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  1. Zen for Ten

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    Sometimes life gets so hectic we hardly have time to think, let alone dream and plan the road towards doing what you love. We have had a crazy few months at DWYL HQ, so we are dedicating April to quiet, reflective time.

    As we search for meaning in our busy lives it can be hard to tune out the noise and listen to what we really want to offer the world. You are invited to join us for Zen for Ten – a simple ten day programme to help you slow down, tune in and light up. This is based on our free resource ‘Zen and the art of doing what you love’ and it is free to participate. It will help you be more present, get quiet and focus. It will help you see more beauty. It will let you travel lighter. And it will get you on the road to doing what you love, for life.

    Just enter your details here and you will receive daily emails for ten days starting on Monday 7 April 2014, with beautiful imagery, short exercises and inspiring prompts.

    We cannot wait to breathe more deeply, live more slowly and appreciate life more during this special ten days. See you there.

  2. Inside PaperLove

    Do you obsess about stationery, love the idea of creating your own books and boxes, enjoy sending real snail mail, and lust over the delight of words? Then our brand new creative course PaperLove is for you!

    PaperLove is a five-week papery adventure, where we unwrap the possibilities of paper – getting stuck into a host of creative projects, sharing inspiration, hearing from people who have made paper love into their careers, learning about the fascinating history of paper, and connecting with other paper lovers from around the world.

    Join us to discover the delights of PAPER (week 1), COLLAGE (week 2), WORD (week 3), BOOK (week 4), MAIL (week 5).

    During this online course you will be encouraged to tap into your own stories, discover the book inside you, get creative and have fun. The clear step-by-step instructions will help you confidently create stitched books, gift boxes and all manner of other papery goodies, while the stories, images and resources shared will provide a feast of papery inspiration.

    You can join us from anywhere in the world, and connect with other paperlovers from across the globe.

    This has been a long time in the making, but finally we are ready to share the world’s first online course about paper with you – class begins on Monday and we are beside our paper stacks with excitement. Have you booked your place for papery delight yet? Sign up here!

  3. Make 2014 amazing (and meet our baby girl!)

    SMK

    Happy New Year! We hope you had a lovely festive season and have eased into 2014 with high hopes for the year ahead. Here at DWYL the past couple of weeks have been something of a blur after welcoming our baby girl into the world on Christmas Day! Sienna May Kempton was born at 3am as the perfect Christmas present, and has filled our days with wonder, smiles and not much sleep ever since! We feel like we have started 2014 with the ultimate new beginning, and are stepping into the greatest adventure of our lives.

    We have no doubt that our sweet girl will change everything, and have a major impact on the kind of year 2014 will become. But we also want to consider our wider dreams and plans, and have been using our free kit ‘New Year’s Revolution’ to help us do this.

    If you haven’t downloaded your copy you can get it here for free. You can also join the hundreds of people already in the New Year’s Revolution Facebook group where we will be sharing prompts, discussions and encouragement throughout the year to help you make 2014 amazing.

    Wherever you find yourself at the beginning of this shiny new year, we wish you health and happiness, and hope you can make 2014 exactly the kind of year you want it to be.

    Beth and the team

  4. Big city lights

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    In the final few weeks before a baby arrives you often find yourself “Will this be our last holiday/dinner out/cinema trip for a while?” Although I know there are many joys to come with the arrival of our little bundle, I am sure there are many things that will be harder to do, like going up to London for dinner and the theatre… which is why Mr K treated me to a lovely day doing just that. We went to see Sam Mendes’ brilliant production of Roald Dahl’s Charlie & The Chocolate Factory in Drury Lane, before heading to Regent Street and wandering around Covent Garden to soak up the Christmas atmosphere among the beautiful shop windows and strings of fairy lights. I am not a city girl at heart, but I do love the way towns and cities come alive at Christmas, with twinkles and sparkles and a touch of magic in the air. I came away inspired by the creativity behind the window displays, the imaginative theatre production, and the energy of the capital.

