Good for one thing | & 3 new juicy books available

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara (new website!)
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

“I m only good for one thing in life. That’s teaching.”
Michael Douglas in The Kominsky Method

Let’s be clear that I consider myself to be good at more things in life than just teaching yoga.
I am for example, if maybe not a good writer in the traditional sense of the word?
A prolific writer.
A not stopping at anything writer.
A not ever having had a writer’s block in her entire life writer.
So yes, there is that.

And also let’s be clear that I am writing this in a week where I am not doing any of those things. Not writing, not teaching yoga and not even publishing my books, even when I did manage to unlock three new books last Friday*, what in hindsight was the last day I didn’t know how badly I was thrown off track.

The Friday when I thought I was on a roll, and that nothing would stop me from going on publishing my books, writing my blogs, and rebooting my yoga career.

Except I had already stopped.
I was already taken out by an unexpected responsibility that considers multiple parties, and a desired outcome that I have no idea how to accomplish or what the costs would be if I did know it.
I have no idea how to fix this, or get the best outcome, and last Friday I had not realized yet, that I am in way over my head.

Oh, and it’s not just my problem of course, it’s something that will hurt a friend if I mess this up. 
And that’s also why I am not going to explain it, but either way:
I didn’t know all that Friday.

If you’d asked me last Friday what the things were I thought I was good at, I would have answered writing, publishing and teaching yoga, but I was also still actually DOING those things.
Or close to be doing them/ picking them up.

As opposed to now, when I m only writing you because I always do so before our call.
I have not written for what seems ages, I m off social media, and I would not have written this, if it had not been because that is what I do before our call.

And yet.
Even though this will go down as what others would call a holiday week, and what I call a “I can’t see myself doing any work” week, still the dialogue from an acting coach/ teacher/mentor played by Michael Douglas in the Netflix series The Kominsky Method, rung a bell.
A big one.

Because in season 1 he sees the reality that although he is a good teacher, who establishes great breakthroughs with his students; He is bad at everything else that has to do with running an acting studio.
Which is why he has hired his daughter Mindy, to take care of that a long time ago.

At the end of season 1 he realizes that she deserves to be in charge. Not him.
That the one who deals with the daily grind is the one who deserves the credit. Not the one who shines for a brief moment between 7 and 8.30 PM, teaching an acting class.

In the past few weeks, I have established a freedom-based format for any work I want to be doing for an extended period of time.
It came down to not wanting to commit to obligations that are going to limit my options.
So for example (and I m going to nuance this, but this is what I came up with last time I wrote you) I didn’t intend to ever commit to weekly classes, scheduled appointments/ calls and so on.

So my preliminary conclusion was that work that was gonna last, was work that could be chosen, time and time again.
Work that I was never obliged to deliver because it had already been paid for.

Now it’s not that there was necessarily anything wrong with that; It is definitely true.
But the scene with Michael Douglas and his daughter made me realize that the reason I feel trapped if I commit to scheduled appointments/ work, is not because I mind the REAL work to being scheduled!

The reason I seem so allergic to commitments is because it means the grey area of daily grind, is in the commitment.

But if I had someone else running my yoga studio, doing the marketing, answering calls and emails;
And me just showing up?
Oh, I could handle just absolutely anything!

So in this strange in-between week, where like I said I am offline and don’t write and have not picked up teaching yoga, and all I focus on is the situation that arose that is asking so much of my attention and that I do not know how to handle properly, it was great to find out that I have way more options than just doing one-off gigs.
I can do reliable, dependable, and I can do it consistently.

But ONLY of the things I am good at.
Writing.
Publishing.
Teaching yoga.
In their absolute purest, stand-alone form.

That it was never the work I did not want to commit to.
It was everything else.

..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

* Yes! 3 New Books Added To The STORE !!! 

1. The Mistress Speaks
channeling a lost archetype

2. The Beach, C.
Diary, letters and essays inspired by Basic Instinct’s Catherine Tramell

3. Star Wars is finally telling women *cross out* everybody to start enjoying The Thing
And other deeply personal blogposts about the sequel trilogy that did not age well

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

 

Three Stars Are Born

 

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara (new website!)
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

I have so much news, I don’t know where to begin!

(and I give everybody reading this blogpost, including Sara, permission to stop at any point, including now!)

