If the EU Debate is clouding your Father’s Day, I’ve got the perfect cards for you. Just save the image below (with all the white space) print at A4 and it will fold down to an A6 card.
Fed up of seeing red everywhere you go? Just choose your poster, right click on the large image of it below and save the image. Then print as many as you possibly can and basically wallpaper the whole of the UK with them if you don’t mind. More options coming later today.
I have been engaged in a full time battle with shyness since adolescent awkwardness arrived on my doorstep. And I’d like to consider myself a success story.
That’s not to say I never feel anxious about social situations, but I certainly know how to rein it in.
Surround yourself with people that believe in you
You know what you can do, and so do your friends. Tell them what you’re feeling anxious about and with any luck a little bit of reassurance will go a long way.
Force yourself to engage
Just a little bit. Talk about the weather with the person serving you at the post office or say good morning to the old lady you’re about to pass in the street. Most people are open to a little bit of small talk and just getting into the habit of it will give your confidence a little boost.
Do something that terrifies you
I can honestly say the biggest steps forward I’ve made in conquering my shyness have come from jumping in at the deep end. I can’t tell you the number of sleepless nights before a big “thing” I’ve had, but I’ve always reassured myself that once it’s over I’ll feel like I’m on top of the world. And I always do.
Fake it til’ you make it
Just look like you know what you’re doing and people will assume you do. Stand up straight, walk confidently and
If all else fails, smile
Feeling like it’s all about to come crashing down around you? Just relax, smile if anyone makes eye contact with you and if there’s something you need that’s stressing you out, ask for help. Sometimes everyone is just muddling along, you’re no different.
Because your life is a journey, and all the things you want are dotted along the path – you just need to find the right one.
When I first started Veronica Dearly, it was a wedding stationery business. At the time, that felt completely right and turned out to be a brilliant stepping-stone into greetings cards & gifts, which is now my main offering.
However, before that, I had wanted to be a Flight Attendant, a Baker and a string of other things that never got off the ground but took up a lot of my time nonetheless.
I talked in my last post about the constant bombardment of obsessions I navigate through, which has applied just as much to the big stuff in my life as the small stuff.
I knew when I started that I was doing the right thing, simply because I was actually doing something about it, instead of endlessly messing about. But if you asked me now if I wanted to run a wedding stationery business? I’d look at you like you had two heads; I absolutely do not want that.
It was perfect at the time, and I loved it despite not really feeling like it was my “thing”, and if I hadn’t done it then who knows what I would have ended up doing. Sometimes, you just have to accept things as a part of a bigger journey.
You might know where you’re headed, and have your path clearly mapped out, but equally you might feel a bit like you’re floundering and not really getting anywhere. Either way, make a start on something that makes you happy, and figure everything else out from there.
If there is one thing I am incredibly prone to it is fixation. Something pops into my head and I spend hours, days, sometimes weeks (and tonnes of money) obsessing over how to make it work before realising that actually, it’s not what I really want or need to be doing.
And this is a constant cycle. Working out whether to ditch an idea early on, or push through and try and bring it to life is a really important part of making your dreams come true.
This can obviously work in opposition to us achieving what we want. If we don’t know what we really want then how can we get it? So for me, sorting out what is going to be an internal fad to what could turn into something bigger is an important process.
Unfortunately, it’s not an exact science, and involves an awful lot of ‘going with your gut’ but this is my process of elimination:
Can you see yourself doing it?
Really? Really, really? Because if you can’t even imagine it being part of your life, this might not be the one.
Can you see the path to success?
Not all the nitty gritty details you might have to spend time investigating, but do you know where to start? And roughly where this journey will take you? For some things this is simple, ie. you want to learn the piano, so you get a piano and find a piano teacher – done. For others, ie. you want to start a charity that helps a cause you feel strongly about, there might be more to investigate.
And that’s not to say that if it’s difficult you shouldn’t bother, absolutely not – but sometimes we need to think carefully about what we are willing to put in.
Have you got what it takes?
Or can you get hold of it… is this going to take a lot of money? And if you haven’t got it is it worth the risk of getting a loan or do you think you can get investors? Or does your dream need some kind of skill or qualification? If you don’t possess it already then how can you get it?
Are you happy with the sacrifices?
Look at all the above, and you probably know already whether this is something you really want, or if it was just a passing fancy.
I’ve realised something recently. You can do things, but only if you really want to.
As the saying goes, if you want something enough you’ll find a way, if not you’ll find an excuse. And that was me a few years ago, excuse after excuse.
I’ve always wanted a creative career, always, ALWAYS. I remember my art teacher telling me if I didn’t get at least a B in my art A-level then he would have failed as a teacher. I didn’t get my B, but it wasn’t his failure – it was mine.
I was coasting, flitting from idea to idea, never really expanding on any of them enough to give them a real chance and leaving everything to the last minute, and then throwing something together I knew was basically rubbish.
Fast forward to now, around 10 years down the line and I did it. I got past all the nonsense in my head holding me back. I got past all the real life, tangible obstacles; lack of practical knowledge, business skills and everything else that could have stopped me. I got my creative career, and I made it myself.
I worked out, that I can do things. And you can too. Whether that thing is a creative career, running a marathon or learning Mandarin – if you want it, you can do it.
And that’s what this will be: me sharing my journey, getting past all my blocks and getting what I wanted, in the hope that it can help you do the same.
So I have spent the whole summer in pastels, but I found myself in New Look after a sling back disaster and fell in love with this outfits. In fact, I’m wearing it right now.
I feel like I must just get through Autumn now.
So this year The Terrific Project is taking on a life (and a website) of it’s own.
And for those of you that don’t dig big planners, there’s A4 wall calendars too.
I hope to see your terrific things on instagram + twitter, show them off and join in with #theterrificproject
I wrote a post last year about trying to enjoy the journey and the anticipation. However, it seems more and more that I’m living in anticipation of something that may be happening next week, next year or at some indeterminable point in the future. Just waiting for that to happen, surviving until I get to that next step.
And so many things are passing me by.
So many happy times, so many milestones and moments going unnoticed. And it crushes me every night, like a huge weight on my chest. One day, I will be old. One day, the things I have today will be a memory and nothing more, and what will I remember?
Will I remember the things that consume so much of my time and brain power? The administrative tasks that keep me awake, the reviews that ‘could be better’ or the daily inconvenience of having to find a parking space on the school run? I hope not.
I want to remember the best things from every day, the things I look forward to. The things that aren’t big occasions, but seemingly insignificant moments of joy and gratitude. And if I want to remember them I need to feel them, I need to allow myself to feel them.
Instead of rushing Tabitha along when she wants to walk along a wall I need to hold her hand and take a photograph.
I have too many plans. I have too many targets. I only have one now.
And I’m going to try and pay more attention to it.