I'm supposed to practice self-compassion though, so here I am, cutting myself some slack.
If you're more interested in my city-building videos and don't care about the experiment of moving to a small city, scroll down to the bottom. If you're here because you want to hear how everything is going, I will oblige in many words below as I've felt the rare urge to write it all out.
This position was purposely culled to part-time for me because a) I don't want to waste their money doing in full-time hours what could be accomplished in less; b) I want to allow myself the opportunity to keep learning from my own business and get experience that will make me a better professional and mentor.
I was pretty overwhelmed last year with requests to make videos for various businesses and organizations. While I loved each project that I got to work on, it meant I was no longer taking time for my own creations (as made obvious on this blog). So this year, I'm resisting the temptation to take on more work than I need to be financially stable and will instead focus on finding and building my identity in this space. Since I stopped sharing my ideas last year, I stopped always questioning and redeveloping them. I didn't like that. Knowing this crazy world, my good fortune will probably not last forever, so I'm going to invest in my skills development and the ability to control my professional identity while I have that luxury.
We've been dreaming about somehow acquiring a multi-unit income property downtown because we're both eager to try our hand at property development. I'd love to finally be able to physically improve the city and plant a garden without negotiating with a landlord.
In the meantime, we've been enjoying living simply plus the perk of good food and nights out, courtesy of not having to pay for a car. We often work late into the evening surrounded by friends at The East, a shared studio downtown created by Wear Your Label, which I profiled earlier. We love our neighbours and interact regularly. The folks Downstairs have gotten into vermicomposting and help supply my booming classifieds worm sales. We go to the rock wall together. I dog-sit for Across The Street and share a grocery delivery with Three Doors Down. We all hang out from time to time. It's like a page out of The Happy City.
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
- Mr. Rogers
I knew I'd love the small city vibe, social life, festivals, trails, and quaint old houses. What I didn't predict was the incomparable completeness that comes from having a diverse group of friends. I could not have guessed the joy and inspiration I'd get from spending quality time with people 19-75 that cover a massive array of skills and interests. It's amazing to know someone to call about almost any challenge. It's beautiful to see their kids grow into irreplaceable community members as well. This completeness will be the heaviest anchor if I ever have to leave. It's what makes me feel at home because I know I'm a part of that completeness for them too.
- I'm still collaborating with my friends at Strong Towns and you can find my weekly field notes on their blog.
- There's a new video on my horizon about silly apartment locations, but since I don't have a car it has been a real nuisance to get my film equipment up to said silly locations.
- Drawing abilities come in handy in my work, so I'm trying to become more proficient.
- Also developing an experimental art project with the local Artist Run Centre. More on this later.