Allowing Myself

…to feel, to love, to be.

Tag: Brene Brown

Move-A-Body Friend

I’ve been waiting patiently for months for today.

The day where I wish my friend Chelsea a happy birthday, and explain to you what a move-a-body friend is.

This is not my term. Brene Brown coined it:

When we’re looking for compassion, we need someone who is deeply rooted, is able to bend and, most of all, embraces us for our strengths and struggles. We need to honor our struggle by sharing it with someone who has earned the right to hear it. When we’re looking for compassion, it’s about connecting with the right person at the right time about the right issue.

We need a move-a-body friend.

(She continues to tell a story about a friend needing help moving her passed out alcoholic mother off the sofa before the kids get home from school)

“I’d call you because you would come right away, give me a hug, never look judgmental or disapproving or disgusted. And then you’d say, ‘Let’s do this.’

And that’s what I’ve decided Chelsea is for me. Someone who embraces my strengths and struggles and continually shows up for me as a friend.

I feel utterly responsible for so many people. People naturally trust me and share their honest and weighty experiences with me (many times without my prompting). This is part of my superpower, part of the service I bring to the world, but damn, if it doesn’t get tiring.

I was just talking to Chelsea the other day and said that it seems I don’t have a need for physically close friendships. Maybe because I’m an introvert, or spent so many years without best friends, or am close with my siblings, or have Henry, or because talking is my love language…

I have many female friends. Loving, deep, important, close, supportive – these are all words that come to mind for the friendships I keep.

But, while I need and love my female friendships, I don’t need them to be in my physical presence. I go to work and call one of them. While I’m driving I call another. We Skype, we text, we write emails and letters and Gchat all day long… but I don’t see many of them in person often.

And I haven’t seen Chelsea in years. So it’s only fitting that, at the strongest our friendship has ever been (at least, I think), I booked a plane ticket to see her this month. To visit her in the city she’s made a life for herself, meet her boyfriend and cat (though you could argue order of importance there haha #joking), and spend quality time with her.

Y’know, make her laugh in person. It’s gonna be awesome.

We met working retail in Boston. It was my first and only retail job. Our boss was a fucking nutcase, one rude comment away from full on sexual harassment. Chels and I bonded instantly with sarcasm, high levels of work and ridiculous chocolate chip cookies from the mall food court.

She quit. Then I quit. She left Boston. I left Boston. Maybe I left first…? And we stayed in touch.

I moved to LA. She moved to Denver. We stayed in touch but somehow had a fight, then a falling out.

And then, after some long cooling off period, we got back together. She is one of two friends ever that I’ve had more than one fight with and yet we continue to stay friends.

Lately, we talk multiple times per week for hours at a time, text every day, rely and depend on each other the way only close friends do. I can be my full, real, honest self with her. She shows up for me. And I hope I do for her.

I don’t think I have ever felt so fiercely about a friendship.

So, here’s to you Chelsea. Happy Birthday! Can’t wait to celebrate it with you in person in a few weeks xoxo

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#30daysofdresses – day 9

The little yellow belt is back…so are the boots. Clearly the best $17 I’ve ever spent at Kohl’s.

This dress is my straight forward style – comfy, navy, and an interesting neck and hemline.

That’s it really.

If you’ve been following along, I haven’t been doing so well. As I write this, I’m feeling better, but the start of the week was rough.

But how to explain it to you?

I wake up rested, even happy, to be laying in bed in the dark – the cool desert air coming in, the cloud cover of the westside hiding the sun, and then some thought hits me, and anxiety. Can’t even tell you what the thought is.

Or I feel fine, and decide to vacuum (Carter’s fleas may be the death of me). And as I’m vacuuming, the drone of the motor, the rhythmic back-and-forth, the dog circling me unsure, I start to feel pissed that the carpet sweeper is broken, that I have to vacuum before work, and my mind races through all of these injustices and bam, I’m crying instead of cleaning.

If I could explain it, maybe I could fix it.

But I’m also learning that there’s nothing to fix because I’m not broken.

It just is.

If this dress is straight-forward me, then turning to books is my typical approach to feeling insane. The day I wore this dress I started reading Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. My friend Steve calls her one of my saints. That evening I watched part one of Elizabeth Gilbert on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday. Another of my saints. I watched videos of Pema Chodron on Youtube. These women hold up a light when I’m in this deep darkness. Anything to know that I’m not alone.