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    What festive loveliness have you spotted where you are?

    ***

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    Are you ready to make major changes in your life? Do you want to look ahead to 2014 with excitement and anticipation? Do you want to make it the year you finally do what you love? To help you do this we have created New Year’s Revolution: a practical kit to help you make 2014 amazing. This is completely free – and it comes with a community you can join to get support throughout the coming year. Doing what you love doesn’t happen overnight. It is an attitude, and a way of life, and it takes courage and boldness to make the tough decisions which let you get there. It also takes thought and planning, so we have created this special gift to help you on your way.

    CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTION KIT

     

  5. Do What You Love interview – SANTA CLAUS!

    thebiginterview

    Mr K reporting from the North Pole…

    Some interviews are considered career defining. Some even stand the test of time and become legendary. Call it intuition or a struggling writer’s hunch but today’s interview may just be the most magical and awe inspiring interview of all time for me. The fact that I am sat here somewhere just outside the North Pole getting ready for this interview is surreal enough. Then considering the fact I am surrounded by ice and snow yet feel perfectly comfortable is crazy. But preparing to interview Santa, well that just blows my mind.

    3389058334_1ac9d4dc08_zNorth Pole by walkadog

    The room is beautifully simple. Every fixture and fitting is carved from ice or sculpted from snow, a perfect blend providing both structure and comfort. My ice chair is softened by a snow cushion and decorated by what look like Midget Iced Gems. My senses are overloaded and confused as a heat emanates throughout my body.

    I place my notepad and pencil on the table. A steaming cup of hot chocolate and a small plate of mince pies invite me to indulge. Opposite there is a small glass of brandy. I have to chuckle to myself. This is exactly what we used to leave for Santa on Christmas Eve when I was a child.

    After rearranging the notepad and pencil and adjusting my seating position for what seems like the hundredth time I become aware just how nervous I am. Then it happens. The lights flicker on and off, the ice walls become a translucent blue and it begins snowing… inside! Two huge red velvet curtains part from the other side of the room and in enters a truly unmistakable sound …

    Santa

    Santa via Portable North Pole

    Santa – Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas Mr. K. Welcome! Welcome to my humble home, the North Pole.

    It really is him. Dressed in huge red dungarees, a long sleeved white thermal top and black boots. He bounds across the room, his eyes sparkling and his cheeks rosy red, framed perfectly by his beard that looks like it is made from the whitest of clouds. He is quite easily the most jolly and friendly person I have ever seen. I can’t quite believe it, it really is him!

    I am now shaking the hand of Father Christmas himself!

    Mr. KPlease, the honour is certainly all mine. Thank you very much for this amazing opportunity and for taking a few moments of your very precious time to speak with me.

    SantaOf course. Please be seated. Would you care for any more hot chocolate or would another tipple be more to your fancy?

    There is a glint in his eye that belies his iconic standing, as though he is sat across the table from me as just another man in the pub rather than the legendary Father Christmas.

    Mr. K – Another hot chocolate would be perfect.

    At that moment a rather unusual snowflake catches my attention. It is larger than the others and moving sideways. It floats gently and hovers just centimetres above the palm of his hand. He raises his hand to his mouth and then blows it towards me. The snowflake spins, twinkles and bounces until it is directly over my cup. It changes before my eyes into a small cloud and then begins raining chocolate. As the last drop falls the cloud splits into several smaller snowflakes and disappears.

    Santa – There we go. Just one last thing – a little memento for you before we begin.

    A small robin darts in through the window carrying… wait for it… a ‘Father Christmas’ hat. It drops the hat on my head and, of course, it fits perfectly.

    3195113510_dd44da21da_zRobin via davehamster

    Santa – Thank you Dillon.

    The robin seemed to curtsy before disappearing out of the same window.

    Now Mr. K whenever you are ready.

    I cleared my throat and dived in…

    Mr. K – How are you leading a life ‘doing what you love’?

