I KNOW YOU’VE BEEN WONDERING … what kind of photos I received in response to the invitation to ‘Send Me Your Smiles’. Well, as it turns out, some fabulous ones! It was great fun working them into a short upbeat inspirational video. Check out ‘Sunny Smiles‘ and pass the link along.
REFLECTION: Last day of August. First day of September. Summer transitions to autumn.
I’m looking at the list of projects I’d planned to tackle over the summer months when my business is typically slower. Truth be told, I’ve made a dent, but not moved mountains. Research, redesign, product development. Yep, progress on all those fronts. But nowhere near what I apparently anticipated in those more optimistic, summer stretching out ahead of you, early days of July. Maybe you find yourself in the same situation – with merely a dent in work related tasks or home and family projects.
Frustrating? Somewhat. Discouraging? Only mildly. You see, one of the things I’ve learned so far in life is that my ambitions always have and always will exceed my time and energy. That’s just the way it is.
On the other hand, there were so many things that never appeared on the ‘To Tackle’ list in the first place that have contributed to two memorable summer months. Visits with sisters. Connections with friends and neighbors. Mentoring chats with ‘just beginning’ colleagues. Time with my folks at the farm. Adventures with my grandson, my husband, my children. Hours in the company of watercolors. Moments in the garden, along the river, appreciating the great outdoors.
The contrast speaks to the balancing act between making a living and making a life. I was reminded of that distinction this week with the passing of my dear friend, Courtney Milne. Courtney was a world class photographer who made Saskatoon his home. Over the last decade, Dave and I became good friends with Courtney and with his life and business partner, Sherrill.
Courtney saw the world in unique and exciting ways. He unabashedly shared his vision and enthusiasm with the rest of us. Over the years, we had many conversations about the business of making a living from creative pursuits. In the end, which came far too soon for Courtney, the most meaningful part of it all turns out to have been the business of making a life. At this, Courtney was a master.
ACTION: I encourage you to pause for a moment or two as you head into the fall. Pay close attention to the balance in your world between making a living and making a life. Yes, they can and do feed each other. But, in the end, don’t be left with a laundry list of regrets about making a life, having sacrificed far too much to the business of making a living.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK: Who wants a living? I want a life. – Jack Kerouac
RESOURCE OF THE WEEK: I know I’ve mentioned Courtney’s work in the past. However, if you’d like a reminder, or you’ve never checked it out, now is the time to check out Courtney’s website. The image in this posting is from his Pool of Possibilities daily e-Calendar – truly a feast for the eyes and the spirit!
READERS WRITE: In response to last week’s message, Urgent…Or Not, Pause reader JP writes: “I’ve found that some of the most surprised reactions I get are when someone (like your clerk at Shoppers) is apologizing all over themselves and I’ve said, “Not to worry, I’m not in a race.” Do I get impatient sometimes and overwhelmed by my perception of the urgency of a situation? Of course. But most of the time I’m able to assess the situation, realize no lives are at stake, and choose to have more pleasant interactions with the humans I’m sharing space with at the given moment. Thanks for the reminder – particularly timely as so many of us come off vacations.”