I just love recapping the year. I think it does something for my soul to remember everything I’ve experienced in the past 365 but sometimes it seems like so much to sum up in one little post! This year instead of recapping what happened, I’ll attempt to share with you the big things I’ve learned this year and how it will shape 2012.
1. A TEACHABLE SPIRIT IS NECESSARY TO GROWING – I’m reminded of this one every time I make a mistake. I’m human. I will make mistakes, but if I don’t take the time to learn from them, I will KEEP making those mistakes. What a torturous never ending circle! Make a point to have an open heart to loving critique (not criticism) and the world will be your oyster.
2012 is the year I keep my mind open to critique and even seek it out from mentors.
2. SOUTHERN FETE IS A BOUTIQUE STUDIO – I’m not a 10-person team with a 10,000 foot office space and a warehouse of rentals. And Southern Fete has no plans to be that. Sometimes growth can happen so quickly. Southern Fete was booked for all of 2012 for event planning three months before this year even started. Business 101 might try to convince me to hire a wedding planner or two. But the thing is I like small. I like being the one my brides interact with when they contact me. I LOVE what Jason Fried says in his book Rework “Small is not just a stepping-stone. Small is a great destination in itself.”
2012 is the year I realize my potential as a boutique studio and stick to my limits and focus on quality service for my brides.
3. IT’S ABOUT THE MARRIAGE – I’m in this business because I think marriage is one of the most incredible blessings you can experience and being a part of the start of that is a great honor. But sometimes it can feel like my job is just about the “stuff” involved in a wedding day. Reminding myself of the bigger purpose of why I do what I do keeps me refreshed and motivated.
2012 is the year I invest more in my bride’s relationships and ask more about why they love their fiance instead of just why they love their favorite color.
4. BRIDES AND VENDORS NEED TO WORK TOGETHER – When people find out I’m a wedding planner, one of the first things I hear are tragic wedding-related stories. It’s CRAZY the things that happen! I fortunately get to hear from both brides and vendors to get a balanced perspective. Florists don’t make a couple’s vision about themself. Remember you are working for a client. Do your best job and show how much you care and that they aren’t just a number. Brides don’t make ridiculous demands. Show your vendors you appreciate what they do. Just because you hand them money doesn’t allow you to treat them poorly. When brides and vendors love working together, the wedding day goes sooo much SMOOTHER!
2012 is the year I make it my mission to bridge the gap between vendors and brides. How can that start? Communicate with each other in a timely manner. Many times it’s as simple as that.
5. YOU HAVE TO PREPARE FOR GREATNESS – This past week, Tyler and I spent all day working on our dreams and goals for 2012. It was incredibly inspiring to have that solid of a time to plan the future! (Thank you to my lovely brides for being so patient during then!) On the last day of planning, I was sort of gripped with a fear that I had made such awesome goals but what if I never achieved them. Putting a plan into action is the hard part. That day I thought of the obstacles that normally stop me and put a plan into action of how to combat it. I wrote a ton while there too. Getting thoughts out of my head and onto paper helped me see things I didn’t even realize were holding me back.
2012 is the year I set myself up in the best position possible to actually achieve my goals.
6. ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE – This year I reached what I thought was an impossible goal. I’ve doubled my gross each year the past three years I’ve been in business. This may mean nothing to most people but when I think of the statistic that most businesses fail in the first three years of business or even when I picture that brand new planner working three side jobs to make Southern Fete happen, I am so incredibly thankful for where God has taken me. He’s done this. Not me.
2012 is the year I make God-sized goals not limited by my own imagination.
7. WHAT I PUT INTO MY BODY AFFECTS ME – Tyler and I have studied so much this year about health and nutrition. It’s amazing the things you realize that can be cure/avoided with simple changes to your diet. Need a place to start? Read Clean by Alejandro Junger.
2012 is the year I put that knowledge into practice and cook clean meals and exercise often.
8. READING IS LIKE MAGIC – I’ll go into more detail about this very soon, but lately I have been amazed at how close we are to knowledge we don’t have. If you don’t know how to do something, take the time to read about it and then POOF!, now you know about it! Magic! ; )
2012 is the year I read at night instead of playing on facebook or watching TV.
9. TIME OFF MAKES ME A BETTER (INSERT JOB HERE) – In 2011, I learned a lot about balance and got pretty good at it. I rarely look at my email after hours and on weekends. At first, it was REALLY hard. I felt like I was not catering to my clients needs enough. Now I see it as my duty to protect that balance if I want to stay my best invitation designer or best wedding planner.
2012 is the year I continue to find balance.
10. I’M BLESSED TO BE A BLESSING – I don’t quite understand why God has blessed me the way He has. Sometimes I’m scared it’s too much. I’ve learned that blessings grow out exponentially. What I do with what I’ve been given can have major repercussions if I’m willing to get out of my safe little comfort zone and make a difference. And those people can bless others, and those people can bless others…
2012 is the year I take the blessings given to make and MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
Today is not just another day. How will 2012 look for you?