I just exfoliated the last vestiges of 2017 off my face. I’m ready for the quenching infusion of a new year. My skin has been desert-dry and seeking to be satiated since I was in Marrakech, and now here in Denver. You, smart reader, know this is going somewhere more metaphorical than just talking about dry skin. Agh, yes, I’m talking about a thirst for more–next-level growth and satisfaction.
Everything in my world was fine before the Atelier Doré Creative Retreat. Life was really good and work was humming along. I had just done a bit of design change to the Plumage 59 website, and the pace of a consistent posting schedule was getting more familiar. But, since returning from Marrakech six weeks ago, there has been a lot of comparing, cajoling, and coaxing going on in my head. What is the meaning of this new advanced existence? What does it say to me? Who am I now?
The retreat in Marrakech was an intense immersion of brilliance. I took in a different world that saturated my consciousness, as if it had previously been a parched wasteland. In reality it was like a drop in an ocean of a lifetime of experiences and awareness. But Marrakech was a tipping place–the ever-so-slightness that affects so vastly. When we go from great enough to evolving. Like in the turning point that transforms egg whites into glossy meringue. Beating just a few more seconds yields a whole different thing.
So I’ve been wrestling with figuring out my place in limitless beauty, of being sharp and astute, having agility, and grace. This, brought on by the people–living in Marrakech, and the women at the retreat. Sure, there was impact in the colors of El Fenn, and the lack thereof at Riad Joya. Notice taken of the smells of tagine, spices at the souk, and of argan oil. Memories in the charm of short rock walls in the forest, and waterways trickling through the Berber villages in the Atlas mountains. But the impact was with the nature of the people.
What to do with all of this?
For one, I’ve been channeling much of my excitement into more changes to the look and feel of Plumage 59. Isn’t that a much better gig than doing the work on myself? Ha! But wait, there’s some of that too. Branding, so often a dirty word in this over-commercialized, social media-ized world, has taken over my mind. Inspirations from the retreat, like Vicki Archer, Gigi Hopkins, Morgane Sézalory, not to mention Garance Doré, are outstanding at presenting their passion in a consistent identity. Excellence in harnessing their brand is why we get that buoyant, fuzzy feeling of contentment, bliss, connection when we read them.
What keeps getting more and more apparent to me is that there is an undeniable link between figuring out your brand and knowing yourself. See–there’s no escaping it! Another wonderful woman from the retreat, branding guru Natasha Lakoš, brought that back home to me on her website. First I have to get to my brand–my personal identity–to figure out my business’ brand. That means taking a good look at myself…again…and getting more clarity on the essence of who I am. What do I want? How do I accomplish that? For Plumage 59 it means determining what do I want to say, what’s my vibe, and how do I present that?
Because I’ve done the front work, I’m feeling ready to move ahead with motive (I couldn’t do the word, intention) in 2018. The other challenge (as with all things worthwhile) will be pairing my desire for growth, with strength and discipline to do it. The whole New Year’s Resolutions bit. If only it was as easy as exfoliating.
Leave a comment below about your own identity work, and what you would like to see more of here, on Plumage 59. Happy New Year!