And I gathered three things:

1. “Vulnerability is not weakness, and the uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure we face every day are not optional. Our only choice is a questions of engagement.” ~Brene Brown

2. Elizabeth Gilbert saying that we have three different voices in our head. The child, throwing a tantrum because they’re exhausted. The older sister, who we think is the voice of our highest self, saying things like “why do you keep doing this to yourself?!” but, Gilbert said, if there’s any of this ::wagging her finger::, that is not your highest self. There is no judgement from your higher self. And the actual higher self she seeks to listen to, which is full of love, grace and support. The voice that says “I love you” and that’s it.

3. Pema Chodron saying that even she experiences times of meditation where she feels like her mind is crazy and the thoughts do not stop. But even if the experience of meditation that day isn’t great, it’s the post-meditation feeling that matters. That her meditation practice “opens more room in (her) mind”.

I wish I had better answers for myself so I could pass them on to you, but all I can do is read, jot down my notes, let the crying come when it does, and be gentle with myself.

 

Flow: Month One

Looking back over January, I have one word for myself: proud.

I’m proud that I managed my anxiety with four major events in 21 days, kept up my workload, gave myself space when I needed it and listened to my intuition.

There was the upswing of anxiety with events – planning, preparing, all hurry-up-and-wait.

There was plunging exhaustion with so much adrenaline coursing through me I only slept 8 hours in 2 days.

There was the serendipity of being asked, “What are you proud of?” the day after the last event played off.

That night, getting coconut milk ice cream with these ladies, I experienced a deja vu, only to have the store clerk say “That means you’re on the right path.”

There was Heidi’s advice via Instagram: “lots of deep breathing to help slow your body down. Generous amounts of kindness and compassion for yourself especially in recounting the event and your delivery of it. Listen to your body and do your best to give yourself permission to give it what it needs most. Hang in, Justine. You have a great sense of awareness around your HSP so I trust you will know what you need. 🙂 …the tears are a great sign that you are releasing. The more you can give into them, allow for them, and not judge them, the more peace you will find. Be gentle with your process.”

I gave into the tears, so hot and heaving one morning, I thought they wouldn’t end. And I was gentle.

I shared on Facebook:
This weekend I was the gal in the arena “who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if (s)he fails, at least fails while daring greatly”

I had almost 500 people show up to one event. We had 3 events total. I leaned heavily on my coworkers & husband. I didn’t sleep. I took good care of myself. I laughed with people and almost cried under pressure. Then actually cried in the shower. I chose green juice and then downed margaritas. I answered email from bed, walked the beach and checked Instagram too many times. I was focused, scattered, grateful, pissed and everything in between.

Risk requires vulnerability and vulnerability requires trust & love & really good people in the arena with you. The critics don’t count b/c their not even in the game. Remember that. xo

And then I posted this: Brene Brown – Listening To Shame

I drank too much (again) and took naps at 5pm in the afternoon. I did a ton of work and then soaked in a hot tub. Twice. H and I went to San Diego for a night. I hiked during the day and checked email late at night. I swam in the ocean. I went out on runs with Carter and then took over a week off from exercise because of a terrible cold. And stress.

I started pulling tarot cards – tuning into whatever magic the Universe whispers through signs. I pulled the Eight of Pentacles (focusing on the task) and The World (fulfillment of a grand project) multiple times. It’s become a morning ritual.

Somehow, it is what we’d call a “net win” – coming out at the end of January feeling confident in myself, trusting and moving along with whatever reality brought me.

It truly felt like a month of ebb and flow, week to week, day to day, even hour to hour.

And I was determined to not put my living on hold while I was awash in the anxieties of these work pressures, and I succeeded. I asked for help and received it. I was open to whatever came my way. I risked and was rewarded.

I think I grew more this past month than in other month’s combine. And I’m proud. I went with the flow. I was the girl in the arena. And I dared greatly.

Day In The Life: Live Is Being Lived

Lately, I’ve been up and down emotionally. When this happens, I never know exactly why and therefore randomly try things to help me feel better. Most don’t seem to work and the best plan is just to wait it out. Monday was anxiety, Wednesday was frustration, and Thursday was something close to depression.

But when I remembered it was June’s “day in the life“, I perked up. Here was something that could anchor my day. Something that would remind me to notice the moments and to choose the “better” task hour to hour.

