How to Create from a Place of Rest Not Hustle

March 25, 2019

The first day of the Illume Retreat is equal part nerves and excitement. As my team and I set up the final touches for our welcome session I always anticipate what it will be like for these women to walk through my door. I often joke it’s similar to those “first day of school” feels because you don’t know who you’re going to meet or what it’s going to be like, but you just know it could be life-changing.

I’ll never forget these “first day of school” feels back at our 2016 Illume Retreat. I stood in the middle of a courtyard that could have easily been set in the Tuscan countryside, surrounded by buckets of fragrant flowers under the bright Texas sun. My hands were shaking as I helped our team lay out floral shears by each place setting, right next to the rustic concrete vases that were thoughtfully selected with each attendee in mind, each awaiting a new pair of hands to soon pick them up and lovingly fill them with a one-of-a-kind floral arrangement.

As the attendees slowly made their way into the courtyard, we all exchanged shy smiles and enthusiastic hugs. And then that life-changing moment happened.

When Ashlyn first stepped into the courtyard for our April 2016 welcome dinner, her equal mix of nerves and excitement were almost palpable. She timidly introduced herself to me before going to mingle with fellow attendees and meet the rest of our speakers. And later that night as I watched her sit next to brand new friends at the dinner table, I could tell that one burning question kept running through her mind:

“How can I create from a place of rest, not hustle?”

You see, friend, Ashlyn was 3 months into her business as a calligrapher and copywriter for creatives. She had talent on talent, and skills that blew us all away! But she was struggling to figure out how to marry the heart of her work with the practical know-how that leads to purpose profitability (with zero burnout involved!).

She’d walked that road of directionless hustle and crippling burnout before and was done.

She was ready for something new.

So, over the three days that followed that welcome dinner on a warm Texas evening, we got to work.

“Illume changed my business completely. I was poured into by women that I’d admired from afar for months … and here I was, sitting shoulder to shoulder with them in front of a fireplace, as they steered and shaped my business, encouraged me, pointed out my blind spots, and told me a specific Ashlyn-shaped hole in the market I could fill with my own gifts.

Looking back at Illume, for me, it’s where the magic in my business really caught traction. It changed it all.”

Since then, Ashlyn has gone on to lean confidently into the little niche where her gifts meet a true need in our creative industry. As a powerhouse copywriter for creatives, educator, and talented calligrapher, she’s gone on to launch sold-out online courses, speak confidently to a room filled with over 100 creatives, and grow a small team to empower her as she serves her clients well.

These stories of our Illume Retreat alumni remind me why this intimately restful retreat is so much a part of my heart.

The Illume Retreat has proved itself to be a catalyst that propels our attendees on to new levels of success since our very first retreat in 2015. From five-figure speaking engagements to six-figure course launches, our alumni have used Illume as a stepping stone onto their own definitions of greatness. As you engage with our speakers, our curriculum, and our approach that dares you to dream bigger, you are challenged to chase after only that which matters most in a way that empowers you to create your life’s best work.

Because life’s too short to spin your wheels building a business that doesn’t truly propel you forward.

If you’re been dreaming of joining us at our 2019 retreat, I encourage you to check out our speakers, explore the details, and learn more about our 6-week mastermind experience, too!

Registration is currently open, and we have just two seats available for our October 14-17 retreat, friend.

Click here to claim one of those final spots as your own.

Hoping I’ll get to hug your neck this fall, friend.

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I'm Bonnie -- a designer, brand designer + strategist, writer, wife, and pet parent to the most rambunctious golden retriever this side of the Mason-Dixon! I'm passionate about building authentic brands, encouraging small business owners to chase their dreams, and spreading joy through design. It's a delight to have you here, lovely! Grab a cup of coffee, pull up a comfy chair and stay a while, won't you?

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