Slow mornings are beautiful. I love mornings that force me to accomplish things early in the day because there is something motivating about that. Now and then, though, a slow morning is such a refreshing way to ground myself before I dive into work.
I just recently purchased the book “In the Company of Women” by Grace Bonney. I’ve been eyeing this book for a while and this weekend I really felt like I was in a space to read it. Sometimes you just know a book will speak to you the best in a certain space. Right now this book is doing that for me.
It’s a huge collection of interviews with creative, entrepreneurial women. The answers they give are honest, inspiring and super practical in some instances. I aspire to be this type of woman: gentle, but tough, creative, confident, and ever growing. This book is like a guide to that. I think I’ll keep dipping back into it as the years go on.
Here are snippets of some of my favourite quotes:
Genevieve Gorder, interior designer, on the best piece of business advice she was given at the start of her career:
“In design school, a professor told me to always “show them your fifth idea. The first few concepts were all shared by every designer . . . get to your weird place, your special place, the fifth, sixth, seventh concept. That’s where the gold appears.'”
Cheryl Day, baker and author, on advice for starting a creative business:
“I would suggest immersing yourself in the culture of your trade in any way you can. Seek out a mentorship or an apprenticeship or join professional organizations (and don’t forget to learn about the business side of things too!) I think it is important to take an honest look at yourself and what it takes to be successful in your field of interest.”
Aarti Sequeira, Chef and television host, on what she admires in other creative women:
“I used to say I admired women who never doubted themselves, who have no fear and just kind of roar it out and do it. But I’ve changed my mind, because I don’t actually think that exists. I admire women who are open and vulnerable about the self-doubt that happens in the creative process and yet go forward and do it anyway.”
I’m thinking about my future career as a writer and creative person. This book encouraged me because all of these women took incredibly different paths to land in the positions they are in right now. It wasn’t just a linear ascent. There’s no real formula to a creative career. There’s ambiguity in that, but there is also adventurous possibility that sparks my curiosity.
I’m looking ahead to graduation in a few months and life looks like a blank canvas. Sometimes it’s easy to get anxiety because I don’t know what’s next. When I look at all of the crazy trajectories these women followed to end up doing what they loved, it takes the pressure off. It’s ok to take the slow road. It’s ok to mess up. It’s ok to do a whole bunch of things before you land at the right place. It’s ok not to be immediately “successful.” I’ve got to work up to that. And, to be honest, that journey is kind of the whole point.