I already sent you a private in-between email about me finding a way to work under the same terms professionally, as I have found as my relationship style.
How freedom needs to be the basis of anything in my life that is worth holding on to.

But I didn’t know why. 
Why was I so allergic to people claiming my time, and more specifically my future?

The good news is:
Now I know why.

The bad news is:
This is indeed a precarious situation, where I cannot afford to take my eyes off the ball.

And it doesn’t even matter, technically, how many or how little hours I have for my own freedom-based business model;
What matters is that I spend every minute I have exactly on the right thing.

What I learned since the last email I wrote you, is what a serious attempt and dedication to this free professional lifestyle looks like.
One where I do not have to look back on my deathbed and say “I wish I”.

So results are not guaranteed, but making an attempt is.
Do or die trying.

The picture I see before be, contains two parts which are not related, or perhaps loosely related.

1 Warhol

I ve totally fallen in love with the work of Warhol and its meaning. It’s such a coming home, and for the first time ever, I feel I have found an artist with whom I can relate.

His topics, his work, its meaning, his themes, but most of all his desire to let creation happen through processes he did not control. And share it without clearing it up;
That’s me.

By studying Warhol I now know how I want to publish my books, making use of the multiplicity and the prolific nature of my work.
And that vision of the artist that I am is so strong, unique and expansive, that it’s as if I can almost touch everything I thought I had to sell my soul for, and cut myself off, until I fit into some tight little prefab container.

This is a vision that is FULLY expansive, into everything I was, am, and will be.

After seeing and understanding Warhol, I feel I can create without the motherfucking handbrake on.
For the first time EVER!

.

2 My Daily Who Does What

Two weeks ago I wrote the blogpost about who I am;
Including an A4 drawing with circles, who my different creative personalities are and where they are “located”.

That schedule already contained the different creative expressions for every character/ side of me. But it didn’t yet have a strategy of how to manage them, or how to go about my days.
And I made that schedule today.

I have to warn you, it is messier, and asks way more effort to understand it (so feel free not to!).
But I will do my best to describe it/ guide you through it.

Here is the new drawing I made today: 
2021 08 15 activity categories and priorities

It has one non-negotiable (taking a shower) at the top left corner,
and from there it starts to indicate which daily activity should or will get done.

category I – all (social +work) interaction, commitments and agreements

This category also includes my entire work + social life.

But also things that have to get done.
It’s a very mixed category, but what they have in common is that they’re somehow promised to someone, or that I have to do them in order to live my life (f.e. your finances).

The general gist is:
When I have promised I will do something or to be somewhere, I will do it.

On such a day, I will not first do my own work or something: I will always do this.

I m pretty reactive here – I really need a clear agenda with no ending time to an activity, to do my own work.
Maybe I will be able to be more flexible, but I m not the one who hustles five minutes at a time.

The shower + category 1 are the top of the schedule and the only two things that will always get done.

The Three Hijack Arrows

2021 08 15 activity categories and priorities
activities categories and priorities large: https://laurenharteveld.files.wordpress.com/2021/08/2021-08-15-activity-categories-and-priorities.jpg

Three parts of my personality, the baby koala, Lauren Harteveld and Rock Star Suzy, all have the capacity to hijack my life, when they are absolutely mesmerized by something.

The Baby Koala is seduced by crafting and archiving;
Lauren Harteveld by sexual adventures (which she processes by writing, but writing comes second here)
And
Rock Star Suzy by music, entertainment and (pop)art.

The schedule gives an indication of how to keep these sides satisfied, and somewhat under control, by feeding them regularly;
But ultimately I cannot control them, and these parts could hijack my life.

The upside to these personalities is that they have superpowers;
The Baby Koala, Lauren Harteveld and Rock Star Suzy can all concentrate for hours or days on end, hardly need sleep, are naturally thin and good natured.
They have no ailments, they are completely in flow with Life.

For example:
If the Baby Koala would start publishing my books, it would be done with so much joy!
Just that absolutely nothing else would get done.

When Bon Jovi came to the Netherlands and I forgot to pay the rent of my yoga studio, twice;
That’s Rock Star Suzy studying and being creative in the weeks leading up to the concert, and needing weeks to come down.

