I can’t believe I’ve been writing this blog almost 10 years (the anniversary is coming up in October).
Because of my blog I was able to buy my first house, and renovate it from top to bottom. And if that wasn’t enough, rip out my front and back yard and turn it into an English garden.
It’s so beautiful now that it’s maturing, when people walk into my backyard they think they’ve arrived in a secret garden.
Garden design (Long distance eDesign) by Maryanne White in New York
Here are the 2 best things I’ve learned in my year of being 50 and almost 10 years of writing this blog:
You’ll NEVER get to the end of your to-do list
In the world of on-line marketing, there’s always another ground breaking article to read, social platform that you should join, or posting that needs to happen on the social media accounts you already do have. There’s always another blog post to write, and when you get to the end of all that, online programs to create and launch.
Depending on your business model, your list looks different, but if it’s on-line, it’s a never-ending list.
I’ve learned that I need to stick to what I’m good at, which is creating content that I’m interested in, rather than focus on a to-do list created by anyone other than me.
In the end, I’m just going to do what I want anyway regardless of any to do list I might have with a bunch of should’s on it. It’s floating around here somewhere (no idea where it is at the moment).
Maybe you’re OKAY just the way you are
I live in the country, where affordable housing exists (Downtown Vancouver is one of the most expensive cities in the world to buy a house), but the biggest reason I live kind of in the middle of no-where (because I am a city girl) is because my Sister and my Mom are my two closest friends.
There’s no-where I’d rather be than in my Mom’s Carriage house at 5:30 am (located a 2 minute drive from my house) with my Sister Elizabeth (who lives in a house on the same property) on any given morning analyzing life with a good cup of coffee.
Maria and my Mom Hellen
Because I work alone and don’t get out much (unless I’m travelling around the country leading my colour workshops) I have no one to compare myself too. Except other people on-line, and their highlight reel, which always looks better than my life currently does.
I see other bloggers and influencers working with brands and I worry that I should be doing more of that.
I see other designers launching product lines and I worry that I don’t have my name on a can of paint some where.
And then, I read a book by Gretchen Rubin called The Four Tendencies. I saw her speak at a conference last Fall and immediately purchased her book.
It’s truly groundbreaking and I highly recommend it.
I am a questioner/rebel. I question EVERYTHING. It’s likely that side of me that had me create a system that is changing the way the world sees colour.
The rebel side of me resists being dominated by anyone. This perfectly explains why when I worked in the corporate world, I was fired about 7 or 8 times.
Writing this seems obvious now but it wasn’t so obvious until I realized my tendency.
And I’m grateful that the colour workshops I lead all around the country every Spring and Fall, are so popular and well attended! That people continue to buy my eBooks and colour boards online and that my eDesign department is such a big success!
The so-what of all this is that I have a very successful business model that works for me and my personality.
As long as I have wi-fi and a laptop, I can work from anywhere in the world, including Palm Springs where we’ve spent the month of January the last two years.
If you look around at the life you have right now, and notice what you’re doing right now, that’s what you’re committed to.
So the biggest lesson I’ve learned this year in my 50th year, is that I’m okay exactly where I am right now.
And it’s not like I’m going to stop growing and improving, but I really can stop comparing myself to everyone else that’s doing something a little different from me that looks more glamorous than what I’m doing right now.
This year as I turn 51, I feel blessed.
Last year my best friend and sweetheart Terreeia planned a fabulous 50th birthday party for me and this was my favourite photo, taken by my sweet Mama. It was the the best birthday I’ve ever had. Everyone I love was there, it was a very special day.
Maria and Terreeia
This year, I want to ask for the same favour as last year:
Will you leave a comment telling me one thing that my work has helped you do? That would be the best birthday present!
It could be building your dream house, or your dreamy white kitchen. Or your business experienced a transformation after you completed one of my colour workshops.
This is what makes writing Colour me Happy worth it!
All I ask is that you be specific, include actual numbers if that’s appropriate. Share your Story.
Thanks in advance — and here’s to the best year yet.
PS. We leave for Spain and the Amalfi Coast on Monday, follow along on Instagram and my insta stories, it’ll be fun!