take a read through when you wish. it's your right to design if, how, and when you take in all that's beyond you.
It's been just a month since we connected but, to me, it feels like it's been longer. I am curious to learn what's happening with you, if you care to share. And I'm feeling grateful that we are connecting in this here and now.
This note today is centered around these last few sentences of my morning pages from a few weeks ago:
If I want to get somewhere I've never been, I need to do things I've never done. And it'll be awkward and uncomfortable and also it could really be pleasurable and inspiring. And what am I doing here in this life, on this planet if not to adventure with the unknown? To try new ways of being?
In this free-writing, I came to two small, but hopefully substantial, things I've never done that could support me in getting where I've never been:
- centering why I'm doing the new thing
- celebrating wins along the way towards the new thing – in ways that genuinely feel celebratory to me
#1 centering why I'm doing the new thing
One of the never-done-before things I'm embarking on is redesigning my business, Be With Cassandra. As more elements become clear, I'll share them with you. Right now, the thing I'm clear on is why I'm redesigning my business.
As I was free-writing, I wrote that this is my "why mantra." I wrote it with the understanding that these words need to be easy to remember and easy to repeat.
I've been thinking about mountains and climbing mountains. And how in those stretches of seemingly endless and steep terrain, there's only so much brain power that can be devoted to something other than putting one foot in front of the other. In the midst of the awkward and uncomfortable moments – and straight out HARD ones – I need a beyond easy touchstone to keep me going.
The why for redesigning my business:
reclaiming my way
reclaiming MY way... reclaiming my way...
I have no issue with the exploring I've been doing with my work over the past four years. In fact, the regrets I do have in relation to my business are the paths not ventured. (isn't that usually the case?)
I am ready to walk past the paths that I now know aren't mine so that I can focus my time in these forests we call life on the paths that are mine.
One path that's now very clearly not my path is the path of having thousands and thousands of email subscribers. My business, specifically my work as a Creative Partner, does not need thousands and thousands people signing up! I also personally don't need that many eyes on me and my process.
Another is the path of my business serving me, clients, and customers in a full-time capacity. I thought I wanted this path. I tried with a lot of might to make this path work. I've struggled with not reaching the mile-markers I've wanted to reach. Recently, I've been able to detangle the knotted balls of my struggles and my feelings and thoughts about my struggles. Through this detangling process, I see that I, actually, didn't want this path but rather I thought this was the path I was supposed to want. I also thought this was the path that "made sense" and was the path of success. But it's not the path for me. And I can make sense, be successful, and be me walking the paths that are for me and the paths that I make for myself.
This particular re-orientation and reclaiming has revealed a new host of questions and 'experiments in belonging' that I am diving into right now and will continue exploring through the year.
I'm working with four awesome people as their Creative Partners and it is abundant. Maybe four continues to be the number. Maybe not. What I do know is that I trust the path will be revealed as I keep reclaiming what is mine to reclaim.
My ways... My ways.. what are my ways?
Experimental and rhythmic –
both intimate and spacious enough for questions, pauses, laughter... tears –
weaving inter-being, interdisciplinary, intergenerational, interspecies –
expansive forms of knowing... inner knowing, not knowing, unknowing –
I wonder what else, who else, will resurface, will re-call to me?
((What are your ways? What ways are you reclaiming?))
#2 celebrating my wins along the way – in ways that genuinely feel celebratory to me
mhhhmm celebrations can feel so foreign sometimes to this human I am, this human who is often outwardly optimistic and idealistic and inwardly quite the nihilist. I feel grateful to have learned about celebrating as way to support growth from Megan de Boer, a financial wellness coach. I was quite accustomed to (well, no, I was deeply entrenched in) the notion that once one challenge was met, that success just upped the ante. Now that that challenge was through, I expected more of myself, preferably instantaneously!
There really can be time made for celebration along the way. And not just at the end of something.
And that celebrating need not be the burn-off-steam exhausted kind but rather celebration that has the body feeling good and joyful.
I turn a song on and dance for the length of the song after I do my bookkeeping. Even better, I'll go outside to dance or walk over to the huge shop with the awesome speakers.
That's the personal-to-me kind of feel good I'm talking about.
Another way I personally love to celebrate is reflection. Conducting a retrospective on a project brings me deep joy and peace. I'm able to empty out all the threads of thoughts, inner knowings, experiences out on to the page in a constructive way (rather than in a ruminating way). I feel spacious and calm after a retrospective. I literally have more space in my being now that I've released out all I needed to in relation to that project.
It's intentional that reflection is woven into my very fabric of my role as a Creative Partner. It not only brings me great joy, it's a skill and gift that doesn't get as much attention in daily living as it really could.
((How does your body feel good celebrating along the way?))
It feels like 2024 is already bringing many internal, external, and between-us-all shifts – and that there's much more to come. I know I've been grappling with a lot lately. I imagine you may be, too?
Some of what I'm grappling with is ready with words, like what I've shared already, but there's so much that's not formed into language. Maybe it will be at some point and maybe some of it never will.
Dancing, yoga, Feldenkrais, moving in and with nature and with fellow humans – those are some of my ways that I grapple with all that is – and do it with love (rather than with fear) – and with all that's not yet able to spoken. Writing is a way for me, too, but I find it beyond valuable to be able to walk paths that are worlds away from words.
I hope you have your ways for grappling with love, both wordless and wordy ways. I hope you feel you can experiment, play, question, reclaim, and release ways before, during, and after you sense they are "yours." I hope you have your ways of celebrating along the way, along your way. We truly are ever-changing beings and what feels like it's yours one day, it may feel quite the opposite the next.
May each path bring us new whys, new ways, and new celebrations...
Til next time,
P.S. Another poem wants to be shared with you today. Thank you, Michael, for sharing this poem with me several years ago. I still hold the words, your creativity, and compassion close.
You'll notice the poem I shared last month is linked below if you want to reread it.