Jolly December

I love how everyone seems to think doing a 4 day a week HR job in London and trying to run a small craft business on the side is one big jolly. I’m so jaded with tiredness right now and have been on the receiving end of a few throwaway comments recently ūüė¶

*Keep going, stay positive*

I think I’m going to have to focus on the bigger goal of eventually concentrating on The Soap Cabin full time and retain a thick skin in the meantime…

Brighton

You may or may not know that I do Tap Dance classes in my spare time (I would say I am probably an Improver at this stage), so on Thursday 1st September I travelled down to Brighton for the Brighton Tap Festival and took 2 classes in the afternoon, followed by a stroll along the sea front and the Tap Gala Showcase at the Brighton Dome Studio Theatre in the evening!

Dried Lavender 

You may recall that we visited Hitchin Lavender Farm a few Saturdays ago and filled a couple of paper bags with the stuff. Well, the Lavender has had time to dry out, so today I pulled the dried flowers off the stems and collected them in a tall Kilner jar to use later. It smells soooooo good!

It will be great if we are able to use Lavender grown right here in Hertfordshire in our soap on a regular basis…

Spare Time

What do you like to do in your spare time? Running a craft or handmade business is great fun, but you can find yourself heading towards burnout, especially around the lead-up to summer and Christmas festivals and especially if you juggle your craft business with a ‘day’ job. Around October time someone was questioning me rather aggressively about where the business was going (I guess in their eyes it is not as successful as it should be by now – ugh) and I was so tired and drained from many changes going on in my day job, the threat of redundancy plus trying to get stuff ready for upcoming fairs and Christmas fast approaching, and I almost, very nearly burst into tears!

As someone who juggles both a 9-5 and a craft business, I find it really helpful to have some sort out outlet:

-First of all don’t be afraid to say NO. You have to do what is realistic and also have some breathing space.

-Dancing. Yes, I dabble in a bit of ballet, rhythm tap, contemporary, you name it. Maybe you enjoy some other physical activity, like running, ju-jitsu or Zumba.

-Writing. I’ve been writing since I was a kid. I love writing this blog, and I’ve also had a novel on the go for about 15 years…

-Photography. I like getting out in nature with the camera at the weekend. Rickmansworth Aquadrome, Black Park, Langley Park, the Grand Union Canal etc.

-Just sit somewhere and read a book

-It’s ok to take a day off. From everything. The world will not collapse.

-Book a massage or spa day every now and then

What do you do to wind down or let off steam?

Every now and then it is also really important to write down everything you have going on in your life and see where you can chop things out, rearrange or change for your own sanity.

Here’s an article from Create and Thrive about focussing when you’re trying to juggle too much that I find helpful to look at every now and then:¬†http://www.createandthrive.com/6-tips-to-focus-your-business-and-life

Another article I keep a paper copy of in my office is from Zen Habits: http://zenhabits.net/edit-your-life-part-1-commitments/