In April 2013, I heard about a businesswomen’s conference in Eau Claire. The topics interested me, but what pulled me to find a way to be there was the appearance of the owner of a women’s community magazine. I had seen copies of her magazine and liked the format of them. I just had to see her, talk to her. I had questions to ask her. My main mission was to talk to this magazine owner, which I did.
In May 2013, I graduated. I took another look at job opportunities and ended up with the same result–nothing that I could realistically apply for.
A week after graduation I decided to pursue my “purposeful mission,” specifically creating and publishing a community magazine for women in agriculture. I thought I would start out right by connecting with a mentor through a local SCORE chapter. I was fortunate to be matched with a magazine publisher who published magazines that have gone national out of Iola. Like me, he began working for someone else full time by day and part time other hours in the basement of his home on a magazine. He too had a bachelor’s degree majoring in communication. It was after that I began planning the magazine based on his advice, ideas I got from the owner of the magazine I mentioned above and other information I got doing some research online and offline. I had a mock-up of the first issue by June 2013. Months later, I fine tuned that mock-up purchasing better software. I took a month taking an online class to learn how to use it and to create a new template in January 2014.
I began layout of the spring 2014 issue in February 2014 and finished it mid March 2014. It took weeks of tweaking that layout to make it the best it could be. I am a perfectionist in that regard.
Even though I am not getting paid to do this, I am driven to put everything I have into it–my time, my talent, my ambition, my gut intuition. My instinct.
Yes, instinct. God-given instinct. It had to come from somewhere. I certainly didn’t learn it in college, although a lot of the benefits derived there did help. But, there is only so much learning from a book can do for you. To get a mission with a purpose carried out, a lot of what it takes comes from within. Instinct.
Believe me, instinct doesn’t happen overnight either. It took me years of searching for my purposeful mission. While some people are content with dabbling in one activity, I had to try many out to find the right one. The one that would be meaningful, purposeful and would bring joy not only to me but others. But, you have to have instinct to know when you have found the right one. I didn’t realize, until this magazine that I created, Country Diva, came to be, that I had instinct. What else could it be? I never laid out a magazine in InDesign before or even looked at InDesign before laying out that first issue. I never designed ads until that first issue. I never sold ads until that first issue. I never thought like a magazine owner until that first issue.
My SCORE mentor assured me I was on the right track. Aside from a few suggestions he didn’t have to specifically tell me what to do every step of the way. It was God-given instinct behind my motivation.
Certainly one would have to be crazy to pursue a “purposeful mission” of such magnitude. But, I don’t see it as a mission that is impossible. I suppose some of this instinct comes from being a farmer’s daughter and now a farmer’s wife. Anything meaningful has its challenges, and farming by no means is not without its challenges. Growing up with challenges on a dairy farm I think strengthened the instinct I have today.