Guilty Freedom

Guilt of being free

               Lately my mind has been plagued with thoughts of guilt, thoughts of freedom, and thoughts of shame. You see, I work for myself, every dollar I earn is a relationship that I have created. I don’t have a boss or a company telling me when I must work and when I have to be there. I choose my schedule, when I work, when I want a day off, when I want a long lunch period and I know this probably all sounds great but, it’s so hard. The discipline to not let yourself wither away into a black hole, to never see the light of day again is HARD. Because there is no where that I HAVE to be, I have to choose my work day in and day out. A life of an entrepreneur is solely driven on you wanting to do this thing called life. There is no management personal that is expecting things from you. So, you choose to continuously show up for yourself, for your passions EVERY SINGLE DAY. Driven is the word that comes to mind. My life as a young businesswoman is not busy. Everyone tells me I look so busy, but I am really not. My schedule is pretty flexible. Now, when I was in school, I would say I was busy. But I am not busy anymore, is that okay? Should I be busy? BUT then there is this thought I have been playing with… We aren’t supposed to work our life away, you aren’t supposed to work 12 to 16 hour days, what did we come here for if not to experience LIFE!? Work is just one of the MANY aspects of life, yet we spend over half of our life doing work. Why are YOU here on this earth? To be miserable? To miss out on the lives of the people who matter most? I think not. I found out way too young that you can make money a million different ways, that you don’t have to spend the rest of your life as a work slave. I see my parents, who work so hard, who have sacrificed so much. I see them and I want so much for them to have the freedom to say NO, to say no to whatever they desire. I see a thousand other people who work so much. And here I am… young, working for myself, doing great with it and I FEEL GUILTY. I think “I should be working as many hours as they do” or “I shouldn’t have this extra time I have; I should be using it to make more money”. I have had to stop myself too many times to count from going down a slippery slope of guilt and shame for the life that I have created. But I WILL NOT APOLOGIZE FOR IT. Let’s be clear, no one has ever made me feel guilty, but I see what society’s expectations does to people and I wish I could free them. I am slowly freeing myself. A friend once shared these mantra’s with me…

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE PRODUCTIVE ALL OF THE TIME

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE EFFEICIENT WITH YOUR TIME

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE BUSY TO HAVE WEALTH

This may be a jumble of thoughts, but it’s whats on my mind today. Thanks for reading,

Austeen Freeman

The “I” in “I Love You”

I’ve been on a journey with the word “I”.

Love You and I Love You, such a subtle contrast but these are two very different sentences, with very different meanings. We all know it, even though we pretend that we can interchange the two sentences, it’s not the same thing. Let’s be honest, we hide behind the phrase “love you”. It comes as a protection mechanism. Allows us to not really mean it, to not truly feel it within ourselves. Otherwise, we would be lying if we said the I along with it. Yeah sure, we said the L word back when we said, “love you”, but did we? We said it back because someone said it to us or because it’s “Family”. But we probably didn’t really mean it. And should we have to say it back to someone because they said it to us? (That’s a whole other conversation).

The I in I love you is personal, it’s a direct reflection from you, it FEELS different than saying just “love you”. When you say “Love you” that could have come from anywhere, it could be anyone saying it, you wouldn’t have to own it or claim it because there was no “I” involved. BUT, you put the I in front love you and it’s a game changer. Now it’s you, dedicating that YOU, yes you, love them.

Throughout this journey with the I, I have been intentional with how I say I love you, and more importantly, identifying how I feel when I say it. Am I comfortable putting the “I” in front it? Would I rather not? And if I don’t feel comfortable then I probably shouldn’t say it. How do you say I love you? And can we admit to ourselves that maybe we shouldn’t replace love you with I love you?

AND maybe we don’t say that we love someone if we can’t put I in front of it. Let’s be honest this isn’t the only phrase we make impersonal. There is… “Sorry” vs. “I’m Sorry” and “Miss you” vs. “I miss you”. Now just to be clear, I am not judging those who don’t put “I” in front of these terms. I have been on my own journey with being comfortable making these phrases personal and this may help someone who is also struggling. AND for those of you who have just begun to be comfortable with the words love and sorry and miss, congrats to you! Really, that is a big step.

These are freeing thoughts for me. Thanks for reading,

Austeen

Human Connection

There is a lot to say when it comes to human connection. I don’t even know where to begin. But I want to start with THANK YOU for those of you who can look me in the eye, share a moment without words, and be yourself without any expectations.

YOU ARE LOVED

YOU ARE LOVED

YOU ARE LOVED.

Superficial people make me uncomfortable. Do they you?

I first realized the important of human connection in a 3 day Bhakti yoga retreat with Janet Stone. That weekend was amazing, life-changing. I shared tears and sweat with complete strangers. And they loved me even though I wasn’t from around there. They wanted to know me, to understand what makes up my soul. I am missing that today. I want to know people’s soul and love their souls. The good, the bad and the horrible.

I hope one day I can see them again. Now I am extremely thankful for those people who aren’t afraid to connect to, to love, to show emotion.

KNOW YOU ARE LOVED.

Austeen

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What I did with Lattice

I had this idea in my head. First of all, I thought lattice was called valance. Long story, but I ended up figuring it out. LOL

A lovely friend of mine knew someone who had old white lattice outside against their barn. They donated to this project of mine, thanks guys! I had this awful window in my massage room. I had covered it with just an old black scarf for the longest time. I knew I would have to do something with it eventually.

