Joy & Ease in the Midst of Chaos

The last few weeks have been NUTS! When I last wrote, I’d arrived in Phoenix and started my new job. Since then, there’s barely been a moment to breathe. Until now. Until today. Which is why I’m back with an essay to share the joy and ease I found in the chaos.

Cross country relocation sometimes involves air travel, even in a pandemic

With gratitude…

Moving is always a crazy and hectic experience. When it’s a cross country relocation, there’s an added layer of stress. When we moved a year ago, from Chicago to Florida, I didn’t notice the madness because I was working for myself and, because it was the early days of the pandemic, my business was slow.

This time, the move included going back to work so time to settle in was limited to evenings. For the first few weeks, I stayed with cousins who were generous enough to open their home to a relative they hadn’t seen in at least 20 years.

I am so grateful to them both for making me feel welcome and cared for. I think, if I’d gone straight into a hotel, I might have felt a little lost in the new locale. Instead, I was greeted with open arms and lots of love. They were overjoyed to have me stay with them and I was filled with joy to get re-acquainted.

With trust…

During that same time, as I began settling into the routine of a “regular” job again, I also began the search for our new home. While the Big Guy and I have very similar tastes in houses, there was an underlying anxiety that followed me around as I toured homes he could only see via photos in the MLS listings or via FaceTime videos as I walked through a house. What if I fell in love with a house he hated?

Fortunately, he agreed with me when I found a house that felt ideal. We put in our offer, went through a round or two of countering, and finally entered into a contract. House #6 was the winner. We’ll close in early May and are looking forward to sleeping in our own bed in about a month.

With faith…

The day after our contract was accepted, I flew back to Florida to oversee the movers who were packing up our house. It was the first time on a plane since early March of 2020 and I was grateful for all the protocols the airlines and airports have put in place to protect the passengers.

The movers were awesome. Over the course of three days, they packed all our belongings and loaded the truck. They were personable, friendly, and we all had fun during the process. The truck arrived in Phoenix a few days ago and our stuff was transferred into storage until we can take possession of our house.

Packed and ready to load, the place looked like a bomb went off

The Big Guy joined me here about a week ago. He too has started work and is settling in well. We’re living in an extended stay type hotel and are looking forward to exploring Phoenix and the surrounding area now that the stressors of finding a home are behind us.

With joy and ease…

Moving is a crazy time, yet when you’re open to it, there’s so much joy and ease to be found in the process. Yes, I’ve been stressed. Yes, I’ve been anxious. Yes, I haven’t always slept as well as I’d like. But I haven’t allowed any of that to get in the way of enjoying the adventure that is moving across country, starting a new job, meeting new people, renewing old relationships, and living life to its fullest.

Joy and ease are our birthright. They are present even when our world feels chaotic and overwhelming. In fact, I’d say joy and ease are MORE present when the world feels chaotic and overwhelming. Those are the times when we need joy and ease the most.

All you need to do is stay open to the beauty, fun, and little things that make you happy and grateful when life feels nuttier than usual.

What is currently stressing you out? How could you find your own joy and ease in the midst of your chaos? If you’re willing to share, drop a note in the comments.

xo


Interested in my art, my writing, my poetry, or learning more about bringing consistent joy and ease into your life? Then let’s talk!

Contact me to schedule:
* A virtual coffee
* A private (virtual) art show of my art
* A commissioning conversation to discuss hiring me to create a textured fiber painting uniquely yours

If you enjoyed this essay, and it feels aligned, please share on social media or via email. If you liked it, someone you know will probably like it too!

Drinking from a fire hose

I’ve made it to Phoenix. Yay! And I’m swamped. I’d forgotten how much a cross country relocation resembles drinking from a fire hose. I’ve managed to eke out a few moments to write this weekly missive. Let me fill you in.

Photo by Greg Leaman on Unsplash

I’ve enjoyed one full week at my new job. The project may have barely begun but it’s moving at the speed of sound. Lots of moving parts as we mobilize and pull the necessary contracts and permits in place. It’s exciting, the work and the people. I’d almost forgotten how much I appreciate being surrounded by positive co-worker energy. Each day brings with it a little zing.

In addition to full work days, I’m also on the search for a house for the Big Guy and I to purchase. My cousin’s girlfriend is a Realtor and she’s doing a bang up job of finding listings for me to look at that meet our budget and our parameters. Phoenix is in the midst of a seller’s market so homes are moving at the speed of light. I don’t really expect to find our ideal home until early April, after the Big Guy joins me here in the southwest, however, I’m open to whatever the Universe chooses to deliver. I trust the powers greater than I to handle the timing for our dream house.

