Promotion to Chief Strategist

I have been a bit trapped in my head lately. With a tight fog wrapped around my thoughts, I have spent hours laying down begging for it to break. I know what I am supposed to do. I know what I want to do. I think…

Part of the fog’s heaviness was due to this weird guilt I have as a parent, pursuing a dream instead of spending all of my time and energy supporting my daughters. I even wonder if I am supposed to be master minding the musicians in my family. Am I supposed to channel all of this fire I have to lifting up others?

There is this weight of expectation and my tendency to get so excited about my projects that I talk about them and talk about them and live them through this talking and then I feel crippled at night, wondering if I will end up late in life, as that person who had all these great ideas and never did anything… but she had so much potential.

I feel challenged by what emboldens me. I hesitate to fully own the fact I feel called to bring attention to Spirit, the Holy Spirit, the intuitive voice, etc… This radical self awareness that changed my life I see absent in the lives of people clinging and stuck. Which helps me realize: if I am stuck, if I am clinging…. perhaps its time for that radical self awareness that has changed my life before…

I realize all of my fears. And the pressure. I recognize the daunting nature of creative thinking and being too much, mis understood, out of scope, beyond budget… I am not in corporate anymore.

Even with having a book complete, I think: “what a failure”, “you did not try hard enough”, “there is so much more to do”. And I realize… Erin, be gentle with yourself. You did a big thing. You made something exist. Now you raise it. Babies are not born Teenagers, Teenagers are not Grown Up.

I feel crazy sometimes with Apple Tree Magic and Yoga Underground and Frozen Spaghetti – and why do I have this ongoing theme in my life with so many names? Even my actual legal name… I was one thing before, and another before that… Four different names, so many instagram handles, am I certifiable nonsense?

But, see, here is the teaching – the practical truth – only the mind can make something a bad thing. Universally bad things are bad because, universally, most people qualify them as such. Yet I get to choose my thinking. I get to choose if I am a disaster or if I am unfolding.

I get stuck creatively when I wonder what to let go of – it halts me in my steps. And, again, the next teaching – the next practical truth – the right step is only one step and it is obvious. If I keep the names, I will know when it is time to let them go because it will be clear. If I hesitate, just wait. They need to be there so I know when they should go… and why…

I am continually balancing self trust with critical thinking. I am continually wondering if I should have continued to play it safe: get a paycheck, have good benefits, take a couple of weeks off a year to write. Then mornings come, mornings like this one – where I remember the math that when things equal hard add “work” and get to it. Get to it. Get to it.

I have an ambitious day today, but – everything I want to do is something I know how to do. I have the full support of my husband, my mother and my self. I know better than to question timing – and this knowing better will ground me today. It especially helps me when I feel like I am doing this all too late in life. As it could only be now that I have what I have to mix in and produce the art… the words.

I have always written rhymes and told stories. I have always sang songs and enjoyed cleaning the bathrooms and the floors. I have always found joy in making others laugh or think, in perfectly wild circles of friends around a table – meeting each other for the first or second time; always open to trying something new with themselves. Because those people are my audience: the ones who like to think differently than yesterday.

The ones who feel a problem in their life and look for the meaning, the silver lining, the option to open a window.

Curious for the abstract in the practical and the practically abstract… that is what I do. It is what made me a good analyst.

Yet this digging into the data and bringing up something wild is also why I believe I never got promoted beyond a certain point in the corporate world because the thinking – it was way out there, it was experimental and I was always thinking way faster than I was talking and I was talking way fast… But the great news is that, in this world? The one I am in now? I am the only one that has to understand myself and I don’t even have to say anything to get there. I don’t need to make myself a deck. I just need to act on impulse, grounding myself in my spiritual practices that will make this all work in the end. As that is the core belief.

So – get pumped: I am promoting myself to Chief Strategist of my life.

It makes good sense to do so…

We have a lot of fun ahead of us, you see.

I just need to keep believing and you – you need to read. :)

Thinking Positively about my Negative Thinking @ Desk in Family Room

I just took a delicious swig of the cool left over venti Pike Place I got yesterday morning after checking out of my hotel. What is it about the combination of a packed carry on tote and Starbucks that literally gives me life? I don’t know but I am a believer.

This is my writing warm up for the day. I woke up in room 1107 at a little boutique hotel yesterday and spent a full morning in a sunlit queen sized bed doing whatever I wanted in my notebooks and on the internet. A daughter turned 13 on Saturday and her and her best friend got some rare pandemic free time to just breathe, be social and be somewhere different.

The idea was generated out of excitement for them, they are great girls and deserve a little treat. However, as the day progressed and birthday morning prep and “party” execution and basketball games came and went; the excitement rolled over onto me. I have been missing the smell of my suitcase and long for the mental puzzle of a little bit of travel. And though the night was not necessary relaxing (though it is where I started to relax – as the eucalyptus soap washed the bonfire off) the morning for sure was.

I attempted to draw the curtains shut at the crack of dawn to learn that they actually did not shut. Grateful for the pretty morning after such a grey week, I woke as early as I normally would and began to peck through my heart and my thoughts to figure out: with no other stimuli – where I was in life, what I was wanting to do and spend time on and where I needed shifting.

My negative thinking is rarely negative thinking more than it is noticing the problems to be solved, the areas to transform. I told a friend this morning, when we caught up for a quick thirty, that I can tell when I am doing something wrong in my approach when my approach is causing me stress, worry, losing sleep or irritability. I have learned that means a belief I have isn’t helpful or it is a reminder that I am attempting to manage something outside of my own self (and to knock it off).

Because of this, I share my “negative thinking” openly. I am comfortable with it. And though I know that I have a MAJOR opportunity to change up *the way* I tell my stories so it doesn’t sound hyper critical of a specific kid or situation, I do trust the overall process I have learned to be true: you learn your words and your needs when you acknowledge the things that make you feel gross.

I decided to start up an anonymous blog on the internet to talk more candidly about some of the major themes in our house hold that this blog needs to keep private. I have my writing projects prioritized and moving along; with full access to my basement study. I have a new mental memo to self going on which is telling me what is not necessary in my writing and it feels helpful; like I have grown there.

Every single hard thing offers a way to make room for something better. The emotional labor of life is real and can create a trickling speed limit of how much you can take on, can sift through, can handle, at a time. I believe our lots in life are where our opportunities to demonstrate variations of loving lie. And, with that, I finish my writing warm up. Which I originally thought was going to be a fun little travel bit about Ojai.

Maybe next time.