So, I went through my day, taking photos. And I remembered my horoscope from Astrobarry last week:

In case you haven’t noticed by now, Pisces, the horoscopes I’ve been writing you lately have been pretty fucking awesome. They have mostly centered around accepting yourself for who you are, right here and right now (instead of mooning over what could’ve been or might someday be), and just reveling in the giddiness and gorgeousness and general good-time feelings wherever and whenever you can find ’em. Now, I don’t want to be a sugarcoating bliss-ninny and give you the mistaken impression that everything in life will be sunshine and rainbow and tutti-frutti ice-cream cones from here on out—hell, I bet even at the best of times, there are still some things that are functioning poorly and/or mainly serve the role of ‘giant pain-in-the-ass’. And yet, here comes a year full of Jupiter-in-the-5th, starting early next week, which is one of the loveliest astrological happenings a sign can experience: an increase of encouraging planetary energy in the house of love and romance, children and child-like wonder, pleasure and play, and all leisure-time activities which bring creative self-fulfillment. Raise the roof on that one, dear fishy! While this will not magically remove all bumps-in-the-road or thorns-in-your-side, it does support you whenever you take steps to improve your appreciative enjoyment of the world. Knowing you, the hardest part just might be determining what you most genuinely enjoy… without unduly considering everyone else’s preferences and pressures. Doing more of what you really really love, by the way, is an incredibly attractivequality.

And I focused on doing what I wanted to do.

This is the hardest thing for me. I may seem all bad-ass and confident, but sometimes the slightest look from a friend or word from H can send me off into the hustle for worthiness.

This week had plenty of that as I prepared for my annual review. Even though I just received a promotion, even though I rock my job, it sent me into a panic. Thoughts swirling about if I’ve done enough and will make the cut. If I’m liked

But I kept my focus on taking those photos. And the ideas from above: “just reveling in the giddiness and gorgeousness and general good-time feelings wherever and whenever you can find ’em… pleasure and play, and all leisure-time activities which bring creative self-fulfillment“.

And I realize now as I write this that the act of taking these photos, of noticing my life, gives value to where I’m at, allowing myself to do what I want with these precious minutes I’m given each day. And it brings creative fulfillment, which brings me deep happiness with myself and my life.

*The picture of the 3 of us on our family walk is my fav

—Related—
Ali Edward’s Day In The Life
Susannah Conway’s e-courses, especially Unravelling
Liz Lamoreux
Brene Brown

What A Week

This week was packed and yet, doable. I am so proud of myself for handling all of it so well. So you’ll excuse me a moment if I need to list it all out to reassure myself I am pretty f-ing awesome.

  • Felt anxiety but turned to running, podcasts and good internet blogs to buoy myself
  • Watched Brene Brown on Oprah (omg!)
  • Organized an event for students visiting LA on spring break. Didn’t get home till 11pm.
  • Terrible noise from car’s rear driver side. Bring it in.
  • End up working from a Starbucks for 5+ hrs. Turns out, the need a part from the dealer and they’ll keep the car over night. Bah.
  • Manage to get a ride from a neighbor’s husband. Thank goodness for nice people.
  • Ride my bike to the grocery store for food for the next day’s event. My job should reward me for being the most resourceful & committed employee… ever.
  • Unload groceries. Walk dog. Shower & change.
  • Hitch a ride with my colleague to second event of the week. End up hosting over 150 people (biggest turn out yet for this event). Snag a ride home with an alumna.
  • Sleep less than 7 hours and get up to run events 3 & 4 this week. Hitch a ride to work with my sister. Arrive by 8:45am, which is the earliest I think I’ve ever shown up to the office since the start.
  • Run event 3 while inhaling tiny croissants, strawberries and orange juice.
  • Deal with event 4 and a student with an ego.
  • Wait for my ride home. Latest I’ve stayed at the office for no reason.
  • Go to Wurskutche with H & my sister. Needed that brat.
  • Manage to wake up and run 3m to the car place on Thursday – exercise the dog + car pick up in one. Boo-yah.
  • Meet an awesome friend for early lunch. Do more work. Finally get some rest.

And manage all of this with hardly any tears, no major panic issues, and lots of self-love. Constant reassurance that “I got this” and “I’m really not that busy“. Lots of trust in myself and in things working out just the way they should.

