Ruins and Wild Horses

Traveled to Cumberland Island this past weekend in quaint St. Mary’s — a small town in Georgia. The island is a smooth 45 minute ferry ride on St. Mary’s River.

The 35,000 plus acres of island is uninhabited and undeveloped, and utterly captivating. Cumberland Island is home to the famous Dungeness Ruins, a Carnegie family Mansion until it burned down.

I’ve never been this close to a wild horse and I must say, I was geeking out and blown away by the entire experience. The getaway was unusual, adventurous, and enchanting.

Realizing that often times the best adventures are uncomplicated.

Being Honest With Yourself, Even If It Hurts

In more recent months I’ve been challenging, and facing, the fear that creeps up when I think of what others may think of me.

Growing up, my very philosophical parents used to try and soothe the very angsty teen version of me by saying, “don’t worry, when you get older, you’ll care less of what others think of you.”

It’s got me thinking that as we get older, we may care less of what others think, but what I really believe happens is that we begin to care more about what we ourselves think.

By caring more about what we deem important we light up in the world, we begin to take action on what really matters to us, and we begin to take steps towards the business, creative practice, or career that has been calling us.

But most importantly, by caring more about what we think of our own lives, we begin to find fulfillment in simply being ourselves.

This is a friendly reminder from someone who has been actively practicing radical honesty in her daily life — in creative practice, relationships, and career.

It will be uncomfortable, and it may even hurt, but you’re doing it for you.

Be honest with yourself.

Be honest about the life you crave.

Be honest about who you’re becoming.

At the end of the day, the approval you’re seeking is your own.

 

 

Seeing Failure As Part of the Process

I’ve realized that deep feelings of satisfaction come from our ability to stick with something long term to see the fruits of our labor. Although, to be honest, I want to instantly feel like an expert at whatever I’m working on, and completely bypass the failure part.

My fitness coach recently told me, “everything  important in our lives is going to require effort — and most likely, lots of it.” This of course happened when I was wobbling on the ground trying to hold a plank position.

Our ability, or inability, to stick it out with something is really the determining factor in our ability to get better at it. This means everything from work, fitness, business, writing, to relationships. This means it’s going to suck, look messy, and frustrate us.

I’m working on admitting to myself when I’ve felt like I’ve failed. And instead of giving up, or hiding, or ghosting from it, like my usual M.O, I’ve been getting back to it. Whether it’s being embarrassed about writing a piece that got no reactions/likes, or having a workout where I didn’t give my all, or whether it’s having an uncomfortable conversation in my work or relationship, I’m getting back to it.

I realize that the contrast of feeling wrong, or feeling like I failed, is also part of the process. And the sooner I get back to it, the better I feel.

What about you? How do you handle failure in your life, art, and business?

California Part 6: Questioning Perspective in Berkeley

What are you noticing in your life? What are you focusing on?

Travel can be a great mirror for what we value. When I return from travels, I look back on the photos I took. What did I see? What did I stop to notice? What did I value?

As you’ll see from my travels to Berkeley, I took a lot of photos of flowers, art, and architecture. The sky is pretty gray for most of the day, which causes color to pop when you see it. The contrast of the gray sky made me appreciate color so much more.

This makes me question how I live my life when I’m not traveling. I realized that in my day-to-day life I rarely stop to notice, or take photos, of things I see. I realized that there are so many ways to incorporate adventure and inspiration into our daily lives. It doesn’t just need to be when we’re traveling.

So why don’t we?

What would our lives look like if we allowed ourselves to see it, and act on it, like travel or adventure?

Execution is the Game

As writers, and creators, it’s easy to let perfectionism and the fear of people’s opinions (FOPO) get in the way of putting our work in the world.

I’m guilty of this. And, I’m sure you are too.

In February 2018, I had the pleasure of seeing Gary Vaynerchuck live at the Tampa Theatre. His live talk was identical to seeing him on social media — except you get to see how funny, candid, and generous he really is.

I can’t remember the first time I listened to Gary Vee, but I will say I was put off. I gave him a second chance and listened to what he was saying. Basically, his desire is for all of us to stop complaining about our lives and go all into whatever it is that we’re passionate about. He wants to help us all avoid regret at the end of our lives. I dig it.

That leads me to a Gary Vee quote that rings in my ears these days:

“Ideas are shit, execution is the game.”

And, so I find myself being more honest with myself. Writing more. Putting work in the world. Trying. Failing. Trying again.

Because ideas come and go, but the most important is to execute on what’s bursting to come out.