Between work and house hunting, there’s not much time for anything else. My art making is on hold pending purchase of a home and delivery of our belongings. I’m going to continue to try to squeeze out a bit of time to write a short essay each week, but if you don’t hear from me on a random Monday in the near future, know it’s not because I had nothing to share but rather because I was water logged from that fire hose.

While my schedule (and occasionally my brain) are a bit overwhelmed during this transitional time, I’m still finding the joy and ease within it all. Life is an adventure and I’m grateful to be living it.

With joy and ease…

These are exciting times for my art, my writing, my work, my family, and me. I hope you’ll appreciate the little updates I’ll share on our progress and the joy and ease we’re finding in this remarkable life. In the meantime, keep finding your own joy and ease. It’s what makes life fun.

xo


Interested in my art, my writing, my poetry, or learning more about bringing consistent joy and ease into your life? Then let’s talk!

Contact me to schedule:
* A virtual coffee
* A private (virtual) art show of my art
* A commissioning conversation to discuss hiring me to create a textured fiber painting uniquely yours

If you enjoyed this essay, and it feels aligned, please share on social media or via email. If you liked it, someone you know will probably like it too!

New Adventures!

Last week, I wrote about patience as an exercise in BEING. That essay paid off. The thing I was anxiously awaiting, and diligently practicing patience for, came to be. And it’s an adventure!!

Me, excited for our new adventure. 🙂

New adventure? Tell me more…

First, about the whole practicing patience thing…writing that essay last week allowed me to release the outcome for the thing I was waiting for. As often happens when I let shit go, the Universe pretty immediately stepped in and hand delivered exactly what I was seeking. In fact, as I’m writing this week’s essay, I’m in Dallas, on my way to start my new adventure.

By the time you’re reading this, the new adventure will have begun.

So what is it, you ask?

Let me tell you!

We are moving! Again. After only a year. This will make two pandemic moves. The Big Guy and I are nothing if not willing to upend our lives in the middle of unprecedented conditions.

We are headed to Phoenix, Arizona from our most recent home in South Florida. I am returning to corporate work in construction as part of a team building a $2B project in North Phoenix. It’s a fast-paced project and I’m super excited to be a part of it. The Big Guy has also landed a position on the same project, which certainly simplifies this relocation. No one needs to find a job. Hallelujah.

Things I’ve learned…

For the past two years, I’ve worked full time to build a business as a coach, an artist, a writer. I did not achieve any financial success and yet, I don’t consider any of that time or effort to be a failure. I learned SO MUCH about myself. About what I want, about what I’m willing to do, about what I need.

Most importantly, I learned to find joy and ease in everything, including my work.

This single lesson is the one I’d been looking for this entire lifetime. There is joy in serving one’s co-workers and one’s clients. Being of service and making a meaningful contribution to society doesn’t always mean being your own boss. I couldn’t see that before I stepped away from corporate.

I see it so clearly now.

But what about art and writing and…?

I’m still going to write. I’m still going to make my amazing, bright, bold, abstract fiber art. I have to. These things are intrinsic parts of who I am. (Although I will admit I’m on an art making hiatus until we find a house and get ourselves moved in. I’m hoping to be back in the studio by May.)

I’m also going to go to work to help bring this Phoenix project into reality and be of service in that way. This too is an intrinsic part of who I am.

With joy and ease…

Throughout my corporate career, my motto was “give great customer service”. I considered my co-workers, my clients, the community, the contractors, the various agencies, and more to be my customers. I trained my staff to lead with service. Embracing service is what I do. Giving great customer service brings me joy and I’m thrilled to be returning to that work.

How do you find the joy in the work you do?

xo


Interested in my art, my writing, my poetry, or learning more about bringing consistent joy and ease into your life? Then let’s talk!

Contact me to schedule:
* A virtual coffee
* A private (virtual) art show of my art
* A commissioning conversation to discuss hiring me to create a textured fiber painting uniquely yours

If you enjoyed this essay, and it feels aligned, please share on social media or via email. If you liked it, someone you know will probably like it too!

Practicing Patience: An Exercise in BEING

Patience is not my strong suit. In fact, as the saying (sort of) goes, I was too impatient to stand in line when they were handing out patience in the Spirit realm before I took human form. Sitting around, waiting, drives me nuts.

But the reality is, practicing patience is an exercise in BEING. All dreams can come true when we operate from BEING, because BEING is where joy and ease live. So, if the purpose of life is to live with joy and ease, then patience truly is a virtue because it keeps us present.

