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The year of achievement.


It all started on January 1st. As begins to be a tradition in my life, I spent a few hours looking for my word of the year and finally I chose "achievement". The previous year,"trust" had helped me navigate a bittersweet, complex and transitional 2016. I sold the house I'd lived in for 28 years of my life — an eternity! I got rid of over 70% of my property. I found love and felt that this important part of my life was finally complete. For the first time in many years, I felt vulnerable. I broke my foot and spent 4 months of "self-employment" literally eating up my savings. I had to give up my first starring role in Microteatro (thank you Alberto García!) because I was unable to move without crutches and just thinking about going down the stairs to Loreto and Chicote gave me chills of fear and helplessness. Plenty of time to think. Many days when life went very slowly. I just wanted to regain mobility and not have any sequels left. I religiously attended all the rehab sessions. I became friends with people who were in the same situation as me. The days were long. Jose, the wild animal veterinarian who was a housemate at the time, often took me to the hospital and went to pick me up. Alicia, my other housemate, kept me company. My boyfriend would help me bathe and cook for me. I felt cared for and pampered but the loss of independence made me think that perhaps there were simpler ways to earn a living without sacrificing what is non-negotiable for me: feeling that what I do makes sense to the world and contributes to my happiness and that of my environment. 

Because I care a lot about happiness at work. I have found out that it's not a myth. That you can and should be happy working. And also that any activity, as long as it is done from the right place, can lead to a state of fulfillment. I began to think of a recurring concept: "I want to create a container of well-being"... How could it materialize? Perhaps the closest thing to that concept was Dcollab, the coworking I had worked in during the past few years. What makes coworkings special? The open spaces, the proliferation of freelancers or very small companies, the absence of hierarchies and tensions, the fact that you feel pampered and surrounded by talent, the feeling that you have the power to dare with new projects and to approach human relations at work from a different perspective. 

A few years ago I decided that my world was that of entrepreneurs, where fresh, innovative, questioning ideas were born, those who can only improve the status quo. I was fascinated by that moment when the entrepreneur is in love with his idea, long before it is big or scalable or of interest to an investor. That idea that will improve the world with a big or small innovation, part of an introspection, because we only innovate as we are, from the place that matters to us. And so, in those long hours of looking at my navel, I discovered that what matters to me in the work environment has to do with three things: with a thoughtful and slow way of doing the work so that ideas can be born and polished, with a lifestyle that enhances constant small doses of micro-happiness, and with enhancing the skills and self-confidence of those who are close to me. Slow, hygge and prozac are the three words that are the starting point of my new venture. It would have to be a coworking with that attitude. Dcollab, always sexy, always special, had just inaugurated the activity Elevator Tea, and I had the first opportunity to present who I am, starting from the assumption that I am a late bloomer, that it took me a long time to mature and maybe that's why I still have enough illusion left in me to make my dreams come true.

One of the things that has changed my life this year has been something I bought on a whim: my beloved Passion Planner. If I look at the whole year, I see that I have been unable to fill in all the boxes that it has: month focus, week focus, day focus. However, few weeks have gone by without me filling the space of infinite possibility.

And it is precisely the exploration of possibilities that moves me the most, even though I find it so difficult to decide what to focus on.

What have I done in 2017?

I moved house... and sold the old one. Threw out 70% of my past. Built a new home from the most beautiful of the old one for a mature and happy present. 2017 was also my last year at Dcollab. From this year, I still have the good energy of that wonderful room that overlooks the gardens of the SGAE. And my "family" I'll always love.

I learned that sometimes you have to let yourself slide down the mountain and not climb Everest all the time.