    Santa – Great question. Well, my team and I strive for one purpose – to remind the children (and occasionally the adults) of this wonderful world that magic does indeed exist. To help awaken their imagination and see their eyes come alive is a delight which I will never tire of experiencing. To bring a smile to a single child’s face is reward enough. To do so to millions? Well that is just a treasure of a job. Wouldn’t you agree?

    Mr. K – What did you do before this?

    Santa – Before this… wow that was a long time ago. Let me cast my mind back. Ho ho ho… oh yes I remember. I was a doctor of sorts. I had studied children’s medicine with local doctor Jens Brandels in Tromso. I went with him everywhere we were required. It was a wonderful and at times heartbreaking experience but I knew I was on the right path helping children.

    Mr. K – Why do you do what you do?

    SantaReally now Mr. K. I’m sure that question answers itself.

    Mr. K – Yes sorry that was stupid of me. You are instantly recognised all over the world. You must have a powerful marketing machine behind you. What is your secret?

    Santa - Mrs. Klaus! And she is very much looking forward to meeting you later.

    Mr. K – Amazing, I can’t wait to meet her either.

    Mr. K – How do you handle the logistical challenges of having such a seasonal peak of international deliveries in December?

    Santa – It is all in the detail – planning, a little more planning and of course just a hint of magic. The way I look at it is I have to be at my best for one night only. Not a bad job, hey? Ho Ho Ho!

    Mr. K – What kind of team do you have around you? What are the key roles in your team and who plays them?

    Santa – My team? Where do I start? There is of course Mrs. Klaus without whom nothing would be possible.

    My head Toy Innovator is Atarashi Present, a wonderful man who was invited here from Kyoto, Japan back in 1784. He creates the most wonderful toys and never ceases to amaze me. He works very closely with children all over the world to develop the toys they dream of, but does it is in disguise so they never know. How else could we ensure our toys are just perfect?

    Our Senior Packer and Wrapper is Holly Primrose. Holly is an elf and has a team of elves who I believe are closely related to her. They scour this and other mystical worlds to make sure only the most fantastical of paper is used.

    Last but not least is Arthur Swift. Arthur is a lovely Irish man who moved to Lapland because of his love of reindeer. He is now working with his tenth generation of reindeer. However none of his work would be possible without some very generous ideas given to us by Mr. Charles Pillow of Cloud City. But he is a completely different story for another time.

    And last but not least the real team players are all the parents that let me and my team take a few plaudits for all their hard work. I take my Santa hat off to them all. Ho ho ho.

    Mr. K – How do you keep your employees motivated?

    Santa - Music, mince pies, milk, brandy, plenty games and of course giving them Dec 26 – March 1st off!

    Mr. K – What impact has the internet had on Christmas?

    Santa - The World Wide Web, what a marvellous creation. The idea was born over a few too many Eskimo ales at the Red Reindeer Pub during a discussion I had with Atarashi and Arthur. We decided that the idea had to be harnessed and developed properly so we dropped it into the stocking of a young boy called Tim Berners-Lee. Just look what he has done with it. Wonderful stuff.

    The internet has helped connect so many people and families worldwide with loved ones. That is a true gift. It even allows people to teach on-line, doesn’t it (wink wink)? And did you know you can arrange for me to send a special personalised message to your children using the internet? Have a look at this clever site here.

    Mr. K – Yes it is an extremely powerful tool. What do you do to relax?

    Santa - I love a few cheeky Eskimo ales with the boys, and travelling of course. But of late, cosying up with Mrs. Klaus with a special mug of hot chocolate to watch Downton Abbey is a definite must! I am looking forward to their Christmas Special…

    Mr. K - What aspect of your service are you most proud of?

    Santa - The longevity of it. We live in a very cynical world but my business and everyone concerned ensures it has never lost any of its magic. The hope that exists in everyone fuels us all here at the North Pole. It is obviously stronger in children whilst they are protected from the world but I can sense magic and the belief in possibility returning among adults too. If you can believe in a rotund jolly man delivering presents from his magic sleigh then you can believe in anything!!

