Life Lately

My mind just said to me ‘don’t write! You are empty. Just.. don’t write! Ok?!’

But today, I had to put my foot down twice! And I’m glad I did! And I’d like to ‘document’ this mildly agonizing day with a few words. So when one day I look back, I remember that sometimes I just have to say Thanks but no thanks. Or We all have to.

I am going to be participating in an annual coffee event coming up. The event committee usually does a live interview on a local BreakfastTV Channel to promote the event. A program I never watch as to me watching TV during the day is an activity_or perhaps an inactivity_ that resembles sitting in a dentist’s chair! That’s how much I dislike it! But then I’m odd and I believe we have established that by now.

The event committee picked me to showcase the event live on TV this year! I declined. And I am perfectly comfortable with my decision! I could completely see how others would jump at the opportunity. Promoting their business and the event sounds very appealing! I personally do not enjoy being in the spotlight. It’s that simple. So it’s a no.

On the other hand, I’ve been keeping my mind busy doing some graphic design work, researching cold coffee brewing recipes with nitrogen and without, designing a big background of wood and copper piping to go behind our counter at the coffee event mentioned above! My mind is doing a lot of creative thinking and problem solving. No wonder it is feeling wary of writing a post.

The past couple of days, have been spent swimming on and off in a realm of mellow disappointment, and then wading into a shallow pool of…frustration. Nothing major. Nothing too serious. No deep agony. Just…life.

Lots of hours of sitting behind the computer. Creating graphics. Revising. Making changes. All that is required to create solid designs for a…local restaurant’s Corporate Identity and rebranding.

I don’t work regularly as a graphic designer anymore. I’ve had my coffee business for a few years now and I just take on graphic design projects sporadically. So it’s fair to say it takes me a little bit longer to produce a design that I am happy with.

When I finally presented to the client a couple days ago, they seemed to like the designs, and in the end decided upon one. All good. Until…

Until they started changing the design to a point it is no longer recognizable! That process generally happens a lot when you work as a designer. I was prepared. I finally advised any further changes will be hourly billed! As well as, I also cautioned against all the changes and supported my opinion with clear reasons and objectives.

It took some dealing with the unpleasantness of basically saying to the client ‘Stop making changes! Or this design will risk becoming suitable for a 9 year old Dandelion Cookie Fundraising Group!’! Thank Goodness I did not actually use that exact wording! However, they’ve responded to my gentler version of it, and already stated they are willing to go back to the original design! Of course, that is after giving my brain little mini aneurisms every single time they’d suggest a new change or add ‘more’ bright colours!

Life is…stressful sometimes! Life is…full of doubts and uncertainties at others! Questioning our decisions, reasoning, current mood, triggers, reaction etc is part of it all! But, knowing when to stop all of the questioning, and then making a decision that is inline with ‘our’ self respect and self value, is a skill we need to master. Otherwise, we may risk allowing life to fill in all the blanks, while we are standing there..watching from the sidelines.

Author: Kat

I used to work as a graphic designer, until one day I was tragically and blissfully hit by two colliding meteors! One caused my falling in love with the world of coffee! And the other resulted in me falling out of love with the not so wonderful and nearly suffocating office culture! I left the glamour of the design world, and opened up my little café! Those were the best years of my life! I say ‘were’, because (wait! May be another time! But please do ask me if you ‘must’ know and can’t sleep tonight unless I tell you!) For the past three years, I have been living in a pyramid shape house in a middle of a green forest in the summer; a green forest buried underneath lots - I mean LOTS - of snow in the winter. I used to ‘think I still do ;)’ love the city! With its buzzing energy! I love to travel and seeing different food and coffee scenes...preferably alone! visiting ‘quirky and unusual’ places! I do not love visiting museums, hugely commercialized areas, malls and landmarks! I love old and full of heritage ‘anything’! I also love, to sit in a busy coffeeshop ‘reading quietly’ and not talking! Talking exhausts me most of the time! Watching the world unfold.. and thinking ...never does!

