1. Like you, I have left the regular 9 to 5, a secure job to pursue a daily creative life. Do you remember the moment you made this decision? How long did you question yourself before making this big decision?
About a year before I left my job, I had a folder called “the happy plan”. In it, I had notes and lists of thoughts and ideas. A breakdown of different scenarios, going part-time, leaving my corporate role etc. My heart knew I was destined for another life, so even though I was realistic in knowing I had to keep doing what I was doing a little longer, I felt positive I could make a change. It was in the summer of 2009, when I finally realized how other artists were making a living from their art in very diverse ways, that this dream started to become reality. I then took all the tools and techniques I had learned from the corporate world and life experiences so far to map out a way forward. I wrote out my long term goals and dreams then started to break them down into bitesize chunks, focusing on the outcome. My visionboard in January 2010 had “April” on it, so this actually ended up being the time I decided to leave.
2. There is no doubt that you are a brave woman as you have left your home in England and everything you know to live in a new country. What makes you so brave Louise?
Oh thank you Danielle! I wasn’t always brave! Growing up, my parents had always taught me by example to “go against the grain” so to speak – so do what I felt was the right thing, not necessarily what everyone else was doing. From about the age of 17, I started to do things that pushed me out of my comfort zone, that scared me a little, travel overseas, spread my wings a little further. At 22, I remember looking through a magazine and seeing a picture of the great barrier reef in Australia, wishing I could visit, then realizing I could, I just needed to save the money, book the flight and have a plan about where to stay and what to see!! I started to set goals about places I wanted to visit, activities to be more adventurous. I booked a scuba diving trip in Australia to try to overcome my fear of the ocean. (I did it, but am still a tiny bit scared to swim in the sea when I cant see clear water!) . There’s a saying “do something that scares you everyday” and I think the more of those kind of things we do, helps us become braver. These could be little things, like talk to a stranger when waiting for the bus or wearing a bright color! Taking these small steps helps us become more confident to try new things and cultivate the brave souls that we all are.
3. What lead you to an inner journey? Many people believe they are too busy during the day to quiet themselves and listen. Why do you think this is so important?
It’s so important to be present and listen to ourselves and the world around us. I have recognized how distracting this world can be sometimes and before we know it a year or many have passed without us even thinking about what’s important and what life is really all about. In June 2009, I complained to myself, that I didn’t have enough time to be creative, then realized the time I was watching tv could be swapped for more creative activities. I decided to give up tv altogether just to see what difference it made. So every evening, I would create, do research, visit blogs, connect with others, meet friends I admired to discuss life. I found my own life was enriched and I became so much more productive. I think its so easy to be on “auto pilot” and when we stop, take a break, go on vacation, this is when we become restless, because we know that something needs to change.
Catch the Wisdom by Louise Gale
4. The ecourse you are launching in the New Year sounds fascinating and I am very excited to join you in 2011. Why are you so passionate about this project? Tell us why this course is unique.
I’m so passionate because this course combines the right side of the brain with the left, giving us the fuller picture of dreaming and then putting ideas into action. There are some amazing ecourses out there focusing more on dreaming and identifying dreams, but what makes “Big Dreams. Small Wonders” unique is we take it a step further, we cover how to break down the dreams into actions and brainstorm ideas of what to do next to help them become reality. I am so excited to be able to show some of the tools for “drawing out” dreams and then putting them into roadmaps. I’ll be combining exercises for the creative right side of our brain (the creative, dreaming side) with the left side (more analytical, list building and executing of ideas into action). Everyone usually has a preference to one side of the brain to the other, so some may feel the exercises take them out of their comfort zone just a little, but this is ultimately growing the side of the brain they need to balance the other side with. The theories I used in my learning & development role in the corporate world also help piece the learning experiences together as we work through the 4 weeks.
5. What would you say to someone who wants change and knows they need change but they are too afraid to take a step towards change?
Ah Fear! That feeling that sits with us constantly. I am a strong believer in things working out the way they should and for a reason. I would firstly say “Trust yourself and the universe and to stay positive”. The power of positive thinking has an amazing effect. I have always been a glass half full kinda girl and even when things don’t go as planned, when I look back to reflect, I understand this “event” has taken me down a different road, that the destination is the same and ultimately brings about something positive… as long as you let it.
After realizing a change is needed, I would then suggest scoping out further (this is usually what stops others moving forward). Ask yourself questions such as; what is needed to make the change? What resources do I need, How long can I manage financially as I’m making this change? Can I cut back on anything? What are the key steps to get there? What contingency plans can I put in place in case something doesn’t go as planned? This process helps you be realistic and also overcome some of those fears, especially when you have a plan B, C, D etc, Creating such a plan helped me overcome a lot of the fear I initially felt about taking a huge step. I also looked at different scenarios: Would I think about taking some extra work here or there to help me? Could I give up spending money on x to enable me to survive longer financially? I also gave myself a date to review where I was and make adjustments if needed. Having a plan really is key, it won’t always be easy, but being able to come back to the roadmap and always moving forwards helps us stay focused. We do all deserve to live the life we were born to have and this is all part of that wonderful journey. You can do it.
Mystical Garden by Louise Gale
6. What do you think separates the dreamers from the non-dreamers in life?
I think we are all dreamers at heart, but for many, putting the initial dream or thought into action can feel out of reach and therefore wont then ever happen.
One of my favourite authors- Antoine de Saint-Exupery said “A goal without a plan is just a wish”. I create plans for all sorts of things!
We are in charge of our own destiny. There are many obstacles, other circumstances and hurdles that are put in front of us to make this more challenging, but it’s the challenges and risks we take in life that make it so much more rewarding. Overcoming an obstacle, doing something that scares us a little, pushing ourselves to grow and improve ultimately enhances our own life, our self esteem and the legacy we then provide to our children or the next generation we are here to influence. I really feel that “Big Dreams. Small Wonders” will inject what is needed for many to make 2011 a great year, and unstoppable to make positive change for years to come.
Now you know why I am SO excited to start the NEW YEAR with Louise and so many others who want to make 2011 count. Registration is OPEN right now. You deserve this. Join us!
A huge thank-you to you Louise for opening up and sharing your wisdom and journey with us. I can't wait to see you again next February at AAJ! (Major SQUEALS!!!) But, first I will see you online January 3rd. I can't wait!
Find Louise here:
PS. Before I sign out, I have to thank-you all for your comments and kindness on my last post. Your words made me blush, cheer and smile from the inside out. Thank-YOU for your generous words. I will keep them tucked inside my heart always. xo