What does Meraki even mean??
We get this question all the time, and why wouldn't we? Meraki [may-rah-kee] is a Greek word that means to do something with soul, creativity and love. It is a verb or an adverb (although it is commonly mistaken for a noun) and the Greeks use it to describe when they put a little of themselves into what they are doing. They are fully invested in it and give whatever it is their undivided attention & focus. To meraki something is to do it with energy, enthusiasm and creativity. When searching for a name for our new business, I spent hours and hours writing out different phrases. I would make lists and post-its and try to capture what it is I exactly wanted to do. The concept of our business was already different and a little hard to describe. I had already proposed the idea to Kim. She and I work really well together on all different kinds of projects. We are a good balance for each other but even she was a little unsure what I wanted to do exactly. I kept telling her- women need more time to do the things that are important. I want to bring them together to talk about things that matter. I want to let them drink wine and have good food. I want them to be able to laugh and cry if they want to. I want to teach them to relax and be mindful. I know this is exactly what I was lacking in my life and if I could just create a space & time for others to join me...I knew they would. This vision was something that had been brewing for years and I just couldn't quite organize it into something that made total sense yet. So I guess it wasn't really that surprising that I couldn't name it. I didn't even know what it was. I tried though. Everything I came up with felt trite and a bit forced. It all seemed kind of corny and didn't really feel like it was representing what I wanted to say in a name. Finally I just let it go for a few days. I can obsess over things when I get a project going and most of the time if I have set my mind to do something, I like it done instantly with urgency. I like progress and instant gratification. When I get excited about something, why wait right? It is just the way I am wired. But I was stumped on this one. And it was really holding me up. How could I move forward with something if I didn't even know what to call it? How could I describe it to others or build a brand if it remained nameless. I couldn't. So I let it go. I told myself that it would come to me. Like I often do when I am searching, I gave it to God. I meditated...which I know to some people freaks them out. But I always say it like this...Prayer is asking God for something. Meditating is listening to God. So I sat with it. And one morning I said to myself- today it will come and I expressed gratitude in advance.
A couple of hours later I was sitting in a meeting for professional development. This woman was talking about the innovative ways she teaches math and science to her middle school students. She had a great little presentation. I thought to myself- man she has good energy. I want to hang out with her. Then she began talking about the support system she had in her school environment. She started talking about a group of women that supported one another, encouraged each other and were totally committed to their students and the teaching profession. She said "this is my meraki group" and then briefly described the word. Her meraki group...that was it. I got out my phone and typed...Meraki, my new adventure. I walked out of the crowded auditorium and literally bumped into my friend Allison. She is an art teacher at the school. I was so excited about my new idea that I just started rambling to her. And to my surprise, she started finishing my sentences. It was like some weird synergy was happening and we were completely on the same page. "I'm in" I remember she said and I thought, yep...that's it. Kim, Allison & I literally met that afternoon. Each of us had a different perspective. Each of us had different skills and talents. By the way, mine is not art and it is definitely not food (see Pancake video on FB.) Each of us are at different points in our life and yet we all needed the same thing. We needed to connect, with ourselves and with what really mattered in life. We needed to connect with other women. We needed to know we were not alone in our stress or struggles. We needed time to ourselves. We needed relaxation & stress relief. We needed to connect with our bigger purpose. We needed to recharge our batteries. We needed to laugh. We needed a time and space to do these things but we knew a week long retreat or heck even a night long retreat was out of the question with the busy lives we led. We just needed a few hours once or twice a month to breathe. And so Meraki was born...
We could not be more excited to meraki this business. We hope you come along for the ride. Wishing you soul, creativity & love. Katie