These three personalities in flow are both a gift, and a liability.
That’s why they are The Three Hijacking Arrows;
Once they have left the bow, the rest of the schedule will not get done.

.
category II – House & Body 

There’s three activities here:
Clean house, do yoga and cycle.

Cycle is last, because I will always do that, unless category 1 got out of hand.
So even if I would write all day, there is a chance I ll still cycle at 6 or 7 PM

And cleaning my house is first, because I detest doing yoga in a dirty house.
It’s as if yoga just doesn’t “work” if the house is dirty.

I also see my physical exercise as my work (because I m picking up my yoga career),
and physical exercise is the only thing you can’t redo if you’ve missed a day.

So providing the day is not full with category 1 and/or time for the three arrows whether planned or unplanned, category 2 will get done

.

category III – (Online) business hours 7-10 PM

This is the category that anyone wanting to create what Warhol called “Business Art”, the art of building a business from your art, MUST do.
It’s about connection, messaging, posting to social media, showing up for the conversation.

It’s about paying your bills, selling, adding calls to action, to what you put out.

This is hustling.

And this is what is the difference between hustling/III and what I called “Dead Writer Hours”,
which is the fourth category.

category IV – Art | Content| Curating| Legacy

(Dead Writer Hours)

Now WHY is it called Dead Writer Hours?
Because what you create here, is what is left of you after you’re dead.
Which illustrates both its importance as well as its utter unimportance.

Ideally the activities here, go straight to one of the Hijacking Arrows! 
Publishing books to the baby koala.
Making videos to Rock Star Suzy.
Writing to Lauren Harteveld.

But with this fourth category, being designated in the time window left open
between 1 (commitments, social life) and 2 (house and body)
and then 7 PM when the business hustle begins;

I finally understand why there always seem too few hours in the day for anything.

After category 1, worst case scenario the day is already gone. 
Or if I have a day without obligations, then I focus on 2, which could still not get done if the day is hijacked by one of the three arrows.

Baby Koala crafting.
Lauren Harteveld, writing.
Or Rock Star Suzy studying art, Bon Jovi or yoga.

And today that IS what happened!

I ONLY had Category 1 activities!
But they were fully in flow:
-7 hours making the drawing/schedule (Baby Koala) and writing this email (Lauren Harteveld)
-6 hours a date with a friend, call with another friend and grocery shopping (all Rock Star Suzy)
And I cycled (category 1) because I had to get to the cinema.

So I had a fantastic, fulfilling day.

And I think I now know what my definition of success is.
Which is a question I think you asked me in 2018 already…. I don’t know what I answered.

My definition of success is:
When ALL the categories, but IN PARTICULAR category 1,
Are done by the three hijack personalities Lauren Harteveld, Rock Star Suzy or the Baby Koala.

That’s when I am truly free.

Like today. .

..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

NEW
TIME CAPSULES

Inspiration and personal stories 
exclusively on
my Facebook page and Twitter

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

 

Yoga Teacher Me (2008) and three other personalities, each with their own skills

The photo as found by Baby Koala-Me, as it indulged in unlimited playtime with my hard drive when I was suffering from a headache

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara (new website!)
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

This is going to be the tiniest email I ever sent you.
It’s Sunday night, and I did not get any work done this entire weekend.
And I want to make YouTube yoga videos tomorrow, for two accounts!
But I also have a deadline tomorrow afternoon, which will require about four hours of work.
 
So that’s why I think this email will be smaller than usual.
.
The weekend went awol because I finally broke down when a week-long mostly one-on-one birthday fest, was finally punished with a headache on top of the Oh-God-I-Feel-Awfulness that seems to have become my standard Good morning.
And Saturday’s grogginess did not go away either.
It usually clears up after a few hours.
.
I wasn’t feeling sick with migraine, it was not that bad.
Just a mild headache and tired like when you have a hangover.
I quit drinking about six weeks ago. To no avail, except that I now know with certainty the grogginess never had anything to do with alcohol, but is my response to pandemic stress.
As is the sensitivity to headaches I ve had since spring 2020. 
.
Either way, Saturday was written off, and I started going through my old archives. Something I had been meaning to do for a very long time, mainly because there is a lot of double stuff on there.
This Saturday the repetition of going through the files and deleting things and moving them, had a numbing yet satisfying effect.

