Window Dressing

  
Selfies are getting boring. Their message is so superficial. “Look at me doing my life!”

They don’t say “Come in, let’s  have a seat at our soul-table and feast together.”

I guess sometimes we’re selling ourselves as mannequin displays. This can become less and less satisfying over time. We’re hungry for something that’s not being served. Maybe we don’t feel interesting enough…to ourselves. So we dress it up and snapshot-share so we can get feedback and messages from other people’s comments about who we are and how we must feel.

That’s kinda backwards. It’s incredible that we don’t know how we feel (other than superficially) 80% of the time. 

But I guess that’s how the journey to the banquet starts…dissatisfaction with the menu options. 

This is also known as awareness.

Awareness is an opportunity to check-in, self-reflect and express. Our lives feel more meaningful, rich and  animated as we satisfy our appetite for self-awareness and growth.

Aliveness comes from something beyond performance and pose. It comes from what messages we are feeding ourselves and others. This affects our energy.

Aliveness is felt in the body as energy. If it’s well-bred and well-fed, it’s your true nature kicking into gear from neutral or backwards.

Being out of neutral or reverse means you have drive through fears like rejection, the unknown, vulnerability, exposure, truth and change. No Easy Button there! 

It’s dirty work for sure…and no one else can do it for you. 😳 This work is like the opposite of slave-driven pyramid construction. This is the solitary and unique exploration of what it means to set yourself free.

I’m on this experiential trip with myself. I’m going deeper. 

For decades I forgot that as a kid I wanted to be an archaeologist. 

I finally remembered 5 years ago, and thanks to my semi-addicted dedication to The Dig,  I’ve unearthed more personal dinosaurs, pirate treasure, bags of garbage and unidentified lying objects than ever before. 
At this 49th year I’m at a crossroads again. I have the most information about the anatomy of myself to work with. The bones are exposed, and the debris is cleared. Time to wash the tools and lay in the wheelbarrow for a break. There’s so much relief and weight lifted! 

I can breathe down here in this space and my energy is returning. I can hear  the heartbeat of a new thing.

I can’t wait to see what this personal excavation brings into sight when I get the aerial view. I have a feeling it’ll be quite the 3D masterpiece. 

  

I’m so Proud!

Live Your Legend Blog Challenge Day 3

What are you proud of?”

Hmmm.  I guess I don’t really ponder that question very much. 

A few years ago I spent almost a month traveling in Thailand, mostly by myself.  I had met a friend there for a few days at the beginning and she taught me everything she had learned from her few days there. I didn’t feel afraid to be on my own, and neither did she. When it was time to part, we high-fived and went our separate ways.

I’m really proud of myself for being open to that experience and not freaking out even when things went sideways. It really helped me learn how to lean into my intuition and problem-solve my way without being overly-attached to outcome or plans. I developed a really loose structure for myself and the trip was peaceful, meaningful and inspiring. 

I started doing a collage every day in my journal and posting it on Facebook to share the story of what I was learning about myself with my friends. Some people found the collage and writing really inspirational and some people thought I was having a mid-life crisis. Haha.

Maybe I was. But  I like to call it a mid-life INSPIRATION.  That trip was a tipping point for so many changes and so much personal growth. I felt like I was reclaiming parts of myself that I had ignored or abandoned for too long.  

Looking back, I’m so proud of myself for following a path into the unknown and returning with the treasure of a different relationship with myself. 

Now everything is a Thailand “ed-venture” as I find myself at home in my heart. 

  

Gifting is Easy!

Day 2 Live Your Legend Blog Challenge.

What do you love helping people with?

Well that’s easy. I LOVE helping people name things, explore possibilities and find meaning.

It’s SO fun it’s almost criminal.

I can hardly help myself! It’s like falling down the rabbit hole …the whole process is a total TRIP. 

If I even hear a blip of someone trying to figure out a name for something…a business, a product, a piece of art…it goes into my head and starts moving through the name factory. It’s kinda like Willy Wonka’s factory.

