In January I started a year-long adventure in personal growth and conscious life design: Grow Your Depth, Nurture Your Brilliance (GYDNYB).
The point of GYDNYB is to do exactly what it says: grow your depth and nurture your brilliance. To shine the light of your gifts out into the world in whatever way you want to do that.
In GYDNYB we do this by taking all the things I teach and USING them and DOING them… EVERY DAY. To go deeper into your practice than you have gone before and see what happens then.
So here I am at the halfway point of this adventure. At the starting point, I had specific, clear intentions for what I wanted to create in my life through GYDNYB.
And now I have those things. All of them.
(Even the secret dream I had that I was sure was actually impossible. Turns out it WAS possible and having it in my life is better than I’d hoped it would be.)
And so I don’t know what’s next and I’m feeling lost.
Which is not a way I like to feel.
Which, through some convoluted journaling, led me to discover what my real problem is: I’ve been avoiding dreaming new dreams.
Dreaming is terrifying. For everyone.
I can’t even count how many emails land in my inbox about this.
I feel like I’ve written a million blog posts that say don’t wait until you’re not feeling afraid because that will never happen. That learning how to transform the fear is the secret to moving forward.
That you actually build the path to your dreams out of your fears and doubts and inner critic voices.
I know this, I know this so well and yet I forget all the time.
And so I walk around feeling lost until I remember.
My journal practice helps me remember sooner.
Because I can’t keep writing the same bullshit out day after day without my memory being jogged.
I feel lost. I don’t know what I want. I’m tired. There’s too much happening. I need more space. I feel lost.
It’s just hard to lie to yourself repeatedly in writing.
Of course I know what I want. Of course I know where I am. Of course I’m not tired and the only thing I actually NEED in this moment is to pull my head out of my ass.
The truth is, I FEEL lost when I’m avoiding my dreams.
But I’m never actually lost because my dream is a lighthouse – it’s how my soul calls me into alignment. It will always lead me home.
So – hello there, new dreams.
Rather than feeling lost I can choose to celebrate the fact that all of the things I wanted to get out of Grow Your Depth, Nurture Your Brilliance this year are ALREADY HERE.
I can choose to believe that hey – I must be ready for more then.
I can choose to ask myself: what do I really want? I can give myself time and space to really explore that.
I can pick new dreams and start moving towards them.
It’s not about accomplishing more. It’s about choosing to stay in alignment.
I am in love with the way I feel when I am in alignment with what my soul is calling me towards next (AKA my dreams).
I feel present and open and connected to this deep deep well of unspeakable joy that lives inside me.
I feel on the right path.
I feel sure.
I remember that I’m stronger than my fears, doubts and inner critics combined.
It doesn’t matter what happens – if I “make the thing happen” or not. It’s all about being on the path, feeling this alignment, and trusting where my creativity and intuition lead.
So if you’ve been feeling lost, or unsure, or uncomfortable in any way – I hope this helps remind you of your truth.Read More
Following my new plan, today the question I got from the journaling cards was:
What are you learning?
Oh my this was a good question.
As I listed all the things I am learning I also started listing the things I wanted to be learning and the things it would be nice to be learning which led me to some new questions, including one which was super helpful: “How do I want people to feel when they encounter the journaling cards page on my website?”
That question got me right into creative flow with how to put the cards out there.
I started writing out what I want to say about the cards. Then the idea came to me for how I want to design the page in a way that would support how I want you to feel when you encounter the cards on my website.
I did a bunch of artwork for that – to make the page match the look of the cards. I even got it formatted and uploaded to my website.
I worked on the design for the page.
And planned out the video I want to make. These cards REALLY want a video, where I can show you the deck.
BUT I want to feel grounded and confident and happy about sharing them, before I can record the video. So I’m doing the other stuff first while increasing self-care so that I get to feeling that way sooner rather than later.
Right now I’m feeling optimistic and inspired and still a little overwhelmed. I know I could push myself, and record the video anyway, and it would be fine but it wouldn’t have the same energy it will have if I wait until I’m REALLY feeling it.
