This is the year that everything changed. This is the year that nothing changed.
What changed was me. My perception of who I am. Who I accept myself to be. And who I openly want to be.
I’ve held a camera in my hands for a few years now. It wasn’t until last year that I really gave some action to the thought about being a full time artist. But in the back of my mind there were real doubts. Times and moments where I thought, maybe I should go back to school. Maybe I should get a real job. We all have those thoughts. But they didn’t really start losing power until this year.
This was the year that marked being able to accept myself as an artist.
I woke up this morning as usual. With a little resistance. And somewhere around neutral in terms of mood. Then I remembered that this is the last day of the year. The last of 2017. Just let that sink in for a minute. Can you feel the weight of that sentence? That’s exactly what I felt after the thought occurred to me. So I started to reflect. To think on the entire year that is now behind me. What did I accomplish? Did I really do anything this year? Did I accomplish enough for
And then something happened. As memories started to flash through my head I began to feel it. A moment of clarity for everything I had done. For everything that had transpired over the last year. And I begin to feel gratitude. But more than that, this overwhelming emotion of being enough. This kindness for myself that said, “you have been so hard on yourself lately, look at all that you have done. Look at where you came from. You’ve been through a lot. Ups and downs. And you are still here pushing to be what you want. I’m proud of you.”
That’s something we don’t tell ourselves enough. I’m proud of you and I love you. And that’s something that I organically felt this morning. After going through most of my photos from 2017 I cannot be more grateful. For all of you who have supported me in some way shape or form. I sincerely thank you.
This was the year I begin to stand a little taller and introduce myself as a photographer. As an artist. As a creative. As someone who creates for a living. And each time I did that and continue to do that the shame of “well that’s not a doctor, well it’s not a police officer, blah blah blah” lessened.
I do it because my heart tells me to. And this was the year that I began to listen to my heart more than my mind.
So if there is anything to take away from my ramblings it’s that we should all listen to our heart more. Life gets complicated but it’s amazing how things tend to work out when you start to do that.
Here’s a few of my habits that have helped along this process.
Meditation. Absolute game changer for me. I’ve become acutely aware to how my moods, outlook, and tolerance to just about everything change when I don’t meditate. The app that I use is Calm.
Exercise. This one is a struggle. As I continue to get busier finding time to exercise gets harder. However a few bands and planks, push ups, and you can accomplish a pretty good workout at home.
Journaling. Although my thoughts tend to happen at light speed compared to how fast I can write, journaling is a way to slow down, get my thoughts out onto paper and then I can sit back and analyze them more effectively and objectively. Something interesting happens when a feeling or thought leaves your mind and moves onto paper or spoken word.
Here are a few of my favorite moments from 2017. It’s been a beautiful year.