If I could ask one thing of all my readers this Christmas, is to take a break from checking your social feeds. Be present and respect the company of your family and friends whom haven't seen you in a long time. I'll be looking forward to a digital detox in the next couple of weeks and reflecting on what has been another incredible year.
Whilst my career and public profile has steadily climbed, it's not been without personal sacrifice. Another spurned relationship, more fledgling friendships have materialised, only to turn out to be just that; materialistic.
I've made some mistakes with my e-commerce site as I relied heavily on one supply chain that let me down badly, which consequently left me out of stock. I've made those tweaks and the business is continuing to grow now in its 5th year.
Tips - Make sure you're not being held hostage by anyone in any collaboration. Imagine what you'd do if your business partner walked out on you. Imagine if you're employer makes you redundant tomorrow. What transferrable skills do you have? What options are out there should the worse come to the worse?
How to be more independent - I've learnt the hard way and one of the best words I learnt this year is called 'optionality'. Meaning if one of my videographers calls in sick, my entire campaign isn't going to fall down like a house of cards. I've networked furiously and built my rolodex so now my round table is filled with knights that bring value, different skills, different opinions and counsel that I depend on deeply.
Plus points this year
The campaigns have been truly wild and humbling. From working with Reiss, to BMW, (more on that next year) the calibre of brands that resonate with my personal style are reaching out to me is very exciting. I know that might sound a little big-headed, but if I don't blow my own trumpet who else will?
I also got shortlisted for the Vuelio Menswear Blog of the year for the first time. I lost out in the end to a worthy winner in Ape to Gentleman, but it was an honour to be shortlisted, but next time I'll simply have to lobby harder and pay the judges more.
The year ahead
After listening to a few development classes I aim to lead a more fulfilling life in the new year. What do I mean by fulfilling? Have you ever wondered how rich people in western society can be miserable, yet some of the most impoverished people around the world have such a buoyant approach to life?
It's because whilst money can make you happy, it can't fulfil you. Only by leading a life that has value, that has meaning, can you feel fulfilled.
Anyway, stay tuned for more 'new man' hokum from me in the new year. Thanks again for reading and for all the engagement on my social platforms. I read every comment and appreciate them all.