When people are feeling stuck and wondering about options, all these balloons of ideas start popping up for me. Pop! Pop! Pop! It’s like a party!!

Finding meaning and connection is pretty exciting for me, it’s like a scavenger hunt leading in surprise directions. The keys in your pocket are personal growth, cumulative wisdom and willingness to experiment. These keys are used to unlock the doors of possibility so that you can build a meaningful, connected life. So FUN!

Well, that was easy to clear up. 

  

I’m SO Angry!

Live Your Legend 7-day Blog Challenge.  Day 1. 

“What makes you angry about the world?”

I hate money. It’s REALLY distracting and makes people  do ridiculous things. I also hate people sacrificing their life for everyone else. That’s crazy.

SACRIFICING IS PURE BULLSHIT.

The WORST EVER is people stuck doing work they don’t like just to pay bills. This sends me off the rail. It’s a legit form of prostitution. 

If we take it  a step further, there’s people out there who do a job they hate to pay for things they don’t care about. 

WTF????

Holy muther, that’s INSANE.

I’m close to insane. 

Right now I’m working at a job I don’t get fired-up about, to pay for a lifestyle I don’t feel excited about.

WHAT??

And, even worse,  I can’t seem to force myself to work more to afford a vacation from this life I’m not thrilled about, so I can rejuvenate by leaving it all behind for a teaser week retreat (but really more of an advance) to an adventure I’d rather have.

 So if you’re following this, you’re starting to see the insanity.  

Because we all know that if money wasn’t a THING, we could just get up  each day and figure out what cool thing we wanted to do or learn or discover that day, and go about doing it and not worrying about lame shit that means very little in the end. 

I get angry about feeling stuck, or seeing other people feeling stuck. 

The dumbest part is I’m not really stuck. There’s lots of options. I just don’t like any of the ones that involve working…HELLO MONEY, you lame-ass control-freak! I want to be free to explore and see what happens without you micro-managing everything!

I have a feeling, a belief, that if I stop doing the things I don’t want to do, it’ll make room for new things. These new things will bring some cash money! I might not hate it pouring down on me like a cloudburst. 

I have a gut-feeling that losing $ecurity is guaranteed to make it rain.

  

Jumpstart

Tomorrow I’m beginning a 7-day blog challenge issued by Live Your Legend. 

Today, I’m wondering why.

I’ve done a blog challenge before (and then failed to write another post after it was done).

Why did I press “take this challenge”? 

Cue VIH (Voice In Head)…”Seriously, Shelley, that’s not really a challenge.”

Writing isn’t necessarily a big challenge for me, but the WHY sure is. I guess I need to sort out my WHYs.

Lately I’ve been thinking blogs aren’t that relevant and nobuddy cares to read that “blah blah blah me me me me me me blah blah blah.”

I guess I’m not very interested in people’s empowerment and personal growth stories any more. Maybe I’m tired of my own personal growth story because it’s boring as fuck.

I thought I was really making moves with my life, connecting with myself, learning new skills, living in my values, pushing my limits and building a meaningful momentum towards some thrilling shit I find deeply fulfilling. I’m doing all those things and, at this point, it’s really not. 

I look back over this past year and see that I’ve basically made the same life-soup over and over again. Ok, maybe I used different quantities of the different ingredients, or hit it with some spice here and there, and maybe I changed the soup’s name- but I’m using the same fucking container, the same tools and economically-sensible basic ingredients. This soup is so faded and dissatisfying!!!!! 

What happened???? WHY???????????

I’m an artist. I create art. I play with ideas and expressions. I made cards out of my artwork recently and I think they’re pretty fucking great. My mixed-media art and collages are meaningful and provoke thought. I have some people who give me feedback, support and company. But often I feel like it hits a wall and most people don’t understand me, or even want to have a conversation about the messages they are picking up from my art, or even worse-they don’t pick up any messages at all. I feel alone. I feel like screaming. I feel confused about my motives and my future. I want to change my life and  I want company.  I can’t make the same lame soup anymore. 

