Being “offline” at the moment has been a huge relief, riddled with guilt.
The guilt stemming from the idea that I must be online and available at all times to be a good business woman and to foster my own abundance.
Yet, this week. While intentionally taking a break for many reasons I discuss below - I’ve made the same amount of money as last week - with 100x less time on my phone. Ive found myself Searching beyond the instagram caption for something deeper, what that is - im still unsure.
But its buried beneath the consistency of half baked content by the creative to try and keep up with the algorithm, because as they say you gotta post at least 5 times a day!
The insatiable beast that is social media (which don’t get me wrong, I love and am grateful for) has the potential mentality of
“suck you dry of all creativity and feed scarcity (wrapped up as self development)”
if your not careful.
It brings with it the feelings of never enough-ness.
Never enough time, enough money, enough support, enough bed linen, enough cleanliness, Enough space, enough followers, veiws, sales.
And yet if I truly think about it. None of those things are hard to find, and plentiful If we step past ourselves and really look.
I am exploring this scarcity within myself, that for the past year I’ve felt in a constant game of whack a mole with.
By-passing most the thoughts with more positive ones. Bulldozing my way on social media and feeling the treadmill of needing to keep up. - I’m good at keeping up. If I wanna play the game, I will. But it doesn’t feel right, for me, right now. I think it hasn't for a while and I have been ignoring that part.
The scarcity I have discovered is so subconscious that I find myself on the loo, stressing about the amount of money I “hadn’t” made that week - only to check my account to see that; yeah things may be slow, But I’m still covering all bills and paying myself a decent wage.
Why aren’t I celebrating that?
When that fourth wall is broken and I truly hear those thoughts that are whispering in the back of my days, I halt with a WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK.
It’s thoughts like that, that dig their hooks in and keep me online, creating more content to create more money all the while keeping me away from my family and detached from my life. And afraid that I am still not making enough. Identifying the small seeds of anxiety that propel the hustle have been my first step to awakening my inner artist again.
I went to a Workshop last week on the element of Earth. It was beautiful, and ran by some inspiring women in my community.
Sarah, one of the hosts and friend invited us to her practice of a “sit spot”
The idea is simple, which is to sit in one place in nature, (their retreat space is held on a wonderful permaculture farm) and overtime, months , seasons - witness its changes.
We didn’t sit for long but to have a small window of time to place my awareness outisde of myself and onto the wild and vast world that surrounds us brought such a profound feeling of abundance.
- I studied art therapy years ago and it set up some wonderful pillars for self introspection - that I think I ended up caging myself in my own internal experience. Consistently processing, analysing and developing my sense of self to something greater(Mark says this is a super power of mine - to be continually assessing my own actions and improving them - but perhaps it has been a protection mechanism? - something I’m still pondering with)
Though to remove the cage, intentionally - to become invisible in the landscape the surrounds me brought a simple and satisfying elation I haven’t felt in a long time.
It isn’t how about how the grass, birds, wind interacts with ME.
It is just how they interact, as themselves.
I think some of my most precious times in my life are in nature.
One of the longest places of joy for me was when Mark and I lived in our first place together in Aus.
An Off grid a tiny cabin with no reception in the middle of awfully overgrown forest for almost two years.
When I think of that place I remember the vivid encounters with wildlife, literally in my house.
The ceaseless bamboo that sprouted through the floorboards and nothing - nothing to distract me from myself.
My artistic practice was so strong. I made and made and Made and holed myself up in that cabin, alone, isolated, bored and so happy.
Of course it had its downfalls (one of the biggest being the house was literally falling down a mountain) I think you can only spend so much time in a potent environment like that and we eventually evacuated after discovering mould embedded in honestly everything we owned.
But my brain felt less full when I was out there - I spent so much time discovering myself.
I danced daily, i communicated with the wilderness around me. When I was alone (which was often as Mark was working full time) I remembered the primal fight or flight turning on. Always on alert for when I found a snake in the kitchen or a goanna at the back door.
Alone with all that slithered.
I uncovered a unique way of creating away from Pinterest boards and YouTube tutorials. As the only bar of reception to be found was when the phone was sitting on the windowsill in the attic.
I sat in that cabin, in the wild part of the forrest and felt such magnificent abundance within myself without the noise of the outside human world and apart of the wild world that surrounded me
I feel a homecoming to that part of me. A remembering, a deep breath back to That part who wanted to spend time steeping in the unique experience that only my creativity can bring to me when I intentionally remove the noise.
It’s been this surreal awakening from living my life in the unchecked hysteria disguised as “abundance” and “conscious based business” That I’ve been in so long. The hustle culture that is peppered with affirmation rhetoric.
Those places, for me - have camouflaged their way into my everyday with words of positivity and brought so much comparison, analysing and debilitating scroll holes in search of my own inner creativity.
Keeping up with the algorithm, and chasing for that next financial goal that it eats away at my entire day.
My Artistic practice is full of failure at the moment and it’s bringing me so much joy.
Because it is coming from a place of creation via curiosity rather than a commodity. I've awoken once more the knowing that there is no searching for my inner artist outside of myself - for she has been inside of me all along, quiet and whispering waiting for the relentless noise to stop.
