As I leave behind boring day job life (well, night job life) for the slim-fitting and glamorous exploits of a crafter, I am still working on finding a few things. A routine, a schedule, and most importantly some solace from the anxiety of feeling responsible for my time and also pulled in the many directions of how to use it (learn Spanish! practice piano! yoga! home improvement! marie kondo your room! go on a trip!). All the while I must be careful not to blow through my millions, and to escape it all with a healthy brain and body. This is only my first week, but I can tell you. It's not easy. I have been talking to Bearcat about how to stay zen while being in the apartment most of the day and how to regiment my time, and she's mostly kept tight lipped about it, but I'm pretty sleuthy and have managed to squeeze a few tips out of her.
Number one. Relax. It will all get done. If you use the time that you'd normally spend worrying about things to take naps and lightly groom yourself, you'll find your blood pressure drops a good deal and you'll accomplish the same amount, plus you'll look fabulously unstressed and well-rested. This is something I really need to work on. I need to remember 24 year-old Greg who started this company. Who loved life, and tried to get one key thing done each day and felt an enormous amount of pride at accomplishing it. Who built a whole life in a city he knew next to nothing about. And who spent time every day in a hammock, made breakfast tacos every morning and thought abstractly about what would happen to this (then unnamed) dream of mine.
I have improved dramatically in my time here, at recovering from the pitfalls of my somewhat to non-existent love life. Acknowledging and caring for my frustrations at what my day to day was missing and who was missing from it. And coming to peace with the churning of the emotional magma inside of me. But I am still not the relaxed person I once was. I worry quite a lot. I fret and stew and savor my concerns. And I must remember to breathe. To nap. And most importantly to forgive myself over and over until giving forgiveness becomes as true and reliable as the heart in dialogue with the lungs.
Part of this will come from keeping to my favorite habits. Cooking and meal planning is an exciting thing that never quite makes sense when you work in restaurants. I am thrilled to finally hone some of my go-to recipes I've learned over the years, and of course, try some new ones (I have a plan for an illustrated autobiographical cookbook). I am excited to make a more daily ritual of reading and re-commit to the free expression of this blog. I am ready to push myself physically into new and exciting shapes which will help me to stay focused and positive and not to swipe like I am drowning in the fits of a dating app. I am going to attempt another herb garden and to grown a few plants this Spring and Summer and hopefully with my favorite habits I will grow too.
Number two. if you don't get what you want, be vocal about it. I'm not exactly sure to whom, but I think she's talking about talking. I may be responsible for all the work, but that doesn't mean I have to keep everything to myself. Outside of straight up asking for help (which is a good idea and I have done) I must remember to also talk to human beings for my mental health and sanity and also because communication is a wonderful way of working through some anxiety as well as fine tuning ideas that may otherwise lose their edge in the rock tumbler of my brain.
Not talking is one of the quickest ways toward despair for my particular brain basket and the chemicals brewing therein Even the somewhat nutty habit I have of talking to myself, both about what I want to accomplish during the day and straight up imagining conversations with people I know and don't know, allow me to socialize in a way that is very necessary in one of the loneliest jobs imaginable. I am also taking this moment to remind myself to make phone calls and video chats with people. To visit people with bottles of wine and cook dinner and volunteer and take classes at the gym. People will help me not to become bitter against the time-consuming nature of my art.
And lastly if you don't like the way you are being pet, fight back. Once again, this is hard to contextualize fully because I'm mostly on my own and at home. But I must be flexible enough to make changes. In my rituals and schedules as I learn to have those, in my ways of doing things, my ways of representing myself and my priorities. The work will get done, and I will be vocal about it, but that doesn't mean the effort I give should be static or numbing. i have the ability to make changes. To adapt and should the need arise, to leave Shipwreck behind in one formation or other if something greater should arise.
For now I am primarily focused on making this happen. After 6 years in the making, this is the year in which I will finally push the boulder over the hill. But I am having long conversations with the cat to remain grounded and to work my hardest to ENJOY THE RIDE. From what everyone has told me about starting your own business, before you know it, you are tied down to so many different things, that you will look back at the early moneyless days with a yearning you can't even understand. And I want to make sure, I am in it, and present, and proud of myself and what I've made so far.
A place for product updates, inspiration, behind the scenes stuff, and in general a place for mind meandering.