the hustle economy

It has always been a blessing and a curse to be as eager as I am to raise my hand. A million times it has gotten me in trouble, embarrassed me or caused major social anxiety and yet i have never stopped being quick to volunteer. As much grief as it has caused, as I watch my daughter grow up, I notice that she is the same way, and I'm proud.
If teachers asked a question, if coaches needed a volunteer, if clients wanted an explanation. Even if it wasn't my place, I always have found myself raising my hand.
i volunteer to help, to lead, to go first, to try, to explain, to read out loud. I imagine some portion of the population has to be like that, or else not much would move forward in life, right?

I also know that very few people are blessed with talents so strong that they never have to speak up. I was not blessed with such talents. I wasn't the smartest- but I was quick and curious. I wasn't a strong hitter, but i could bunt my way on base and steal my way home. And i'm not an amazing designer. But I am a good talker. I can talk my way through a lot of situations- I'm the thousand words that pictures are worth. I'm not afraid to respond, to sell, to question, to fight for work. I am willing to lend a voice to things I believe in that aren't being heard. It's why I named the company Vocal.

Recently I was a featured contributor in a book called The Hustle Economy: Transforming Your Creativity into A Career. (get it here) It's been exciting and nerve-wracking and I've felt out of my league with other contributors but it also feels amazing to just go after things like that. And that's why I'm proud of my daughter. She's wrong sometimes, but she raises her hand. She's the smallest kid on the team, but she tries twice as hard. And as annoying as it might seem to her peers, if she sticks with it, she can turn it into something amazing, because being curious and also willing are some of the most important things to be. And there will always be people who need to hear things, or to have things said, that they themselves can't say. 

Discover your strengths, even if they embarrass you sometimes. Turn them into tools. They can be a huge advantage. Everyone has a differentiator that can help them hustle. And if you don't want to hustle, you better ride shotgun with someone who does.

 

what just happened.

Another year just went by. They seem to be speeding up, amiright?

2015. WTAF. Let's recap.

I laughed- but not enough. There were too many times I was too serious and too affected by things I can't control. The world is a rough place for control freaks! truth. I worked hard and sold my face off. The hustle remains my favorite part. Presenting work I believe in is my skydiving. I should probably wear a go pro headband once, because often the reactions to my enthusiasm are hilarious. Vocal had a better year than last year, and I have rad new clients, and the raddest old clients who have stuck around. 

I continue to write my book, and in the meantime, am having my first publication release in April- a book called the Hustle Economy of which I am one of 25 contributors. I also hosted a podcast this year. So in case anyone is still wondering if I miss the corporate life... please!!!! the learning and the cool shit you can do when you aren't tied down!! #noregrets 

The biggest challenge is keeping the momentum rolling. I'm exhausted, let's get real. My kids don't even nap anymore. I'm never doing less than 3 things at once. So next year? Some focus would be good. Some time face-down in a lounger in palm springs would be good. Probably for all of us. So cheers to the New Year, and let's have it:

The Vocal Top Ten for Year Three. (3!!!!!!?!)

1. laugh (more). I mean come on. Pot is legal here now. No excuses.

2. adjust. a door gets slammed in your face? your office building gets sold? adobe updates design software faster than you can open a goddamn new file? roll with it!! nimble. woo-saw

3. observe. travel and look at color and shape. watch the people. notice the patterns. store it all away so that you never have to wonder. take total advantage of your time.

4. fly closer to the sun. that icarus bullshit was just to get people to stay down and do their jobs.

5. hustle. yeah, i know. it will always be on the list. don't knock it, it's making the world go 'round while you put your makeup on during your commute. get up earlier. 

6. motivate. get people excited. make everyone around you want to try new things. make your kids want to do things. wild things.

7. meet new people. the best way to get new work is to meet people. humor, confidence and boldness are all you need. build it and they will come.

8. put your oxygen mask on first. take care of your entire family and business? take care of yourself first. don't forget that. #girlsweekend

9. break glass. there's a lot left to be broken. 

10. be wild. remember when you were 9 and the sun was out and the best thing in the world was literally just running around? do that. go outside. before virtual reality turns us into a scene from wall-e.

To 2016!!! Drink too much, dance like an asshole, and then start fresh with 365 days to do something amazing. xo

kels