The Story Behind QS Creative
Feel inspired, confident and empowered to design the life you want to live.
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I’m Sadie, a lifestyle blogger from Vancouver Island, BC off the west coast of Canada (#PNW). For real though, we have some of the most beautiful nature and the freshest air that the world has to offer. I’m here to help you figure out how to improve your life so you can take action and live the life you never imagined was possible. I’m super passionate about intentional living, life design, and helping others follow their dreams. My goal is to help you feel inspired, confident and empowered to design the life you want to live.
Some of my favourite things include hiking, mountain biking, bike commuting, walking and talking, disc golf, visiting with friends and family, seeing new places, eating delicious food, reading, goal-setting, coffee, cooking, painting, and kitty cats.
I'm an Introvert
Actually, I can be very social, incredibly enthusiastic, motivated, hilarious, and nearly obnoxious if I am comfortable around you. I love making new friends but I’m all about being real and sharing deep conversations. Small talk seriously makes me twitch. I definitely need ‘quiet time’ to reflect and recharge my batteries.
I like to mention that I’m an introvert because, well, you might not have expected it (and I LOVE trivia), but it also speaks to why I named my business “QS Creative”. “QS” stands for “quiet soul”.
Why? Two reasons. First, because you don’t have to be loud to be powerful. Second, Quiet Soul Creative, or QS Creative, was originally meant to be a creative outlet for my busy mind. Just because I’m quiet doesn’t mean I don’t have something to say. It also doesn’t mean I have to verbalize it. I like to stew on things, reflect, and see what comes out of it. I can express myself through my painting, poetry, photography, writing, or however I like because there aren’t any rules.
“You don’t have to be loud to be powerful.” – QS Creative
Why start a blog?
I decided to begin blogging to give you inspiration by showing you that all it takes is to try your best…surprise! Were you expecting more than that? Because that’s all I’m doing over here. Writing this blog…creating a business… trying my best and hoping that it all works out. All that fun stuff aside, I’m not one to simply settle on whatever life happens to throw my way.
With this blog I aim to help you feel inspired, confident and empowered to design the life you want to live by chronicling my journey to living my own best life through intentionality. Really, I just want to focus on getting 1% better every day.
What we're all about
You’ll see I speak openly about finances on my blog. This is mostly because it interests me but I am also hoping that speaking about money as a lifestyle blogger will help facilitate a paradigm shift around a subject, which is so taboo in our society. We will discuss personal finance in a way that recognizes it is okay to brainstorm, execute and most of all, discuss personal finance with the emphasis that is it just that…personal! To me, your relationship with money can be healthy, or not so much. It impacts your life in many ways, from feeling anxious because you can’t pay your bills, or maybe you haven’t been able to do something really important to you because you don’t have an emergency fund. Maybe you miss out on things because you can’t afford to take time off work.
Laying the foundation to discover what is meaningful to you
I want to help you help yourself. I’m here to help you figure out how to improve your life so you can take action and live the life you never imagined was possible. Don’t forget- my ultimate goal is to help you feel inspired, confident and empowered to design the life you want to live.
Let’s discover what is important to you and take action to bring more of that into your life.
There is no single right way to kick ass at life, but there are a lot of things you can do to set yourself up for success. Often, focusing on what enhances your life may be challenging until you have laid the foundation for yourself to feel secure. Feeling secure will be different for everyone. Often it looks something like this, where you:
- aren’t living paycheck to paycheck
- have an emergency fund in place
- work somewhere that meets your current needs
- have solid relationships; and
- a good support system. What makes someone feel secure will be different from another, but once someone feels like they have their bases covered, it is easier to focus on the future.
Lets have a meaningful conversation
Subjects you might encounter here include:
- self-improvement and goal setting;
- personal finance and financial independence;
- business building
- saving and investing
- wealth building
- psychology and intentional living;
- relationships and setting boundaries;
- confidence & self-worth;
- career satisfaction & tips;
- general health and wellness;
- recipes & cooking;
- mistakes I’ve make;
- life hacks; and
- sharing anything I can think of that has added value to my life.
