Challenge Project Categories
So, like, what even is the Sew For Your Life Challenge?
Great question! It’s built on the idea that through creativity, you can establish a self-care regimen that feeds your soul. It’s a system that addresses 7 key areas of our lives where a little self-love, organization, and imagination can go a long way towards improving happiness. Each of these 7 categories contains related sewing projects, that are beautiful, practical, and easy.
The Ultimate Goal
Self-care is defined as the practice of actively improving one’s own wellbeing and happiness. Through a consistent use of creativity I believe that you’ll be more actively engaged in pursuing complete wellbeing, achieving confidence in yourself and your abilities, and ultimately a satisfaction with the various areas of your life.
Spaces | Sewing Space & Personal Retreat
With the SFYL Challenge you will be spending more time in your sewing space. Whether it’s a small corner of your home or an entire room, it’s important that you make it a place you want to be in. We’ll create projects that are functional, beautiful tools that will help you along your sewing journey.
By creating a personal retreat space, you can give yourself a place where you feel inspired and at peace to create, relax, or reflect. I’ll show you how to plan and execute projects that will make this space comfortable and ideal for your needs.
Spirit | Spiritual Growth & Communing with Nature
Carving out time to read my Bible, journal, meditate, and get outside impacts how I move through each day, each situation, each encounter. The projects here will focus on creating the means to dig deeper, finally organizing all those buzzing thoughts, and finding the encouragement necessary to take next steps.
By creating a peaceful space outdoors (or bringing a bit of nature in), you can take time to appreciate life around you, and really consider your own. The fresh air and clarity will allow you to focus on what is and isn’t working in your life, and move toward making healthy strides in your spiritual growth.
Mind | Rest, Relax, & Refresh
Every time I go to the spa I wish, just a little bit, that I could stay and live there in a constant state of, “ahh…” But, most days it’s more like trying to remember the last chance I had to take a shower. This section is all about creating a mini-spa for yourself. These projects are all about being well rested, completely relaxed, and ultimately, rejuvenated. We cannot survive in a relentless go-mode. I know, because I’ve thought it, too, “if I don’t keep going, it’ll never get done.” But, I promise, if you slow down and allow yourself to refresh, you will be able to accomplish so much more, and better, too.
Body | Physical Health & Personal Comfort
Self-care is a big concept. It involves altering your surroundings, focusing inwardly, and probably most obviously, literally taking care of you, your body. Physical wellness is so important. Before my pregnancy, I might have choked on those words. I do not enjoy working out, and I think salad is for rabbits (fine for a side, but I wouldn’t order one as a meal). However, a surprise baby and 6 months of physical therapy is enough to convince me that it’s necessary to hit the gym. These projects make that just a little bit easier, as well as ramping up healthy eating habits. I have also found that when you become a person who says, “yes,” and commits to one self-betterment project (like the SFYL Challenge), it becomes easier to commit to others, like three mornings a week at the gym.
Personal comfort is also part of this category. Now, that has two meanings. The obvious meaning is being comfortable in what you’re wearing. The other meaning is being comfortable in your body. I’ve selected projects that will add both types of personal comfort to your wardrobe.
Connections | Nurturing Relationships
Think of self-care like a series of concentric circles, with you being the center. That’s where a lot of the change happens. But you’ll notice that it starts to ripple out and touch the other surrounding rings – your family, friends, neighbors, coworkers. As you begin to take care of yourself, you’ll naturally notice that each interaction, each encounter you have with others, will feel different. The more rested you will be more engaged in conversations. The more spiritually in-tune you will be less frustrated with a series of endless questions from your 3-year-old. The you that went to the gym this morning will find the confidence to speak up with a clever idea at work. You may discover a friendship with a neighbor you hadn’t considered. You may even be able to see more clearly relationships that aren’t entirely healthy and start to limit those interactions. Regardless, your connections will feel more effective, and with the projects in this category, you’ll be able to nurture those relationships by spending time together.
Work | Jobs & Commitments
I find that when the afore mentioned areas of my life are running smoothly, it is so much easier to enjoy my work. For many of you, work may involve more than just an actual paying job. For me, this category covers mom-ing, my part-time job, Sew For Your Life, my involvement with a volunteer organization, as well as playing my part to keep our household running smoothly. We all have a lot to organize and accomplish, and it helps to have the right tools at hand. This alone can make our work more enjoyable, or even shed light on some needed changes.
Balance | Budgeting & Big Goal Setting
Setting an effective budget, typically a group effort, will make certain big goals possible. As a family, we want to be in a secure place to make plans for things like travel. Travel is a wonderful way to continue a personal growth journey, whether it’s a big trip to Europe, or a daytrip to a nearby vineyard. Travel provides the opportunity to break from the normal pace of your life, form new connections, see, taste, and express a grateful heart for all this world has to offer.
Simply getting out into the world is my big goal. I have always been a bit of a homebody, but now that I work from home, in a small town, in a world where anything I want can be delivered to my doorstep, I have found that I don’t get out a lot. For a while, I forgot how to interact with other adults. Much of my day consists of talking in silly voices, making ridiculous sound effects, and putting all my words to the tune of whatever Disney song happens to be stuck on a loop in my head.
So sometimes, travel just means budgeting to go get Indian food or Chinese once a week. Even a small adventure out there in your community is an excellent way to connect and explore.
The projects in this section are geared towards getting out into the world, but as you begin to set your own goals, think about projects that may work better for you. Maybe your big goal is to KonMarie everything and downsize to a tiny house. Or maybe, you want to finally tackle that kitchen remodel. Maybe you want to write and publish a book. Whatever it is, I bet there’s a sewing project that’ll help you achieve your goal. Need help coming up with one? Contact me and together, we’ll come up with your very own Sew For Your Life project.
I believe that there are 3 things that make a project work within the Sew For Your Life system.
Aesthetics – One of the things that has drawn you to sewing is the power to make beautiful things. While beauty is in the eye of the beholder, everyone enjoys being surrounded by whatever they find to be aesthetically pleasing. All of the projects I’ve selected are beautifully designed and can only be enhanced by your personal touches like fabric selections.
Practicality – Look around you. You’re probably comfortably sitting on something sewn, and unless you’re reading in the nude (your prerogative), you’re wearing something sewn. We use sewn items in every room of our homes, in so many aspects of our lives. Not everything sewn is practical, some things are just for fun. But if we’re going to take time to do these projects, I feel that they should be useful in the end. All of these projects result in a finished product that will be beneficial within its category (and sometimes even in others, too!)
Simplicity – The idea here is to improve our lives, not make them more difficult. All of these projects are designed to be easy to complete. I’m not saying there won’t be some challenges, especially if you’re new to sewing, but it’s my goal to provide clear instructions that will have you finishing projects left and right. All of those wins will feel amazing as they start to add up.
Creating a sense of community with others seeking self-care through creativity is a great way to make the journey more fun. Share your projects with us on social media!
Your beautiful Unique Life
This order works for me. Each piece feels like a building block that helps me reach the next category.
You might find that in your life, with your priorities a different approach will work better. Tailor this system for you! Giving yourself a map to follow and understanding your reasons for your approach gives you a clear bigger picture to motivate you.
Write down your own order and bulletpoint why using the Tailored System Journal Template.