DaylaArabella-01

EVENT ARCHITECT | MEDIA RELATIONS | TALENT BUYER | TRIP HOST





Call me, message me, FaceTime me, email me —anytime, anywhere, holidays too. I’m here, just for you.
Doesn’t that sound so 2003? The problem is, this is me right now. The biggest gift the Millennials have given to Gen-Xrs like me, along with some headaches, is to show us it does not have to be that way. “Balance” — in life, love and work isn’t a dirty word. It’s not something to be embarrassed about pursuing or even demanding.

Six years since ago I started my own public relations and event consultancy and I love it. Out of the gate I had wonderful clients, most of which are still with me today. With hard work and a reputation for delivering results, I’ve added more. I consider myself fortunate to work with clients with a mission I believe in and with values that mirror my own. I never thought that would mean as much to me as it does. It does.

Not every solopreneur has this luxury, and believe me I don’t take it for granted. That is why you work harder, you come up with ideas you know will expand your duties without a thought to additional compensation.

So what is the problem? Endless accessibility. That is always right at the top of the list when clients refer me to others. You get Dayla and she’ll be there for you 24/7/365. You can contact any one of my clients and they’ll tell you about our 1am calls, or email exchanges, phone calls and video chats after Sunday mass, and late night meetings over espressos still wearing a ball gown from the event I just left. But as everything else in life, the aforementioned comes with a price tag — and I was ultimately the one who paid it.

As my client list has grown, I’ve been forced to make real sacrifices in my personal life. My partner and I have suffered from too much time apart, either from traveling or holing up in my office on nights and weekends we were actually together, finishing projects until the wee hours. There were missed holidays, family gatherings, workouts and a great deal of missed sleep.

Then, I experienced what can only be described as the ultimate sign from the universe: I fell nearly 20 feet at an event site, and was incredibly lucky to have walked away with only (did I say only) two back fractures and some bumps and bruises. I was scheduled to leave two weeks later to Newport R.I. where I had 60 concerts happening over 17 days at the Newport Music Festival. Guess who was there back brace and all?

The real scare came later in the year. I got sick. I had bronchitis and pneumonia. I NEVER get sick, but I had noticed I was getting these little signs that I was just run down. As soon as I got that under control, I started losing my decade-long battle to keep my migraines at bay. This was it, time to change.

So that’s the story, now here is my 2017 resolution. I am going to have office hours. Sounds sexy, I know. It’s a challenge for me and a promise to my clients. By having shorter (dare I say a traditional) daily availability, you just have to work smarter. I’ll no longer say I’ll get to this after the 11 p.m. news. I won’t be a slave to my inbox. I’ll focus on one task at a time, one client at a time. I’ll expand and detail my daily, weekly and quarterly strategic plan and map out tasks with each of my clients, and we’ll stick with it. I will enlist that same determination and schedule my personal life too — to workout, to meditate, to read (boy do I miss reading anything that is not a trade journal or arts press release), to be with the love of my life and truly be present, and to spend more time with my friends and my parents who I am so blessed to still have in my life.

Sounds easy, doesn’t it? I know it won’t be and I also know the biggest challenge will be me, but I have a plan. I’ve been passionate about New Year’s resolutions my whole life, I take months to put them together, I devise a plan and I get them done (you can read about my love of resolutions here).

I love New Years because it gives us all a reset button. It’s a clean slate, ready to be embraced.
So here’s to focus, here’s to balance and here’s to life!

Happy New Year everyone!
Dayla

P.S. As always I’ll be reporting on my resolution progress quarterly, so stay tuned for a March 15 update. And if you are interested in sharing your resolution plans, I want to hear about them. Then you can join me on March 15 for a progress party.
You can reach me at Dayla@DaylaArabella.com

DaylaFlowerShow

It’s hard to believe six weeks have passed since a rather routine event setup became one that I won’t ever forget. A historic home, a floor collapse, and a fall through to the basement, more feet than I care to remember. The details have been circulating for several weeks now, and many people have heard the story. However, that story is not the purpose of this one. As it happens sometimes, it takes an event that sudden, that serious, to reveal something we should have known all along.

From my days in the corporate world to my life now as an owner of an event and public relations company, July has always signified the start of my summer as my workload lightens, and I get ready for a month of rest and rejuvenation. This year, mighty July started my season of gratitude, and with good reason. Since the accident, I’ve had at least a dozen doctors remind me that the accident could have been much, much worse. Believe me, I know. I was there! I am determined to hold on to the gratitude and relief I felt that day when the doctors came in to tell me the extent of my injuries.