I have spoken before of the delicate balance of business owner vs artist.
Business itself is obviously inherently creative. Bringing an idea into reality is an alchemical process. I love my business - all aspects of it.
But I have been lost in comparing or chasing goal posts to meet the expectation, of that girly (albeit who I’ve never spoken too) that made 7 figures in 6 months. And I thought it was helpful to keenly understand her experience when really it was harming me and removing me from my own greatness.
I have been Striving for personal clarity and success via contrasting my experience to others.
Of course surrounding ourselves with these stories is important - to expand our own dreams and see them in action. But to be continually marinating in the 1000’s of voices that share “the best and only way for our business to reach xyz, JUST LIKE ME” is paralysing for the inner artist.
In saying this, Im no way bowing to the starving artist complex.
I don’t believe that shit.
I do believe my creativity will continue to lead me and my family into blissful increasing abundance. BUT the noise of social media, of business, of the hustle, can kill that inner quiet place. That one we can only discover when we sit with ourselves, and with the Earth.
And that inner place is where we can listen to our own voice of what abundance is to US and how to receive it.
I have found myself Exploring the world of art and artistic practice again instead of the world of girl bossery- In all respects.
No more manifestation podcasts or TikTok algorithms telling me how to run my social media accounts by posting 12 times a day. No more abundance books, or online courses.
It’s like a divorce from the chronically online wellness institution (like are they really “well” to be spending that much time online and playing chase with their reels views?)
Instead I find myself steeped in - the particular world of artists. With books, podcasts, documentaries. Stories of genius that bleed intention, dedication, thought, and blistering perseverance on repetition, and of time.
Away from the hustle of how to sell and back into the deep presence of creation.
I’ve been Listening to those who truly put in the labour of love.
So much time to make a completed work.
I miss that.
i miss making meaning through marks on paper, sculpture, photography.
That are mine alone, that are worked and reworked over and over again until they are burnished and gleaming.
That incessant, insatiable feeling of creating because one must create.
Lord am I hungry for it.
I recently figured out that MY ENTIRE JOURNEY with silversmithing has been PURELY for business. I started this material when I was pregnant with Rei and launched into business IMMEDIATELY - I do not regret this.
I am honoured and filled with gratitude for where I am.
But it also means for the past three years, I have never created for creations sake.
All of my artistic practice has been on the leash of business.
All of it created in the minds eye of social media content, and consumerism.
At the peril of that ever thrumming scarcity mindset of never not making enough money, wringing my creativity and my inner genius for every last penny, putting it on show for the carnival of instagram and not ever stopping to make for fun, for failure or for practice. (To be honest; I don’t have that much time to do such things, because ya know - breadwinning. But its nice to acknowledge said experience)
It’s been a massive unlearning. And I feel such shame to have insulted and subjugated my inner creative spirit for so fkn long. I never understood why I fantasied for my time back at art school, or back in that cabin. To make for makings sake, because my body yearned for it - not because I had to provide everything, for everyone upon it.
Mark is a Hair away from finishing his degree and it means this journey I have been on for the past three years will be radically changing, and my artistic practice will be transforming back into somthing that isn’t held captive by capitalism and providing it all for my family.
Perhaps this is why these thoughts are bubbling to the surface now - it’s never been able to before because I have been surviving. Now the light at the end of the tunnel is shining in the distance and perhaps we will no longer have to survive from my craft (thank the gods for it)
Coming to the awareness has pulled me away from the MORE MORE MORE - that leaky world of conscious money growth, social media growth and business hustle I have been hypnotised by (out of survival) for the past few years - and back to a space of rediscovery as an artist, before all else.
I feel a sense of success and failure in coming to this junction. But it is a nesscary one for my growth in a centred and evolving way moving forward. I am excited to bring deep intention and dedication back to myself.
I am so hungry for it.
The slow burn of inner flame, my flame. Undisturbed by the winds of the world that tell me I should be a bonfire.
A silent flame can still be just as strong, captivating and inspiring. It can and will still bring abundance and joy.
The DO DO DO of the online bonfire to keep up with the algorithm and to push and push and push to find success in virility is not coming from a place of centred strength. Its boring. Let’s be real. It’s so boring.
I am excited to share less on social media, and come back with content that is produced, considered and with more depth, more integrity and more driven purpose than the current hubbub that instagram and scarcity mindset cultivate in content creation. I don’t know what this looks like yet and it will likely take time for me to figure this out, so find patience for me.
I am grateful to acknowledge it with softness and to move past the fear - back to that place where my heart can stand on the soap box instead and share something worthwhile.
Yes, perhaps this will mean less money in the bank account - also perhaps not.
But it is a promise to myself, to my nervous system, to my inner artist and mother to step more fully into my life and not feel the call to turn everything into content to stay relevant.
I want to call money in, via my art from a place of truth and a place of beauty.
This is me breaking up with instagram in a way I’ve never felt before.
I’ll still be on Insta. But certainly not as often.
I am excited to remove the feed from my daily life and to focus on those things that light me up - I’ll share them with you.
But only when it feels right, and whole and wonderful.
Perhaps more of this longer form prose will be an outlet for me.
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