New Year, New Perspective

It is a blessing to do the work we do at Craft – to help clients we believe in grow their business and start and end each day feeling like what we do matters. But, you never know how life will evolve; how one step in the direction of your heart will influence a thousand after it. When I started Craft 4 years ago, I never could have imagined all the ways it would have changed my life and outlook on the world. This is my new sweet spot:

The sweet spot. Image by Anaïs Bock http://www.meetanais.com/

Some of this change has been really uncomfortable – forcing me to break out of habits or ways of working and being that had served me so well in the past. Other parts have felt as natural as diving into a pond on a warm summer day, or leaning into a fire after an afternoon outside in the snow. Perhaps the hardest piece was finding the courage to listen to that voice inside of me calling for a slower pace, more connection with nature, and stronger sense of community.

After 8 years living and working in the marketing and media scene in NYC, I have taken a leap of faith to Portland, Maine – a growing city within my home state. Bolstered by the support of friends, family and great clients like The Lewis Institute, I can bring home the perspective and experience that only living in a city like New York can bring. A perspective I will always be grateful for. But now I also run into friends and neighbors on the streets, in local shops, at yoga classes. I spend time being purposefully non-productive – exploring the coast and strengthening my connection with myself. I shop local and work to live my values more and more. I service clients from a more grounded, creative place and carve out time to work on projects like the documentary film Criminal, recently profiled by Babson Alumni Magazine:

In Portland, Craft and I have found a new home in the collaborative creative community of Engine Room - thoughtfully designed and curated by owners Jim Hauptman, Chuck Martin and Yona Belfort:

Engine Room. Photo Credit: Audra Photography http://AudraPhotography.com

Here there’s plenty of plaid and Patagonia and L.L. Bean boots and beards and hand-hewn furniture and coffee. I am inspired each day I walk through these doors and feel blessed to be surrounded by such talented, creative folks. Through Engine Room I was included in this recent video profile on the Portland start-up community by Popular Mechanics:

Pleased to be in good company with Jess Knox of Maine Startup & Create Week and Blackstone Accelerates Growth, Jim Hauptman of Engine Room and Blaze, Jake Ryan of The Open Bench Project and Andrew & Briana Volk of Portland Hunt & Alpine Club. And the quotes they chose from me perfectly sum up my experience of this transition: “My move to Portland was driven really by a quality of life decision. What I’ve been really pleasantly surprised to find is how rich and vibrant of a business community it has up here.”

So, here’s to following your heart and all the newness and possibility that 2015 holds!

2 comments

1 Annette Henderson { 01.08.15 at 6:51 pm }

Inspiring!! I can only hope to emulate some of this attitude in my career and life.

2 alice hurley { 03.04.15 at 2:17 pm }

Leah, this is so inspiring! I love your new life!

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