I started this post to share a life update on what's been going on over here in my corner of the world, and it turned into a heart-fuelled vent session! Such is life, haha.
So I'll start with the updates, and then if you want to get a peek into the inner workings of my mind, you can read on ;)
First of all, October! It's October. One of my favorite months of the year!
Ben and I celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary!
We had an amazing dinner at a local restaurant, Gather. Highly recommend if you're ever in Lincoln Square!
I finally feel like we've reached adulthood. Being able to go out and completely enjoy a multi-course meal and cocktails at a nice restaurant (without worrying about the cost or calories) is bliss.
And yes, marriage rocks.
We road-tripped down to my hometown in central Illinois to celebrate my 10 year high school reunion. It. was. a. TRIP.
It was also the weekend of our high school homecoming, and I gave my little sister Nicole her first hair straightener as a combo birthday/freshman survival present :)
I've been spending a lot of time outside just soaking in the glorious fall weather and getting back into a running routine.
Running has been really therapeutic for me lately, just a chance to get outside, THINK, and clear my head.
I have gone on a FULL OUT creative bender.
Throwing my business books and hustle to the sidelines to re-connect with my inner feminine energy and creativity, after way too many months and years of ignoring her.
Starting to learn how to live from my values and how I want to FEEL, instead of trying to get shit done 24/7 and feeling inadequate if I don't measure up to random external markers of success.
Basically...breaking up with goals, pressure, expectations, and the idea of "productivity."
SO HARD but so worth it!
Lots and lots of journaling, candles, and turning my home office/studio/gym into a cozy retreat.
OH! And I'm also working on phasing caffeine out of my daily life. Yeahhhh. It just gives me too much anxiety and makes me feel like shit! Seriously, I feel like as I start to accept my emotionally sensitive nature, I'm becoming more and more physically sensitive too. It's weird but I don't really miss my daily coffee habit! Chai tea, fun herbal blends from David's Tea, and decaf Americanos have been my new BFF's.
On the work front, I have been letting my energy and heart guide me. It feels amazing. I won't spill the beans because I'm in development stages, but stay tuned for more!
So that's the external update!
Here's my internal update...
It's been a couple weeks since I dramatically announced I was breaking up with my ego and over-riding my inner critic, fears, and doubts.
And since then, well, I've been going through a particularly INTENSE phase of growing, expanding, seeking, and reconnecting with my creativity.
I haven't been blogging but I HAVE been writing. Journaling and brain dumping and purging my heart onto Word documents and Google Docs and the pages of my notebook. It's like there's this spirit inside of me that's desperate to get out, and I can barely keep up with it. When I can't keep up with it, or when I ignore it because it's uncomfortable, or when I distract and numb myself with "busy work," it makes me feel physically sick and anxious.
I know the spirit is me, my soul connected to God, this inner wisdom, and it's REALLY weird and freaky. I'm here to share a message, and I know deep down what that message is, but I"m still struggling to fully embody it myself.
You are enough. You are creative. You are meant to be happy and share love with other people. You are a leader. You are worthy of all your desires and dreams. Step up and rise.
It's like I am in the process of giving birth to something that's huge and beautiful and I don't really know what it is yet, but I'm learning to be ok with living in the uncertainty and the process.
I'd be more scared, except I've been inundated with signs and coincidences and teachers who seem to appear in my life out of nowhere and support my discoveries and breakthroughs.
One of these teachers is Elizabeth Gilbert. I've been reading her new book, Big Magic, and she's teaching me that it's ok to be creative. It's ok to live with fear. It's ok to feel like there's this restless, burning OBSESSION that wakes me up at 5:30 am, keeps me constantly feeling on edge, and drives me to be constantly seeking and exploring and experimenting. That obsession is simply inspiration.
I've been dealing with days of intense joy and calm and purpose, alternating with days of anxiety and fear. The closer I get to who I'm meant to be...the louder my fears and insecurities start screaming at me.
The more you feel like breaking down, the closer you are to a breakTHROUGH.
Anxiety, for me, is misplaced creative energy. When I finally buckle down to write, or create, or get into the flow, the anxiety goes away. I'm still trying to figure out if all this restless energy is a good thing... or if it's a clinical disorder...
I don't know. This year has been intense in general. I was just telling Ben how I feel like I'm going through some massive awakening right now, and he was just like, "aren't you always?"
Yeahhh. It's been over a year and a half since I started feeling this nagging aching stirring deep in my heart and gut. I guess it had been there for even longer, but I had chosen to ignore it until finally it got so loud and uncomfortable I was forced to take action.
Question the path I was on, launch a coaching business, learn how to follow my heart, quit my job, learn and grow and expand and explore and ultimately it's just been a big, long, hard process of coming home to myself.
I'm slowly getting used to the idea that I'm not who I thought I was. I am so much bigger than that.
I am here on earth to be creative and joyful and share that light with others.
The Anna I completely lost touch with as I spent age 14 to age 27 convinced I needed to pursue a career in science.
The thing about science is that it's so freaking linear and competitive, and it kind of squashes out any room for creativity.
But science = jobs, and creativity = struggling. Right? WRONG.
There was a point along the way when I realized that I would rather hike in the mountains simply for the sheer joy of immersing myself in nature, instead of trying to scientifically name each flower and collect data and turn it all into a rigorous and dry scientific publication. But I couldn't accept that.
My whole adult life I've been living under this idea that I need to BE someone, and DO something with my life. Get a job. Have an easily understandable job description.
When really, all I need to do is be myself.
But who is she? THAT my friend, is what I'm figuring out.
I am in the long, extended, lifelong process of breaking up with the old me, the scientist, the achiever, the perfectionist. And coming back home to the imaginative, creative, visionary leader.
Learning how to relax and trust the process, instead of striving towards goals and achievements.
Learning to accept that I am already enough.
And helping other women crack open their hearts to accept the possibility that THEY are already enough too.
Whew! Yup, so many ideas and feels swirling around. I'm sure they'll make their way onto the blog when the time is right. Thanks for reading and following along :)