This blog covers a broad range of topics but could be summed up as a place where we share deep and meaningful conversation about life and how we can improve ours.
Join the Tribe, Live your Dreams
I hope that by engaging with this blog, and with our tribe, you get to a place where you can:
- spot opportunity;
- analyze options objectively;
- consider impacts;
- talk about feelings and consider how your daily life will be impacted throughout the period of change and after;
- revisit the “why” to determine whether the opportunity is in line with the life you want to live;
- take a HUGE goal and break it down into small, bite-sized pieces;
- recognize that motivation comes and goes and that perseverance along with your vision will push you through the lulls;
- feel motivated and get excited about your goals;
- envision success on the other side of all of your hard work; and
- take action.
Mindset of the QS Creative Tribe
I recognize that nobody is perfect and we all need a break. This is the long game. This isn’t where we push you till you’re ill to reach your goal as quickly as possible. This is the space where we build your life around what is the most important to you: your relationships, family, travel, financial security, self-expression, confidence, career, or whatever else.
If you have off-days, no big deal. If you need a week off, it’s not the end of the world. That’s up to you. Your progress won’t be judged. Our tribe works together, shows gratitude, exudes generosity and dreams big. We don’t put others down, act greedy, or get jealous. This space is about YOU. I will be right here to provoke reflection so you can dream big and figure out what you want to do with your life; where you want to go. I’m not going to tell you what to do. You need to figure out what you need to do to enhance your life. I aim to inspire, instill confidence, and support you so that you are empowered to take action and live the life of your dreams. I want you to leave feeling capable, confident and empowered. I’m a gentle human, but I get fired up about helping others discover the power within them to take control and make their dreams come true. You can live the life of your dreams all while being a good human, taking care of yourself, and lifting up those around you at the same time.
Our tribe works together, shows gratitude, exudes generosity and dreams big. We don’t put others down, act greedy, or get jealous. This space is about YOU.
One of my favourite YouTube influencers “Sarah’s Day” has a motto that is “your vibe attracts your tribe”. I LOVE THIS. If you spend all of your energy trying to figure out how to be accepted, when it comes time where you want to just be yourself, there’s no room for that. You’ve already developed this persona of who people think you are. JUST BE YOU and you will attract the right people for you. You may even inspire others with your ability to be true to yourself.
While I truly struggled with knowing what and who I wanted to be when I grew up, I somehow learned to have a growth mindset. This has allowed me to feel like I have total control over my choices and life. I’ve always been a planner, creative, and very goal oriented. Sometimes I struggle with execution, but hey, who doesn’t from time to time. My mind is always going 100 miles per hour and I am a person who frequents their “list” app on her iPhone, plans big projects, goes all in on commitments and is constantly striving for self-improvement.
It was only mid 2018 when I really decided to look hard at my own finances, start tracking where my money is going, and when I started to feel like I could live whatever life I designed for myself. I have crazy big goals! These goals could not come to fruition if I didn’t feel some strong sense of confidence and freedom through financial security.
This should NOT scare you! My husband and I were $65,000 in debt when I first decided to check our net worth in January 2018. Further, by that point we had already been paying off student loans for more than 4 years, and had purchased a brand new car in June of 2017.
We are STILL not above zero net worth, but we are making huge progress having increased our net worth by more than $25,000 in the first 8.5 months of this year (January to mid-August 2019), despite getting married on July 15, 2019.
My husband and I are average people with average paying jobs, renting in a decently high cost of living area that isn’t walkable. We went from no cash savings and having to “take breaks from spending” to pay off our credit card bills, to having a small emergency fund, a number of other savings accounts for medium to long-term goals, investing for retirement and feeling like we can take unpaid days off work if we don’t want to miss out on an opportunity that’s important to us.
MANY of you may be well ahead of me, but still lack what it takes to take charge of your finances and live your dreams. I’m not an expert, or a guru, and you won’t find me giving advice on what funds to invest in, but I will share my experience and my story, which includes getting my finances in order so I can focus on living my dreams.