    Mr. K – Absolutely. Thank you so much Santa. It has been an honour.

    Santa – It was an absolute pleasure. I only ask that you and your wife continue your work at Do What You Love. The world has never been more exciting and I just wish more people were doing what they love every day. I look forward to seeing how everyone prospers. I must go now as the reindeer need a run out.

    Just one last thing, I would like to wish you, your wife, your new baby and everyone in the Do What You Love family all over the world a very Merry Christmas! I’ll be popping down a chimney near you soon (wink wink)…

    3192039702_0a35e1c265_zReindeer via peupleloup

    NYR 200

    Are you ready to make major changes in your life? Do you want to look ahead to 2014 with excitement and anticipation? Do you want to make it the year you finally do what you love? To help you do this we have created New Year’s Revolution: a practical kit to help you make 2014 amazing. This is completely free – and it comes with a community you can join to get support throughout the coming year. Doing what you love doesn’t happen overnight. It is an attitude, and a way of life, and it takes courage and boldness to make the tough decisions which let you get there. It also takes thought and planning, so we have created this special gift to help you on your way.

    CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTION KIT

     

  6. Start your New Year’s Revolution here – free downloadable planning kit to help make 2014 amazing!

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    With holiday cards to write, Christmas shopping to do, the house to decorate, and all the hustle and bustle that comes with preparing for the festive season, this is an exciting time of year. But it can get pretty exhausting, and before you know it the new year will be upon us.

    This year we would like to invite you to pause for a moment, find somewhere quiet, and commit to making next year different, more exciting, more fulfilling… more full of life! And to help you do this we have created New Year’s Revolution: a practical kit to help you make 2014 amazing. This is completely free – and it comes with a community you can join to get support throughout the coming year.

    CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTION KIT

    Are ready to make major changes in your life? Do you want to look ahead to 2014 with excitement and anticipation? Do you want to make it the year you finally do what you love? If so read on this is for you…

    Doing what you love doesn’t happen overnight. It is an attitude, and a way of life, and it takes courage and boldness to make the tough decisions which let you get there. It also takes thought and planning, so we have created this special gift to help you on your way.

    ‘New Year’s Revolution: A practical kit to help you make 2014 the year you do what you love’ is a FREE 24-page PDF to help you extract the good from 2013, look ahead and shape your 2014 into the year you want it to be. It includes a powerful technique to help you make dreams into reality, and make your ideas happen.

    CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTION KIT

    And guess what? You are not alone! Here are some ideas for connecting and sharing with others…

    • Join the New Year’s Revolution Facebook group here for regular prompts and the chance to interact with a community of others who are also trying to do more of what they love, facing the same challenges and obstacles. Find support, friendship and accountability here! Be sure to introduce yourself and share where you are on your journey.
    • Spread the word on Facebook and Twitter or blog about your experience New Year’s Revolution is FREE and we want to help as many people as possible to get on the road to doing what they love, so please share a link to http://dowhatyouloveforlife.com/nyr with anyone who you think might benefit!
    • Let us know how you are getting on – connect with us on Facebook here, or on Twitter here @DoWhatYouLoveXX #newyearsrevolution

    Get to it, and make 2014 amazing!

    Good luck – we are with you all the way…

    Beth and the Do What You Love team

  7. DWYL HQ – Calling All Women Entrepreneurs!

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    We get sent a lot of opportunities here at DWYL HQ and wanted to share this particular one with you… Recently we were contacted by Sara Conte who is a Casting Director with Strickman-Ripps, Inc.

    We are reaching out to you because Sara is casting a TV commercial that will feature a female entrepreneur, her small side business and product!  Specifically, the person must have some type of full or part-time job she works currently until she is able to leave to pursue her flourishing business full-time.

    Ideal candidates would be women who create, design and sell something tangible and fun (unique crafting, baking, puppet making, fun decor, kid’s toys etc.).

    This is an exciting project because it is a huge promotional opportunity for whoever is cast.

    In order to be considered, all someone need do is fill out this secure form.

