How We Live + Work // 7.27.16

This week we're sharing a theme that kept showing up in our world last week: RESILIENCE. What it looks like (in many forms) and some things we do to bolster ourselves when we need it the most: music, focus, and fiction. Enjoy!

If you're new here...welcome! Every Wednesday we share our creative chronicles—tools we're using, things we're loving, stuff we're doing, and ideas we're implementing to navigate and grow our service-based business. You'll also get a behind-the-scenes glance at our work/life adventure as a married couple defining and aligning our own personal version of success! We hope our weekly letters uplift, empower, and inspire you to do the meaningful work you were meant for...with soulful simplicity.


Hey there! Happy Wednesday:) It's Deana...

Since we were last together, I've noticed a subtle undercurrent dancing in my life. 

Little swatches of stories. Tiny moments of emotion that bubble up and pop. One random dot that two days later connects to another random dot.

This is how it goes for me. And for you.

The theme I've noticed weaving through my life right now is...

RESILIENCE.

I think it's good we talk about this because, as a soulfulpreneur, you're gonna need bucketfuls. Here's why:

Your business is an extension of what you believe. It's the difference you want to make in the world. It's how deeply you care. It's the joy you want to fling far and wide to help lift others up.

In other words, it's an extension of you. It's personal. It's a mission wired into your deepest dreams.

This means your journey is going to feel very vulnerable at times. And it's going to be your job to fortify and strengthen yourself when you feel weak and bruised. If you don't consciously commit to this, you'll experience moments that take you down and keep you there.

Because I have the honor of witnessing the resilience of soulfulpreneurs every day, I want to share some real examples of what it looks like:

It's the life coach who helps parents see their children as naturally creative, resourceful, and whole rather than extensions of themselves.

It looks like the architectural draftsman who composes beautiful music in his quiet moments. The kind of music that turns notes into stories that ultimately shift the way we feel or see the world.

It's the wellness guide who empowers people to connect with the wise signals of their bodies to course correct health issues with greater ease.

It's the lawyer who's decided she wants to stop helping people fight out their divorces, but rather guide them to write a new kind of separation story for themselves and their children.

It's the makeup artist who teaches people to love what is unique about themselves rather than hide beneath layers of foundation.

It's the speaker who goes into companies, spots the cultural cancer, and yanks it out at the roots by cracking people's minds open with humor, new ideas, and fresh perspectives.

It's the photographer who captures the teeniest moments when people's souls sparkle out their bodies so they can see their truest selves from a new angle.

It's the rancher who understands the necessities and realities of her livestock, but treats each animal with the dignity, care, and compassion they lovingly deserve.

It's the end-of-life navigator who helps people make peace with their mortality, resolve loose ends in their relationships, and leave thoughtful tokens for dear ones after they've taken their last breath.

It's the leadership mentor who helps creative, intelligent people through the fear and confusion of designing and navigating new, heart-based opportunities for themselves.

It's the stylist who not only helps people look fantastic (on any budget), but also guides them to stop purchasing cheaply made crap that harms our beautiful planet.

It's the spiritual teacher who helps people quiet their busy minds so they can tap into the wisdom and subtle frequencies of their own energy.

It's the thoughtful, reassuring nurse who helps people navigate chronic or life threatening illness from the the comfort of their homes.

It's the massage therapist who before starting her private practice, sat at a corporate desk for 15 years, until one day her body and brain broke from the emotional strain of a life not remotely aligned with its beautiful purpose.*

*That's my massage therapist's room above. The one I visited last week, where I learned about the resilience it took to switch careers and launch her business. AND I got to see how the branding we created last year has played a significant role in helping her business take off! Read more about her launch story right here...

These are not easy things things, friends.

Beautiful. Yes.
Worthy. Damn straight.
Needed? More than ever.

But easy? 

No.

The fortitude, elasticity, suppleness, determination, vulnerability, and doubling down it often takes to bring the dream for your life—your business—into the world and STAY with it when you feel tender, bruised, and scared is immense.

I don't tell you this to scare you. 

I share this because if you are on a soulfulpreneur journey, you need to know a few things about the hard parts:

1. They're normal.
2. You're not alone.
3. You can absolutely handle them...but you're gonna need some tools set up in advance. (Because trying to gather your tools when you're in a tailspin and your perspective is skewed is practically impossible).

Some tools I use to bolster my resilience:

Music:

This concise playlist helps me process and release funkiness.

1. Little Wonders // Rob Thomas // Because it reconnects me to what really matters (little moments, love, and teensy wonders that drama can blind me from).

2. It's My Life // Bon Jovi // Because this song makes me want to do lots of fist pumps (and maybe get a tattoo for, like, 5 seconds).

3. Elastic Heart // Sia // Because it's such an awesome reminder that "YOU WILL NOT BREAK ME" and "I'VE GOT THICK SKIN AND AN ELASTIC HEART."

4. Electric Love // BØRNS // Because I DARE you not to dance to this (and dancing always lifts me up)!

Here's that playlist. Headphones are a must. Enjoy ❤︎

 

Focus:

When I'm feeling low, it helps to focus outward instead of inward. Giving my attention to someone else directs my mind away from my worries, or inspires new ways of looking at them altogether! There are people to admire, send love to, or assist—all around us—if we get curious enough to pay attention.

Fiction:

I'm sure this is a personal quirk, but I find one of the least helpful things for me in low times is personal development or self help materials. Weird, right? I'm a person who loves seeking new perspectives and ways of being. The problem is—I can easily get addicted to it. And the problem with THAT is , I can end up operating from a place of fear (that I'm slightly broken) instead of from a place of creative possibility.

A great fictional story is like a hot bath for my brain. When I feel pummeled by life, one of the best things I can do for myself is hop on my bike and pedal my corgi legs up to the library:)

Turns out I'm not the only one who feels this way: The Surprising Power of Reading Fiction: 9 Ways It Makes Us Happier and More Creative

Currently I'm re-reading a story I ADORE! It's called The Dream Lover by one of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Berg. The Dream Lover is the (historically fictionalized) account of author George Sand's life. She was a French woman who moved to Paris and dressed like a man to experience the creative freedoms necessary to become one of most significant figures in French literature. Her friends and lovers included the likes of: Frédéric Chopin, Gustave Flaubert, Franz Liszt, Eugène Delacroix, Victor Hugo, Marie Dorval, and Alfred de Musset. Ooooh. It's good. And talk about resilience. I can't imagine the courage and conviction it took to accomplish what this woman did—in a time when women didn't have the freedoms or opportunities we often take for granted today.

Well, there you have it! What we've been doing and loving this week:) I hope our journey inspires new ideas for you!

Until next week...

Oh! And we have a couple new launch stories to share...

Deana Ward

Simple & Soulful Creative, Lincoln, Nebraska

Simple & Soulful Creative is a Squarespace design studio that helps solopreneurs + small businesses clean up their messaging + launch gorgeous (easy-to-manage) websites.

About The Author

Deana Ward is a Squarespace website designer, copywriter, and consultant who helps soulful entrepreneurs align their brands and set up efficient business systems—while guiding them to take simple, tangible steps toward their professional goals. Her warm, personal approach goes beyond website design. It includes one-on-one training, accountability, and idea decluttering—which empowers her clients to get up and running so much faster than going it alone.

I'll send simple tips to help you take down-to-earth action with your Squarespace website & business!

Sign up below & I'll see you on Wednesday:)