Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines

5 questions with guest interviews

My name's Pip, and I started this account almost a month ago when I returned home from hospital after a pretty major abdominal surgery. A second major UK lockdown had just kicked in and I was concerned for the mental health of my friends. I wanted to use my time to find ways to cheer them up, and add positivity & inspiration to their day. Over the 3 weeks it's evolved into crafting, baking, event ideas and lots of dog spam. 

1. What would you say is the hardest part when starting a business?

I wouldn't call this page a business (yet at least - who knows!) but I've been very fortunate to have a lot of time. I won't lie - I've been very unwell throughout running this page, but I've had creative freedom in the sense that I don't have any other pressures such as work, or kids to think about. I've been able to solely dedicate my 'good energy' hours in the day to this project. That's something the majority of influencers can't do, and I'll need exceptional time management when I go back to work.

I think there are two different types of creative energy: the thinking, and the doing. I'm great at the thinking part in the mornings: idea generation, planning etc. By the afternoon I'll be hopeless - but I'm good at DOING in this time. When I return to work I will carve out time for morning reflection & planning before I start work. And then likely execute and post in the evenings! 

2. What fueled your interest in baking? 

Good question! I love baking because it's something you can create and share with just about anybody - and they will like it. I get a lot of satisfaction from making someone's day that bit better - even if it's with a flapjack. 

I've worked for large corporates since I left university and I suppose have had limited opportunities to truly be creative. When you work mostly from spreadsheets you don't really get that feeling of "I've made something tangible today". Baking and cooking have filled that void for me. I can feel a bit flat after a work day, but then I can bake an amazing cake, look at it and think: "I made something great today". It gives me an enormous sense of satisfaction.

3. How do you maintain positivity in all your endeavors?

I really get my inspiration from my Dad. Life has thrown a gargantuan amount of crap at him - health issues, losing many of his loved ones far too soon and failed businesses. You would look at what's happened in his life and think: I bet that guy is angry and bitter.

But he's the opposite. He takes every experience as a learning opportunity. We're not a religious family at all - but both he and my mum have instilled this belief in me that life has a path in mind for you, and everything happens for a reason. Take my tumour for example: yes it absolutely sucked that I was in pain for 9 months and had to go through rounds of chemo before I could get an operation date (thanks Covid). If the operation could have happened back in march, I would have had a far less complex surgery and be back to work in 2 weeks. Instead, it grew to the size of a rugby ball and I've had to have a six week break. But it's given me this time, and freedom to reflect, reconnect with old hobbies such as painting. Catch up with friends and send them gifts. It's like I've hit the reset button on my life. So now finally this all makes sense, and my faith in life's plan has been renewed for whatever it throws at me next! 

4. If you could go back to your past life, when would it be and why? 

Ooh this is an interesting question! I've always been an outspoken person who fights and campaigns for causes. At school I was always getting myself into trouble sticking up for my friends being bullied who were too scared to say anything. I think this personality trait would have dominated more in a past life, as even 20 years ago the UK had unbearable inequality in society against women, anyone not white, with a disability or a different sexual orientation. Imagine 100 years ago!! I think every past life would likely have been as an activist spending a lot of time in prison! 

5. What is your message to those who waste their talent?

Don't talk yourself out of doing what you love because you don't think you're good enough. I was too scared to pick up a paint brush for 10 years because I thought "well I'm out of practice, I've lost my talent". It's never too late to pick up that metaphorical brush - whatever it is for you! 

Don't be scared of what people will think of you putting yourself out there. I had some people in mind who I thought might cringe at some of my more soul-baring content. But I've actually had messages of support from them! If you never try, you'll never know. So just go for it! 

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