Image credit: lessonslearnedinlife.com

Ants in my pants…

I’m talking about patience today because I’ve really been struggling with it lately. I’m in the middle of something that, when the outcome is revealed to me, will create a great deal of change in my life. This is something I’m excited about and eager to embrace. I’m ready to move forward into what will be a new phase. (Don’t worry: when it happens, I’ll tell you all about it.)

The issue is there’s still no firm answer. Each day, a tiny bit more drips into my awareness, teasing me. All the plans in the world won’t bring the answer any more quickly. All the visualization won’t do it either.

Instead, I must be patient and trust the Universe to deliver the outcome in its own perfect time and for the highest good of all. This is what BEING is all about, and it’s something I’ve forgotten to focus on in my excitement.

Trust the Universe…

BEING is all about staying present. The past can’t be changed. The future isn’t written. And the truth is neither past nor future can ever be entered as moments in time. The only time that exists IS the present but I, like you, find myself building castles in the sky for a future I’d like to manifest.

There’s – mostly – nothing wrong with building those castles. I’m grateful for the direction they give to my vision. They help me to feel the feelings that will bring them into my reality. They give me something on which to focus my energy.

But I said there’s MOSTLY nothing wrong in this. That means there’s a tiny bit of wrong and it is this:

When I attach to the vision of those castles, I remove myself from the present. When this occurs, my excitement and eagerness turn into anxiety and tremendous impatience. I want those castles NOW but the now when those castles exist hasn’t yet come to be in my timeline. The impatience sends a strong signal to the Universe, resulting in a mixed message, and the Universe always delivers based on the strongest emotion.

Instead of delivering on the gratitude and joy I feel when I imagine this new path, the Universe holds back the outcome because it knows I’m impatient. It breeds impatience like rabbits.

I don’t have room for all those impatient rabbits. Instead, I’ve got to let go and trust the Universe. I’ve got to be patient. I’ve got to remember the best thing I can do for my vision is to BE, and then do that.

With joy and ease…

I’m confident the outcome I’m anticipating will become reality. I wrote this essay to remind me to be patient and trust the Universe to deliver it in its own perfect time. I’m releasing the outcome, I’m practicing patience, and I’m going to only BE for awhile.

This doesn’t mean I’m going to sit on my hands and overdose on Netflix (although that is an option). BEING means I’m going to focus on what I choose to do in each moment and let everything else go. I’m going to immerse myself in gratitude for the lesson and revel in the joy of my vision. And one day, easily, effortlessly, my vision will be real.

What about you? How patient are you for the castles you’re building? I’d love to know.

xo


Interested in my art, my writing, my poetry, or learning more about bringing consistent joy and ease into your life? Then let’s talk!

Contact me to schedule:
* A virtual coffee
* A private (virtual) art show of my art
* A commissioning conversation to discuss hiring me to create a textured fiber painting uniquely yours

If you enjoyed this essay, and it feels aligned, please share on social media or via email. If you liked it, someone you know will probably like it too!

Creating a Tree of Life

When I’m creating feelings out of fiber, the feeling I want to create next always rises up while I’m working on another feeling. This is why I’ve been able to create feeling after feeling for the past 3-½ years. But something weird happened when I was making Joy. No new feeling arose. Instead, I felt the call to create something completely different.

(c) 2021, Hilary Clark, “Joy”, Fiber, 34-1/2″ x 24″ ~ $1800

My feelings series includes twenty-one different pieces, ranging from Depression to Joy, Anguish to Serenity. While I don’t believe I’m done creating feelings out of fiber, I do believe my intuition when it suggests it might be fun to create something different.

A couple weeks ago, I posted several images on my social media accounts and asked people to vote on the piece I’d make next. In an unanimous sweep, a Tree of Life was the popular vote.

Tree of Life graphic found as a free download

The other images included a Wheel of the Year and Planet Earth. Apparently, I’m drawn to making something circular.

The image shown above is the concept I’m going to follow as I create my version of a Tree of Life in my bright, bold, abstract style. I’ve barely begun the work on this piece but I can see it taking shape in my mind’s eye. I’m looking forward to watching it become tangible. This is the template for the canvas and then the canvas itself.

With joy and ease…

As I usually do, I’ll post a progress update at some point, so I hope you’ll continue to follow along with me. Until then, may your days be filled with joy and ease and lots of bright, bold color.

xo


Interested in my art, my writing, my poetry, or learning more about bringing consistent joy and ease into your life? Then let’s talk!

Contact me to schedule:
* A virtual coffee
* A private (virtual) art show of my art
* A commissioning conversation to discuss hiring me to create a textured fiber painting uniquely yours

If you enjoyed this essay, and it feels aligned, please share on social media or via email. If you liked it, someone you know will probably like it too!