I spent a lot of time debating on whether or not I wanted to make this post. This post was also meant to go up earlier, but it’s okay. I think I lost track of time trying to figure out whether this post would actually go up. I’ve had many discussions with some of my friends on the topic and at the end of them all, I realized something. Even though I know I would have been a great fit, I am totally okay with the fact I didn’t make The Happy Planner Squad. It sounds crazy, but I have some really good reasons why.
To really explain my history with The Happy Planner, I have to go back to the beginning – all the way to 2015. That isn’t a crazy long time, but that’s the earliest the OG Happy Planners can go back to.
2015 was a weird year for me. There were a lot of changes that I was undergoing and I needed a planner solution desperately. I had been at my job for a few months and I was getting more hours and trying to balance out life overall. I knew I wanted to start working from home, even as a part-time solution, but had zero guidance or time management at that moment. As someone who grew up where planning was a requirement to my life, I had no desire to continue doing so. It just happened to be the only idea that I had to keep myself on track once again.
Imagine my surprise when Michaels of all places was selling planners. The display wasn’t very large at all, there were only five designs, but there was plenty of stickers. I had no idea what any of it was about and so the first few times I walked away. After those few weeks and many long talks, Chris finally convinced me to pick up my first Happy Planner. Even better – it was on sale AND there was a coupon for sale items! My total? Only $12. What a steal.
I admired the beautiful cover (the multi-colored chevron with the quote “good things are going to happen”), the cute discs, and the strange (at the time!) layout. After becoming so accustomed to horizontal layouts the vertical layout threw me for a loop. I was hopelessly in love; at that very moment, I had the perfect solution for me. I had no idea what kind of journey my Happy Planner was about to take me on.
I can already see the thought in your mind. “Just because you’ve used The Happy Planner forever doesn’t mean you should have been on the Squad.” You’re 100% right about that, there’s no doubt about that. But there is so much more.
The Happy Planner has given me an outlet to work through my anxiety and to ultimately lead me to life goals I wasn’t sure I wanted to pursue. I was a fairly fresh college graduate with a degree in business because my original life choices told me I wanted a different path. After graduating I realized that wasn’t what I truly wanted to do, but wasn’t sure what.
I had dabbled for two years in computer science in highschool, receiving an associates degree in that venture. I was a life-long theater kid (with anxiety, I know…it’s horrifically ironic) who had dreams of performing on Broadway. Most of all I was someone who wanted to create and inspire. If it weren’t for The Happy Planner I never would have considered the idea of working in graphic design. That’s just one thing that this crazy little planner has made me realize. I could honestly write a novel about it.
The joy that this little planner has created in me is so infectious. Every opportunity I get to convert someone to The Happy Planner, I do it. In fact, I have even convinced Christopher, my lovely and darling fiance, to join me on my adventures. The Happy Planner isn’t just a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. To have Christopher take part is an absolute dream. The couple that plans together stays together (that’s a quote, right?).
It is such a crazy and pivotal little object that has changed my life in so many different ways. To say I eat, sleep, and breath this planner and the company’s message, even in my darker days, is a complete understatement. I have applied to several different design teams to gain experience so that I would be better prepared for when the day would come that I could promote The Happy Planner on a bigger scale. To put it simply, I seriously L O V E my Happy Planner. If this blog post was my application, perhaps the circumstances would have been different.
I know that’s not why you’re reading this post, though. So let me finally get into why I’m okay with not being on The Happy Planner Squad.
I can continue to grow and improve.
Admittedly when I sent my application my photos, well…they weren’t the best. I know my photos weren’t the best. I sat and screamed at my camera, willing it to get the shots that I was looking to attain. Ordinarily, I would say user error, but my camera truthfully would not do what I wanted to do. The shots were too dark, my white backdrop was either too yellow or too green; if it had the possibility to be completely wrong, it was. The worst part? I knew I was buying a light kit at the end of the month, but that wouldn’t be in time for me to take my photos.
I knew I wasn’t going to be home so all I could do was hope that my pictures were good enough. While I don’t know if my photos were the deciding factor over not being picked, but I knew it didn’t help.
Just a few days before the application deadline that my friend Jackie, of Organized Potato, informed me that I should add more color. What did she mean by that? She mentioned that I use a lot of neutral colors, but bright pops of color would probably help. I knew I didn’t want to sacrifice my planner style, but why not added colorful backdrops? Most would say that they were surprised that someone’s idea worked, but I wasn’t surprised at all. Just changing my background made a huge difference. Thank you, Jackie!
This is just one of many improvements I plan to make, but at least I have the time to grow.
I can focus on what I want to for a little while.
The past six months I have spent working on projects for Paper House Productions. It doesn’t seem like a long time, but when you’re trying to think outside of the box it’s time-consuming. By not being a part of The Happy Planner Squad, I have some time to evaluate and think about what I want to do.
After all, I’m trying to take care of several life events at the same time. I know others have a similar workload, but I’m also traveling since Chris lives nowhere near me. I don’t spend a lot of time in one spot and the idea of lugging around a lot of things with me doesn’t sound enjoyable. If I’m on The Happy Planner Squad, I want to do it right. I want to be able to be in one location, focusing on something I love. Not only that, I want to know that I’m not only making myself happy, but also everyone at the Me & My Big Ideas office.
I get to make tons of mistakes and figure them out for myself.
Not being on The Happy Planner Squad means I get to make a ton of mistakes and know that I’m only affecting my own brand. In my first reason, I talked about the photos that I took for my application and that is just one of many mistakes I could have made. I don’t know the rest of the reasons, but I can only assume and work off of my own issues that I had with my application.
I can work through these mistakes and become more confident with myself and my decisions. For the next year all I have to do is focus on myself. Not only will I become better, I will be better
At the end of the day, I am perfectly content with the fact that I’m not a part of The Happy Planner Squad. I am excited and delighted for each member, new and old, and can’t wait to see what changes will be made. Being able to see what The Happy Planner Squad will truly entail means a better educated decision for myself next year.
I wish nothing but the utmost success to each member of the Squad and encourage them to cherish every moment! The next year is going to go by extremely fast – you’re not going to want to forget any of it. It’s going to be exciting and while I wish I was an official member, perhaps I’ll be an “honorary member” in the future. 😛 If not – there’s always next year! See you all on the #thehappyplanner tag.