Going Back to New Beginnings

Illustration by Monica Smiley @eightyseventhst

Since I announced that I was leaving my fabulous full-time job two months ago, the most common thing I’ve heard is – “I can’t wait to see what you’re going to do next!” While I appreciate the enthusiasm and vote of confidence, that comment strikes fear in my heart every single time. I thought that I had long ago given up caring what people think of me but I realize now that I do care – very much. Yet my own expectations of myself are higher than ever. Many times I’ve thought that my plans would disappoint people by not measuring up to their definition of success. But I can’t play by anyone else’s definition anymore – the playbook has changed and I’m making the rules.

“You’re so brave!” my friends say. I guess so but I know in my heart that this is the right thing to do. I thrive on challenge with creative partners, and wilt when commandeered into doing something for someone whom I don’t believe in. I’ve been thinking about buying a home in Vancouver for more than a year now. The timing is now perfect.

I couldn’t get on the plane fast enough when I moved from Vancouver to Toronto 20 years ago – January 10, 1997. My job as Beauty Editor of Chatelaine Magazine was a dream come true. And so many of my dreams, especially the biggest one (more on that another time) did come true and far exceeded my expectations. And now it’s time to go back … This time though, I’m leaving with a heavy heart. I’ll miss my family and my friends desperately but I won’t miss the frantic corporate stress, the skyscraper jungle, and the punishing winters. I plan to come back often – for work and visits – but my base will be on the West Coast.

So, what am I going to do? A lot of things. I’ve learned that my creativity is better unboxed and working for myself with a variety of different people and companies on projects. I’ll be blogging frequently and also public speaking, consulting, freelancing, travelling, teaching and anything else that grabs my fancy. I feel that I’ve earned that freedom after 20 years of working for two major corporations.

Thanks to technology, we can all work pretty much anywhere. The world is a LOT smaller now. When I left Vancouver in 1997, I packed my 20lb laptop, my flip phone and fax machine (email was only just making professional inroads) … think about that for a second! With FaceTime, smart phones and social media, we’re closely connected no matter the time zone.

I’ll be charting my journey here – the highs and the lows – and hope that you’ll come along for the ride.
Lisa xo

#QOTD (quote of the day): Love What You Do … yes, it’s that simple