Learning To Say No.

In the past year I’ve been presented with an absolute tidal wave of mind-boggling opportunities- from amazing client homes, photo shoots, charity events, magazine spreads to cool side projects like High Gloss and most recently, a foray in to television.  When success happens quickly and all at once, it’s hard not to feel like it’s a fluke and that you have to say yes to everything and scoop up every opportunity and job because it will probably never be this way again.  Kind of like eating everything at the buffet because you can- I mean, it’s THERE for the taking so why not take it? It would be stupid not to, right?  Saying no to anything has been very hard for me to do, and in doing so has stressed me out to an unhealthy level and caused me to make some poor decisions and frankly be quite unhappy when I should be on top of the world! I learned the hard way that more is not better, sometimes more makes you feel like less.  For this reason, although I was excited about it, I had to pass on the opportunity to do a pilot with HGTV as I mentioned on Facebook and Twitter.

It’s such a hard call to make, but being so blessed to have so much work and so many side projects, I felt this tug inside that I really need to put all my energy into those commitments instead of be swayed by the sexiness of a potential TV show.  We live in a TV centric culture of which I happily am a consumer, but when that opportunity comes at a time when I am already maxed out, it just doesn’t feel right or fair to anyone, especially myself.  I love my clients and I take my work for them seriously and when I make a commitment to someone I want to make sure that I not only follow through but do so with 100% effort, focus and creativity. This attitude is why the people on my wait list are probably very annoyed to have to keep waiting, but it’s only because I want to give each client this service.  In this same vein, when and if I am able to do tv, I want to give that my all too, and right now that would be nearly impossible. I never want to put out a half-hearted product- be it a design, a show, or a blog post.  I know to so many people it’s hard to understand passing this up, and of course there is a part of me that may regret not jumping at it, but I think deep down I know in my heart this is the right thing to do.

It’s all a matter of finding a balance and prioritizing what means most to you. And it’s oh-so easy to neglect that notion while burning the candle at both ends. I think the past few months I’ve been so caught up in work I have neglected friendships and relationships that mean a lot to me too, and that makes me sad.  So I’ve recommitted to maintaining those as well and setting aside time to really make sure those close to me know how much they mean to me and how much I enjoy having them in my life.  I also need to spend more time on myself- more yoga, more outdoor time, more snuggling with my puppies and worrying less about all the pressure I feel to be this person I’m not sure I am or want to be. Why do I HAVE to do TV? Why do I HAVE to take on so much?  What’s wrong with staying small? I want to be successful, but I want to enjoy that success too. But don’t you worry, this blog ain’t goin’ nowhere. :)  I always say, if I had to give everything up but one thing, that one remaining thing would be this blog without hesitation. It feels like a child of mine, a true labor of love and I can’t imagine life without it. It’s given me everything and it’s the best part of every day.  Thank you for making it so.

So that’s that people. I’m here, I’m trying to refocus and hoping to be better than ever.



  1. SO GLAD that you’re not leaving the blog. Your blog gets me through the day – it’s like Christmas morning every day! All the best!

  2. Great things comes along , from God´s hands, to great people.
    Keep committed to others, but first and always to yourself.

  3. I come home from work excited to read your blog. Good for you, that had to have been a hard decision. xo!

  4. Great insight and words of wisdom. It is quite remarkable that you were able to see what was best for you right now in your life. I love that you shared your experience and hope the best for you. Congrats on the much success, and to everything there is a season… right?!

  5. This was the perfect end to my day — I love reading your blog every day, and I too had to make a really tough decision this week (similar to your decision). When you are a type A personality (like you I’m assuming???) it is hard to decide NOT to do something. You feel like you have to GO GO GO!!! And be successful at everything and take every opportunity! But you are so right, and that is the same conclusion I came to this week: you have to be happy in order to be truly successful. What is success if you can’t enjoy it?

    Congratulations on your success and congratulations on a very admirable decision! And that is exactly why so many of us love to read your posts day after day :)

  6. Thank you for being so honest. So many times we coast through life without this insight into what is important and to take that calming look into what is going to make us happy.

  7. “Know your limits”, a quote posted on my desk. After 20 yrs in the business I have learned that the work is always there even after having babies. There is nothing wrong with staying small. Even though it is fun, it is work and there is more to life than work.

  8. God bless you, Erin! It sounds like you are a very wise lady. I am most impressed. Take good care…..all things that are meant to be will come to fruition if they are truly meant for us.

    Here’s to a wonderful weekend!
    Cheers~ :)

  9. I absolutely understand your stress over this decision. Owning your own company can be fabulous, but also taxing because you want to make everyone happy. Cheers to making a great decision!
    Amy meier

  10. Erin, good for you. I can’t imagine it was an easy decision, but if it feels like the right decision it is. I love your blog I get so much out of it, you’re doing an amazing job. Thank you

  11. we must be living parallel lives- i passed on an opportunity to be in an HGTV pilot about a month ago. of course, it wasn’t a pilot built around me, so it was pretty darn easy to say no to being second banana! your decision must have been a bit harder! i’m sure however it was the right decision to make. you have to follow your heart and your gut, and if this wasn’t the right time, then when opportunity knocks again (and it will), you’ll know if it’s right.

    onward and upward!



  12. I found your blog and now it is one of my favorite destinations…. I love your sense of style, sense of humor and above all… your sense of self! I wish you all the best, and trust me… We have all been there, feeling like we have to say yes to everything and everyone, I am also on this journey of self and giving myself my own sense of truth and nothing feels better than following your gut and inner voice, that is your true north and guidance, block the noise and you know what you know.
    thank you for giving your best… it shows!
    TAKE CARE. have a woderful weekend.

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