This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.
I m right where I ve been so many times in recent years. The place where I recognize snippets, revelations, decisions, understandings and choices I made a dozen times before and apparently didn’t stick to, most likely because I didn’t understand WHY they were the right one.
The past two weeks have been extremely rocky.
And it is easy to say that was because of professional choices, but it wasn’t. It was because of my sex and love life.
I ve said it many times over:
“Remind me (when things are rough) that it’s always about a man. And if it’s not about a man, then it’s also about a man.”
That is the first part of the truth; There is no such thing as me being invested in work, career or even money.
It is (by principle) all a front, a hoax, a thing I use as the next best thing to control, when my love life is once again taking a toll on me.
When I am recovering from sexual and relational adventures, then aiming for success in business, fame as a professional and fortune in my bank account, seem viable ways to distract myself, attractive alternatives to deal with reality.
Because it gives you something to do, a direction to take, when in reality;
It is about a man, generally speaking, or it is about art and doing what I love, as sort of a spin off to that.
I once again tried to use my talents to build a future and business, only to burn it ALL DOWN.
Yet, of course my actual, healthy, only-realistic business model, as far as you can call it such, should be what we’ve settled on a million times before!
I create what I create.
I share it.
And if you want to you can pay me.
These alterego LS Harteveld accounts are not suitable for that, and I have more reasons to not let myself be paid here. But for my real/ professional name, that is what it comes down to.
I need the freedom to be like a street artist, and choose my spot to play every day, and even skip days or weeks when I want to.
I m not going to monetize, package up, offer ANY of my skills in programs, services, gigs;
I will only be an online content creator.
But I didn’t know that yet, and fueled by the control I do not have in my love life, I researched and tried out three business models;
Two were real world ones, one (the most profitable one of course) was an online one.
Yet, I felt so clearly how the real world ones, take away your freedom!
The commitments, legal issues, getting VAT registered, opening a business account to allow for debit card payments on your phone, get liability insurance;
The absolute never ending drain on your time and energy for all sorts of things – all time that could have been spent creating something – before you can do your work, or earn one euro.
I honestly think that if you’d be realistic you would have to conclude it no longer pays to do business in the real world unless you trade raw materials or something.
But my business model for the online world had problems of its own.
Although it did not have the professional restrictions of working locally, here “work” meant more solitary computer hours, when I absolutely do not want to spend more hours alone and at my desk.
All my creative activities are already at my desk, as is all the studying I like to do for those projects and special interests.
And next to that, being visible online as a business owner, means you’re not just selling your current hours behind your desk but future ones as well;
Because almost everything digital you sell, is a maintenance and customer service obligation for your future self.
In a more abstract way too, building an online community or an online client base, related to the term “know-like-and trust”-factor, means you are capitalizing on your future online availability.
If you do it well, meaning your clients become people who love hearing from you, you are implicitly promising them your future self.
My current self and my future self, are not interested in all the liabilities and restrictions of working in the real world;
They also have way too much creative, soul-aligned computer work, to put in extra desk hours to make money.
And they both, current self and future self, want to be free and do not want to sell their time nor presence.
So for maybe the first time in my life, I stopped looking for ways to monetize my skills, my talents, I quit it all.
I make what I want to make, online, all things I love, and usually directly inspired by my actual love life.
And I m going to accept Life has not left me time, nor the talent and definitely not the patience, to monetize any of it into a business or a career.
And as soon as I set one foot out the door, I am no longer a professional.
No longer an artist, no longer a yoga teacher, no longer a business coach, no longer a writer.
Those only exist at home, behind my computer.
When I walk out the door, I am me.
And I identify more with being Lauren Harteveld 1997, than with being the real me in 2022, to be honest.
My life becomes a performance project, being Lauren 1997, the moment I walk out the door!
I will go look for a place to work with colleagues, and where I can move around. Preferably weekends and odd hours.
I would really like to work in a restaurant in a kitchen, in a place that is entirely new to me and where I don’t know anybody yet.
Meeting new people and having fun, not building a business and making money, will not just be my priority from now on;
It will be all there is.
And then the irony; I feel that by committing myself to my art in whatever form it wants to come out, and refusing to alter it to the business models I ve either actively applied or toyed with the past decades-
I feel like this Easter is my resurrection.
An earlier version of me has died, and now my best work starts!
Not a skill, a line of work, a business, something serious, dragging, draining, where I am paid to have an expert status, paid to talk about my books, paid to teach, paid to sell and then deliver a service or program.
I am never going to do any of that ever again.
From now on, my creative work, my soul, can only be found online.
And my body can be found working in a restaurant, meeting new people, living like it is 1997. My work in real life is my performance project.
Or; my real work, is life.
An unexamined life is not worth living
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