The task was appealing, and I was not bothered by my headache at all.
But when sorting it out, which I spent like 1.5 days on!, something interesting happened;
I discovered a whole new personality, which belonged to something I was going to start doing this week. Which was teach yoga on YouTube in Dutch.
.
And next to this Dutch yoga teacher personality, which was discovered by finding a photo of myself in 2008, I discovered a fourth personality.
Because today, I started drawing up a circle within circles scheme of the three personalities I had found so far.
.
The first two you know, I ve written about them frequently:
.
Catherine Tramell played by Sharon Stone, Basic instinct (1992)

 

1. Lauren Harteveld

.
My alterego under this name, writer, publisher, Catherine Tramell-fan (Basic Instinct). Signature era: The 90s!
Lauren96, the diary I keep as the 24 year old me, is one example of what I write under this name.
.
2. Rock Star Suzy
.
The English speaking alterego under my real name, who ties everything she does to Bon Jovi. Her identity matches Madonna in Desperately Seeking Susan.
Decade: The 80s!
.
And then the third, as mentioned sparked by both my plan to start teaching Dutch yoga on YouTube, as well as by the photo of 2008 me from when I was in my 15+ years of teaching yoga professionally.
.
3. Suzanne Yoga Teacher NL 2021 (YouTube only)
.
This was a really cool find, because although I knew I wanted to pick up teaching Dutch yoga on YouTube, it didn’t really have a vibe yet.
But the moment I found that picture, I connected back to the zeros 2000-2010, when yoga in America (I read Yoga Journal) was so damn cool.
With all the yoga studios, being super contemporary and having that happy brightly colored vibe!

.
And suddenly I also tapped back into the business coaching for yoga studios, but also the business coaching from Denise Duffield Thomas (I always kept following her, just far less actively than I used to);
And I rekindled the love for my first business coach that I really vibed with, which was Amanda Daley who taught marketing to health coaches.
.
I never made all the business training for yoga teachers/ local businesses “work” and in retrospect I SO understand why! 
Because the whole niche thing, and find your tribe thing, is very hard to pull off when you work locally.
Or at least: You have to be better at marketing/ finding your voice than I was!
.
I got stuck because I/ my yoga never got past being selected for “what time are your classes”  and “where do you teach”.
I was selected on location and service, not on niche or who matched with my personality.
They chose yoga, not me. 
.
And that doesn’t mean I regret it, in particular the final years were awesome and I had students I really liked. And they me. But at the same time, if I had known how to really attract people who vibed with me, instead of “ending”  with people who vibed with me, but being unable to move further into authentically being me and calling in my truest of clients?
Oh, well, then maybe I would still be a yoga teacher.
.
Or maybe it is simply impossible to do the niche thing, and someone should go tell the yoga teachers that market is simply not suitable to select your soul tribe unless you’re a marketing genius.
Which I, in that case, was clearly not.
.
But I loved the marketing around the studio, and I have marketing books about how to market your yoga studio. And like I said Denise Duffield Thomas and Amanda Daley, they were around 2015 really my go-to for inspiration.
.
After finding that yoga picture of 2008, and starting to see myself as a Dutch yoga teacher again, I connected with their study materials again as well.
They were the perfect marketing coaches to give me the feel of the Dutch online yoga teacher I wanted to be.
.
Madonna in Desperately Seeking Susan

So Suzanne yoga teacher (2008) was the third personality which I discovered, on top of the other two (Lauren Harteveld and Rock Star Suzy) I wrote to you before.
And as I was drawing all these circles, about which personality did what, created what, and what coaches did they have and so on;
I also drew a circle of activities that did not seem to have any meaning, yet every now and then they took A LOT of time!

It were the activities you called my “happy place”.
Sorting my notebooks and diaries of decades and decades and lining them up on the shelves next to my desk.
Making a visionboard card deck, and every now and then spend a day making new cards. And I always laminate them.
And now the activity of going through my digital archives and spending the weekend there.
.
I didn’t quite know what the purpose was of this strange inner circle that had such luxurious concepts of time dedicated to whatever the f it wanted to;
But then it struck me!
Of course I knew who was in there!
 