    We would encourage you to take a deep breath, contemplate the affect that the above could have on your life and if it feels right then take a leap of faith. Who knows where our paths will take us?! Good luck.

  8. Do What You Love Interview – Forest Foundry

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    Today’s interview is actually with a collective of talented artists from around the world, who ‘met’ each other through our Make Art That Sells course (with Lilla Rogers) and have gone on to form a business relationship which allows them to pool resources, access a wider audience and support each other. We love this idea, and were intrigued to find out more about the artists behind ‘Forest Foundry’.

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    This is how they describe themselves: “Forest Foundry is an art collective of eight artists from around the world, who believe that beautiful art should be accessible to everyone. We create art that is colourful, and evokes the imagination. We try to make sustainable choices whenever we can, to help the future of our planet.”

    The Forest Foundry consists of Katy Tanis (KT), Karma Voce (KV), Ine Beerten (IB), Victoria Weiss (VW), Zoe Ingram (ZI), Miriam Bos (MB), Neiko Ng (NN) and Kat Kalindi Cameron (KKC).

     

    1. How are you leading a life ‘doing what you love’?

    KKC - My life at the moment is a bit of a juggling act. I have two small children (aged 5 and 3) so I have to balance the school run and home stuff with my love of designing and illustrating. I am working on a few licensing projects at the moment which is my main goal as an artist.

    MB - It’s pretty easy doing what you love when the thing you love doing the most is creating. I get up, start a doodle in my sketchbook while having breakfast. Then I get behind my computer to check emails and social media, and when I have had my cup of tea I start working on whatever project I have at that particular moment. My days are like this almost every day. Even on the weekends. It’s hard to stop.

    ZI - When I realised I was about to hit 40 this year I decided to take the bull by the horns and do Lilla Rogers’ Make Art That Sells e-Course which was absolutely amazing, and following on from that I entered the Global Talent Search, which I won! I am now doing something that I absolutely love with a passion and I believe that Lilla’s course came at the right time for me.

    VW - I think for most of us that are also mothers, it is a real test of how deep do you love what you do creatively. Every time my day is about to go downhill I ask myself why I am doing what I am doing, and this gets me back on track. It is simply so much fun. It’s magical and mysterious and I can’t imagine my life otherwise.

  9. Life According to Mr. K – Handwriting On The Wall

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    Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!

    Audrey Hepburn 

    Where do we look for inspiration? Do we delve into books, relive great sporting moments, do we wait to be inspired by others, do we look back at historical events or can inspiration be found everywhere and anywhere if we are ready to be inspired?

    Personally my inspiration has come from my family, friends, films, sport, travel and books and more recently my wife. This was until I joined Do What You Love.

    Here at Do What You Love we are blessed to be enveloped by inspiration on a daily basis. People are changing their lives. No it isn’t always easy but, what worth having is? There is a growing movement of people who are finding the courage to step out from the life they have to create a life they want. They are finding courage from within a community that is reaching far and wide. Throwing away the shackles of insecurity they are empowering one another to give it ago and fulfil their dreams. How can you not be inspired!

    I took some of our own advice recently and registered on a creative writing course. I had to start from somewhere to try and realise my dream of writing a children’s book. It has been fantastic. I have met other people with a passion and love for the power of words. By merely choosing the correct words and placing them in the correct order you can create something very poetic, dramatic, haunting or even humorous. This journey is one of blood, sweat and tears and then most probably a few more tears.

    I have tried to draw inspiration from the likes of AA Milne, JRR Tolkien, Roald Dahl, Lewis Carroll and C S Lewis to name but a few. They have created worlds which have mesmerised children and adults alike for decades spanning various generations. They have even gone as far as to create their own languages.

    My idea is starting to gather a little momentum but it will be a while until I have the courage to share it with you. Whether it will be worth the wait will be debatable but the enjoyment of writing and creating a world to harness dreams has and is a constant pleasure. Even if it only keeps my wife entertained.

