I'm totally fixated on "the wall". You know, that thing we all hit at some point whether it's being creative, getting other work done, running/working out, whatever...*BAM* there's the fracking moment when you feel completely incapable of continuing, but there's that one shred of "maybe" and you have to choose to forge ahead to see what's on the other side or retreat.
I had an experience yesterday that makes me think that "the wall" isn't just an imaginary brick structure with which our will and spirit collides. The wall has a name scrawled across it and knowing that name gives me the power to overcome it. (Mine has some pretty sweet grafitti since I lurve grafitti. See above.) Beyond the fact that I'd like to see more pink in street art, the name on my wall is "Perfectionism". Ack! Ugh! Perfectionism? In my line of day work, people often use this as an answer to their biggest weakness. It's become cliche, but dammit if it isn't real. So real that when I set out to do something, I zero in like a laser on the problem that needs to be fixed. If I fix that, I find another...and another...fix, fix, fix.
At my best, I turn out good stuff. I work hard. I'm not satisfied with good enough. At my worst, I get paralyzed with feelings of beign inept while trying to hit the ever moving target, I work sometimes too hard, yet nothing is ever good enough. Talk about a killer for an indie business. If I'm stuck, things stop. Can't happen. (This is totally different from taking a healthy break.) I'm aware of it so generally, I've learned to run through those walls and not beat my head against them.
There are those times though, when the wall sneaks up on me. I'm in a groove and suddenly I can't move. It isn't lack of creative ideas, inspiration, or motivation...when I look closely I see the familiar foe...and there's the cliff hanger. What will Indie Jen do? Fight or run and hide?
Tune in for more reflection and art about this, but for now I wanna know what your wall is. What stops you dead in your tracks?
You ever have one of those days when it seems like everything your hands touch turns to rust? I don't why it happens, but every once in a while, I'm inspired to do all sorts of things, only to have each of those not turn out as planned.
It seems to happen most when I'm on a bit of a creative roll so I keep on rolling (see hot and sweet cookie above), then *bam*. Hello wall.
Today my hair didn't go as planned. My acorn squash and leek soup turned chartreuse thanks to pureeing the two together and adding a splash of cream. I also over cooked most of my little cookies I baked by like 1 minute (types were anise + fig jam, lemon + candied ginger, sugar + chocolate chip).
I took a time out for a minute and turns out my hair isn't so bad after all...just needed to settle in a bit. My husband grabbed a handful of the test cookies and said they were good (he's picky with sweets so I believe him). The soup was fabulous and I made a faux onion and leek confit to go with. (To make your own faux confit...saute onion and leeks with a little salt and garlic in olive oil. I added about 2-3 tbs of Garlic expressions vinaigrette and simmered till they were beautiful. It doesn't get all jelly like, but the taste is amazing!)
Alright, that was my story, but the point...if stuff isn't going right. Take a time out (one of the the hardest things to do for a creative person) and it'll be better.
So it turns out that doing an internet radio show is so fun!!
In this Saturday's show Tameka Allen-Mercado owner of, Pretty in Peace, will talk about all the amazing things she has going on! As a multi-talented artist with a successful business, mom, blogger, and more, I can't wait to hear and share her story.
If you wanna see what she's all about, take a little trip around interwebs:
I told ya this woman is making it happen! I hope you listen in tomorrow :)
The beautiful happy birthday banner from zippityduda.etsy.com (click to visit her shop).
When I mentioned that I did a radio interview, I should have posted a picture of the shop to go along with it right?!?! Duh! Sorry! So here is a sample of what sorts of loveliness is just a click away. And here's the super fun inerview. I'll get better at this I promise :)
Just a quick note...a reminder to myself really...I have an internet-based business like a lot of us do, but sometimes you need to read a book. A real book about fake people, lol! You need to look a human being in the eye and listen to their story, their thoughts, etc. and respond back with yours. You can't edit these moments. You can't type delete like I just did. You can't use emoticons to express what you feel...you have to use your actual face. I think these moments make us better. I committing to more of them.
The show was a lot of fun! I hope you listen :)
(Click the pic if you wanna see what I make.)
Go out on a limb and get out of your comfort zone today!! OK maybe I just want someone to do this with me so I can feel a little more comfortable breaking out of my cz :D No really, after years of doing things quite the same and getting quite the same results, I've decided that it's time to do something different. For me it's starting with making decisions faster and making more connections with people...getting out of my head and out of my bubble. I'm nervous. I get so nervous about some of this stuff... Screw butterflies, my stomach turns in knots and I feel sick and anxious just sending an email to a new networking contact. Yeah, it might be weird, but don't judge me...it's my thing (well, one of them).
Anyhow, I realized that I don't like feeling vulnerable which is good to know. Getting out of my cz makes me feel super vulnerable. I have no guarantees that it'll go right or that I'll won't look foolish...like I don't already, lol! I don't have any steps to share...OK here are two for those of you who like steps:
1. Get sick of doing things the same for so long.
2. Do something different or the opposite of what you have been doing.
The potential of looking foolish to others for having tried is better than looking smart to yourself only to wake up one day to realize that, in reality, you've accomplished nothing. ~ Me :)
Check out this post from Jeff Kohran on asking the Dumb Questions! Alright, see you on the limb!
Have a great day and happy blog hopping. I'm about to tweet some great stuff from one of my fave bloggers evah, Jeff Kohran right now :)
Reading blog after glossy blog trying to soak in all that I can about marketing, I'm learning a lot and I've fallen in love with what marketing can be. Wading through the sea of big business speak, I've realized that we indies have some distinct advantages. Here are three pretty good ones I think:
1. A real voice. We don't have to *act* like we're real or *create* a voice. When I post about a product on fb, it's ME...the dreamer and maker of it. Big businesses are trying to get what you already have...a real voice. Don't trade that for canned bs business speak. Work it!
2. Passion. So maybe the person behind a big business' facebook or twitter account is totally passionate about what they sell, but when you're the dreamer and maker you've got a fire about it. Take the facebook page of Pretty in Peace. I love how I can feel the passion about her work, the jitters about an upcoming show, when new designs are coming...I get excited about her updates because I feel that passion!
3. Something special. Pierogi Picnic's tunic is made with her own two hands, including that awesome squirrel applique. You aren't going to find that applique anywhere else, because she made it. What do you offer that no one else does? Don't bash others (that's an awful way to get business IMO) but in your messaging, let people know how special what they're looking at - and buying - really is. It's an important part of your unique story - tell it!
There are definitely more than three advantages, but super long posts make me crazy so I won't even go there! I hope this gets you excited and feel free to share your thoughts :)