Foxy Brown my stupidly-big, flashy, impractical, ostentatious Buick Enclave went back to the dealership on Monday. Our time together had come to an end - my lease ended. In her place I brought home a much more practical, albeit kinda cute, alternative.
It’s the least excited I have ever been about a new car. (Also... #FirstWorldProblems)
It’s fitting Foxy went back to the dealer on the day of the Spring Equinox, a day of new beginnings. Giving up Foxy Brown was the last hold out from that life I used to live - the life where I didn’t have to be so picky about how I spent my money because my family had two regular paychecks.
That’s just not my life anymore.
Sometimes choosing the life we truly desire over whatever life was before brings about a set of consequences - choices that have to be made - that don’t always feel so great. And my precious snowflakes, giving up Foxy Brown, decidedly, did not feel great. In fact, I handled her trade-in with all the grace of a teenager that just lost her phone privileges because she didn’t do her chores.
Life is SO UNFAIR! *fish flop on the couch and pout*
I miss Foxy Brown’s wood and leather steering wheel, her plush leather seats and the way she glided down the highway like a boat on calm waters. I miss the way her interior lit up like a rocket ship at night. I miss the feeling of luxury I had every time I slipped in her doors. More than anything, I miss her Bose sound system.
Like, a lot.
Every time I get in the new car (I’ve named her Debbie Harry because she’s a blondie too), I try to find one thing I like more about her than Foxy Brown.
It’s been a stretch - Foxy was the creme de la creme - but there are a few things I like about her better. Debbie Harry is more aerodynamic, she heats up faster and instead of having to work a full-time j-o-b to afford her, I get to spend my time building places (both at the SheHive and with my corporate clients) “where individuality is not just embraced, but celebrated. An evolved world where we merge our unique selves to create a vibrant, joyful, eclectic existence. A place where discovering your true self is not a privilege of the wealthy or well-educated, but an opportunity available to all who seek it. A place where success is not defined by wealth or power, but by health, emotional well-being and personal enlightenment.”
That last part in quotes, by the way, is from a Personal Vision Statement I wrote for myself in May 2015, when the SheHive was just a budding idea in my head.
Last week the women who are participating in the A Life On Purpose series finished up their personal vision statements and shared them with the group. It reminded me that it might be a good time to look at my own again, so I pulled it out of my archives. What good timing that all was… a reminder just when I needed it again, when the consequences of my decisions were about to get a little more uncomfortable, of WHY I am doing what I am doing.
We often forget that a purposeful and fulfilling life has to start with a vision of where you are going. (Science even says so.)
You need a destination before you can build a roadmap. You also need a guiding star when the road gets bumpy... it’s pretty damn enticing just to give up otherwise.
Do you know where you are going? I'd love to hear all about it!
With much love and gratitude,
Ursula Adams, MSPOD
P.S. The SheHive is going to be a little quieter than normal in April as we begin work on our next grand experiment - the KeyHolder pilot. Twelve amazing women have agreed to help us manage the SheHive and bring new programming to the space so that we can increase our capacity and our offerings beginning in late April/early May. Stay tuned for details!
Hi my lovely SheHivers.
It's me. It's my turn to write this week and I have to tell you, I've been drained and fatigued and paralyzed by too much. Writing? Shit. My creative flow just isn't there. That side of my brain feels like someone stuffed a sock in it. A sock filled with task after task after task after task.
Quite honestly, last week I was ready to run away.
Don't let all the Facebook love and fun fool you. I have been drowning in overwhelm. Let me point out the irony. I have all my value reminders written down in my planner because I am the kind of woman who aims to live with intention.
I am an expert at telling others how to do this. I am queen bee when it comes to reading all of the books and believing all the philosophies. Simplicity. Minimalism. Saying no to too much and yes to yourself. I subscribe. I believe. I preach. One of my favorite quotes is "stop the glorification of busy". Oh yes, that would be me on my holier than thou simplicity throne. Yet here I am, condemning it...but still so fucking busy.
I take antidepressants for severe PMS. Let me tell you a secret. Last week I was so riddled with anxiety, I doubled up my dose. That is a flaming red flag that I am living outside of my value set.
When what you do and how you behave is not aligned with your highest values (priorities for life) then that is when things begin feeling somewhat uncomfortable and painful. You feel unfulfilled, dissatisfied and maybe just downright miserable, and you probably don’t even realize why you’re feeling this way.
So maybe starting a business while also having a full time job and a family including a daughter in her senior year of high school wasn't the sanest idea in the world, but hey.... I'm a leap and the net will appear kind of gal. I thought I could sacrifice for a little while with the busy-ness that would surely be essential with making a dream come true. I didn't even conside regular life management, my kids' futures, their school lives and health concerns, the time it takes to figure out the frustrating trickery of health insurance, spending time with the people who are important to me (my husband, kids, parents, and friends), keeping finances in check, making chore lists, buying birthday gifts, taking my vitamins, eating healthy, exercising, paying parking tickets, returning library books on time, remembering to rub progesterone cream on my inner thigh on day 10 through 26 of my hormonal cycle. Jesus. Who has time for a job anyways!?
My life is full guys. For that I am grateful.