Plus, being so introverted and sensitive, I’m not always in a good space to talk, so my videos really are better when I wait until I am in a more extroverted space (and practicing extra self-care can help me get into that space faster).
With my work, I am ALWAYS being challenged to move slower. To wait until everything is aligned on the inside before acting on the outside. To give things the time they need to grow.
I am not usually very patient with this, but I am getting better.
A part of me really, really, really wants to finish this this week – this part of thinks I should already be done so she’s just really in a hurry and keeps pushing me to work all the time at this.
In the grand scheme of things, what difference does it make if I put the cards out there tomorrow or next Tuesday?
The idea that I “should” get this done quickly is just impatience-wrapped fear. It has no substance.
I am REALLY enjoying writing these updates.
Just like the weekly updates I write on Fridays in the Creative Dream Circle to share my ongoing process of living my dreams (and if you’re a Circle member I really want you to participate in those weekly sharing circles with me – that’s where the magic happens!) writing these updates every day is keeping me grounded in the process.
When I feel grounded in the process everything is clearer and easier – the path smooths itself out.
See you back here tomorrow…Read More
This is from a deck of cards I’m working on for a Creative Soul Alchemy client.
It’s always amazing how the things I help others with are the exact things I need to help myself with.
So, after writing that post yesterday about my mission to share the process of becoming comfortable and confident and ready to put my journaling cards out there into the world, I sat down with my journal and the cards and picked this card:
What do you need right now?
Whoa. I had been so focused on what the cards need that I forgot to think about what I need.
And as the only person who can give to the cards, in order for the cards to receive anything from me I need to be full so of course this is exactly the right place to start.
It turns out I need all sorts of space and permission.
Space and permission to let this take the time it takes. To not judge myself for not being able to do it faster.
That comes in like a giant wave of crisp fresh air.
I hadn’t realised how tangled I was in the idea that there is something wrong with me for not being able to do this faster, or for not already knowing how to do this.
Which is super ridiculous because how can I know how to do something I have never done?
I can figure it out, absolutely. And I’ve done so many similar things that it will probably be pretty simple to figure it out.
But I need permission to start here, in the place of not having a fucking clue.
Recognizing that it’s ok to not know puts me in a different position. From here I can see what I need next:
- A new routine.
- To devote this week to figuring this out.
To remind myself that I am in the process of doing this new thing by not doing my usual things – as much as possible.
Which means, to still take care of the other things I need to take care of with my work, and to devote the rest of my work time to figuring this out. And to get out of my usual routines as a way of signifying that I am moving into something new.
Then what came to me is that I need to ride my bike to the park with my journal and have journal picnic where I will brainstorm what to do next.
So I did that last night.
And things became a lot clearer. I felt myself move from that overwhelmed feeling of “I don’t know how to do this” to that grounded and open feeling of “I could do this, or I could do that. I have a lot of ideas and I can figure out which one to go with.”
I feel like I have found solid ground. A place to begin.
I don’t think it occurs to creative people often enough that “putting it out there” is just as big a job as creating the thing in the first place. This part of the process needs a different way of thinking, a different way of working. It needs your time and attention.
This is a problem that a lot of creatives have – we want to just breeze through this part.
We want to hold onto some kind of fantasy that all we have to do is make the art – that if it’s good enough it should sell itself. Which is bullshit.
This part does take time and love and attention. If you want to actually sell your work, this part is just as important as the creation part. And in fact, this part – the marketing piece – can be as fun and creative as the creation part.
I have a lot to say about how the way you market your work can (and should!) be a light itself, a way of sending inspiration and putting your message out into the world. The way your market your work can be a GIFT to the people who experience it, which I think is the best way to build a sustainable creative business.
But I do have a Creative Business Incubator inside the Creative Dream Circle with hours and hours and hours of videos on this so I will digress.
Most of us want to breeze through this part because to give it love and time and attention means to be present with how we actually feel about selling our creative work which is fraught. It’s fraught for EVERYONE.