2 years ago I talked about leaving my nursing career behind. I was so burned out. I created extra special suffering by blaming myself, second-guessing and trying to continue/not give up so I could provide for my family. What I ended up providing for my family was a walking-dead version of myself. 
I ended up taking time off to reset last year and have been healing through art and self-exploration. I guess I’m in a new place now, one that doesn’t make or serve soup anymore, but still wants something hearty on the menu. Something NEW!

So I guess, that’s WHY enough for now.

I’m changing my life again…still…more. 
The REAL challenge is letting go of the old story and creating the new. 

Life’s a GrowUp

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Day 14! I made it!!
*clapclapclapclapclapclap*

I had no idea what I was going to do for today’s collage until I realized it was going to be a sculpture!

I mean why the heck not???

It just highlights life’s tendency to get 3-D. The cumulative learning pushes us up, and out.
That’s growth in a nut-shell.
We’re always Becoming.
It doesn’t matter what we look like or even feel like, we are in creative-evolution.
We walk a little straighter, we think a little deeper, we innovate, we care differently, we help each other and we create.
Even when we don’t want to change, we are. There’s no choice!
The base camp of BEING is experiencing real beauty, the kind that shows, from the roots-up.

I think of my life as a sculpture like this tree.
I’m a solid framework of growth experiences that capture extraordinary reaches, unfolding moments and bud-to-bloom surprises.
A strong matrix of faith holds me in any circumstance, and stirs me with Spirit winds.
I can count on this framework to protect and provide what I need.
This is trust!
No wonder I feel at home within myself!

Over the past 14 days, I’ve discovered
a way of life that fits me very well. I WakeUp, create my life and share the experience.
The seeds that were planted in and around me long ago are starting to grow!!!

So cuuuuute and fresh!

I’m pretty sure what’s happening now is a direct consequence of the 4-D art of believing.
I believe I have a purpose.
I’m really enjoying living in my values and congruent with my nature.
Tomorrow I start my new job. I’m looking forward to a new work experience and we’ll see how I can knit the things I’ve learned into
West of the Moon and East of the Sun.
I will find a way to wear freedom as a crown and carry on with my blogging, because it was FUN!
I’m sure that one day I will be able to
look back and say “this is progress!”
Thanks for sharing this part of my journey!
The WakeUp Artist

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My Head is a Group Home

Well it’s day 13 of the 14-day blog challenge I made for myself.

It turns out that getting committed is EASY!

All you have to do is let all your personalities hang out with you in public…and soon enough the authorities come along with the strait-jacket and take you away!

I’m currently avoiding The White Jacketeers by sipping iced coffee like a normal person at Gallagher’s cafe in Port Moody.
I don’t have time for The Institution today! I only have 2 more days off before starting my new job! Yikes.

So…for yesterday’s creation I made my own sunshine out of paper…and today…my collage seems a bit crunk on moonshine.

Welcome to my zoo…of wild feelings in captivity.
So many feels to feel…and ride around the pen to various theme-songs.

I think I’m actually learning something. Being myself isn’t the painful, vulnerable, impossible nightmare I had thought it would be??!

Duh.

If I claim all the voices in my head, I’m guaranteed to improve the flexibility of my perception of myself, of others.
A flexible perspective is a solid-gold tool for exploring the archaeology of our identity, our values and our purpose.
I get really excited about purpose!
(It’s like solving for “X” without doing any real math!)

When I was a kid I wanted to be an archaeologist. Now, when I look back on the past year, I see that curious kid returning to her excavation playground- marking, identifying and solving the puzzle of how to return to a life of possibilities.

I think that’s progress!

The cherry on top is looking back or forward through the door of this blessed experience, and seeing the love created, the dreams coming to life or being laid to rest, and the beliefs that bloom into guiding stars.

I get the feeling that my dusty ride will be a wild slide into home-free!

After that, I’ve made a launch date with Glory.

In the meantime, we ride!

The WakeUp Artist

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