Satisfy your Soul

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September is an exciting month. With my birthday at the beginning, followed by an annual trip to Ottawa for Folkfest shortly after, I’ve got a lot to celebrate. Truthfully – I feel as though I grow into myself a little bit more each year.

Looking at books about birthdays, reading into my astrological sign over the years & learning about my Mayan sign while traveling have all led me to conclude that I am a lot like they describe. Sure, there are some generalizations that can apply to many – but at the core – I can really relate to what is written. It wasn’t always this way. There was a time when I went off course, turned into someone else to please others, but luckily – I found my way back.

The Secret Language of Birthdays by Gary Goldschneider & Joost Ellfers

(A page from The Secret Language of Birthdays by Gary Goldschneider & Joost Ellfers)

Part of getting to know my soul has been experience. I am very fortunate to travel & embrace different cultures, something which I attribute to this slow and steady growth that I enjoy more and more each day. The satisfaction from pursuing my passion all while having purpose in my actions is second to none. I am learning to live with less – reminding myself that a “dollar saved is a dollar earned” (a quote from a taxation teacher I met while pursuing accounting as a profession).

Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico

(Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico)

Business is one thing – a grassroots movement is another. Once I redefined my goals for Simply Sustainable, I broadened my scope to encompass a Triple Bottom Line framework. I distributed the weight of success beyond dollars & cents and celebrated achievements of all sorts. This lifted my spirits and inspired me to work in different directions, expanding further than selling a product.

(Canadian Fair Trade Network – a page from the Fair Trade Magazine)

Turning passion and talent into your profession is tricky – but not impossible by any means. I believe that it takes persistence, patience and above all, purpose. My artistry does not just give me the opportunity to express myself creatively, beyond that; it gives me the opportunity to express my ethics. Over the past couple of years, my mobile shop has transitioned from being a means to sell my wares, into a chance to share my movement – making my space more like my soapbox.

Simply Sustainable Blog 4

(Simply Sustainable at Ottawa Folkfest 2014 – Photo Credit Christopher Gilliatt)

The more I move forward, the clearer it becomes. I have been granted the opportunity to become a leader by example. In 2014 I began to stand up in front of school classrooms and auditoriums to share my experience and knowledge as a social entrepreneur that decided to do things differently. This year I was also presented with the opportunity to collaborate with my “competitor” – allowing us to empower each other to grow in the most positive direction.

Simply Sustainable Blog 5

(Waiting out the rain at a summer fair with Jennifer of Kaunis Jewellery – brainstorming the exciting year ahead)

Choosing the road less traveled and taking the long way home has had some bumps – but it’s those small struggles on the way to success that make it all the sweeter.

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Leah Feor

Leah Feor is the owner of Simply Sustainable, a small business that has evolved from a fair trade mobile shop to a strategic consulting firm serving entrepreneurs with a social or environmental vision. Balancing her clients’ Triple Bottom Line – people, planet, profit – is Leah’s utmost goal, and is supported by her background in accounting and environmental management.

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