Black, white and peacock

By next week I will revamp my PSP. For the third time. I see this as a win.

For a number of reasons, that I have begun to explore, I realized that I tend to wait for bad situations to hit rock bottom before I make a drastic life change. When things are bad I often ask myself how I created the situation, what I could do differently or what needs to be done for things to improve. It is hard for me to see things in black and white and to argue that certain things are right or wrong; In fact, I tend to seek out the grey in search of a different perspective, feeling or thought that I had not initially considered. While this thought process is valuable in a work setting, it is detrimental in my personal life. This week I experienced the value of setting my own standards for what is black and what is white, drawing healthy boundaries and communicating this to whomever will listen. And so, I achieved the clarity I have been seeking in both my goals and will change my PSP to reflect that.

In an effort to find a new job, I sent my resume, cover letter and a list of ways my contacts can support me to 110 people. I did not realize I had created over 110 contacts in New York in the past 3+ years! Knowing how important networking is I resisted sending a mass email because I had created some story about how I didn’t know anyone in this city so it didn’t matter. That is such an unhealthy attitude. I really wonder where that came from. Maybe I was scared of the aftermath of such an action? There was a point where I feared that my resume would be sent to a board member and I would be let go, which is a legitimate fear, but not one that is greater than my desire to try something new. Regardless, I did it and it brought me hope. Now I need to device a new plan for my next steps.

My other goal focused on self care. I had listed a series of different things to try. Well, I found that works so I am scraping the other options. DIY (do it yourself) projects! It is an opportunity for me to be creative, relaxed and stretch in new ways. This past Sunday I went to a bridal shower at a pottery painting shop. I usually find these places offensive since they charge you over 20x the price of a normal mug, for example. But I went. I chose a large mug (cause if I can’t manage my issues with portion control, I might as well have something nice to look at) and sat down. I decided to enjoy the process. It was inevitable that I would produce something, and there was no need for me to pick up the item, so I had a lot of freedom in choosing how to experience the process. I remained relaxed, lacked negative self-talk and criticism, and from there – got rather creative. I decided to draw a peacock feather and since the mug is curved, I thought it best to make myself a stencil to simplify the process. Apparently that is not the norm and everyone looked at me with wonder. I ended up having a great time and I think I produced a mug I like and even if I don’t, I want to pick it up since it is a souvenir of a memory: a time when I did something totally differently than I had in the past and from there created something I like. With a different attitude, none of this would have been possible. This came in contrast to those I was sitting near. It became clear how stressed they were about painting. They kept asking each other for validation and talking about how difficult this was and how stressed they were. It was heart breaking. Then I realized that was probably me a few years ago. I had an art teacher tell me once how hard it was for her to teach me since I wanted everything to be perfect all the time. She noted that I wasn’t really open to trying things differently so she started to leave me alone. That really scared me. This experience showed me how art allows me in the freedom of an artistic experience – I grow in ways I really like. For a long time I used cooking as a creative outlet but the truth is, it can be very limiting since I am attached to the outcome. I need the food so if I mess up it matters more. I don’t need ten paintings and there is never a time limit. I find this freeing. It provides me with the perfect setting to stretch in the best of ways. Send along your favorite DIY projects.

Also, I hate the color grey. I really prefer to see the world in black, white and peacock colors. If you don’t believe me, come over. My apartment reflects this sentiment perfectly.

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6 thoughts on “Black, white and peacock

  1. Excellent, Eliane! Congratulations on your new awareness of how you have been operating and how you have now used that awareness to thrust yourself into committed action sending out resumes!

    Also great awareness and embracing of your creative side! It is good to hear you loving yourself!

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  2. Love the freedom you experienced while painting, and contrasting that experience to when you were in school. That’s really an incredible thing, to shift to a place of freedom/creaitivity/lightness/joy. It is pretty horrific when us type-As (though I never have admitted to being a type A and I still won’t admit to it) can’t let go of that mentality even when we step into a space where it plain doesn’t belong. I’d love to see you paint more. And I love paintings, how they transport you into someone’s perspective of something, making the ordinary suddenly special and alive.

    Just remember — you don’t need a bridal shower party or a pottery painting shop to paint. You can do it whenever you want, with whatever you want. Unleash your inner peacock! :D.

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  3. HOLY COW!!!

    With the minor exception of chasing after coaching during your LP (from absolutely everyone!) I have never experienced you so focused and in action.

    I don’t know what it was that made things click for you – and by that I am NOT referring to the circumstances – or had you shift to this place (& would love to hear more about it), but I have to acknowledge you right now for taking your future in your own hands.

    The type of energy that you created for yourself with that declaration and follow through is incredibly powerful, and I’m wondering if you can feel it coursing through you…

    Also, the combination of vulnerability and clear direction that you gave in your email is fantastic.

    Kudos all the way for going for this and I really only want to know what your next steps are for this goal – emails are a great start…what’s next?

    Let me know if you’d like to talk I through at all, and will make time this weekend to reply.

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  4. “I am” is the most powerful phrase in the human language. Anything that follows becomes reality. I’ve experienced this myself as I read my affirmations each day. If you say you are a certain way then you will be correct. Be careful how you use this powerful phrase, only use it to make yourself more powerful. If you want to describe how you have been, I would recommend preceding anything by using the word “historically” or the phrase “Up until now…” . This puts it in your past and does not dictate who you are in this moment or moving forward.

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  5. I believe that when we create something, it is the closest we get to God, because we become creators; we are channeling that intelligence. I am so happy that you released any expectation and just had fun! You’ve inspired me, I want a peacock feather mug now (literally and figuratively)!

    Also, congratulations on allowing yourself to reach out to your community for job-search support. Networking was my favorite part of job-searching; people are generous, and kind and THEY WANT YOU TO SUCCEED. You’ve started the wheels turning!

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  6. YES!!! I am blown away by the focus, self-trust, energy and ACTION you have created!! You are taking risks, asking for support, being responsible, nurturing yourself and so much more. I am experiencing Eliane, the leadership development guru and artist extraordinaire. Because you said so.

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