Seeing through the color blue

Life is complicated. I find myself weaving through the noise to find a way to just be. As a small business owner, it seems to be about searching for the special sauce, the recipe that will help me be successful, the MOST successful.

We are bombarded by messaging on an entirely new level. Social media has taken over life in so many ways. We follow people and messages we are attracted to, interested in, and curious about. And before you know it, that curiosity has become a new addiction. We scroll through aimlessly when in reality, if we are just centered. Listened to ourselves and practiced our authentic fingerprint the harmony would align to our beautiful lives.

Without consciously doing so, I often find myself in comparison. I am not enough, I am not successful enough, I am not generous enough, I am not in enough galleries, I am not known enough for my art, I am not talented enough, I am not… you get it right?

This not enoughness seems to lead to a host of other things. It feeds the depression monster and smothers creativity. It diminishes the ability to any sort of forward movement ultimately leaning into what can be perceived as more failure.

Well doesn’t that just stink?

The trick seems to be to see clearly regardless of the filters that might challenge us. It is perspective. It is an objective perspective.

As an artist, when I am struggling with a piece, I often take a photo of it on my phone. The camera doesn’t lie. It shows the good, bad, and, well… ugly. It shows what needs improvement, but also shows the success.

Speaking of success. Isn’t that a whole bunch of perspective too?

When I see through the blue… I cannot see any success. I am not a millionaire, I am not famous, I am not special. But is that success?

When I fully dive in, even through the blue, I can see that I have grown so much as an artist. I have grown as a human. I can pay my “art bills” with art-related income. I have an expansive collection of art created (and has been collected nationally and internationally), I have awards graciously given by my peers, I began and have a greeting card company, and have the opportunity to venture into the “dream ” or “heart” projects- (my Affirmation decks) for one. I make my own schedule (which is still too busy) – but… I would say, I am doing okay. Blue and all.

Here’s my point. Don’t listen to the lying brain. She’s not a nice person. She believes in all the comparison cultures, the banter on the internet, the lies.

Take a moment, to see through the blue. See how far you have come, see the good you put out into the world. Celebrate that. I believe in you.

Sending you so much love,

Susan

We’ve got this…

Yesterday was a people day. Like you, I have been very isolated and not out in the world, so to be honest, it was a bit of a shock to my system! Friends and strangers alike were picking up art and cards at my studio. It was MUCH more peoply than anything in recent times! Socially distant and with masks on- Each one shared a few moments with me. Most shared how discouraging life is right now. Each one shared about their losses, their sadness, their frustrations, and discouragements. 2020 has certainly been a year for challenges.


Covid has touched all of our lives. Too many lives have been lost which has broken the hearts of so many families. Our habits have changed, our realities have changed, our celebrations severely modified or canceled altogether. LIFE IS very DIFFERENT.


I too am finding this journey all so overwhelming at times. Some days are better than others, but in general, I am overwhelmed by the challenge of this pandemic. I am saddened by not seeing my children and granddaughter. I am stressed over trying to safely support those who are elderly or compromised by health concerns safely. It is a dark time, requiring so much energy and thought.


We are all in the same crazy challenge but are living it very alone. Now more than ever, it seems it is important to return to basics, recognize that life isn’t “the same”, nor can it be. I believe some of our strife comes from the fact that we mourn the loss of what was normal, and often forgetting the blessings we do have. Sometimes counting blessings is very difficult to remember.

Here are some thoughts: This is what I know- kindness always feels better. Sending a card to people you know, love, and maybe a few that you don’t know! (I am not suggesting this because I own a card company, however, I do – Greetings4Good.org), Call someone who lives alone, sometimes just a five-minute phone call can make a difference(for you both). Pay it forward somehow, there are countless ways to do that- especially at this time of year. When we take a moment to put someone else first, that seems to balance us a bit, introduce some light in the darkness. Small things seem to make a big difference.
Alsoself care. Take a walk (bundle up if you live in Rochester!) Drink your water, get your rest, meditate, breathe deeply, eat food that nourishes your body, MAKE ART! (yes, everyone can do this!) Read a book, turn off the electronics. Light a candle, sit in silence. Call your family/friends on a video- seeing each other’s face is a good thing! Write down every single thing you are grateful for. (yes, everything- it helps, I promise)Do things that are good for you. Celebrate what you have the ability to still do!

It seems we are given this lecture often. There also seems to be some wisdom to the fact that you are given a lesson repeatedly until you learn it.

I am not in any way suggesting life will be perfect if you send Uncle Pete a greeting card, I just know that I am happier when I claim the little victories, recognize the light around me and celebrate that. I think the bottom line here, is that while I recognize that life (for me as well as others) is an incredible challenge, I also want to do something about it. Some days I really struggle. But the good news is, I am celebrating each new chance I get.

There are all these little repostings around the internet about checking in with each other, about mental as well as physical health. This is me, reaching out to you. Do your best to reach out to others too. – both of you will benefit. Life is easier with a willing connection to others (even if we cannot have a cup of tea together in the same room).

Sending you love….hang in there….we’ve got this!

Susan

Sending you so much love…