    I have been reading lots of different books and poems to see what I can learn. I stumbled across a great little poem which I thought I would share with you. I read it a few times and loved it. See what you think?

    The Handwriting On The Wall

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    A weary mother returned from the store,
    Lugging groceries through the kitchen door.
    Awaiting her arrival was her 8 year old son,
    Anxious to relate what his younger brother had done.

    “While I was out playing and Dad was on a call,
    T.J. took his crayons and wrote on the wall!
    It’s on the new paper you just hung in the den.
    I told him you’d be mad at having to do it again.”

    She let out a moan and furrowed her brow,
    “Where is your little brother right now?”
    She emptied her arms and with a purposeful stride,
    She marched to his closet where he had gone to hide.

    She called his full name as she entered his room.
    He trembled with fear–he knew that meant doom!
    For the next ten minutes, she ranted and raved
    About the expensive wallpaper and how she had saved.

    Lamenting all the work it would take to repair,
    She condemned his actions and total lack of care.
    The more she scolded, the madder she got,
    Then stomped from his room, totally distraught!

    She headed for the den to confirm her fears.
    When she saw the wall, her eyes flooded with tears.
    The message she read pierced her soul with a dart.
    It said, “I love Mommy”, surrounded by a heart.

    Well, the wallpaper remained, just as she found it,
    
With an empty picture frame hung to surround it.
    A reminder to her, and indeed to all,
    Take time to read the handwriting on the wall.

    Can you think of a moment or time you were convinced you knew the truth until it was put into context and it all changed?

  10. Do What You Love Interview – Kate Thorman (Oysterbaby) + GIVEAWAY

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    Being pregnant myself, I have come to understand that there are an inordinate amount of things to buy for a baby, and choosing what is right for you can be overwhelming. I knew early on that I wanted to keep my baby close to me as much as possible (rather than in a buggy), especially in the early days, and when I stumbled across a postcard for Oysterbaby slings and my local yoga studio I knew I had found the right thing for me. Oysterbaby slings are made from bamboo fibre, are lightweight but supportive for your back, and are so pretty. I ordered one online and was delighted when it turned up beautifully wrapped, with illustrated care notes and a lovely little carrying bag. I could immediately see that this was the product of a young company which really cared, and I was intrigued to find out who was behind it. And that led me to Kate Thorman, the very inspiring founder and owner of Oysterbaby… – Beth

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    Kate Thorman is a part-time midwife, a full-time single mother and an entrepreneur. She describes her life as “ full to the brim with energy, variety and challenge. As well as my work at King’s College Hospital in London, I also run a variety of birth preparation courses and about a year ago I founded my company, Oysterbaby. I sell beautifully crafted organic bamboo slings for parents who wear their babies with love. I like to think I am a positive person, and that attracts good things in my life. I am a natural carer and I believe that kindness breeds kindness. This is the only way we can make our wonderful world an even more beautiful place to be.”

    Kate lives her life by the philosophy that ‘life is for living’ and the work you do should be fulfilling and afford a lifestyle in which you can appreciate your family and friends.’ Love that – sounds like something we would say here at DWYL.

    How are you leading a life ‘doing what you love’?

    My main love is my daughter Indira. Everything I do is with her in mind. As a single mum, I feel determined to show Indi that by having a good work ethic and following your passions, anything is possible! To make sure I never spread myself too thin and stay a happy and healthy mother for her, we practice yoga together every morning. I also take her swimming every week and we find adventure in everything we do – there are bush-shaped jungles in our streets and stair-shaped mountains to climb in our home! We live in Brighton, so I try to visit to sea as often as possible. Even on dull, gusty days I find that spending just a few minutes breathing in the sea air, listening to its roar and watching the ebb and flow really recharges my batteries. It gives me time to think and develop creative ideas. I come from a well-travelled family. My parents explored the world when they were young and have always encouraged me to find my own adventures. I left for my first solo trip aged 18 and didn’t really stop until I had Indi. And even now I find myself on a plane to Africa or Indonesia as often as possible.