The outpouring of well wishes, cards, flowers, wine (!), and creative care packages has been overwhelming to say the least. I’ve already told the concierge in the building that I’ll have to send him flowers for all the trips he made to my apartment with gifts. The senders were friends, family, clients, colleagues, and my Boston Women in Media and Entertainment (BWME) sisters.

This latter group is the newest to me. They are members of a group I co-founded in August of 2012 with beloved Boston broadcaster Candy O’Terry. The group consists of women in the media and arts fields in greater Boston. It astonishes me that in less than 4 years we have grown to over 200 members.

When Candy and I created the mission, we knew we wanted to educate, inspire, and connect women in our ever-changing, fiercely competitive fields. The goal closest to my heart was to build a solid network of entrepreneurs and industry professionals with varied areas of expertise who would partner on projects, hire and mentor each other, provide referrals, and work together to achieve their personal and professional goals. I’m delighted to report this is happening.

Candy and I have invested an enormous amount of time cultivating a strong network that met the professional needs of our members who were coming from all over our industry’s ever-widening landscape. We were determined to be available by phone, in person, or through email for our members to guide, listen, refer, assist, and accept tons of great feedback. We labored over the services we offered and the timing of and takeaways of our events and are constantly measuring the ROI of our membership plan.

But what we built was much more.

So many BWME members have reached out to me with heartfelt words, referrals to doctors, and offers to deliver meals and provide transportation to physical therapy appointments. They’ve chatted with me about what I can expect on the road to recovery and made sure I knew what my priorities should be. They also assisted with staffing my events and moved my projects along the pipeline. I can’t explain here how much this has meant to me.

What BWME ultimately has become—and honestly, I think I’m the last one in the group to realize it—is a much more meaningful group of women who care for each other beyond the workplace and office hours and who understand how vulnerable you can be when you work for yourself, by yourself, or work for a bigger institution that has little regard for what life may bring your way.

I’m grateful beyond words to be a part of this group and to have so many exceptional women in my life … in good times and bad, and in sickness and in health.

Here’s to the power of networking!
Dayla

I have a strange name, fat face and crooked smile. Thanks Mom.

by DaylaArabella May 5, 2016

When I was 8 years old, I told my mother I didn’t want to have kids, ever. When I was 15, I told her I was never getting married because I was going to do things my way. At 21, I told my mother that I completely understood what Joni Mitchell meant when she sang, […]

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I’m Not Busy. The Art of Unbusyness

by DaylaArabella January 27, 2015

This is tough. I’m tackling my first resolution of the year. We’ve all heard colleagues and friends overusing trite expressions like “I’m drowning” or “I’m just crazy right now.” Maybe you do it too. That’s so 2014. I decided I want to be one of the new cool kids who have mastered the art of […]

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Your Resolution Resolution. Start Early, End Strong.

by DaylaArabella December 23, 2014

It is the most wonderful time of the year, but that shouldn’t just extend to holidays and all that they bring. For me (and for you) this time of year is ripe with professional and personal opportunities, where we all press the re-set button with a new sense of excitement and energy as the new […]

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I Know What You Didn’t Do This Summer

by DaylaArabella September 3, 2013

When I wrote “Put Down Your Summer Reading…You’ve Got Work to Do,” back in early July, I didn’t expect the hate mail. Okay maybe it wasn’t hate mail, but I did get quite a few comments that I needed to get a life and that I should really get off everyone’s (my staff’s) back. In […]

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What’s In a Name? Your Bottom Line.

by DaylaArabella August 9, 2013

Being a talent buyer is fun, exciting and at times can be, let’s say complicated. And when you are talking about headline talent, well that just ups the ante! The high risk/reward makes finding the right artist for your client’s event a challenge with a lot of ground to cover. 1. The Basics Start with […]

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Put Down Your Summer Reading, You’ve Got Work to Do

by DaylaArabella July 1, 2013

If you’re like me and millions of other small business owners all across the nation, summer is the one time of the year that you get a little reprieve from 14-hour days and a constant stream of deadlines. For 10 months of the year my clients will tell you, I am available around-the-clock for them, […]

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Where’s the Boston in the Red Sox?

by DaylaArabella May 20, 2013

With the Red Sox some forty plus games into the season, it’s hard to believe, with the “chicken & beer” legacy of the Valentine era just barely in the rear view mirror, we’d be praising the Red Sox, not for their play, nor their early attempts to put last year behind them, but the fact […]

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Another Test of Faith for the Patriot Way

by DaylaArabella May 13, 2013

In Bill We Trust. Remember? Well that mantra is being tested again Pats fans. Picking up damaged or unwanted goods and attempting to recycle and revive careers is nothing new for Bill Belichick; think Corey Dillon, Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Danny Woodhead, and oh yeah, there’s Albert Haynesworth and Chad (Ochocinco) Johnson as well. Shall […]

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