Making a living selling your creative work is vulnerable and scary just as much as it’s fulfilling and thrilling.
And the only way through that (with integrity) is to be with it – all of it.
See, I keep thinking that it’s going to get easier. That I’ve been making a living with my creative work for so long that I should be used to this by now and it should be easy by now.
But it’s not.
And the faster I step back into the real story, that it’s not easy but it’s not impossible, the sooner I can start walking this path.
The treasure is always right where you don’t want it to be.
Your gifts, strengths and sources of power are hidden/trapped inside the fears, doubts, limiting beliefs, inner critics, etc.
Through healing and transformation you liberate them so that you can use them to build the path that leads to where you want to be – in this case, successfully and happily selling your creative work.
When you skip that part you wind up working against yourself.
You either will find reasons to not put it out there or you’ll put it out there in ways that don’t really support it in selling the way it wants to sell.
So today I am anticipating spending as much time transforming my fears, doubts, limiting beliefs + inner critics (using the Un-Sticking Station inside the Creative Dream Circle) and using what I learn in that work to start implementing my ideas for putting the cards out there.
My plan is to start with a bike ride. I always work best if I leave the house and either walk or bike for a bit.
Then go to a coffee shop with my journal, cards and laptop. Pick a card to help guide my next steps, journal about it, and then get to work.
I’ll see you back here tomorrow for an update.Read More
The big thing on my to-do list this week is to release my journaling cards out into the world.
I’m excited about this! I’m holding the cards in my hot little hands and I am IN LOVE with everything about them. I’m ready to do this.
But I have no clue HOW to do it.
I mean of course I can just say “Hey, here they are”, give you a link to order them and be done with it but that doesn’t feel right. After all the love, time and attention that went into the creation of the cards I want to send them off into the world in an appropriate way.
In order to do this, I have to work on my inner relationship with the cards, and with the purpose behind the cards, which is connected to my purpose and to my own evolution.
I want this relationship to be all clear and sparkling and love-fueled because this relationship builds the path that leads the right people to the cards – the people who will adore the cards, the people who the cards are here to serve.
Right now this relationship is a bit muddled up with my fears and self-doubt.
- I’m afraid people won’t “get” the cards.
- I worry that the cards are amazing but I am not good enough to be their creator.
- I worry that no one cares.
- I worry that people will love them and talk about them and that I’ll wind up with too much attention (being an introverted entrepreneur is complicated)
- I’m afraid I’m going to mess this up in a way I can’t quite articulate.
- I feel exhausted at the thought of working on this, which is a signal that I am in resistance to facing some other fears that I don’t know about.
This is the stuff that stops us.
It’s different flavours of the same fears which come up every time you want to move towards any dream.
I’m really bored of talking about this stuff, and yet I know that not wanting to look at this stuff is a dream killer. So here I am, telling the truth about what goes on behind the scenes.
I have all of these worries and fears and looking at them makes me uncomfortable so I want to avoid it. But avoiding my feelings means avoiding getting this work done which means avoiding putting these cards out into the world which I just can’t do.
So I’m going to use the cards to help me work through it. I’m going to sit down with my journal every day, pick a card, and let it guide me through the process of putting this project out there.
And I’m going to use the Un-Sticking Station inside the Creative Dream Circle to un-stick the stucks.
And, for accountability, I’m going to post an update here on my blog every day.
Well, not just for accountability but also as a little story that shows that it’s hard to put your creative work out there into the world – but not impossible.
It’s a scary and complicated process and, for most of us, it happens behind the scenes. Alone. Hidden.
Since my job as a teacher and a guide is to help you move along that path that leads from where you are to where you want to be it feels important that I share the truth about this part of the journey and how I navigate it.
I don’t know how long this is going to take. Often these things feel totally impossible, but then I have one good conversation with my fear and all the tangles get untangled and suddenly it’s fast and easy. I’m hoping this will work out like that.
But maybe I’ll be blogging every day just to share how stuck I still am.
Either way, I’ll see you back here tomorrow.Read More