Spoiler Alert- I did not find my quiet mind from the countless hours of learning new business skills, perusing other successful sites and business folks, building my own website (twice), doing my taxes, spending long hours on social media, logging data, chasing the next biggest thing, nor losing countless nights of sleep over this, that and the other thing.
Spoiler Alert #2- Quiet mind has not been found to date.
Over the past five years, I have been learning the ways of an entrepreneur. Not an easy task for someone who is completely and utterly right brained. If that’s the creative side, who knows, I’ll look that up later. Regardless, I am not a person with a business background nor am I a numbers gal and I certainly don’t pride myself on my internet wits. To be honest, I don’t really care about most of that stuff. But once I decided to take a chance on me and my dreams I thought I better learn the ropes. So, I did. And (per usual) I jumped in with two feet into the deepest body of water I could find. I figured I better get cracking since I wouldn’t be outsourcing anytime soon. And what I found is that Being a creative while trying to sell myself to the world wasn’t working. I searched and searched. I put in more hours and still could not figure out why I wasn’t feeling successful, good, and proud.
So, I read books and more books. I read blogs, joined FB groups, and talked with anyone trying to find their way. And it actually made my life worse. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong, why I had less and less time to be creative and interact with those I wanted to connect with in my life. As the work revved up, the more I grew tired and hungry for something different. I didn’t realize working harder wasn’t where I could find my peace and my joy. I kept thinking it will come, it will come…with time it has to come, right?
I spent hours ruminating over how I lost these fine gifts. I was painting up a storm. I was selling my work. Every step I took to sell my art was working but my mind grew tired and my time became more and more precious as it was lost to the endless hours I spent losing my mind. Everyone around me seemed to know what they were doing and seemed so happy to be doing it. Why wasn’t I?
I learned from a variety of sources, got a mentor, took all the right steps, and made the perfect moves. Why am I not feeling as badass as I claim to be? Where is all the joy and fulfillment? Is my authentic self not good enough? Why does my head hurt and my heart ache? Those questions became more and more of a nuisance. The more I swatted at them the more they came back with a vengeance. I became desperate. I panicked and worked even harder doing things that robbed me of my joy. I was losing the very thing that connects me to my people and was scared shitless.
My open heart felt broken. Despite all my efforts, I was extremely tired and worn down and left without clues as to why this hard work was not bringing me any closer to my quest. Regardless of the work and spinning my wheels, it was my heart and my demeanor that worried me most. My bounce back seemed to have disappeared along with my worth. It became less and less about what I had set out to do; which was to be creative, paint, sell my art to people I connect with, share my gifts with those who want them, and above all be true to myself and my heart. It became more and more about doing more, helping more, being more, getting more…more, more, more. I finally had lost it and I hit an all-time low.
So, what did I do? I shut it down for the summer and decided I needed to take a step back and spend some hours on me, my family and my purpose. But guess what? I haven’t done it yet. I’ve been too busy racking my brain about what I think I am suppose to be doing and finding myself paralyzed. Paralyzed by the mountains of paperwork sitting on my desk, the canvases built and not yet prepped, the amount of unused-untouched- really cool ideas, the endless email and campaigns just sitting around in my virtual spaces, and social media at every turn begging me to show up and do something. There are an overwhelming amount of tasks that I already let slide since putting everything on hold to start my business fulltime in the first place. And here I was broken and unable to set foot near a room I so anxiously and dearly created.
As little as a few weeks ago, I still found myself contemplating why isn’t this working?
And then it happened.
(Insert breath and long pause here)
I met a very dear friend for tea. I shared with her my panicked state of affairs and she listened. I could feel her holding me in this space of light and goodness. And without judgement she offered me this little nugget. She said, “Your body and mind are telling you what they need. Take a walk to nowhere and pick wild flowers (I tear up just thinking about it). Put yourself in nature and get lost in time and enjoy the elements”, she continued. A week prior I probably wouldn’t have taken her advice. I’m not sure I was ready to hear it. I believe two things happened in that moment: 1. I was aligned and ready to receive and accept such a message and 2. she held me in that delicious warm space of truth and wholeheartedness.
It’s been 2 weeks of venturing out collecting these awesome little bouquets just for me. And when I get home I care for them as if caring for myself and my broken heart. I spend little moments admiring their beauty and what they have to offer me in this hustle and bustle world we live in. They keep me present when I feel rushed. They help me see that I too am as beautiful and delicate as each petal or vein I see and touch. They are gentle reminders that I am growing and as fragile as the tiniest of seeds blowing in the wind. They help me see that I mistakenly gave into what I thought to be right and these tasks I deemed so important are not worth losing what is most important to me…my soul.
My mind may not be as quiet as I like but it sure has a better chance surviving in the stillness, silence, and spaciousness of what is naturally given to me and to us all. These walks and bike rides allow my mind and heart to open just a little bit each time to a little more quiet and the possibilities of what is to come next. Each time I slow down I get a moment of clarity; true Presence. I can feel the light shine in my heart and my creativeness soar. I didn’t fully understand this until someone truly special and connected took the time to show me and share their knowledge. I thank you dear friend. You know who you are.
And so, I share with any of you listening and needing a little nugget. You are worth a moment each day to create space just for you; to quiet your mind and calm your heart. There are enough wild flowers for us all.