Daring to Dream…My One Thing

Last week I shared my #1 advice to clients…to dream about the possibility of a space. Now it’s my turn to share my dreams as an entrepreneur/interior designer.

I recently returned from the Interior Design Summit in Denver, CO. It’s not what you think. It wasn’t all things pretty and sparkly and beautiful. It was about the business of interior design. I know, how boring is that? Actually, it’s the second reason I like being an entrepreneur. I have that fairly equally divided left brain/right brain activity. And the reality of it is, interior design is about 20% creative and 80% management…making the creative come to life. It’s all good to have those wow factors in spaces, but if I can’t tell a contractor what I want or understand and brainstorm the inevitable ‘hmmmm’ in construction, then I’ve done a dis-service to my clients. I’ve sold them the impossible.

Attending the Summit was so inspiring and a blast to be in a room with 110 designers from all over the country. It was interesting to hear how so many of us are burnt out, we’ve forgotten why we do what we do. We’ve gotten bogged down into the minutia of owning our own business and have no reserves. It’s easy to fall into the act of getting things done and forget the bigger picture of why we do what we do, and where we want to go in our lives and business.

On my way home I picked up a book at the airport, “The One Thing” by Gary Keller and within 2 days have read it cover to cover. So much great information and a quick, easy read full of reminders as well as new insights. And it’s not just for the business owner, it’s for any of us who feel like we’re on the hamster wheel wondering if this is the life we were meant to live. It was such a good read I am planning on re-reading it soon.

So what do I dream about? What fires me up? Where do I go from here in my business? What lights me up and keeps me getting up every morning to do more design. What is my big stretch goal? I thought about why I got into design in the first place. In 1999 I remember walking into the Seattle Design Center for the first time and I got this rush of giddiness and excitement, butterflies in my stomach and knew at that moment there was something about this that intrigued me. But my reason for landing in that building in the first place had nothing to do with interior design. I was working as a massage therapist and was meeting with Seattle Home Health and Hospice to be a massage therapist for those in hospice. It wasn’t until and 2001 that I started design school and in 2006 received my AA in Interior Design. What is THE one thing I’m working toward? For me it’s looking toward the future of what our communities look like. I know you’ve all seen the new “communities” being built. They aren’t communities they’re a bunch of homes being built on a lot as an afterthought and the only concern seems to be is how many houses can we build, how cheap can we build them and how much can we sell them for. Not to mention destroying all the trees and vegetation and leaving no room for replanting because supposedly Millennials don’t want yards? Millennials don’t enjoy being surrounded by nature and would rather look at the inside of their neighbors’ home? Really? And don’t even get me started on the interiors. Is this the best we have to offer? I sure hope not!

Let’s stop building crappy houses and lackluster communities and think beyond the ends of our noses. These communities won’t look better once you put people in the houses. You can’t put lipstick on a pig and not call it a pig! STOP the insanity and let’s do some beautiful dreaming and building, everywhere. I want to be a part of future homes and communities, that we want to look at now and 30 years from now. Something that says ‘that was great planning and foresight’! This is my ONE THING that gives me butterflies, that’s how I know I’m headed in the right direction in any action I take.

I know there are builders, architects, planners out there who want the same thing. If you know anyone who has similar dreams, I want to know them!