Transitions (the honest truth)

Dear Friends,

Transitions are hard.

They are hard physically, emotionally and spiritually as well.

For those just joining the party – we’ve just moved 300 miles from Somerset to Durham, we’re staying with a friend as the house purchase hasn’t been finalised, my wife has a new full time job so I’ve become a working dad trying to establish what to do for an income and our children have started a new school this week.

I am physically exhausted. I am an emotional wreck and if my reaction to an email from a Bishop last week is anything to go by, not very spiritually settled right now.

My spirituality is very entangled in being a creative person. And I have a personality that needs to be liked, appreciated and thanked. I always come out weird on personality type indicators but i’m an INTP, an Enneagram 5, a Belbin ‘Plant’ and mostly belong to Gryffindor. When I’m unsettled, I clutch at creative straws, have a million ideas before breakfast, start stuff that I’ll never complete and generally don’t look after my mental health.

This process has been on an acid trip (metaphorically) for the last few weeks as I grapple with huge life changes and trying to ground my experience in whatever way I can.

I am, in all honesty, very insecure right now.

I am anxious about having an income to help provide for my family.

I am worried about doing a good job as a dad, something i’m not sure comes that naturally.

I am increasingly concerned about the labels I choose to use for myself.

I have done the same thing I always do – assume I can start something that will make money even though I don’t have an audience, any start up capital or the marketing nouse to make it work.

I am in awe of the number of people I know and respect who have managed to go freelance in the last month and I know they’ll make it – I’m just not sure I will. (do check out Mark Berry, Will Taylor and Sally Nash)

Obviously the dream is to have a small creative team who produce world changing stuff in a fun and uplifting, holistically cared for type studio space but how you make this happen when you are so completely strung out I have no idea. So, the dream must go on hold. In fact, everything must go on hold so that I can manage the basics.

This is not the time (for me) to be starting anything. And that hurts to say, because I’m a pioneer, a plant, an ideas guy. I can’t be wildly creating contemplative spirituality courses or curating new digital communities or any of the fantastic but unrealistic ideas I’ve percolated for the last month or two.

In a rare moment of clarity this evening, It struck me that i’m an entrepreneurial thinker – not a doer as such. Perhaps that’s why I enjoy being a student so much – the more inputs you have the more creative your thinking can be. I have always had great ideas but nothing much I’ve tried to accomplish physically (in terms of projects) has ever stuck. Don’t get me wrong, there are things I am very good at, it’s just people don’t often want to pay for them. One day perhaps I will find a group of people who need an ideas guy and have a mysterious and very generous financial backer but until then…

I’m taking a moment, taking a deep breath, pressing pause and instead of spending the little energy I have on creating new things I’ll focus on reflecting, learning, consolidating and making it through the current transition.

Practically speaking, that means I have reduced my digital footprint to this blog and two social media accounts. anewloom which has been my ‘brand’ will be shelved in favour of a more personal identity. I guess I’ve been sharing different parts of who I am in different places – but this is me, a complicated and complex person and If you’re still reading this then you are probably happy to engage with the breadth of what I’ll post in the coming months.

If you happen to be well financed and need some creative ideas that can be developed between 10am and 3pm then do be in touch, otherwise – I look forward to the conversations that arise from sharing my musings on life, the universe and everything.

Blessings,

James

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