2017 was the year of a handful of small big brand projects: the repositioning of Libros Prohibidos, from a blog of independent literature reviews to an online magazine. A new identity also for the Guillermo de Baskerville awards. Both of Javi Miró's projects were made possible thanks to the invaluable collaboration of Victoria and Anke. Watch the birth of Bimono casual sneaker shoes, the evolution from the brand to the product and its launching on the right design circuits. I am pleased to have helped Damián get the best IED shoe designer and web design company. It was also the year of the birth of the Howdazz brand, Eduardo and Casandra's innovative supply chain consulting firm. It was also a pleasure to help Art Director Angel Espinosa define and implement his personal brand. And to collaborate with Wildwildweb in the creation of the strategy and the name of a new fast food restaurant of Malaga breakfasts, Bocademia, the reinvention of the Santi Bar. So was the definition of Alawa's brand platform by Jimena and Gabriel. And it was the birth year of Plázida, the first coworking for digital nomads in Madrid, my new personal project. The super-identity created by Jaime Fernández from Tata Friends helps to step very hard.

As always, there were a handful of projects that didn't come through and some cases of flagrant procrastination, such as the updating of the Grasp website or the periodicity of the Grasp newsletter, which I have set aside since the beginning of the year....

2017 was the year of the consolidation of my breakfasts with love. Candy, Ana, Reka, Rebeka, Vanessa, Anke, Cabo, Mika, Maria, Sylvia, Patricia, Andrea, Juana, Javier, Maura and Gonzalo... and many more. Thank you for sharing a little piece of your life with me.

It was the year of saying goodbye to an exciting and fun project, the first branding meetup in Spain, Brand the Gap, which I launched with Geertje and John. My last talk was "The 10 Most Frequent Mistakes of Branding".

Other important milestones were the workshop with Sara, the visualization mandala with Nuria, the meditation in six phases from Omvana, the attendance in Barcelona of the first edition of The House of Beautiful Business, the participation as a volunteer in the first voting of Decide Madrid, the months of coaching with Sofía Víctor, the Encounter of Creative Minds on March 23rd in Dcollab de San Joaquin, through which I got to know the RIC program, the flower meditation of Vanessa, my presentation in the first Elevator Tea of Dcollab, the reunion with Live Your Legend and the participation in the network of the ConSentidas in Madrid.

Special mention should be made to the RIC Course, which took place from April 7th to July 21st. A luxury to learn with Juan Pastor, Antonio Fontanini, Aday Guerra, Carmen Bustos, Alejandro Castillo, Luis Miguel Garrido, Cristian Figueroa, Laurent Ogel, David James, Nestor Guerra, Pablo Jarauta, María García, Javier Martín, Pablo Caño. And of course the invaluable Tatiana and my “compis”, laughter and a thousand and one beers. I feel very fortunate to have been able to start putting words, thoughts, heart and effort to the Plázida project in this environment. Special thanks to my tutor Daniel Truran for putting me on the right track and opening the door to Loom House, where Miguel and I were finally able to materialize it. Thank you, Jose and Paula Almansa, for trusting us and thank you, Maria Montis, for all your help in the process.

My two international trips were also great: I went to Lisbon with Miguel to attend the macro-event of digital nomads DNX and to Dublin for the congress Coworking Europe, where I took part in the first European pitch of coworkings and presented Plázida to my peers. 

A lot of special people with whom I've shared special moments: Gemstone, Sonia, Giovanna, Cristina, Sally, Luis, Lawrence, Merche, Monika, Lili, Jaime, Alberto, Elena... And many others that I will have unintentionally forgotten to mention.

My small participation in Sustainable Sunday at the Sustainable Brands Congress. 

Our (Giovanna and myself) beloved monthly networking Guiri Drink in the charming Café Belén.

A handful of memorable plays with stellar performances by Alba, Susana, Laura, Aldo...

If I have to summarize the year, I would stress that, indeed, I have achieved much more than I was able to imagine, that I have felt loved, appreciated and that on the way I desperately sought out the magical, the surprising, the unexpected, the inspiring. I love the little world I've been building and I love being able to enjoy the ride, giving - or at least trying to give - the best of myself without renouncing to my freedom and my own rules.

I have not yet chosen my word for 2018, although some of them are already in my head. And you, did you choose it yet?

Happy 2018!



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