If I had to choose one word to sum up my life over the past four years in New York, it would be “Hustle.” I’ve spent my fair share in corporate and freelance settings from hustling through my first two years in editorial magazines and fashion brands, to the past two years styling, blogging and freelance contracts.

I wore the the “Hustle Badge of Honor” with pride, foregoing sleep, working out and even a social life most weekends. I have been working around the clock pretty much since I landed in New York and I finally hit a breaking point towards the end of 2018. I obviously loved what I did and the fashion and media industries, but I was depressed, exhausted and wasn’t sure how much longer I could do it.

I was being pulled into a million different directions, I felt like I was giving barely 50% to each job and business, and I was plain exhausted trying to do it all. I was missing deadlines for blog campaigns, I was late on freelance articles, I was disorganized with styling projects and (bless their souls) my part-time interns were trying to help me juggle everything. I sat down at the beginning of the New Year and wrote out my goals and word of intention for the year (read more about them here) and decided to step away from outside freelance jobs and solely focus on my companies: Audree Kate Studios, Simply Audree Kate and Fashion Fundamentals (read more about that here). I knew I couldn’t move forward if I kept holding onto my financial and career safety net. I had to take a major leap of faith and invest in myself and my businesses and have a “make it or break it” year.

In order to really succeed with my businesses, I needed to grow, take major risks and work my tail off. We’re only half way through 2019, but I wanted to write this blog post today and discuss what I’ve been doing outside of SimplyAudreeKate.com the past few months and why a brief break from blogging was much needed. But don’t worry, I’m back and ready to take on the rest of 2019! 😉

1. The biggest life update thus far in 2019 is that I decided to move out of my current living situation and move into my own apartment. I had been toying with the idea of getting an office space for my team for over a year but financially and logistically, it made so much more sense to just get my own apartment. I started looking at the beginning of the year and moved in mid-March. I originally planned on moving in July when my lease was up, but when I saw this apartment, I signed the lease that day. Since moving, all of my free time has been spent decorating and setting up my new office and apartment, and adjusting to living on my own.

2. I hired my first full-time employee! This was HUGE. It’s been a goal of mine the past couple of years, but it wasn’t until my breakdown at the end of last year when I knew it was really time to find full-time help. I hired one of my previous interns and the past few months I have been prepping financially to have someone full-time and restructuring the business strategies and goals now that I have more hands.

3. I’ve been styling! I have felt so lucky to have had a busy 2019 so far with styling projects. I’ve spent over 60% of my week on set styling photoshoots or clients, and it’s been incredible! I booked my first celebrity client, I worked with a few publications and brands and you can see more on the @audreekatestudios Instagram!

4. I launched my digital course and student community, Fashion Fundamentals! We started classes in March right after I moved, and just wrapped the semester before summer break. We will be launching a fall semester later this year, so make sure you stay tuned and follow our new Instagram account HERE!

5. I’ve been working with my team on launching some really exciting projects this summer and later this year. I can’t give away too many details yet, but one includes the Summer Magazine that will be launching this month!

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