Jason Fried of 37 Signals said he’s often asked by ambitious young entrepreneurs: “How can I get more done in fewer hours?”
"You can’t," he says. "Stop trying so hard—if it feels like work, something’s wrong."
We’re human, not machines. We can only artificially motivate ourselves and others for so long. Not every day will or can be a Holy-shit-I-am-so-alive-and-on-fire kind of day.
Creating this expectation sets us up for failure and disappointment (and ahem, I do this to myself all the time). Another approach is tapping into our natural rhythm of productivity, trusting that our motivation and output will ebb and flow. Like the weather. Like seasons changing. Like nature.
So whatever season you’re in, trust your waves. When a surge in creativity comes your way, run with it. When you find yourself in an ebb, keep taking action until the dots connect and inspiration strikes once again.
Day 33 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
At every moment, we have the opportunity to create intention. To make a conversation more meaningful, to add context to a dinner, to add life to a creative project, to go deeper into a relationship.
Tonight, @farhadini and I hosted a dinner at our loft, creating the space to connect and dive into each other’s “burning questions.”
Hours of heart-centered conversation and presence emerged. The power of intention fully revealed itself as we shared hopes, fears, dreams and big ideas.
Tonight reminded me: intention is a choice, and each day we have the ability to bring purpose into every moment, interaction, decision and action.
What intention are you bringing into your day?
Day 32 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
I have two fear voices. Grace and Momma Jenny. One limits my growth and the other supports it.
Grace is a mid-thirties British woman who cares only about appearances. She wants me to show up perfect and never make mistakes. The risky path makes her really uncomfortable as she’d rather keep things simple and safe.
Grace is a huge pain in the ass as she completely limits my creative freedom and expression. Whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed by fear, it’s time for Grace and I to have an honest conversation.
Momma Jenny, on the other hand, is my biggest fan and cheerleader. She’s an 80-year old black woman who just loves me to pieces—no matter what. She pushes me to be imperfect and share my vulnerabilities, and she encourages me to take risks and listen to my truth.
Grace represents the fear that holds me back, whereas Momma Jenny embodies the fear that propels my growth forward.
Whenever I’m feeling overcome by fear (it doesn’t go away, I’ve just gotten better at navigating it), I’ll have a heart-to-heart with Grace so she feels heard. Once she’s heard, she’s quiet, and suddenly Momma Jenny and I can carry on with our creative path.
The insight: Name your fears. Don’t push them away.
Day 31 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject
(at Under The Brooklyn Bridge)
Bringing intention into my sacred studio space. Presenting: The Rules!
Day 30 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
Want to know something that’s really tough and scary to swallow?
Disappointment. Rejection. Abandonment.
I’m realizing more and more that as I continue to live my truth and design a life around it, I will disappoint and let others down—even if I don’t mean to.
The more I act on soft whispers and inner wisdom, the greater the risk of rejection and not being loved.
But want to know the greater risk?
Disappointing myself. Rejecting myself. Abandoning myself. And never having the freedom to know and experience who I really am.
The journey toward truth can be scary and painful, but it just might be the most important risk we take.
Day 29 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject
Did you know that in Ancient Rome the “genius” was the creative force that came to us from afar to speak wisdom?
Elizabeth Gilbert talks about this in her TED Talk about your elusive creative genius, recounting the paralyzingly pressure of writing another book after the massive success of her memoir, “Eat, Pray, Love.”
In it she asks: Are *you* the genius or does your genius *visit you*?
Much like Elizabeth and the Romans, I like to think the latter. Creativity doesn’t come from me, it channels through me.
@thnkclrly reminded me of this today when he gifted me with this Genius card. It’s a reminder that genius is something that I have, not something that I am.
What a relief!
Day 28 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at Tribeca Grand Hotel)
Where does pressure come from?
Society? Your client? Family? Friends? Lovers?
It comes from you. It’s self-induced and self-inflicted. It can be your greatest ally or biggest enemy.
The good news?
You have a choice. If the pressure is helping you do great work, embrace it. If it’s holding you back, stomp all over it. Refuse it and let it go.
You’ll know when it’s time to bring it back in the mix.
Day 27 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
So this just happened.
I awoke this morning desirous to give myself permission to get messy and release the inner critic. With an hour and thirty notecards, my task was to write “Get Messy” on each notecard and then bring the cards to life through watercolors.
For the first half, I noticed myself methodical and meticulous, thinking about the strokes and placement of color.
But what happened next surprised me.
I began closing my eyes, feeling the Latin beats playing in the background and dancing with the paintbrush. My entire body began moving and suddenly I forgot I was painting. Suddenly I forgot about getting messy, writing a book, and everything else I want to get done today. Suddenly I reached the space where my body falls into place with the mind and the material. I simply danced with the moment, enjoying the warmth in my chest and the tingling sensation of feeling so creatively turned on.
The song ended and my eyes opened. My entire body was shaking.
"This feeling!" I thought to myself. "This is it! This is why I create!"
It’s the moment in the creative process I yearn for. The moment when the work seduces me and there’s no other place I can imagine being.
Day 26 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
Everything is material for your craft. The aha moments, the random conversations, the distractions and the inconveniences. Every high, every low, and everywhere in between influences what you have to express and how you express it. Take it all in.
Day 25 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
What would your life be like if you only showed up as who you really are? All of you. Without restraint.
Leave the accomplishments and well-behaved bits at the door. Strip down to the core. Naked will set you free.
Day 24 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject #showerexperiments (at DUMBO)
Today was a day of creating space.
Saying “No” and only committing to places where I will expand. Honest and open conversations. Taxes, accounting and financial spreadsheets. Inbox zero and a clean apartment.
As I worked through what felt heavy, distracting and draining, a wave of lightness came over me. New space emerged. Space to roam free and create from my deepest creative place. Space to get out of my head and into my body. Space to breathe and just be.
S p a c e.
What’s in yours?
Day 23 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
Right here, right now. The only place I want to be.
Day 22 of 100.
#the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
Clues are here, there and everywhere, waiting for us to grab them. Waiting for us to take them, run with them, and weave them into our work and world.
An urge that pulls us in a certain direction. An act of kindness that resonates deeply. A random conversation that leaves us speechless. A book that shows up at the right place and time. An insight that moves an idea forward.
See them. Savor them. Experience them. Create them.
Happy clue hunting!
Day 21 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at Almondine Bakery)
Writing this book is like… falling in love. You lock eyes from across the room and feel energetically drawn to that person. You sink into the moment, allowing the here and now to captivate you. Allowing their presence to become one with yours. Your mind occasionally drifts to “what does this mean?” and “where is this going?” A constant reminder to let go and see where it takes you. For the dance itself will be more rewarding than the finale.
Let love guide you. Day 20 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)
"I’m here for you."
Four words that can change everything.
When someone you love is suffering.
When a dear friend is experiencing heartbreak.
When a colleague loses a big business opportunity.
When you’re mid-argument with your love.
"I’m here for you."
A compassionate expression that creates connection and understanding, and just might change someone’s day.
Day 19 of 100. #the100daybook #the100dayproject (at DUMBO)