And that brings us to today…
Where I walked the dog, Skyped with my mom, did a bunch more work, finally ordered my Project Life photos from Persnickety Prints, and now I’m chilling on the couch with H & Carter Cash. H is just starting his spring break and I’m looking forward to the weekend together.

Hope you are yours are well xo

Fluidity

Today was another up & down day. This is getting exhausting.

And amazingly enough, it was somehow productive – the good and bad fading so quickly into one another it was hard to keep track. Fluid, I guess. Also, a total pain in the ass.

Overall I feel vulnerable, frustrated and a bit like I’m hustling. (Insert Brene Brown link here, which in my tiredness I am unable to find) For what, for who, I’m not sure. I bet it doesn’t help the person I report to has changed 3x in one month. Or that I have 5 events, 4 trips and one presentation to do in the next 6 weeks. Or that I can’t seem to get consistent exercise and did I mention the heat?!

One of the good parts of today was working from a Starbucks. I get so much done with limited battery power and ambient noise of other people surrounding me. One of the down parts was saying something to H that hurt his feelings. Whether or not I’m able to keep myself out of this funk is one thing, but the fact that I can apologize to him and not make things a huge fight (anymore) is a win for the day. I’m still doing something right.

Also, H took me to the self-carwash, the kind with quarter machines and huge water guns, and taught me how to wash my own car. I know how to do it but not at these self-serve car-washes that dot Los Angeles. One step closer to being a native…? Guess we’ll have to see.

 

Anxiety vs Excitement

Yesterday, after a day of anxiety, I decided to reframe my anxiety and call it excitement. And oh my, did that shift things.

I’ve been reading through “Glad No Matter What” by SARK. She writes about nudging her feelings. When things feel a bit extreme and not so good, she says “recalculating” to herself (like a GPS) and she moves the emotional needle bit by bit until she’s processed her feelings.

Anxiety runs through my chest, right at the top of my diaphragm, where my ribs split apart. Excitement usually sits lower, a rippling in my stomach. For how they sit in my body, they’re pretty much opposite sides of the same coin.

Brene Brown talks about our inability to feel “negative” emotions, our tendency to numb those difficult emotions, actually keeps us from experiencing the highs as well. Same circuits. Not to mention, joy is a vulnerable place.

“…vulnerability is still just absolutely essential. That we can’t know things like love and belonging and creativity and joy without vulnerability, but in this culture of reflexive cynicism you better also really have an understanding of shame if you’re going to put yourself out there.” (TED blog)

And what is getting married if not PUTTING YOURSELF OUT THERE. Like the right of passage of vulnerability.

I can be quite stoic. In cases of extreme emotions, my face stays blank, absorbing other’s issues and processing things as quickly as possible. I’ve had people yell at me, “Why don’t you smile!?” People I don’t know. In public.

It makes sense I’m having a bit of trouble untangling my panic, worry and exhaustion from my joy, excitement and anticipation when it comes to the wedding.

So, I’ve changed the tape. Instead of thinking, “I’m so stressed / overwhelmed / panicked about the wedding” I think, “I’m SO excited!” and I feel much more energized and amazing about all of the tasks I’m  working through and the challenge as a whole.

Because planning a wedding is a bitch.

“I got a lot of lovin’ / got a lot of lovin’ / got a lot of love in heart…” lissie

Best Use of My Time and Energy

Monday was a day off, thanks to the marathon in Boston. I used to panic about days off. Work used to equal worth. Now, a day off is savored. Sometimes I make a list of all the fun things I want to do and other times I just let my brain pick the next thing on a whim.

This day off was a bit of both. This week, I want to accomplish a few “big rocks” each day and balance them with rest. For instance, more bridal shower gifts arrived and our bedroom feels dusty, but both take time and energy I am not willing to give right this moment. Note that I didn’t say “both take time and energy I don’t have” because in reality, I do have time and I do have energy. That’s the issue with my old mantra “I’ll rest when I’m done”.

The fact is, we’re never done.

So Monday involved fun and errands. I woke up on my own time, wrote morning pages (as I do now every day), biked with the dog and ate a quick snack. The first item on my agenda was a coffee date with two friends, Mike and Manny. The day was so gorgeous, we found ourselves walking and talking for over 2 hours. We covered almost 5 miles. It was splendid.

After that, I returned home to eat leftovers, read Harry Potter, shower and nap because I could. Napping, like taking baths, is another self-care item that I sprinkle about my days. Why deny yourself such an easy pick-me-up?