So here I am in the freezing cold on Christmas eve, cleaning and painting this lattice. (Thanks Dad and Mary Ann for helping!) AND this is how it turned out. I bought a lot of flowers on the Christmas clearance shelves at hobby lobby along with some lights. I might say that it is almost exactly how I pictured it in my head. YAY for creativity. Thing things you can do with lattice!

The Next Adventure

WOW, it’s almost 2019. There is so much I still want to do in 2018 and I only have a few hours left. I still want to write a book, publish my first oracle card deck, lost 50lbs, establish a routine, gain financial freedom, buy a house, pay off debt, the list goes on. But here I am, at the end of 2018. The end of the year that I had so many goals and dreams.

Now I will slide them over another year and continue to work and process and dream them alive. I tend to get over ambitious with my time, and I feel I’ve ran out. But in reality, it’s just continuing. This year may I accomplish maybe one or two of those dreams, but may I also keep striving to make all of them come true. What a privilege we have to be able to create our life, create it in any way we see fit. Thank you for this breath, this body, the chance to feel, the chance to learn, to change, to grow and the chance to connect with other human beings. So here I am, half of my day old makeup on, tired as hell, but warm and thankful for so much in my life.

Thank you. I am excited to continue my journey in 2019. Ps. I love this human named Dylan Heeney. He has taught me so much over the years and I can’t wait to help him manifest his dream and create a life together.

The Empress

I randomly drew a Tarot card to share with you today. This is a little bit about the Empress. She is a Major Arcanca Tarot Card. Cards can mean different things to different people, and usually you grab the meaning of the card as it intertwine’s with the cards surrounding it. But as the Empress stands… Here is what she means to me.

She is associated with Life. Sometime’s the empress can signify Mother Nature and the fertility and growth that surrounds her. The empress can signify a birth of some sort, a birth of a dream, a realization, a relationship or even a life. She come’s at the peak of the cycle, the beginning, a beginning. The empress can also signify abundance. The abundance may be coming or is already in full bloom in your life. It is about the good things in life and is hinting that there is a lot more good things to come. If your creative juices are flowing this is the perfect time to start.

It could also represent a mother figure in your life, or your role as a mother figure. The Empress is all about abundance and creation.

The Very Last One

Here I am after my first time back to the Crossfit Gym in 4-5 months. It is my dads birthday and his only wish was that we workout as a family this morning. There I was, not feeling good about it. I couldn’t figure out why I was so fearful, so dreading to pick up a barbell… I love to move my body, I love to challenge it, so why didn’t I want to move it in a crossfit way? I know my family picked up on my hesitation.

Fast forward to the end of workout, I am the VERY LAST ONE still trying to accomplish the 12 days of Christmas WOD. There I was, there I was as emotion started to come to the top. What did I feel? Shame, embarrassment, wishing I was somewhere else. BUT this time, instead of running from these emotions. I paused… “No Austeen, do not fight these emotions”, I allowed myself to feel them, to sit with these uncomfortable feelings. I could feel my body tense and my chest tighten. It was a time where I didn’t feel strong, I didn’t feel courage or motivation, and instead of letting negative self-talk come crashing through my head, I just allowed myself a moment to feel these things. I softened. It was the first time I sat in that place. Pause, Pause, Pause. AND then the most amazing thing happened. I moved ON. I released those feelings, they moved through me and I was able to allow in love for myself and for the people around me, encouraging me. I let in the okayness (I know it’s not a word but what the hell) of the situation. IT WAS OKAY that I was the very last one, that I was the slowest, the last. It was truly okay and I really felt that way. It was OKAY.

I haven’t been honest with myself about going back to the gym. I didn’t want to have to deal with those emotions. I knew I would feel them because I have let my cardio go these past months. I knew that Crossfit would bring those feelings up and that is not a bad thing! I just wasn’t ready to face them. I hope this encourages anyone who is afraid to go back to something or try something new because they know as well that these emotions will come up. If they do come up, please please please, pause, FEEL THEM and keep feeling them until they pass. They will pass. They will pass. After that moment, invite love into your heart, love for yourself, for your body and gratitude for sitting with those hard to feel emotions. I know these emotions will come again and this situation will arise once more, but know that I have ventured through it a healthy way… I will be less likely to steer away.

Have a very Merry Christmas.

Candle Light Showers

Every chance I get, which is 6 out of the 7 nights week, I take showers bathed in just candle light. A single candle lights the bathroom, so dark I can barley see. This starts to give my eyes a break from the day. No artificial light and usually some light music playing, sometimes it’s deeper, stronger music… just depends on how the day went. I am sharing this with you because it is becoming an important ritual for me. A way to love myself at the end of the day, instead of maybe loving myself with some ice cream (LOL). Do you have any nightly rituals? Do you have ways of loving yourself each day? There are many ways to do this, candle light showers are just one of mine.

Comment below with your ways of showing love to yourself! I would love to hear them!

BY THE WAY… HAPPY SOLSTICE!

Recommended Books

Hello All! This is my first blog post! I am starting small. I wanted to share with you some of the books I recommend reading.

BOOKS:

Awake in the World by Michael Stone… This Book was such an eye opener for me. It came with lessons and teachings from yoga and buddhism.

Awakening Shakti by Sally Kempton… This is a powerful book, filled with the stories of the goddesses. Sally explains what Shakti is and makes the hierarchy of hindu deities easier to understand.

A life worth Breathing by Max Strom… A simple but profound read. It comes with exercises that I recommend everyone do.

ENJOY!