22 thoughts on “Life Lately”

    1. I am so glad to hear Gina! Courage is a beautiful thing. We have a big political tornado happening in Canada these days! Our Attorney General is a very courageous woman who is standing up against all the government pressure she’s been subjected to! Pressure even from her own party! I love that!
      Thank you so much for reading and commenting Gina!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your friend must sit glued to the evening news just like I do then! ☺️
        Give her my regards…
        This story is sad yet refreshing at the same time! Judy Wilson Raybould made everyone interested in ‘the truth’ again with her integrity and clear concise answers! As well as her courage and honesty!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. she does! and we chat on weekends on skype and she will show me the channels etc. we need more people like that, to stand up even when they may seem to be standing alone

        i will say you said hi, she has zero interest in social media!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Sounds like a great and amazing friendship Gina. So wonderful!!

        So true Gina about “we need more people like that, to stand up even when they may seem to be standing alone”
        I personally hate politics and can’t trust politicians, who does anyway! But JWR gave me a glimpse of hope! I’ll take it

        Oh well it’s ok your friend doesn’t care for social media! It’s not the friendliest beast 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      4. she is my rock,

        i dont like politics either but do see the need to be informed. a lot of news makes me sad and demotivates me, reading blogs like yours gives me perspective and inspiration

        Liked by 1 person

  1. (sigh) It’s tough sometimes to hold back the gush of “hey I do this because I’m good at it, listen to me”…
    Patience is a virtue, it just seems to take so long to practice it sometimes.
    Well done

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Why hold it Mark?! Why not say it exactly how you did?! Your words are perfect! Of course the tone is important too but those words carry a lot of honesty and also confidence! And a lot of times, I find, people, ‘clients’ etc need a leader! They need us to show we trust our capabilities so they can trust us too!

      I’m happy to tell you I met with the client again today, and it looks like I finally earned their respect! Was an entirely different meeting! One full of great understanding from their part! They handed me the reign and in return I explained ‘my goal is to work with you. We are both working towards a killer branding result! I want you to succeed and do amazing! That is my end goal’. I was blown away by how receptive they were today! Sometimes, it’s the only way to earn that respect!


  2. This was me when I handed my novel to my editor. We had to make deal (written in contract) that certain things in the book would not be changed. Every now and then I had to put on the breaks and tell her that she is trying to take away my original idea. Like you, I felt like my work was slowly turning into a grade school picture book.

    Whenever creativity is in play it can be dicey at times. We are the creator but someone wants to mix it up. I’m getting mad just thinking of that.

    You scored points with your professionalism. Good job on your end.


    1. Good for you. So awesome you did that!

      I guess, everyone has this imminent and deeply buried desire to express their creativity one way or another, regardless of how good they are! And when they find a little chance, they start adding their favourite flavours and spices etc to the recipe! That’s when we gently need to take the spoon AND all the spices off their hands, set it all on the counter, look them in the eye, smile, then say ‘yah great you’re doing this! I appreciate it! But I got this! Let’s get back on track and not wander off! Let’s stay focused. It’s my book! Your ideas are great, but I no longer recognize my book and that’s not my goal’

      Thank you for all the kind words.


  3. A great post, Kat. It is reflective about when and how to make decisions while listening to your heart. How delightful you work as a graphic designer but sporadically. You seem to be a very creative person who is also assertive enough to decide when it is Yes and when No. I should learn more from that. These are wise words: “making a decision that is inline with ‘our’ self respect and self value, is a skill we need to master.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Marta. Graphic Design is creative but, Corporate Identity Design focuses on creating a solid brand that is ‘functional’. If it’s creative and beautiful but not functional, the design failed. Then there’s the relationship with the client, and convincing them of this and that! It’s not an easy job! An fine artist, creates what ‘they’ want! Unless of course they’re commissioned to do specific work! A fine artist is lucky in their freedom! Corporate Graphic Designers are not as lucky. Sorry Marta, I became carried away again talking to you! 🙂 as I usually do! Please forgive my divulgence of unnecessary details!

      Thank you again for the chat. Hope your day is filled with sun and all the spring melodies!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are welcome, Kat and, yes, you are right about graphic designers being subjected to the market demands. I guess in a Capitalist system functionality is always priority number 1, which reduces the field of creativity. Anyway, I think you are a person who knows well what she wants. You listen to your heart and thus try to make the right decisions. And I really enjoy your posts so insightful and inspiring.

        Liked by 1 person

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