After all of that fun and resting, I did finally want to do some “work”. Post-office for wedding invitation stamps, library for books, the bank for deposits and finally, groceries. When the grocery store is empty, I find it the most relaxing thing ever. (It’s the dragging the grocery bags in from the car and unpacking them all that sucks).

And then I was back home – unpacking, checking Twitter, feeling a mile pressure to “accomplish” the next thing. But I took a step back and thought, “What would be the best use of my time and my energy?“.

Shoulds came out:

  • Run laundry
  • Check email
  • Cook dinner
  • Clean the bedroom
  • Change the sheets
  • Line the cabinets with contact paper
  • Clean the bathroom
  • Finish writing thank you notes
  • Unpack bridal shower gifts

Wants arrived as follows:

  • Blog
  • Read Harry Potter
  • Cook dinner, so we can eat dinner
  • Read the new books from the library
  • Watch the NHL playoffs

I share this with you for a few reasons. One, even a year ago, “blog” would’ve hardly made the list and certainly wouldn’t be acted on but that was, in fact, what I chose to do first. Two, I’ve come to learn that the “shoulds” become “wants” when it’s the right time for them, either when I have the energy reserves to accomplish them positively or when they really do become “urgent”. Three, I’ve also learned to find middle ground. Like, maybe I will change the sheets, but I won’t clean the bedroom. Maybe I will buy groceries and then we’ll eat a frozen pizza. Maybe I will write up 5 more thank you notes but not press myself to write the remaining 18. The point is I allow myself to mix relaxing activities into with the “work” and I in no way pressure myself to do it all. Because, really, there’s just no way. And by allowing myself that space to rest / recover / chill out, I have energy to do things that need doing. And it becomes blatantly obvious which things I just have no patience for on most days (see “line cabinets” or “check email” – yes, I do these things but only when I know I have the positive energy reserve to accomplish them – or else I find myself trying to reach a bar that is completely unattainable).

What would be the best use of my time and my energy?

It’s a key question, but I’m asking it from such a different mind-frame than I used to that my answers now make sense. My old answers would fit the mold of the “shoulds” and the rest would be some dangling carrot I would never allow myself to reach. Now, it’s a bit of both.

And if you’re not getting my version of this message, I encourage you to watch Shawn Achor’s TEDTalk about how happiness inspires creativity. Love it.

Treat Yourself Like a Precious Object

My one sentence message that I’d like to share tonight for #trust30 is below. I’ve spent the past year and a half learning this and really living it only for the past 6 months. It’s taken from the Artist’s Way book.

Treating yourself like a precious object will make you stronger.

I grew up with my mom telling me “Put yourself first” but as she wasn’t the strongest example of this, putting everyone else before her own needs and care, I didn’t understand. It feels selfish and indulgent and just not OK to put myself first. Of course I want to be first, having everyone wait on me and my whims, but the reality is, I do all of the waiting. And this creates serious resentfulness. Like, I will scream at your in public or at least, I will have nightmares of screaming at you in public for buying the wrong peanut butter. Ya.

“That is the other side of selflessness: its tyranny.” Blind Assassin – Margaret Atwood

After some therapy work, I came to the realization that I wasn’t living my own life in my head. I was living what I thought everyone else wanted from me. So, I wouldn’t sit and watch tv if I wanted to because surely there is something more “important” like washing the sink full of dishes or cleaning the bathroom. I don’t go out alone because my fiance will be sad or my dog will be lonely. I make up excuses to not take care of myself. wtf?

I’ve had it before, the sense that even in the course of my most legitimate and daily actions – peeling a banana, brushing my teeth – I am trespassing. Blind Assassin – Margaret Atwood

Therapy, time, experimenting and the Artist’s Way book have all helped me figure this out for me. And the big picture starts to come into focus:

  1. I see how mean and hatelful people are towards themselves
  2. I see how that leaks out in their interactions with other people
  3. And I just want them to know that it’s OK and they need to take care of themselves.

I’m learning that we’re all imperfect, we’re all in this together, and it’s ok. WE’RE ALL OK.

(For more on the above, dig into some Brene Brown – Gifts of Imperfection).

Taking care of myself first, making time for me, creating boundaries that honor my self are truly important to the level of happiness and contentment I feel. For example, last night I could feel that old rage start to bubble up, though it was just at a “cranky” level. I whined my old mantra, “I’m just sooooooo tiiirrreeeddddd”. And I made a decision to get to the gym today, no matter what.

