Expand Your Mind – Best Reads of 2013

Last week I was giving myself a hard time because I hadn’t finished a single book in 2013. Gah. I have been given books. I have been lent books. I have bought books. YET, NONE READ. {None finished would actually be more accurate. Been working on Steve Jobs’ biography for like 10 months}. I am the kind of person who gets super caught up in a book. I love reading and once I get started, I usually can’t put the book down. I’m often hesitant to start a book during the work week as I always have a sneaking suspicion it’s going to affect how much sleep I get. And hell, I’ve needed all the sleep I can get this past year.

A few days after I was getting all mental on myself for not reading, I arrived back on planet earth. It only took a quick browse through my Evernote and Twitter favourites to remember that I read ALL THE TIME — just not books. :) Articles, posts and random doses of inspirations fly through my social media feeds every moment of every day {often in a somewhat overwhelming way}. Every now and again, I’ll click a link and be swept away. Whether it be a post that completely resonates with where I’m at today {or where I want to be tomorrow} or a big reality check in the face or something that gets my creative juices flowing… I read, re-read and share it with anyone I think might love it.

While I’ve been reflecting on 2013, some of my favourite posts of the year have come top of mind {in no particular order}:

If you’re keen on being a better human, getting comfortable with the uncomfortable, thinking outside the box and drilling down on what’s most important, than you’ll likely enjoy some of these reads.

“A good book is an education of the heart. It enlarges your sense of human possibility what human nature is of what happens in the world. It’s a creator of inwardness.” — Susan Sontag

Do you have a favourite post {or book} from last year? Spread the love. Share it with me.

PS – Since last week I’ve finished 2 books — “Doppler” by Erlend Loe and “Start” by Jon Acuff. Hurrah! Books {and sleeping} will be a part of my 2014. Setting that intention right now.

Shit Got Real

Late Night Working = Bad Habit

When I left my corporate job, I took a major pay decrease… major… and all of my {ridiculously comfortable} job security, to give entrepreneurship a shot.

Why? Because I wanted to.

I was ready to take a jump. I needed a change.

{My mother surely thought I was crazy.}

I entered into the land of solopreneurship completely unprepared.  Totally my fault by the way. I knew I wasn’t ‘corporate’ but I had no idea if entrepreneurship and small business was for me.

I started a notebook called ‘how to be a business’ … Every time someone gave me advice, I wrote it down. Every time I found some sort of magical piece of information online, I wrote it down.

I have definitely learned that it’s way easier to ask people {who have been around the block} for help, rather than search for an answer for 6000 hours.

I have become very aware of what I spend time doing and how long I spend time on tasks. {Perfectionism can be the devil.} I have begun to learn what I enjoy doing and what I should be outsourcing.

I went from working every day, all day long {with absolutely no boundaries} to a reasonable amount of hours in 6 days a week.

I am more organized {but not in a ready for tax season kind of day} and this week I achieved Inbox Zero in all email accounts. The very first time in over a year. Hooray!

I learned how to invoice {both correctly and incorrectly}, manage a budget {most of the time} and keep my clients happy.

I still have a long way to go and a lot to sort out, but I am moving forward. And finally it all feels real.

Guess what? I left corporate. And didn’t die. 

It’s been 10 months and it took me until today to feel like a business.

Today I figured out what I am worth.

A few online peeps I have learned from:

Thank you to Judy, Val, Pete, Jill, Scott, Tod and Glenn for the love — and of course, the hand holding.