ASK THE UTTER #4
Welcome to this edition of ASK THE UTTER!!!
In which I answer a few of your questions. If you have questions for me, this is where you ask them.
*NOTE. I’m not licensed; just a feeling human, a heartbeat.
These answers are born of humble opinion and a little experience.
HAPPY FRIDAY, LOVES!!!!
I’M SO HAPPY YOU’RE HERE.
Do you write every day?
In such form or fashion. In some way. Not pages of a novel or anything, but smaller sparkly things. I count lists and letters and diary entries in this number, and of course, this newsletter. Writing can be whatever we want it to be.
How do I sustain my current feeling of peace? I’m afraid it will disappear.
Where peace and equilibrium are concerned, I think that it’s okay to lose and find, lose and find, forget and remember and forget again. I don’t believe there’s any such thing as perfect consistency against the growing concerns and stresses of life in today’s world. I like to engage in practices that help me remember that peace is never lost for too long. I think it is key to identify those things that bring us back to the centre. It’s how muscle is built, how skill is born.
How do you go about getting out of a creative rut and being consistent when everything around you feels like a whirlwind of chaos and constant change?
As above, my non-negotiables. Daily game-changing tactics (find lots and lots of suggestions in THE HOW,) immersing myself in things and people who spark my creativity and lust for life, and broaden my horizons. I think that the antidote to a rut is newness. Change may seem like the enemy, but it is the most consistent force. (See THE HOW for a chapter on that, too! Sorry about the plug.)
Do you set yourself goals or targets in life and or with your writing, and are you disciplined in the amount of time you apply to writing?
Loosely, yes. And absolutely no. I love to procrastinate and sleep and buy things and watch YouTube videos and make endless cups of tea and talk on the phone for longer than I should. Sometimes, after all of this, the day is gone. Oh well, it’ll be different tomorrow, I say to myself.
How do you deal with criticism without letting it tamper with your spirit/taking it personally?
There will always be criticism. I try not to take anything too personally, not criticism, not praise. Of course, we like to be liked and we love to be validated, so there will always be things that you notice, sharp things that pierce the net. At present, I am very blessed not to have to engage with too much. Where work is concerned, I stay in my own bubble, and once it meets the air, it becomes something else anyway. I’m also happy not to spend much time paying attention to reviews or criticism. Perhaps it is the airiness of my sign or the fact that I busy myself with too many other things. Also, I can be quite vague at times and don’t remember things. In our personal lives, yes, feedback can sometimes be tough! But it is always illuminating, always an opportunity to do or to consider something new. One thing I know for sure though, the wellness of my spirit is not up for the taking. Even in depression or low, low moments, the spirit remains protected.
(I am my own mother and I gift myself with beauty, again and again.)
How hard is it to keep oneself after you found yourself? Will there always be a struggle?
The tension, the back and forth, the dance is part of it, no?
I am angry at a love that wasn’t love, but I thought it was. A new love is coming, one more real, how do I let go of the anger of the previous emotional abuse and welcome new love.
You are still angry, you say. You are still angry, and it is good that you have identified this crucial fact. When we are hurt, we view the world through particular filters. Remember now, even in love; you decide your own pace. This is where you use TIME, which has been gifted to you since you arrived on this strange and beautiful planet. Go slow so as not to allow one experience to bleed into the other too much, so as not to make a new love pay for what came before them. This sounds easier than it is, so when you feel the thing happening, pause. Acknowledge the fact, the anger, the remaining fear. Talk about it. Tell the truth. When I was in recovery, it was suggested that we did not start any new relationships for at least that first year. I am not telling you to end something you are in already, but consider the reasons for these suggestions. Take your time. You will heal, and you will love again with all of yourself, and it will be wonderful.
Is settling inevitable? At some point? For some compromise?
Only you decide. As far as I understand, there are a few meanings of the word ‘settle.’ One feels a lot like paying a debt, and one feels a lot like slowing down. One feels a lot like a solution, and one feels a lot like rest. As it pertains to you, you are the wisest. You decide.
How do I best support my long-distance partner as he helps his mother through her terminal illness? He is grieving hard and withdrawn. I am listening and sending love and strength. Wise words welcome.
Be there. Show up, but do not over-extend in ways that are damaging to you. Be there. Sometimes there is nothing to say. Sometimes there is nothing more than your body, the sound of your voice, your breath. Even the sound of it. Even on the phone. You bring more comfort than you know. Nourish yourself first, in the quiet of your soul and the place where you are living. Make sure that you have everything you need, make sure that you are rested, supported, held, and then share that.
How do you get over letting someone go, someone who has been good but you just weren’t sure about them, a few parts of their personality maybe. They are hurt and you feel a lot of guilt that you even think this could have been a mistake, maybe things could have worked out. How can I deal with this?
Been there. Follow your intuition. You knew, and so you acted. You did the best thing for both of you. Perhaps things might have worked out, but would it be what you wanted? You knew. At the time, you knew, and do not let anyone (even in their great hurt) convince you otherwise. Do not over-identify with the desires of someone else and create dissonance within your own personal journey. You are empathetic, and this is so, so difficult, but believe yourself. You’ve got this.
Thank you for sharing this space with me. X
‘THE HOW’ IS OUT NOW IN THE US IN PAPERBACK AND ON AUDIBLE!!!!
SEE THE ‘EARTH TO COP’ POEM HERE