Is Your Ideal Daily Routine Achievable?

By: Shannon Boatwright

hmmm-a-long-walk-everyday-sounds-so-lovely

I recently read an article in the September 2016 issue of Readers Digest. It completely fascinated me and well, frustrated me. The article is titled “The Daily Routines of Geniuses,” written by Sarah Green Carmichael from the Harvard Business Review. She talks about how she has spent her life searching for the ideal daily routine and how a book called Daily Rituals: How Artists Work fascinated her. She shares all of these fabulous tidbits of information about artists’ daily habits… artists ranging from Jane Austin to Mark Twain, Charles Dickens, Beethoven, Ernest Hemingway, Arthur Miller, Mozart, Andy Warhol and Picasso. She’s right, “the routines of these thinkers are strangely compelling.” Many of them took daily walks, sometimes for up to three hours! And that was part of their daily routine, part of what helped provide inspiration and rejuvenation for their inner spirit, their mindset, their physical wellbeing, for their talents.

It is compelling indeed, mostly because I cannot imagine ever having the time to take long walks like these late greats did, much less do it daily! Many of these genius minds would spend their mornings engaging in their main talent, whether painting, writing, composing, etc, then they’d spend the afternoon doing “busywork.” As I read the article, the entire time I couldn’t stop thinking, yea that was THEN! Way back then when there were no constant, overwhelming sources of communication and interruptions of everyday modern life. No emails, texts, distracting Facebook posts, tweets, Instagram photos… no absurd job requirements, work hours, traffic, endless bills… I could go on and on. But let’s face it, way back in the day, life was flat out simpler.

I’ve written in the past about one of my mantras, which is Carpe Diem… Seize the Day! I do my best in this modern day and age to seize my days, making the very best of them. It’s not always easy and some days it seems near impossible. So I must admit that when I think of the days when some of our famous artistic idols lived and created, there is a part of me that is incredibly jealous of the time they had to focus on their physical, mental and artistic well-being. Now, I know some of them worked better in other circumstances and under certain influences, but the daily routines of so many of our late greats truly were what we would call a luxury nowadays. I start to think… how could I actually achieve that kind of time? Time in my daily life that would allow me to take long walks and rejuvenate my body inside and out. When I really think about it, I’m dumbfounded! I figure I’d either have to win the lottery or become a really well-off retiree. Or I’d have to never sleep. And I promise you, getting no sleep is not a possible part of my life if I want to actually stay alive.

So how do we conquer the modern day nonsense that keeps so many of us from living that dream-daily-routine, blessed life? What would be your ideal daily routine? Quite honestly, in this very moment, I’m so exhausted from a long day teaching, among many other things, my mind is mush and I just don’t even know where to begin to answer that question for myself. Maybe a super long, relaxing walk would do the trick. If only I didn’t have to get up in a few hours when my alarm goes off way too early tomorrow morning.

Stepping Out Of My Comfort Zone – Part 1

By:  Staci Rutherford

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” ~ Neale Donald Walsch

I found this quote months ago and it made me stop and think about where I am in my life, and where I want to be.  I have many goals that I want to accomplish, but often struggle with determining what to do first.  My time management and procrastination issues often leave me wondering how I will get it all done.  I follow a group of bloggers who are my source of motivation, because they are living a life doing what they love.  I have already established my love of handbags, and nothing would make me happier than turning my passion into a profitable business and life-long career.  Since my last post, I finally made the first move.

Before I share my exciting news, I must acknowledge two dynamic women who have come into my life believing in my vision, and challenging me to take the next step – Roshanda Pratt and Alicia Zeigler.  After several conversations about my short term and long term plans, both Roshanda and Alicia have offered advice and resources that have given me the confidence to market what I have to offer beyond my handbag blog.  Roshanda, a fellow Every Woman Blogger, is also a media consultant with R.E.P. Communications Network.  She took the time to help me focus on developing my ideas into something tangible.  While donating a handbag to a pre-Columbia Style Week event, I met Alicia, the founder of FFS Model & Talent Agency, Columbia Fashion Alliance, Columbia Style Week and the new editor of Wink Magazine, Columbia’s premiere fashion magazine.  We immediately clicked, and she too gave great advice that has been instrumental in my stepping out of my comfort zone.

After a few days contemplating whether it was the right time, I decided to follow my heart and rent a studio space at the Tapp’s Art Center located downtown on Main Street. “Studio 26” is the new home the HandbagReport.com office and showroom!  It will be an extension of my blog – a place to connect with others who love handbags.  I plan on having monthly purse parties, designer trunk shows, themed events and more.  I am excited to share this journey with you as my life is just beginning!

What Inspires You?

By: Shannon Shull

What inspires you? Outside of the love you have for your children, your partner and family. Really think about it…what, in your personal life, really taps into your inner being and brings you great joy?

Well, for me personally…when I listen to the soulful singing of Nancy Wilson, Ella Fitzgerald, Tory Amos or Adele, they inspire me to want to strengthen my own voice and share it thru song. No cheese here, music literally fills me up, it lights up my soul.

Nancy Wilson

When I watch Gene Kelly, Gregory Hines or Mikhail Baryshnikov dance – they inspire me to such a degree that it literally makes my muscles twitch. To watch Baryshnikov dance is to watch a super-human…the man is a dance god in my eyes. His talent takes my breath away.

Mikhail Baryshnikov

When I read the works of Rebecca Wells, Steven Press field, Veronica Franco, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Guadalupe de Saver, Shakespeare – it is an indescribable escape.

Shakespeare

When I see a Gustav Klimt painting it takes me away, releases my imagination.  He paints with passion.  The bold, richness of the colors he uses catches my attention and activates my mind.

Gustav Klimt's "The Kiss"

And when I see actors like Jimmy Stewart, Gary Oldman, Leo DeCaprio, Hugh Jackman or an actress like Elizabeth Taylor, Kate Winslet, and my all time favorites, the comedienne geniuses Lucille Ball and Carol Burnett, I am truly astounded by their talent and inspired to tap into my own. They’re ability to transform themselves rocks my world.

Gary Oldman

Lucille Ball

I’m a creative, artistic person so this passionate kind of talk comes easily for me. But whether the passion comes easily for me or not, I know it’s good to recognize the things in my life that inspire me.  So I’d like to challenge you to really think about the things in your life that truly inspire YOU.  Think about your favorites, think about the things that make your heart smile…think about the things you know you should spend more time doing or admiring.

Ready…set…GO allow your true self to be inspired!

And please share what inspires you with us here on EveryWomanBlog.com!

Here are examples of some of my inspirations –

Enjoy one of my singer idols, the incredible Nancy Wilson…

One of my absolute favorite dance pieces by the dance gods Gregory Hines and Mikhail Baryshnikov…

See my ultimate dance crush, super human Baryshnikov, in one of his most brilliant works of art…