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I really want to change my life. I’m deeply dissatisfied with the state of affairs and I can’t shake the feeling that I have to DO something. I read This Article about a month ago and the idea resonated with me. The tips in the article are standard “get organized” fare, but the idea that being organized makes healthy habits easier to do because you aren’t surrounded by chaos is one I can understand. Taking care and time to get organized is an act of self-care.

In a previous life, I was a professional organizer. It feels like it was a million years ago, to be honest. I have absolutely no idea where that woman is now. I don’t know anything about her. But what I do know is that she’s the one who was doing fun stuff. She had a lot of friends, until she got really sick. She had hobbies and interests, she danced more, she sang more, she watched movies that didn’t have superheroes in them, (not that there’s anything wrong with that), she looked better and felt better than I do now.

Is it fair to compare myself today, 48-years old, chronically ill for the better part of two decades, premenopausal, after three years of pandemic living?

Probably not…

But let’s try to see where that organized woman could be today, maybe? Today Me has a lot going for her. She’s discovered she’s funnier than she was then. Her brows are completely in fashion. She’s got more stable mental health, she’s a better writer than she was then, and she really, really, wants a better life. Way more than that version of me did. So where do we (all the versions of me) start?

I looked around my living space to give me an idea. I moved all of my shit into one room about 3 and a half years ago and never looked at the shit again. Other than writing a few dozen stand-up sets, I stopped creating. Yet, all of my creative tools are in piles all around me threatening to cave in on me.

‘“Begin at the beginning,” the King said, very gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”’

Lewis Carroll

The beginning, for now, is my workspace, my living space, my creative space. All my energy needs to go into the place where I can do what I’m good at. I’m calling it my Workspace Project, but really it’s about where I live and breathe. That’s about creating, not about the room I’m in. I’m job hunting right now, and that comes with so many hits to my self-worth, that I’ve got to DO something different. I’ve had so many books come into my life in the previous 5 years, and they’ve just been sitting unread on my Kobo since I got it three years ago. I collect knowledge and facts and I just let them sit in a notebook or on a digital device and they turn to ash.

This is where I’m starting:

A Writer’s Space: Make Room to dream, to work, to write – Eric Maisel

This is where it all starts. I need a space, both physically and mentally, to create.

How to Be an Artist – Jerry Saltz

I keep saying that I’m an artist, but artists make art and I really haven’t been doing that.

Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative – Austin Kleon

This is a quick and light read with some of the best insight into the creative process I’ve ever read. It’s actually the only book on this list that I have read from cover-to-cover. Content related to this will be review for me.

Make Anything Happen: A Creative Guide to Vision Boards, Goal Setting, and Achieving the Life of Your Dreams – Carrie Lindsey

I absolutely don’t believe in The Secret, or in manifesting change just by thinking about shit, but the introduction promised plans and action and doing, so we’ll see where this goes.

Rethinking Positive Thinking: Inside the New Science of Motivation – Gabriele Oettingen

This one is really just to temper the possible woo bullshit contained in the previous book. I read an article or saw a TikTok the other day, or last month… let’s just say, I was introduced to this content earlier this calendar year. The author is from Germany, she’s studied motivation and whatnot for years and was appalled by the North American habit of toxic positivity. Bright-sided: How Positive Thinking Is Undermining America by the late, great, Barbara Ehrenreich is where I first read of this, and her last book Natural Causes: An Epidemic of Wellness, the Certainty of Dying, and Killing Ourselves to Live Longer is a must read for those of us living with medical uncertainty. I have not read Ms. Oettingen’s book but it seems solid.

The Art of Showing Up: How to Be There for Yourself and Your People

I am pretty good at showing up for my people, but if it matters only to me, I absolutely stay home for myself. This seems like the difference maker between doing and not doing.

So here we go…

I’ll be posting something daily on one or more of my internet platforms. Some of it will be duplicate content, and if you’re someone I already know*, you’ll catch it all on my FB profile. This is a massive undertaking for me but I’m not great at incremental change. I’m about 8 years overdue for completely blowing up my life, and this explosion is going to be happier and healthier than any overhaul I’ve ever tried. I’m buckling up for this one.

*NB – if we’ve never met, if we’ve never engaged before, and/or we don’t know each other at all, miss me with your friend request. FB is for family, and while I’m super open to letting people into my found family, you (a stranger on the internet) aren’t my family. I’m not even Facebook friends with my own mother. You aren’t special to me at all.

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