When I was in my mid 20’s and in art school, one of my roommates brought over an older French woman for dinner one night. At one point she got up close to one of my abstract watercolors, and reading it like a Rorschach test proclaimed, “you’re just like Sisyphus** – you’re going to be pushing this boulder up a hill your whole life.”
I could say that she cursed me that night, but even then, all those years ago, I could feel the truth in her statement. I was then, and still am, in many ways, someone who will often work harder than I need to, throwing my whole self into something to get a job done. My motto was always, “give me a shovel watch me dig.” There’s pride in that. There’s also a ridiculous amount of burnout over the years.
And while I can’t tell you I’ve completely changed, I can tell you that in the last few years I have begun to ease up and get some help. I’ve partnered, I’ve let more people in, and I’ve opened to suggestions from friends. Their vision, humor, their talent and love have been, in large part why I’m where I am as a teacher and creative entrepreneur today.
I’ve been meaning to share a few of them with you – there are so many more.
Stefanie Renee Lindeen – a photographer who took a picture of my home fire pit at least 3 years ago, and that had me understand who I was and what I doing over here at 27 Powers. Stef’s photos are like a doorway, which when passed through, reveals your blind spot of beauty – the thing that was in front of you the whole time but which you could not see. Headshots, pictures for your website, family photos. The best. If I want to see a reflection of who I really am, I call Stef. http://www.stefanierenee.net/
Liz Kalloch – the wonderful artist who brought my newsletters and daily writing prompt program, 27 Days, to life with her fantastic ideas for art + design. Kind, thoughtful, professional, and funny, Liz is also a wonderful jewelry designer, and I wear one of her amazing crochet necklaces nearly everyday. http://lizkallochdesigns.com/
Sherry Richert Belul – Hostess of Simply Celebrate and Mad Moon Books – a dear friend who has gifted me with a number of her amazing Mad Moon Books over the years. These are one-of-a-kind Celebration books that allow people to see who they are in the world, and written completely by their friends and family. Sometimes when I’m blue, I look at the book Sherry made me for my birthday a couple of years ago and I don’t feel so alone. Her books are the healing balm and Sherry is the light in the dark. http://www.simplycelebrate.net/mad-moon
Andrea Scher – writer – creative entrepreneur – photographer. Andrea’s superpowers are vast, and she has a knack for reducing big ideas and concepts into bite sized morsels of goodness. Her online classes are gorgeous, the writing on her blog is serious and funny at the same time, and she’s a hell of a photographer. Her generosity to me all of these years has been stunning. I’m sure I wouldn’t be running Telling True Stories if Andrea hadn’t led me in the back door and showed me how and insisted that I could do it. http://www.superherolife.com/
Mark Wagner – artist – web designer – former husband and partner for 25 years – who enabled me to imagine the life of the artist 25 years ago and who encouraged me every step of the way. He is also responsible for my beautiful website. The man is the real deal, a true artist with a great sense of design and color. All of the websites he’s built have been stunning. He’s also a peach to work with. http://www.heartsandbones.com/
Willo O’Brien – geeky, gorgeous, business guru and adorable teenage sunshine rolled into one. If I’m unnerved by something techy, if I have a question about my online business and what will make it rock even harder, Willo will have the answer. I’ll never do another project without her help. http://willolovesyou.com/
Maya Stein – ninja poet – writing guide – creative adventuress. If you don’t get Maya’s weekly 10 Line Tuesday in your inbox everyday you should sign up this very minute. Maya is one of my very favorite writers. Honest, bullseye real, funny, smart – she’s my girl. Take a class from her – you won’t be sorry. http://www.mayastein.com/10-line-tuesday/
Rachel Cole – my coach for the last couple of years. A girl who helped me keep my feet to the fire – who – every time I started to push that boulder up the hill asked sweetly, “does it need to be so hard? How can we make this easier?” Grateful, grateful, grateful. http://rachelwcole.com/
Ariana Pritchett – a coach and one of the most vibrant energies I’ve come across in a long time. Now the proprietor of Launch Sessions, a new business, which helps entrepreneurs, launch their businesses – everything from concept and game plan, to branding and design. This girl is a force in red cowboy boots and a woman I rely on for her terrific creativity and her ability to make everything simple. Launch Sessions is brand new – if you book a session before April 1 they’ll give you a sweet 25% discount + if you mention my name they’ll be even more sweet to you.http://launch-sessions.com/
*** Sisyphus – the god who was condemned to a life of rolling the same immense boulder up a hill, over and over again only to watch it roll back down. Oy!
thank you sweet you…love you so deeply! you are a true friend, a true artist in every sense of the word and I wouldn’t be where I am on this path with you and the wild writing that has gone throughout the many years. xoxo
Oh, my dear, Laurie. I am so honored and delighted and grinningly happy to be included in this beautiful and talented group o’ women. Big hug. Big thanks. Big love. Listen, you are such a powerful force in the world, just by being who you are. You push because you care so much. But you don’t need to push so hard — your spirit and your natural abilities are strong and can carry the load! All you have to do is stand in a room, nothing in hand, and you can change the world — I’ve seen it happen over and over. You gots the juju girl! 🙂
My apologies to wonderful Mark. Revision from above: …to be included in this amazing and talented group of artists/beings!!”
My favorite piece of business advice from you: “Bottle it!”
Thank you for seeing me, my energy, my earnest and sincere love and passion for all things magical and true! Love you so much and feel incredibly blessed that our paths crossed again, intertwined and have blossomed into such an incredible friendship, and invaluable opportunities to support each other. <3
I have loved Every minute of creating with you Laurie, it’s been such a joy to work with you like this and share our dreams for our lives, for our world, and for our creative spirits. You are a true and very amazing force of nature, and I count you as one of the blessings in my life.