WEEKLY WORDS OF INTENTION {08.10.2020}

I’ve been reading The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo, a collection of daily reflections for all 365 days of the year.

The book was recommended by Oprah back in 2011 and that’s about the time that I got it. I had meant to start reading it on January 1st because it sounded like an amazing way to kick off the new year. Then every January came and every January went lol. But as I have been trying to re-read the books I own, I saw this on the shelf and decided it was time to crack it open! It doesn’t matter at all what day I start reading it and I need to let that go–it’s more important that I just start!

Every morning, while I eat breakfast, I will pick up where I left off and see what wisdom is in store for me for the day. It’s crazy how relevant some of the entries are to what I am currently experiencing or feeling! The universe has a way of providing us what we need, when we need it and as I type this I wonder if maybe it was all just meant to be for me to read this book now during this season of my life.

Each daily reflection starts with a short quote, poem, or saying. I’ve decided that while I am reading this book, I’ll use Mondays to letter the start of the entry for that day. I was inspired by today’s words:

Random is the instant a horse at full speed has all four hooves off the ground.

This sentence refers to “the mystery of unbridled passion, to the lift that results from total immersion and surrender. In our age, however, random means without design, method or purpose.”

The lift from total immersion and surrender is such a beautiful concept, coupled by the image of a horse, running wild and free with all four hooves floating in the air. I’m going to try to remember this version of what random means from now on.

PS: I am really liking the look of the pencil in Procreate!

Weekly Words of Intention by Olivia Lin | Atiliay.com

THE 2020 BETTER LETTERS IN 15 CHALLENGE STARTS TODAY!

The Better Letters in 15 Challenge - Free brush lettering lessons and worksheets

This year’s Better Letters in 15 Challenge is here!

The Better Letters in 15 Challenge is a set of FREE brush lettering worksheets based on the idea that 15 minutes of practice per day will help you improve your lettering! It is something that has worked for me and I wanted to create a fun and easy way to do this.

The challenge takes place across 4 weeks and breaks down a three word phrase. Each week you will receive a lesson and 5 worksheets to be completed within that week. The worksheets are designed to be finished within 15 minutes (or more if you have more time to spend on it)!

Each week you will work on a word in the phrase from individual letters to connecting the letters to creating the word. On the 4th week you will put it all together and work on layout. By the end of the challenge you will have lettered the entire phrase and have a piece of art for your home or office!

I began this challenge last year and the phrase for 2019 was PRACTICE MAKES PROGRESS.

The 2020 phrase is TRUST YOUR CREATIVITY and the lessons begin today! If you are just reading this–don’t worry, it’s never too late to join! Once you sign up for the challenge emails, you will have access to all the previous emails so you can join and begin your 4 weeks anytime you’d like!

Sign up to receive your free brush lettering worksheets and lessons now by clicking the button below:

I hope this challenge helps you improve your lettering as well as set aside time to practice an art form you are interested in! See you in the challenge emails and happy lettering!


7 TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL 100 DAY PROJECT

100 Days of Alphabet Connections by Atiliay.com

If there’s two words I could use to describe my feelings at the start of this journey, it’d be hopeful and skeptical! But here we are–at day 101 with the entire 100 Day Project completed! :D I have attempted this once before and failed pretty miserably, so I am super happy to have finished it this year!

Throughout these last 100 days, I have been thinking to myself: What did I do this time that made it successful? Would I do anything differently in the future? What did I and do I want to accomplish? I tried to organize my thoughts and share them in today’s post. There’s 7 tips for a successful 100 Day Project as well as some final thoughts. I hope that if this project is something you are interested in participating in, that the points below encourage you and also give you some helpful tips!

Before we get started, here’s a quick explanation of my personal project so you know what I’m referring to! It was called 100 Days of Alphabet Connections and I took each letter of the alphabet and connected it to all the letters of the alphabet (ie: aa, ab, ac, all the way to zz.)

Take time to plan ahead.

Dedicating a good chunk of time to think through this project and plan each day in advance helped me TREMENDOUSLY! The reason this set me up for success is because I just had to focus on executing each day instead of planning and executing. I figured out exactly what connections would be lettered per day and all I had to do was refer to my list once the project started. If I hadn’t done that, each day would’ve taken way more time! I am also pretty sure I would’ve messed up along the way and not ended with zz on day 100!

In comparison, my first project was lettering daily entries for a gratitude journal. I found that having to come up with what I wanted to write PLUS actually lettering it took up a lot of time! In the long run, this made it less sustainable and easier for me to fall off the bandwagon.

I’ve seen people with less structured projects–for example, write a book and each day would include something that worked towards this goal. I love that idea and I think that format totally works as well! It just depends on what works for you and what you prefer. I think personally, I need to stick with as much structure as possible!

Add the actual date!

Speaking of planning, the way I got organized was by listing each day followed by the connection, ie: Day 1 = aa, ab, ac, Day 2 = ad, ae, af, etc. Nowhere did I put the actual date and I quickly learned that this was a total rookie mistake! After 10+ days, I had no idea what day it was or what date it was lol (plus we are in pandemic times so the sense of time is even more messed up than usual!) I ended up penciling in the dates next to each connection and that made it MUCH easier! I was able to make sure I was doing the right connection, not miss any dates, and keep track of everything!

Pick a project that can be done in less than 30 minutes…

If you have more than 30 minutes to work on your project that’s awesome! For me, I found that knowing I only had to dedicate 30 min (or a little more/a little less) made it possible for me to complete my project. If I didn’t have much time I could still squeeze it in and if I was a little behind, I could easily catch up.

