Seems like I've blinked and 2021 flew by, but what a year it has been.
Starting with the beginning days of last January and continuing on through the month there must have been something disruptive in the air because by the end of the month I decided that I was going to start therapy for the first time in my 55 years.
I don't need to share my full personal experience of why, other than to say I decided to show my full commitment to mental wellness for people close to me by doing therapy alonside them and I discovered that it was a great opportunity for me to uncover and unpack who I really am and why.
My therapist is great. I look forward to talking to her. I interviewed a couple other therapists before choosing "Carolyn." She's like my super smart, bff who allows me to share insights that I never have before, without telling me what to do or even her opinion, she lets me unpack who I am and why. It is through that experience that my brand and my relationships and even my sense of self is evolving more and more everyday.
#1- therapy is here to stay for the foreseeable future and I'm A-Ok with that.
So that happened.
Along with a harsh recognition that our country & our world are not in the best place, and in tandem with developing my brand Have Some Fun Today; I had to figure out what I needed to say to evolve through the chaos.
I decided that we had to make changes. Ethical & practical changes around manufacturing, the messaging and the function with a new eco-conscious collection of Sustainable Bags for the brand. In March we introduced our first collection of recycled canvas & natural leather bags.
#2 - Being more conscious & ethical in what I make and how I make it.
Self Acceptance can be elusive. Seems like a cliche we all know well. I discovered through my therapy that I had a lot of fear. When I would share this thought with a friend I was greeted with surprise around that. "You seem so confident" I would hear. "Yes, I know I project that, but I still have fears around really going for it."
So, that was something I did a lot of journaling, self reflection and unpacking on. Was it something in my childhood experience that wedged itself into my psyche? It's hard to say, but four things occurred:
1. therapy and talking about my thoughts and experiences of what I am truly afraid of.
2. living with a partner who believes in me and doesnt judge me.
3. painting and unleashing my truth on the canvas.
4. self love
These were the conditions where the breakthrough occurred.
One day last summer, I was started those watercolor paintings that say "Have Some Fun Today" in my hand writing - I've written those words a thousand times by now, but for the first time ever it looked perfect in it's imperfection.
Let me say that again: "It looked perfect in it's imperfection" let that sink in.
Now, I am an artist; period and foremost beyond anything else I am. I am also an abstract artist and to think that the seven+ years I have been developing this brand my imperfect handwriting was never GOOD ENOUGH for anything around my brand until now was a BREAKTHROUGH in self acceptance.
#3 - I am perfect in my imperfection. We all are.
So, it's nearing the end of the summer last year. I'm energized to start incorporating my art into the brand. I unlocked the secret door and now a whole new dimension is possible. It's truly exciting and going through all this, even the sh!tty events that I had to go through to get me here, were worth it.
I have a clearer vision of the brand now. I see Have Some Fun Today environments - you walk into a Gallery/Store world of color and this playful message. There is beautiful color and wonderful examples everywhere of ways to absorb this energy. I am flowing with what is and having faith in my thoughts, my work, my vision like never before.
#4 - I can see the path through the forest.
It's probably no shocker that I am a bit new-agey. I have a guy in New York who does spiritual readings for me every so often and I was thinking about a reading he gave me in 2018 and it hit me that everything he told me came true. So I reached out.
A month later I had my reading (yes, he's that busy :) )and he started with the words: "You need to relax", "everything is going to be all right. I know you feel frustrated and uncomfortable, but it's all stuff that is changing on the inside of you, it's good work, keep doing everything you are doing and you will see that it will all work out." - He could've handed me a million dollars with those words.
#5 - Have Faith - Believe in myself, my gut instinct and go for it.
That was the food my soul needed. A message from another dimension along with the messages I was receiving in my own subconscious from all the searching I have been doing.
Something a lot of people don't know about me is my love of psychology and spirituality. My difficult, but impactful read of Marcus Aurelius Meditations is among the books on my table. I knew that by observing other people throughout history and what they did to make an impact would be important to me to figure out my own road map.
So, also in August; I hired a publicist and brought on some new reps in the south and west coast for my brand. I reached out to various professionals and humbly asked for their advice. I went to my first women leadership conference and I began to take steps out of my cocoon.
Like a caterpillar getting ready for its next incarnation. Scary, but exciting and exercising my new muscles of faith and belief.
#6 - Taking The Necessary Steps.
We get to November and by now I have all this stuff under way and I'm doing all this self reflection, but also feeling frustrated in some way and suddenly I realize I am too comfortable. That is what is actually bothering me and holding me back from where I truly want to be.
I realize that I need to get OUT of my Comfort Zone. That is scary. I put my home that I LOVE, on the market three weeks later. This is scary. But, I know it is what needs to happen.
#7 - Get out of your comfort zone.
Here I am now, fully exposed, fully ready to own my truth. The good, the bad, the great and the scary. They always say that is the best thing about getting older, you just don't care what other people think. It does give you a freedom, but I think it's mostly because you get to know yourself. And when you put real effort into knowing, acknowledging, and accepting all that we are ; it brings a joy into our lives that is calming and peaceful.
#8 - Learn all about who you are and embrace your uniqueness fully.
When I went up to Manhattan to pick up my two daughters for the holiday festivities last week I walked through the holiday market an Union Square. I was alone and just enjoying the energy of the city that feels like home to me. I passed one of the booths selling hand knit hats and observed a shop keeper talking to a tall guy holding one of the hats. I stood there and watched the tall man in the brown coat trying on the hat; I noticed his matted hair, saw that his coat looked wrinkled and his shoes were beat up and then heard the shop keeper say to the man: " take it, it's my gift to you" - the man who may have been homeless thanked him and walked away. I looked after the man for a minute and then looked back at the shop keeper and said "That was a beautiful thing you just did" he smiled and said thanks.
It was a beautiful moment to witness. Why did I see that? Why was I in that exact spot when that happened? I think it was for a reason.
In that moment it gave me an idea, another example of how easily we can shift a moment in someone else's life for the better. Make someone smile. I have been giving the mission of Have Some Fun Today so much thought over the past year. I came to the simple purpose of making people smile.
Over the next year I am pledging to myself that I will find a way to incorporate more good into what we do personally and professionally. I have discovered that beyond sharing my soul and my heart with you all through my work, I am here to serve others. Very grateful to have discovered this aspect of myself over the last year and beyond grateful also to share with you my art and all the new energy we are gearing up for with New Products, New Energy, New Bold Vision for Have Some Fun Today.
#9 - Be of service to others in your words & actions.
As we get ready to say goodbye to 2021 and welcome a new year of unchartered territory, let's be mindful that we have an opportunity to do better and to serve our humankind rather than just ourselves.
Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and #HaveSomeFunToday
Love & Light,
#Unionsquare #manhattan #holidaymarket #servicetoothers #sustainability #womenleaders #gratitude #brand #mission #mentalwellness #therapy #meditation #wellness #therapist #Homeless #gratitude #ecofriendly #ecoconscious #comfortzone #spirituality #selflove #selfacceptance #Learning #journalling #mindfulness #art #artist #abstractart #painting #selfreflection #imperfection #mentor #inspire #service #charity
I feel I just went through a therapy section,, very thorough, but simple! I could even understand it.
Thanks for sharing your beautiful heart !