DEAR JENNI EARLE,

SO, here we go, first Q&A!

to get us started, i had members of the jenni earle team ask me questions, but y’all send in questions and let’s get healing!!

  • do you have a memory of a defining moment in your life? -elise, winston-salem, nc

i had a booth at Zapp Hall during Texas Antiques Week in Round Top, Texas. it was 2011, my home life was tense, it felt like my husband and i couldn’t find even an inch of common ground as much as we were trying. i thought that the time away would be beneficial to my brain and heart, (i’ve always felt my muscles and thoughts calm and clear as i set off for a long drive) but i had no idea what i would find in Texas.

it was about the third day of the show and i was walking to the back of the field to use a port-o-john (it’s a classy place, y’all) and i was shocked to realize, almost as if it had snuck up behind me, that i was breathing free, my spirit felt free, unjudged, relaxed in a way that i hadn’t felt in years! it stopped me in my tracks. i took a deep breath, waiting to feel the familiar tug of nervous tension, of not measuring up… but it didn’t come. the warm Texas air flooded into my lungs, and effortlessly left again, like when I was a kid.

noticing this made me realize i was living my daily life in a constant state of fear. and y’all, this is NO way to live daily life. i had forgotten what calm and peaceful felt like. i had forgotten what it felt like to feel no judgement.

this remembering jolted me towards a new goal. i needed to feel every day how i’d felt that day.

maybe not for the whole day, but i needed to find that peace with myself at least a few moments a day. it is still the gauge i use, 7 years later, to tell if i’m doing right for myself. my life looks completely different today. a divorce, a break up with a business partner, a relearning of how i relate to my people, a move, much bigger children than before and new business later, my life feels so authentic that now i notice immediately when i feel the seizing grip of anxiety. it is an emotion i gratefully feel very rarely.

 

  • where do I start when trying to find my authentic self? -kari, winston-salem, nc

you start somewhere quiet. the voice you are most interested in hearing is your own. that takes making time to be quiet and listen. try this: imagine your life as a house. this actually takes away some of the scary, staring deep within yourself, stuff. take a second to agree to be honest with yourself and begin. close your eyes and imagine you are a house. there’s the foundation, the living space, bedrooms, and so on. this isn’t your dream house, we aren’t imagining the future, that will come later… it’s the current state of things. Get detailed, notice things like;

where are the leaks? (remember, there’s no shame in this, all houses get leaks from time to time, that’s ok, but let’s figure out where they are.)

are there termites in the basement or sugar ants in the kitchen? again, no shame, just look for them.

is the sun shining on your house? how large is the yard? are there trees? windows? how many? how big? what does it feel like to walk into the house?

your intuition will tell you where the unwell parts are, and point you to what areas of life you are needing more authenticity. Those places where you aren’t speaking honestly to yourself or your loved ones about what you need and want.

a few examples of things that can show up are:

small, even tiny!, windows. this can show that you aren’t able to truly express what is going on inside you. walk into that room? what treasures are hiding in that room that need to be brought out to the sunlight?

dead grass or lack of trees and foliage could mean that you aren’t nurturing yourself. there’s a symbolic garden inside you! the plants are your thoughts, ideas and passions, and they need watering. you provide this with attention and intention. if they are ignored they will wilt and die, and your spirit will feel real pain. bringing your ideas and thoughts out into the sun and giving them time (water) will make such a huge difference in your feeling authentic and purposeful.

write to me with other house descriptions if you are puzzling over them and we can keep going deeper into this exercise. this is a place to start, a check-in, that you can do as you build your voice stronger and stronger. watch that yard grow lush, those windows widen and the sun pour in.  

authenticity is about hearing your own voice and being brave enough to let it out into the world.

 

  • Looking back are there any mistakes in your life that you are grateful for? -elise, winston-salem, nc

i am actually grateful for almost every mistake i’ve ever made. not during the making, of course, I usually felt more idiotic than grateful, but as i get further from the mistake and look back, i see the reason why i made that choice and i also feel the ways i’ve learned and changed since.

I really think that life is about making mistakes and learning lessons, over and over, and on and on we go.

As ariana grande would say, “Thank you, next.”   

i always tell my children, mistakes are OK, you make a mistake once, that’s because you tried something new or went out on a limb. maybe it failed or you didn’t like how it felt or you made someone else feel badly, but now you know not to do that particular thing again. it’s upon making the same mistake twice that you get into trouble. that’s when it is obvious that you are living blindly to how you really feel. make all the mistakes in the world, but learn each time. learn from the consequence and become a better, stronger, more compassionate human as a result.

that’s our job, LIVE and LEARN. Repeat indefinately…

 

 

  • Are people just born artistic or are there steps to cultivate it in yourself when it doesn’t feel natural but you want to be creative/artistic? -kari, winston-salem, nc

OH, i love this question… i get asked this a lot. here’s what i think…

i think EVERY human is born with a way in which they are built to express. This could be through writing, drawing, painting, and things that are traditionally artistic, BUT also this could be through logistics, mathematics, discovering new species in nature, and so on! there is creativity in every aspect of life, we just have to be open to our inherent expression. don’t box yourself in to think if you aren’t talented in traditional ways of creating that you aren’t creative.

another word for creative is curious.

be curious about what you want to express and try new things that will lead you there. let the answer surprise you! and let yourself be bad at something while you learn. the willingness to make a mess, be wrong, waste time and money and fail a few times is essential to creative success. i think most often people who think they aren’t creative simply haven’t given themselves permission to be messy and wasteful, but there is innovation on the other side of those things! get curious y’all and go make a mess. 

 

that’s it for this week, daring trailblazers!!
write in and ask me your questions, the more we share, the stronger we ALL are. (ANONYMOUS QUESTIONS ARE FINE! just let me know that need.)

be brave,

be authenic,

jenni earle

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