It wasn’t too long ago that I happily stumbled across Stephanie Duval’s beautiful blog. Being from Europe, her storytelling abilities from a different setting instantly drew me in and made me want to travel back over there as soon as possible. Since, we’ve kept in touch and had some great conversations. Stephanie is a genuine lady, living a pretty cool life. For this creative diary entry, she was to focus on one single work day and answer a few simple questions about the good, the bad, and the inspiring. This is what happened, truthfully.
WHAT IS THE FIRST THING THAT YOU DID THIS MORNING : It was my birthday, so the first thing I did was receive a hug and ‘happy birthday’ from my husband. I usually stay in bed while he takes a shower, and use that time to check my instagram and twitter feed from underneath the covers. After he gets dressed I join him in the kitchen in my pajamas to have some breakfast – we’re super into granola these days. I’m always behind my computer by 7 or 7.30, so I find myself wandering into the kitchen again by 10am for my second breakfast of the day. I could eat breakfast all day long, actually.
DESCRIBE ONE CHALLENGE THAT YOU FACED : I travel a lot for work, and today I had to pack my suitcase for two consecutive trips – to my hometown Antwerp in Belgium and to London. Since moving to Geneva my travel schedule has become much heavier, so I’ve had to become a bit of a packing expert. I like to believe that I’ve become more efficient. The key to my system is having lots of pouches and bags: they help me stay organized. I also try to make a mental list of all the things I will be doing at my destination, and try to pack outfits accordingly. I’m also a big fan of a neutral color palette in my wardrobe, so everything tends to match.
DESCRIBE ONE ACCOMPLISHMENT : I crossed off many items from my to-do list, and while I didn’t finish it completely (I rarely do) it did leave me feeling happy about my productivity. As a writer I often struggle with writer’s block, and as a freelancer I sometimes have trouble prioritizing different tasks for different clients. It’s a constant exercise to find a balance between creating, getting inspired and watching cat videos on YouTube. I’m quite happy about today’s mix, which also included a little caffeine-fueled work session outside our apartment. I love my home office, but sometimes I need a change of scenery to get the creative juices flowing again.
DESCRIBE ONE THING YOU LEARNED : Lately I’ve been thinking about my job description a lot. I started out as a freelance fashion journalist, but over the years my activities have expanded. My areas of expertise now include other subjects such as travel and design, and I not only write articles but also consult companies on their content strategies and blogger outreach. I feel like my background as a journalist and experience as a blogger are very valuable, but I feel the need to keep up with recent developments and theories in marketing, too. I’ve downloaded a lot of really interesting books on my Kindle, and every little coffee break I take, I’ve been reading and making notes. I love the feeling of learning new things every day and being able to put them into practice with my clients almost straight away.
WHAT IS THE LAST THING YOU DID FOR WORK : I sent out a bunch of emails to cool places in London that I want to visit and include in the guide I’ll be making. I don’t like to just show up and ask if I can take some pictures – it always helps if the owner knows I will be swinging by and why. I’ve already met lots of really cool people this way, and that’s definitely one of my favorite aspects about my job.
AND JUST FOR FUN, DID YOU EAT ANYTHING TASTY : We met up with a couple of friends for my birthday dinner at a Japanese teppanyaki restaurant in Geneva. At one point two chefs were simultaneously throwing salt and pepper shakers in the air and putting all kinds of meats on fire right in front of our nose. It was quite the show, and they did it while singing Happy Birthday to me. I felt happy as a kid to be surrounded by good food, great friends and cheesy birthday celebration stuff.