This company has been one big lesson – one in surrender, authenticity, soul and instinct (among many, many other things!). I have had to throw out everything I’ve ever learned, all the elements of protocol, and covered my ears to the endless amount of advice thrown my way. Not that I don’t welcome guidance, thoughtful opinion and well meaning advice – but every time I hear the word “should” I shut down. I’ve lived my life following the path of “shoulds”, I think it time to try something else on for size.
As the visual elements of my LTY gift boxes and presentation have come together, I have been guided by an intrinsic feeling. I never quite know what I’m putting together, until I get in my zone and the rest follows. And the result is an absolute explosion of color, patterns, heart and soul. Truth be told, I fall in love with every single gift box I have put together. And I have every intention of not letting that feeling go.
As I built my boxes and the packaging started to take shape, everything just felt in flow and right. Until my head started to creep in. While preparing for the site to go live, I suddenly became gripped with hesitation. Will people take it seriously? Will they “get it”? Is it just a little too much? Maybe I should make the presentation a little cleaner, a little more consistent. How are they going to recognize my brand if there is no consistency? Will corporate clients be comfortable giving it to their clients? Company X’s gifts are so clean and two-toned. Maybe that’s what I should do. Maybe I need to just dial it back a notch. Is there such thing as TOO much heart? I damn near talked myself out of the whole endeavor through my own insecurity and fear or critical judgement.
And then dessert happened. I had the joy of going to celebrate my birthday with some girlfriends at Austin’s La Condesa (If you’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing this place, go now!). It was an occasion, and these girls are awesome – so they decided to try THREE desserts. (I rarely order dessert, let alone 3. That habit has officially changed after this experience.) They brought out the most beautiful array of decadence. The presentation in itself was a work of art.
See for yourself.
Not only were these Plates of Awesome an incredible way to cap the evening, but they also gave me the lesson I needed at that moment. In life, we have choices. We can follow the comfortable norm and walk the line. OR we can be bold, and dare to just be – however big and colorful that may be – regardless of what anyone says / thinks. Which brings me back to dessert. I’ve always been a fan of plain ol’ vanilla. Vanilla is safe. Most people LIKE vanilla, but it’s nothing special to write home about. You’ve got your fancy varieties, but has anyone ever had a bowl of vanilla ice cream and said, “WOW. Now THAT is some life altering delicious!”? Probably not.
I have spent most of my life living in a state of vanilla. Why? Fear of ruffling feathers, and really just afraid of any kind of negative feedback, looking silly, or failure. And it took me almost 40 years to finally figure out there’s another option, one a little more daring, a little more risky. Instead of living a life of restraint, why not put it all out there, in full glory of you? Like those delectable, glorious desserts, I choose to express as an explosion of flavor of all the things that make me happy and ME. Love it or hate it, no apologies. Some people (those who REALLY like vanilla) simply won’t like it – and never will. (Saffron and fruit and salty and sweet – what?) BUT those that really GET IT… WOW! If someone really gets it, they’ll appreciate it and the tribe will slowly start to form.
We don’t need to please everyone. And really – it’s an impossible task if following the true heart strings of you. You just need to be YOU. And that’s all you really need. Because it’s the best of all. And that, my friends, is what I call success. I’m ready to go BIG and let that flavor and color explosion blow. What say you?
XO – Lisa