I’ve done some seriously crazy things and some seriously dumb things in my time. I created a huge design and art exhibition without any prior experience just a lot of enthusiasm, and set it up like a house, in an actual house when I was 24. It went gangbusters, a little too much so especially on opening night, when we threw our launch part with absolutely no party throwing experience to match the lack of exhibition experience it seemed apt. It was in the warehouse joining the house and over 500 people turned up. Which is about 5x more than we expected. We had over 20 sponsors and a bar that went for 27 metres. It nearly killed me, and it was one of the most exhilarating things I did in my twenties.
I also took a 6-week interior and branding renovation for a restaurant and did it in 10 days, with all the tradespeople working split 8-12 hours shifts secretly through the night. Every day the restaurant was closed, there was a huge sacrifice to the budget, so we got it done in 9 nights. I slept roughly a few hours a night, and I have never been so mentally or physically exhausted in my life. We did another round of renovations to the same restaurant when I was heavily pregnant, and knocked the entire front of the restaurant out in the heaviest rains Sydney had seen in 15 years in the middle of Winter, again working through the night (quietly) to get it done in 3 days. We all survived though, and the timeframe was worth it, and the resilience gained even greater.
Arran and I launched a creative agency after never having launched a creative agency before. Arran launched a fashion brand in London with no experience. He also created a vodka brand in the Czech Republic ‘for fun’. I launched a PR agency with no experience or idea about how to do that. We launched a school for creativity, clarity, and consciousness because we wanted to try break the mood for self-development and spirituality. We had no idea about education or anything of the sort. That school is The Broad Place, and has taken us through Australia, to Hong Kong, India, Los Angeles, Japan, London and New York in the last five years.
I’m not tooting my own horn, or praising Arran, as many of these things in hindsight could have been done differently, with more grace or at a higher level than we could achieve with no experience and usually no budget or investment. I am pondering all of this as I keep meeting people that are waiting for the right moment to ‘start something’. There is no right moment. There is no level of work you can do that will ever make you feel ready. There is may never enough money, time or energy. So you just jump in.
Of course, it needs to be aligned with many factors. But nothing beats hard work. The whole ‘work smarter’ rule is key, but you cannot in my experience dodge the bullet that is getting your hands dirty and getting right into it. I keep hearing people talk about the Pareto Principle of the 80/20 rule, and how they need to make their new project ‘work for them’ etc. Sure, yeah, blah blah, of course, we all want that. But in the beginning, there is going to be a level of commitment and hard work. There will likely be a massive amount of terror and sweat and sleepless nights. And when we give ourselves the two excuses of ‘I’ll be ready soon’ and ‘I’m going to be the one person that does this with ease’ we are kidding ourselves. So we choose – would we prefer a little terror and lack of sleep for awhile, or would we prefer to just sit tight in our small, constricting very well known comfort zone?? It’s all a choice.
Sent with love,