After a sweaty cardio session, I felt much better, and it renewed my energy to deal with a work issue this evening. Could I have dealt with that issue if I hadn’t worked out? Sure. But I would’ve been in tears, yelling into the air about how f-ing stupid my life was, blah blah blah… instead, I’ve been mildly annoyed but kept calm and, really, almost found it funny.

Me – finding something frustrating funny – UNHEARD OF.

So yes – that’s what I would say to a million people if I could. It’s an easy was to say “Love yourself” but it feels much more tangible and DOABLE this way.

Treat yourself as a precious object. It will make you stronger.

All Signs Point To – Create Now!

Inspiration finds you, really, whether you’re looking for it or not. I mean, you can be looking for it, but you may find it somewhere you least expect it. “Just think really really really hard about it and then forget it,” Don Draper tells Peggy in “The Wheel”, season one finale of MadMen, describing his creative process.

My DreamLab class is going through the guideposts of Brene Brown‘s The Gifts of Imperfection. I was cruising along, loving everything that is coming together in my head about my life, all those tidbits in the mixing pot, and then last week – BAM – derailed.

Last week covered cultivating creativity, faith and intuition – all important markers that I’ve lost track of in the past 5-10 yrs. (Dang Saturn cycle.) I recognized the faith and intuition pieces immediately, turning them over in my mind to reintegrate. Creativity, though, talk about a shame trigger.

My experiences of the past 9 years have included so many art wounds that I can’t untangle them. Scratching the surface of those history-lines sent me into an emotional panic. Too much weight. The issue isn’t whether I think of myself as creative, it’s that I starve myself of creativity.

This week my therapist asked me about drug/alcohol addictions. My extended family has a history of alcohol abuse, but my immediate family has been addiction-free. She pointed out how my self-control has probably kept me from having any issues – since feeling even mildly out-of-control is terribly uncomfortable for me. Add to that the understanding that I’m predisposed to these pitfalls – I obsessively monitor my indulgences.

But not with art. Not with writing, blogging, photography, journaling, and especially, music. I hold back. I do everything else first. I have some warped belief that if I allow myself to do creative things, the rest of my life will be swept away in a tidal wave of irresponsibility.

So not only did I have DreamLab bringing me “art wounds”, therapy bringing me “addiction & control”, I tuned into this podcast from Karen Walrond. Honestly, previous times I’ve found her stuff on the web, I didn’t fall in love. This time, though, her voice warmed my earbuds and I was smitten. And now I find this post

“All you need to do to be a writer is write.  You don’t need to wait until you’re grown up, or go to university or anything.  You just need to write, and write, and write.  You need to make a point to keep on writing.  Actually practice writing…

Later on, I was thinking about this exchange, and I realized that the same is likely true for just living life: I mean, it doesn’t take a diploma or a formal education to live, and there’s no reason to do anything proactively in life, really, if you think about it.  You could just let it wash over you, and just reactively deal with circumstances as they come.  However, it seems to me that the way to learn to live life best is to actually practice living — challenging yourself to do more, or learn more, and to be more, you know?  Purposeful living.” ~Karen Walrond

None of that’s new to me – writer’s write, runner’s run – but again that theme of practice vs. perfection – that life is in the doing and the being and not the end results. That I’m drawn to creative blogs, photography, and journaling repeatedly, even though I’m not practicing it myself.

My perfectionism, my people-pleasing, my dissatisfaction seem to be ways that I muffle that creative urge.

Creating is the best way I can see to skirt around myself and make my way through on this journey. ~Glad for Art

Here I am 3.5 months later, still not really doing any of that, but it’s there. The urge to create, to express myself, to heal.

“If you decide to trade in your authenticity for safety, there are a few things to keep in mind. Your unexpressed ideas, opinions, and contributions will not just go away. They are likely to fester and eat away at your worthiness. You may experience the following: anxiety, depression, overeating, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment and inexplicable grief.” ~Brene Brown

Experiences in the past 9 yrs had me trading in my authenticity and controlling myself by withholding creativity. It’s a damaging cycle. I know the antidote is as follows, and I know it’s going to be an uncomfortable ride: as Jamie wrote here, I don’t need huge swatches of creative time, I just need creative time NOW.