My word for January is REVITALIZE.
I decided to start each month of 2018 with a word that I wanted to focus on and will inspire me throughout the month. Since I was in such a slump in December and the beginning of January, revitalize seemed like the perfect word to start the year with.
I was still pretty sick for the first couple weeks of January and campus at the O’Neill (where I live and work) was very quiet and in combination with #bombcyclone, very, very cold, so I was mostly laying low.
However, I had booked myself a trip to California for Martin Luther King Day since we had that Monday off of work and I had an audition in New York City that Thursday, so I thought it made sense to just ask for 2 more days off and get to go back home to California to visit my boyfriend, Sam and be REVITALIZED by the clear blue waters of Laguna Beach.
It was the most amazing trip for a lot of reasons. I left with a revitalized sense of what I want to do, how I want my life to look, and a renewed motivation to continue pursuing my passions.
We stayed at La Casa Del Camino, a beautiful little Spanish inspired hotel with the most beautiful ocean/coastline view from our window. Saturday and Sunday I spent with my love, Sam and it gave us an amazing time to connect, eat good food, relax, and simply be with each other.
On Monday and Tuesday, we woke up at 5:30 am because Sam had to go to work, and instead of going back to sleep, I lived my dream life imagining what it would be like to live in Laguna Beach (my favorite place in the world) and be living my dream life.
I went down to the beach and meditated with the waves in the peaceful morning. I watched surfers as the fog started rolling in. I got fresh fruit from the hotel and ate it on a cliff overlooking the waves, unable to take my eyes off the continuous flow of the sea-foam green and teal blue water crashing and crashing again and again. I journaled in my notebook, continuing to do my morning pages, and then walked a mile and half to yoga at 10 am, which was done outside in the shade of the palm trees.
It was magical in every sense of the word. I allowed myself time to reflect on what I really want in life. I gave myself permission to imagine my dream life and really live in that to feel what that would make ME feel like.
Surprisingly, I found that extremely scary and hard to do. When I started to imagine the life of my wildest dreams, I had all these feelings of shame and doubt come up, and the little voice in my head saying things like:
- you will never have that
- that’s not realistic
- be more practical
- you don’t even really want that
- there’s no way you would ever make enough money to do that
- you will never have that kind of love
It was insane to realize how I was SO in my own way and I felt shame to even IMAGINE my wildest dreams. I had to get over this shame to GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION to unabashedly feel the life of my dreams.
And you know what? The “life of my dreams” that I thought I wanted basically my entire life, was not it.
Snapshot: Living in New York City, doing Broadway show after Broadway show, being a successful stage performer in the musical theater world.
When I started to imagine what that would feel like, I knew that it wasn’t enough. I want more. I want to connect in a deeper way.
I realized, I have a deeper purpose.
This was extremely freeing to realize. The world of theater and acting which is what I’ve always wanted to do is an extremely hard career path, and since it is my number one passion, I’ve always been ready to sacrifice anything for my art, even if that means things like relationships, stability, and a steady income.
I will always and forever be: an artist. But what I realized up on that cliff, is that I wanted my life to look a little more like that wonderful morning: waking up to the sound of waves, enjoying fresh fruit, focusing on spirituality, yoga, and meditation, and connecting with others deeper and deeper.
I found that I don’t have to be just an actor. I am so much more. I am a human (jk, mermaid) on this wonderful life journey and acting gives me the chance to practice everything that yoga/meditation/spirituality teaches, which is completely wonderful and is the work that I love to do, but simply living the “actors” life will not be enough for me.
I know there is more. I don’t know how to get there, but I now know that I am giving myself permission to use my artistic abilities to help others more intimately and directly.
I want to inspire others to live their best life.
Whether I do that through the plays I write, the theater I create, the characters I inhabit, or whether I do that through travel and meeting people of different cultures, or through creative life coaching or yoga teaching, now I know that my life has this deeper purpose and everything I do will be in serving this higher power.
So, after this revelation, I felt more revitalized than I have in a long time. I made a list of short term goals that I want to accomplish in the next 30 days. I will share them here.
- 30 day blog challenge – blog every single day for 30 days no matter how large/small. This blog is how I want to create and share with the world, so I will be focusing the next 30 days on doing just that, even when I feel like “I have nothing to talk about”.
- Connect – email a different friend/network connection one time a week. Seeing some of my dearest friends and professors while in California revitalized my spirit and made me realize how I am always so inspired by others and connecting with them reinvigorated my passion and soul. Do more of that.
- Yoga – Take a yoga class once a week. I mostly have my own yoga practice, since I don’t have a car here and it’s hard to make it to yoga downtown, but going to that yoga class in Laguna made me realize how important it is for me to practice in a community.
- Read a book about voice-work and holistic artists. I realized I eventually want to teach voice-work to others. It’s something I was introduced to in college, but I want to dive deeper into that work and the idea of creating holistic artists and humans.
That’s all my goals for now. I tried to focus on more manageable action items so that I can actually accomplish them instead of giving myself huge projects/goals which led me to feel overwhelmed and is partly why I needed to step away from my goals for a little while so I could come back to them: revitalized.