It’s always interesting to me when I hear from younger people that they just don’t know what they want to do with their lives. I’ve always had the exact opposite problem. I want to do too much and am always dreaming big. In fact, my friends and family are consistently reminding me that it’s okay to say “no” — every now and then. It’s hard for me. I love to try new things and I certainly want to seize opportunities that will broaden my horizons or give me a new perspective on the world. Trying to do everything does get me in trouble every now and then. A dream can turn into a nightmare before you know it. Sometimes, even though you have the best of intentions, you simply bite off more than you can chew. It becomes challenging to balance especially when you like to work at a high level. If I’m going to do it, I want to do it right and doing a project right generally takes research, perspective, time and you guessed it — more time. It also takes people who are supportive and helpful — like those who work at my office or live at my house. Without them, there is no way I could continue to do what I do. And, without them, what kind of dream is it anyway? After all, I feel like the most desired dream is to have solid relationships with the people who matter to us. I was particularly moved by Lauren Aitch’s story regarding her relationship with her parents. It’s easy to see that the support her mother and father gave her was a catalyst to following her dreams. The encouragement, support and love gave her the foundation she needed to achieve several dreams — and at such a young age. She played basketball for a Big Ten University, went on to play professionally in Denmark and while there, began to sketch out a career path. Lauren’s tenacity in following her dreams was realized even after she lost one of her biggest cheerleaders — her father. Now a full-fledged fashion designer, Lauren is on a path where the sky is the limit. Whatever her continued dreams are, she’s acutely aware that they are achievable with hard work and drive. I love the world of fashion. I certainly wouldn’t pretend that I can draw or that I have the ability to create new designs like she does, but I love to watch the trends and pay attention to the many styles out there. The definition of fashion is a “currently popular style or practice, especially in clothing, footwear or accessories.” Footwear — especially the high-heeled variety — is an area that is fun to consider designing. I wonder if Lauren will start a line of shoes … If she does, maybe we can join forces for a shared dream of a boutique shoe store in downtown Lansing … What do you think? Okay, I know. I’ve got enough on my plate. But, I don’t think I will ever stop thinking of new ideas or dreaming. Big ideas are always in fashion. August is upon us. We can mourn the loss of summer or celebrate the fact that we have another month of hot weather. Recently, I had the opportunity to visit a lake community up north. It was a group of good friends and my family enjoying some much-needed downtime. Although, I’m not necessary the outdoorsy or swim-in-a-lake kind of girl, I truly enjoyed the peace and quiet, fun-in-the-sun, hang-out-with-friends weekend. It was truly one of the most relaxing few days I’ve had, well … in a very long time. I didn’t do any work and I let myself unwind. It was great and I highly recommend it. I went back to work with a new lease on life and of course — new ideas. It’s that time again. We are holding the CAWLM Lady Classic on Thursday, Sept. 15 at Timber Ridge sponsored by Independent Bank. It’s a charity event that supports the Lansing City Rescue Mission’s Center for Women and Children — a truly worthy cause. I really recommend this event for the seasoned golfer as well as the novice and everyone in between. Also, if you are nervous about playing 18 holes, like last year, we’re giving golfers an opportunity to play nine and out. Don’t worry; there will be other fun activities going on. And, Outback Steakhouse of Okemos is providing dinner. Go to our website to checkout the details. Remember, the summer will be gone before you know it. Have fun in the sun and dream big,
Tiffany Dowling is the Founder and President of M3 Group, a full-service branding agency located in downtown Lansing, Mich. She is also owner and publisher of Capital Area Women’s LifeStyle Magazine and the Greater Lansing Business Monthly. Dowling has helped businesses and organizations with branding needs for more than a decade. Learn more at www.m3group.biz.