I recently had this revelation: that in order to create a happy home (what this blog is all about) we must also have a happy work life too! (No matter whether we work for ourselves or someone else) Ever since I came back to Australia from my time in North America, I have been searching for what that is for me. I have this grand dream that I want my work to be a calling rather than a job. Something that integrates into my life and helps me spread happiness like pretty glitter dust all over the world.
I little while back I saw that The Declaration of Youbook was going to be available soon. I have admired the work of the authors Michelle Ward and Jessica Swift for a long time now. I hesitated and hesitated a bit more as to whether or not I should buy this book. I’ve read lots of books around finding your place in the world and most have left me wanting more. I had an inkling that this one might be more me and I finally bit the bullet last month and eagerly awaited its arrival. It feels like forever to wait for a book from Amazon to get to Australia even when you choose a faster shipping option.
Two weeks later it appeared on my doorstep. Almost at the perfect time. I was looking for something to do that day and there it was right in front of me. I dove straight in. It had me laughing from the first page and I knew that this was going to be great. There are 8 declarations that it guides you through making, with fantastic worksheets and almost a hand holding, be-kind-to-yourself but kick-in-the-pants feel to each page.
I won’t lie. Some of it asked questions that made me feel uncomfortable (in a good way). It forces you to look at what you want and why it might not have happened yet. If you’re not ready to tackle these things, you might not get the full value from it.
It’s a mix of worksheets, interviews with people on each of the declarations and activities like a vision board and a celebration jar (just to name two) that make it fun and really get you thinking and using your creative side. I think this is partly what made it so valuable to me. So many books seem to try to take creativity out of the process of finding your calling (or your declaration of you in this case) but this harnesses it in the best way possible.
There were a couple of things I ended up altering slightly, because they worked better for me, like one of the visualisations, but I stuck to the core of what they were trying to achieve through the exercise. I loved the vision board exercise more than I thought I would and now look at it every day. I’m a total vision board convert now!
I loved how it’s broken up into the 8 declarations: Enthusiasm, Uniquity, Intention, Self-Care, Success, Money, Celebration and Trust, and that you only focus on one at a time. As you go through each one, you’re asked to write your declaration for that topic alone, without worrying about the next section and by the end you come up with your Declaration of You! Whilst some of the sections made me really think hard about myself and what I wanted (I may have cried a couple of times too!). By the end of it, I felt empowered and like I finally had the puzzle pieces in the same place, if not completely together.
I realised that happiness is at the core of my calling (even if the word ‘calling’ sometimes makes me want to raise my eyebrows) and that sharing as much as I can is a good thing and not a foolish move. I want to help other people find what happiness looks like for them – in terms of work and home – and how it’s not the product of success but what helps us get there. I want to do more of the things that scare me and to find the silver linings where ever I can. I’ll be revealing more of how I’m going to do this in the months to come (including this trial workshop I’m running), so I hope you’ll stick around for the ride.
I wanted to say a special thank you to Jessica and Michelle for writing a book that helped me more than you will ever know. I look forward to revisiting it in a year and seeing how far I’ve come and what things might have changed. Thanks for making it the perfect mix of kick-in-the-pants and hand holding friend that so many of us creatives need. x
You can grab a copy from Amazon(I don’t think it’s being distributed in Australia yet)
I thought this book was amazing and I want to buy all the copies and give them to all my friends who are searching for the same thing. Where’s that money fairy when you need her?! It isn’t only for people who want to work for themselves either, it might just help you find what kind of organisation you’re meant to be working in or what field you truly belong to. I highly recommend it.
I’m an Amazon affiliate. I will make a little money if you choose to buy through the link. I will no doubt put it into more awesome books to share with you. x