How was Your 2021? Hear from a Creative Casey Business

Hi, I'm Caroline Ward from local business KI Creative. 2021 was tough for me as I know it was for so many business owners and the end year is a perfect chance to look back and reflect on the challenges and new learnings I've taken away.


When speaking to friends in business, it seemed they’d be one end of two extremes – not enough work or far too much. I was lucky in the sense I had far too much work, but it also came at a price with the suffering of burnout. I admit there were times I wished I had enough spare time to pick up a new hobby.

As the owner of graphic design business, Ki Creative, it’s really hard to remain inspired when your usual outlets for gathering creative inspiration aren’t available, like visiting a gallery or travelling. The unrelenting screen time is also draining and not inducive to creativity, so having to churn out creative solutions all day, every day led to exhaustion.

As a highly self sufficient and independent person, I find it hard to ask for help, but I had to take steps in order to get through the year and remain strong in business.


Here a a few gems I found helped during the past year and its challenges

  • I jumped at the opportunity to go through the free Casey Mentor Matching program with mentor Aileen Day. She helped me with setting boundaries, scheduling, refining my processes, and choosing to work on client projects where I can add the most value. I also took the opportunity to showcase my small business by entering the 2021 Casey Business Awards.
  • I’ve since brought another great designer on board which has helped me immensely and lightened the load.
  • I turned to gardening when I felt stuck with ideas, to ground myself and allow them to come. I forced myself on a daily lunchtime walk, no matter how busy, and I did a lot of yoga.
  • Aside from that, I’ve learned how to decline projects that aren’t my core expertise – just because you CAN do everything, doesn’t mean you have to.


I’ve had to be reactive this year to get through the sheer amount of projects on my plate, so I’m looking forward to the break over Christmas to reflect and reassess where I’m at in my business and proactively plan for the year ahead – with key themes to be more mindful of how I’m running my business for my wellbeing. I’m looking forward to getting back to the co-working centre and scheduling more time for learning and development.


Ki Creative is a professional design and communication consultancy that creates well-considered, professional design to cut through the noise, communicate to the right people, and inspire them to engage.

Based in Narre Warren, Ki Creative is design that makes a difference, specialising in bringing brands to life through purposeful, creative design.