While I do have some serious goals around savings and spending intentionally, I am striving to get to a place where I can think about money only a little; to check up on it more than anything. I see money as a tool to help us pay for things we need and that we feel would add great value to our life. For the most part, in my life this means spending more on experiences and less on things. However, I do have a specially curated list of products that I feel truly add value to my life, or simply make me happy.
My interest in personal finance specifically began when I graduated with my master’s degree at the age of 26 years old and the sudden urge to get my life in order and begin “adulting”. Naturally, with our burden of student debt, I felt like I was behind. Age 26 and in the red. Overall I’m happy with the decision my partner and I made for me to go back to school and become a higher income earner than I was previously (by about double), but it was a heavy feeling to take on more debt. Read more about how I got into personal finance and becoming a lifestyle blogger.
When I become interested in something I give it a huge amount of my attention. I’m super passionate like that. For about a year I was hyper-focused on “FI”, or financial independence including budgeting, reducing my spending, increasing my savings rate, and side hustling. I still love FI but my passions are evolving. This is only the tip of the iceberg but the idea was that I felt completely in control of my financial decisions and was on this major learning curve, consuming all relevant content that I could via podcast, library book, blogs and more.
2018 was a year of transformation and realization for me. 2019 I began to chronicle my insights and findings though living intentionally and I hope you’ll join me in this journey. Over about 10 months from September 2018 until July 2019 we made a bunch of conscious decisions to align our spending with our values:
- We set up accounts and started investing for retirement;
- We subsequently fired our financial advisor and transferred our investments to Wealthsimple, saving on fees;
- Established a sinking fun in my checking account (now I pretend that $1,000 is the new $0);
- Started saving for large expenses like traveling, car insurance and maintenance, holiday gifts and emergencies;
- Signed up for a library card and have (mostly) gotten over my desire to buy new books;
- Traded in our phone contracts by buying out our phones and signing up for Public Mobile, saving $120 per month;
- Opened up a credit card in my husband’s name to improve his credit score;
- Went from two vehicles down to one and learned to carpool, saving about $140 per month plus maintenance;
- Traded in my 45 minute each-way carpool commute for a job where I can either bike to work, or get dropped off on the way when my husband drives to work, saving about $175 on gas and reduced our mileage like crazy;
- Nixed Amazon Prime and saved a mere $8 monthly, but much more in the number of purchases we’ve skipped since then;
- Started a side hustle as a Facebook Community Manager for a high profile podcast, bringing in $200 USD bi-weekly;
- Started a blog, which has been a super fun and has added value to my life in terms of learning new skills and trying new things.
The need to identify what adds value to your life.
Since then I have really focused more on the philosophy of FI and how so much of it actually has nothing to do with money at all. This blog is sort of a reflection of that. There is a responsibility and security component to having your finances in order, however the theory of FI has made me feel empowered to make decisions and design my own life in every other way.
My goal is to consistently improve my life and encourage you to discover your personal values so that you can focus on what’s important in your own life. I have a post about everything that adds value to my life, which has been an ongoing process of discovery.
While on this journey together I want you to ask yourself this:
“When I leave this earth am I going to be satisfied with the life I’ve lived? Am I waiting for something before I can do what makes me happy?”
Lets dream bigger and try new things.
I not going to lie, I struggle on and off with feeling of being “good enough” to write a blog? My biggest fear is that nobody will read it. It’s discouraging, but I know I’m not the only blogger who struggles with imposter syndrome.
What helps, is that I am okay with my life…with ME, enough to fail, and if I can even help a few people realize their dream life and take action on it I feel like I’ve succeeded. If even ONE person publishes the book they’ve always dreamed of writing, makes a budget and stops living paycheck to paycheck so they can travel the world, or starts being true to themselves and attracting true friends after years of trying to chase acceptance from others, I will feel immensely successful.
Lets help each other feel confident and comfortable in our own skin, and provide a place where we feel at home. Lets live with a positive attitude and know that when we die, we at least got the best value and experience out of life we possibly could have.
Join me in my intentional journey to do just that. Welcome to QS Creative.
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