A Year of Balance



As I look back on 2017, I would label it a year of balance. Not that I necessarily achieved it; God knows that will take much longer than a year. But more that I started to take important steps toward reaching a sense of balance in my life. I no longer subscribe to the ‘martyr syndrome’ of having to do a million things to feel successful. I don’t work till 3 in the morning because I want my sleep. I don’t need to run five different companies nor take on more and more just so that it feels like I’ve accomplished lots. I no longer say ‘yes’ to everything. There’s only 24 hours in a day and I’d prefer to spend more of that time now with my kids and partner - and on myself (and I don’t feel guilty about it at all).

Things weren’t always this way and this year - 2017 - was a pivotal year where I actively decided pare things down.

A couple of major things happened this year that caused fundamental shifts in my life. First, I decided to leave Joue Design, a textile design company that I co-founded nearly five years ago. It was a very difficult decision to pull out of something that I had invested a significant amount of time and money into - not to mention my heart and soul. It was a creative venture that took my business partner and I into new territory - running company operations, learning about manufacturing, marketing and sales. From sewing in our dining rooms to products on the shelves in Paris, it was an incredible ride and I not only learned skills to run a company but also a lot about myself.

They say that sometimes the hardest thing to do is to say ‘no’ and walk away. And yet for Joue, I felt it was the end of a chapter and time to explore other opportunities in my life. More importantly, because I was also juggling a full-time job, I couldn’t devote the time required to take Joue to the next level - and quite frankly I couldn’t see myself belonging to that next phase of the company anyway. To say that’s an easy thing to admit would be a total lie. So I walked away in June with no regrets and my friendship in tact with my business partner. 

The other major thing that happened was starting a brand-new job at the end of the summer. I had actually been looking for a new role for a while as the executive I was supporting had left the company. Given I was fairly senior, new roles were hard to come by - particularly anything challenging. But that is exactly what came my way in the middle of summer and was offered the job in August. The demands of the role meant that some sacrifices would have to be made, including foregoing New York Fashion Week in September - a decision I didn’t take lightly but had no regrets in doing so. Although I had decided to skip Paris Fashion Week for the next couple of seasons and attend New York instead, I had to put this decision on hold in order to be fully present in my new role. Now quite frankly, I could have still gone to New York but it would have caused serious stress that I was actively trying to reduce this year.

While all of this was happening, ironically my blog was taking off - and I was provided opportunities to grow my personal brand further through a variety of partnerships. From luxe brands like Tiffany, Omega, and Chanel to everyday brands like Ford, Coke, and Aveda Canada and hotels like the Fairmont, Nita Lake Lodge, Magnolia Hotel and Crystal Lodge, to name a few. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have worked with such amazing partners. 

I look forward to more adventures - including more travel in 2018. This past year I discovered my love for Cabo - which is where these photos were taken. If you haven’t been, you need to go. A perfect intersection where the desert meets the ocean. I really can’t wait to go back. In the meantime, work travel will take me to many places around the globe but the one big trip I’m most looking forward to is Italy in June. It will be the first time I’m taking two weeks off work and where Keith and I will explore the Amalfi Coast. To say I’m looking forward to it is a gross understatement. 

But for now, I wish you and your families an incredible 2018 - may this coming year be one where you accomplish your dreams - and take time out for YOU! 

Happy New Year!