However, I'm having a tough time because I need and require down time. I keep wanting to accomplish more and I keep wanting to slow down. My value is that I want a simplified life with free space and alone time, yet I am driven to accomplish more and a lot and too much. I just want to achieve eudamonic well being. I just want to change the world. Something's gotta give.
If I sound like a martyr, please don't take it that way.... It's just that I think it's important to share that I'm struggling. When people tell me they don't know how I'm managing to do it all, it's important to know the truth. My values aren't aligning with my calendar. I keep adding things I want and need to do and I'm not subtracting. For those not aware, the peace is in the subtracting.
"Whether we live in our true or false self depends on our willingness to stay real. And so, over time, staying real becomes the work of keeping our actions in the world connected to the truth of our inner being, allowing our True Self to see the light of day." ~ Mark Nepo
So anyways, SOS.
I need an intervention. I keep looking for some kind of relief outside of myself. Cues from the universe. Magical answers from a mystic. Surely someone else sees things more clearly than me. No doubt, there is a cure for being spread too thin.
In April, we are offering a workshop called Soul Restoration, and I'm treating myself to simply be a participant. I recognize that I need it. I recognize that we all need it. Life runs us down and we need to restore. This is three exquisite days of intensive deep soul work, connecting with the truth of who you are through a series of beautiful and thoughtfully designed lessons. Ahhhh.....heavenly. I will be closing the doors of Andrea and shutting out any responsibilities or expectations. I will commit to let everything else go for these three days and prioritize the self care that I need.
The SheHive has become such a powerful collective of feminine power and wisdom. Right now, more than ever, I'm allowing the hive and the creative, insightful, talented, and wonderful women who have wholeheartedly joined us in our mission, to keep me in tune and on track with my true self. The wisdom of the group (as Ursula so eloquently describes it). We all need a team, a tribe to help us through. I thank you all for the love and light that you bring.
*A very special thank you to my business partner, Ursula, who takes on more than her share of the workload as the managing parter at the SheHive, a wonderful friend, and all around dynamo. We couldn't have made it this far without you. <3
Love and light,
Chief Inspiration Officer
When I turned 40...
When I turned 40 I stopped tying my age to my worth. Being young wasn’t as important to me as being wise and well-traveled. A few years later, I stopped tying my self-worth my zip code. I gave up suburban living and a big mortgage in a pristine historic neighborhood for city living and a house we could afford to pay for with cash. Not long after that I stopped tying my self-worth to the number that showed up on the scale in favor of being healthy and comfortable in my own skin.
I’ve given up a lot of numbers - a lot of "shoulds" - over these past six years. The one number I haven’t been able to give up, however, is that damn number in my bank account. I felt SO accomplished when my salary finally reached six figures and my 401k was reaching a point that made retirement an actual, eventual possibility.
And then I gave it all up…
quit my job, quit my salary, quit my employer-matched 401k. I cashed it all in favor of a living a life I dared to dream.
To say I have had some shame over my dwindling bank account is a vast - HUGE - understatement. My bank balance is constantly looping in the back of my head… “You should have more. You should save more. You should stop spending. You should be more careful. You should go get another big girl job and earn boatloads of cash.”
You know the most ridiculous part of it all? I haven’t wanted for ANYTHING since giving up my salary.
Still, I panic about money all the time.
From the time I started working in 1985 at Bob’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream and Lemonade at Town East Mall in Mesquite, Texas, (where I had to wear red, ribbed, polyester bell bottoms and pin a lace doily to my head), until last summer, I’ve been on someone else’s payroll pretty consistently. I can’t get used to the fact that now, as a consultant, I never really know when and from where my next paycheck is going to appear.
I was referred to my first consulting client by a dear friend almost immediately after leaving my full-time job last June. We did a lot of work together over the summer and then they just disappeared. It broke my heart and scared the shit out of me all at the same time. A second client I had worked hard on retaining fell through at the same time. For most of September and October I didn’t work.
You know what I did instead? I opened the SheHive. And you know what happened as soon as the SheHive was open? That first client called me - finally ready to continue the work we had started together earlier in the year. And three more clients popped up too.
Since then, every time a larger project has come up, one of my other clients goes dark for some reason or another - freeing up time and space. Last Friday, a client that had literally disappeared and stopped returning my calls, called me to start up our work again just as I was headed out to deliver my final product to another client.
Last Friday I decided it was finally time to start listening to the wake up calls being lobbed my way.
The work continues to come my way exactly when I need it. The universe is not a place of scarcity - it is a place of abundance. I don’t have to worry and I don’t have to carry shame. My income probably may not be six figures this year, but it will be enough.
Today, when we are encouraged to #BeBoldForChange, I am making the BOLD change to let go of this last number that falsely defined my self-worth. I am, instead, defined by my belief that I will always have everything I need. It’s been true up until today and it will continue to be true. And if you woke up this morning and are reading this, it’s been true for you up until today and it can continue to be true for you too.
Happy International Women's Day!
May you #BeBoldForChange today and every day beyond. And may you decide to define yourself by things that really, truly matter to YOU.
With much love and gratitude,
Ursula Adams, MSPOD