There have been many articles, blogs, and interviews from lifestyle and life coach pundits that tout the importance of finding time for yourself. And what I’m sharing in this article doesn’t argue that. In this fast-paced, take-no-prisoners world, it IS important for each of us to carve out time in our busy schedules for ourselves and our loved ones. However, I’m taking that one step further and using the time I carve out to be a creative outlet for myself.
A little over two years ago, my partner and I bought a cabin in the North Georgia Mountains to be used as a vacation rental. Hopefully we’ll also use the cabin as our retirement location when that time comes. When we purchased the cabin, it was, of course, unfurnished and we needed a cabinet to store all the media equipment. We didn’t want to buy one. After all, the cabin WAS going to be a vacation rental.
So we bought an English-style console that was obviously manufactured in the 1970s. Somehow I knew I would be able to paint the console in such a way that, when finished, it would look like an old antique. I did some research online, found that chalk paint would do the trick, bought the desired color of paint and furniture wax, and jumped in with both feet! When I was done, we were very pleased with the result. We were so pleased that both of us started looking for other furniture to paint!
Fast-forward to today. We have been able to take what we’ve learned about painting furniture and other techniques to age it, and turn this knowledge into a small business! We sell our painted furniture and accessories in booths in an antiques and interiors mall near our home.
The most astounding realization for me is the fact that, from a very small need (for a media cabinet), I’ve found an outlet that allows me to really exercise my creativity. Not only does this enable me to focus on ways to be even more creative with our furniture, but my partner and I are actually benefiting from this outlet financially. And I never grow tired of it!
The lesson learned here is that sometimes, even in this fast-moving world, it’s okay to spend some time learning and developing a skill that you discover you’re good at. In my case, that was painting and refinishing furniture. What’s yours? You never know—you might be able enjoy benefits beyond relaxation and creativity. It just might pay you back!