany, the priest said something that made me stop trying to quiet the three year old, “What if we all see the spectacular in the ordinary?” Being authentic to me here at Rajovilla would be writing and sharing photos about everyday living, simple joys and happenings. Writing about the spectacular in the ordinary. Maybe it will be an extension of my Instagram photo stream that I enjoy so much.
Lastly, I want to continue to dream big. We want to travel as a family. A big dream of mine is to take my husband and three sons to India to visit family and Rajo Villa. I want to be able to document my India, as I know it through my photographs and paintings. I want to give life to my childhood journals that lay in a box. I want to continue to be inspired by my culture for design. This may take some time to financially be able to afford a family trip and time away from work, but I look forward to the possibility in the future.
I want the Rajovilla brand to be rich with culture, vibrant like life, down to earth and fun. I want it to bold, brilliant and beautiful like me.
Join me in visiting all of the women who are part of the Bold. Brilliant. Beautiful. You. project:
Will you join us? Let everyone know you are joining in by sharing a photo of yourself with the hashtag #boldbrilliantbeautiful on Instagram and Twitter. Search the hashtag and visit these blogs to find other women like you (and me) who are looking to make 2014 their best, most authentic year yet!
About the Bold. Brilliant. Beautiful. You. project:
Throughout the year, I’m joining forces with some of my blogging friends to motivate and encourage ourselves and others to be bold and step out from behind the lens, projects, and mama status to show ourselves. That’s right, we’re doing something just for us.
And we’re inviting you to join us! Each of us has something bold, brilliant and beautiful inside—whether it’s a dream to ask for a promotion, wear those sparkly shoes in the back of our closet, or start a non-profit. The #boldbrilliantbeautiful project is a support group for all of us seeking to be real and vulnerable. No judging, no questions, just support and words of encouragement.
Be a part of the project by using #boldbrilliantbeautiful on Instagram and Twitter to find other women like you, who are looking to make 2014 their best, most authentic year yet!