I think one of the coolest aspects of this project is seeing what can be accomplished with a little bit of dedication each day. It’s a wonderful reminder that little actions do add up and make an impact!

I know this won’t always be possible depending on what your project is, but this worked for me! I think I will stick to the same format next year as well.

…and includes variety!

Getting to letter connections I had never lettered before really helped to keep me excited and engaged! Although letters were repeated, they switched often enough where it never got tedious. Lettering is something I do quite often so I wanted to make sure I wouldn’t get bored. A boring project easily turns into an abandoned one!

Break it up / set mini goals + milestones throughout.

Before starting the project, I made a tracker as a fun way to measure my progress. It included 100 boxes I would color in each day. To help break up them up, I bolded every 25th box and switched markers every 25 days as well. Seeing the days as 4 sets of 25 made it seem much more manageable!

The other way I broke things down into chunks was the process of pinning each day’s connection onto my bulletin board. The board only fits 25 cards but it ended up working out great that way! After each quarter, I’d snap a pic, then clear the board for the next 25. When I finished, it was fun to see these photos side by side :)

There are many ways to do this–having sub-topics/themes for every quarter, planning rewards at certain milestones, documenting every 10 days, and so much more! I find doing this to be helpful and it’s another fun aspect of the planning process.

Have a visual.

Are you a visual person? If so, I think having visual elements adds a ton of fun and motivation! I find it encouraging to be able to see the progression of your project! I loved getting to color in my tracker and pin each day onto a bulletin board. Seeing both start to fill up during the different stages of the project was very satisfying!

Let it go.

Did you miss a day? No worries, let it go! Pick up where you left off or start again. Missed a few days? Or a week? Let it go! It doesn’t mean you have to scrap your project. You can still finish it, just make the decision to do so.

This year’s 100 day project happened during the middle of a pandemic. It also was going on during an important time of social unrest. I also ended up taking a social media break about 3/4 of the way through. While the idea is to do something consistently for 100 days, life happens! And I think it’s ok to allow yourself to let it go and keep going.

I had to play catch up a few times but was ultimately able to complete it. If I had felt that I “messed up” and that I couldn’t continue it, I never would have finished!

My favorite part…

I have always loved the concept of The 100 Day Project and had so much fun joining in this year! My favorite part was actually planning everything out, coming up with different ideas, and seeing it all come together (like the tracker and bulletin board). I also enjoyed being able to practice my lettering on a (almost) daily basis. I don’t do it often enough and usually the excuse is finding time for it. This project helped solve that problem!

Thoughts on the next 100 Day Project.

I’ve already had so many ideas when it comes to next year’s project ranging from photography to writing to my pets! I’m not sure what it will be yet, but I am excited to continue to brainstorm until I get that feeling that a certain idea is the one :)

Something else that’s been on my mind is how The 100 Day Project is primarily hosted on Instagram. I currently have no plans of using the platform but would still love to participate–and I don’t think I’m the only one. Besides my blog, I’m wondering if there’s a way to make The 100 Day Project more accessible to everyone, including those not on social media…do you have any thoughts about this? Luckily, I have some time to think about this before the next 100 Day Project starts :)

What about you? Did you participate this year? What were your take aways? Will you be joining in next year? Is there anything stopping you? I’d love to hear your thoughts! And please also share your project links/hashtags with me if you have one! Leave them in the comments below or feel free to send me an email.

I hope you enjoyed this post and congratulations to my fellow project participants for hitting the day 100 mark!

If you want to learn more about The 100 Day Project and my 100 Days of Alphabet Connections, head over to the very first post:

THE 100 DAY PROJECT | 100 DAYS OF ALPHABET CONNECTIONS


100 DAYS OF ALPHABET CONNECTIONS | DAY 100

100 Days of Alphabet Connections by Atiliay.com

Happy day ONE HUNDRED of the #The100DayProject! Wrapping up my 100 Days of Alphabet Connections with the last connection: zu-zz.

Day 100 / zu-zz

I can’t believe that we are at the final day! I will be writing a separate post on this experience–this is the first time I have actually completed all 100 days and there were definitely some things I learned along the way! In the meantime, here are a few photos of my completed project.

100 Days of Alphabet Connections by Atiliay.com
100 Days of Alphabet Connections by Atiliay.com

Thank you to all the awesome letterers who joined me in creating connections with every single letter in the alphabet! It really helped me stay motivated by seeing other people’s posts.

Did you participate this year? Why or why not? How has your project and journey been? I’d love to hear more about it :)

If this is the first time you are hearing about The 100 Day Project, you can learn more about it and my personal project, 100 Days of Alphabet Connections, head over here:

THE 100 DAY PROJECT | 100 DAYS OF ALPHABET CONNECTIONS


100 DAYS OF ALPHABET CONNECTIONS | DAY 94-96

100 Days of Alphabet Connections by Atiliay.com

We are nearing the end of 100 Days of Alphabet Connections for #The100DayProject and I really can’t believe it! Here are the connections for the next 3 days, 94-96:

Day 94 / xu-xz
Day 95 / ya-yn
Day 96 / yo-yt

It’s been interesting as we get into these letters we don’t normally use! Even though I know we won’t actually be using a lot of these connections, it’s still fun to try them out and letter things I have never lettered before!

If you’d like to learn more about The 100 Day Project and my personal project, 100 Days of Alphabet Connections, head over here:

THE 100 DAY PROJECT | 100 DAYS OF ALPHABET CONNECTIONS