Monday, January 26, 2009

The OSI Interview: Danielle LaPorte

Danielle LaPorte is the founder of and the lead author of the bestselling Style Statement: Live By Your Own Design. She has been featured in Elle, The Huffington Post, Vogue Australia, Domino, Better Homes & Gardens, and numerous talk shows. A former think tank executive, she now helps entrepreneurs rock their creative potential with her signature Fire Starter Sessions.

A few months back I ordered Style Statement: Live By Your Own Design after reading about it in Domino. The premise (brazenly swiped from Amazon): Part workbook, part inspirational narrative, STYLE STATEMENT presents a series of inquiries that lead readers to the personal words that guide the spirit, look and feel of their life. The first word represents your foundation, your 80%. The second word, your 20%, is what motivates and distinguishes you.

Naturally, I was intrigued. And when the book arrived I couldn't put it down. Yes, it's fascinating; yes, it's interesting; but above all it's extremely useful. I highly recommend it.

And so, when seemingly by chance I happened upon Danielle's website, White Hot Truth--I ain't ashamed--I went a little fangirl. Nothing incites me to action quite like kick-ass, real-life, cut-through-the-bullshit straight talk from a creative, intelligent, intuitive person. Danielle is just that, and her site reflects it. It's a little like a fantastic dinner party, filled with only the most interesting and compassionate people you know, the best music and delicious food and drink. Yeah. Like that.

1. In the context of your work, which bits of minutiae matter most?

I actually just looked up the definition of minutiae to feel, like, tuned in. It gets a bad rap, doesn't it. It reminds me of Nietzsche: "everything is important, nothing matters."

Meaningful minutiae for me: every.single.word.matters. Nothing is published without thought and word economization.

2. Which bits matter least?
The peer pressure to Twitter and optimize search words.
The dust bunnies beneath my desk.

3. In the context of your life, what types of minutiae once seemed important, but have since fallen by the wayside? Why?
How people perceive me used to seem colossally important, now it seems like a detail. Which is not to say it's an unimportant detail - I'm very interested in being understood, but external perception doesn't govern my choices like it used to. I know who I am.

4. What types of minutiae, if any, have you had to train yourself to pay closer attention to?

I mean, typos.
I write volumes weekly and it's hard to be flawless, especially when you're a night owl with an early-rising kid.

I've also trained myself to be more sensitve to the people's feelings - which can be very subtle but incredibly meaningful.

5. Just for kicks -- what are your favorite bits of minutiae (personal, from a book, a piece of music, moment in a movie, etc.)?

My 5 Favourite anythings:

I adore my Fire Starter clients. My clients are bright, big-hearted women and I feel blessed to play with them.

I just discovered for (free) photo editing and I love its simplicty and smarts.

My currently predominant thought: freedom is not something that you need to "earn."
Jason Mraz's CD: We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things.
This quote from poet John O'Donohue: "When we experience the Beautiful, there is a wonderful sense of homecoming; we feel fully alive. Our lives become illuminated and we come to glimpse behind the shudder of appearances, the sure form of things. Beauty is the true priestess of individuation."


Thank you, Danielle! Can't wait to see what you do next...


And that was the first installment of The Old Soul Ink Interview! The aim is to have a conversation on minutiae with a different fantastic person every Monday. If you'd like to be featured, or would like to recommend someone, drop me a line!


P said...

Fantastic interview, Emma! I need to check her out.

Don't Feed The Pixies said...

Hi Emma - thanks for visiting my blog. I enjoyed this piece too: it made me think about all the minutia in my life.

I love wierd facts and bits of info: like odd collective nouns or facts about history. These little things help you deal with the other kind of minutia - the dull repetitive bits of your job

Emma said...

P--glad you liked it! Definitely check out Danielle's site. Lots of great things there.

DFTP--welcome! I also love weird facts and bits of info. I'm glad you're here.