4. the baby koala
.
It was the little baby koala.
The me who only wants to do cute things, and it makes drawings from love duckie, and takes photos of little bear Puux.
.
It was the little baby koala who was in the inner-circle at the truest core of who I was.
And who was absorbed in archiving and loved playing with stationary. It could bind and unbind anything and had hole punchers for three different types of ring binders. 
.
And then around this koala, so the personality who I thought was the most “me”; I had drawn the circle from Lauren Harteveld!
How fitting!
Of course, she was the perfect person to protect the little koala there.
.
And around that came Rock Star Suzy.
Whose main relationships are with other Bon Jovi fans (I forgot to put that in my final schedule I will post in a second)
.
And around that came Suzanne the new yoga teacher 2.0:
She had the most interaction with the real world. Her main relationships were with not so much clients, because I do not have a business and also do not aspire to get one;
But her main relationships will be the one created over teaching yoga.
.
She will be a yoga teacher without a studio, it will all be online on YouTube.
.
And that’s all for now, Sara!
 
Little baby koala has taken its blue and red pens, and as soon as I had figured out how all the circles should go, we made a schedule of it.

 

Because it was A4+ it required some work to get it into a file, but here it is.
2021 08 01 4 Different Identities And What They Create

And this weekend for sure, that little baby koala has been the most productive from all of us.
.
click the image to enlarge
..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

 

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

 

One For The Tattoo On The Forehead Department

young-woman-in-black-hat-with-red-lips-on-black-stock-photograph_csp47739598This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

Do you remember the iconic rectangular image of a woman’s red lips under a black hat, which was definitely not the photo I used for this blog post but it was the closest I could find?
.
Or, alternatively, is your mind flooding with an avalanche of 80s imagery where the entire visual art world of both graphic designers as well as photographers seemed to have kind of lost themselves in this thrilling combination, probably creating enough of black-hat red-lips “content” to last us well into the entire 21st century?
.
Because just like 80s filmers were obsessed with indoor scenes being lit by sun shining through blinds, the static arts (although also obsessed with lighting through blinds) had a thing for the woman with the hat and the lips.
The best was really a woman with a black hat and red lips AND lighted through blinds.
.
My obsession has been where to focus – yoga, Bon Jovi, diary writing or advocating sex.
Which medium to use: writing/blogging, YouTube, publishing books or showing up in the conversation on social media or real life.
What to monetize if any.
.
And most importantly, the question of questions and ironically a question that very few of us ever need to answer (rationalizing why it may have taken me 15 years to figure this out):
Who to be?
Which part of my work (which name) and therefor which part of my personality was going to be my professional persona?
Taking the punches but also making the money, and receiving the fame and the glory.
.
And which part of me was going to be leisure, socializing, fun, and taking down with it any activities associated with it, because they were now reduced to hobby or side-hustle at the most.
.
Like THE hat photo that popped to mind decades after it were en vogue, I could see it very clearly with my mind’s eye. Yet, probably because I never found that one exact image that had stood out for me vibrantly (I should probably check my agendas if it was cut and pasted in there), the vision who I was and what to do always faded.
.
I tried to “get” it, I tried to remember it, but because it wasn’t precise, because it wasn’t an absolute exact representation of what it was I was going to do, who I was, with an accuracy that could not be swayed;
The image failed.
.
Sometimes within days, but sometimes within hours.
And the past week I ve had the feeling the circles got smaller!
From prioritizing YouTube, to writing, to YouTube.
From going all in on Suzanne (my real name) to all in on LS Harteveld (my alterego)
And so on and so forth.
.
Which is why this time, today, as the vision revealed itself so clearly that just like that ONE photo with the hat, I knew all the other photos Google gave me for “big black hat red lipstick 80s” were NOT it?
.
That I m going to write that vision out, here, for you!
And I should probably tattoo it on my forehead.
.
I’m going to warn you, it may seem like nothing much. You’ve said it last time we spoke, that for yoga (for example) I m looking for ways to “teach” it that are different to the career in teaching I used to have;
I m looking for a different framing, but to the outside world it can easily look like the exact same thing as I taught for 15 years.
.
That’s the story of everything I m going to tell you.
It’s ALL framing.
And as life-giving and big and major this is to me, it could very well be the same thing I came up with before.
.
But having said all that, this is how I m going to work.
This is who I am.
.
WORK/ CALLING/ THE ONE THING I MUST DO 
AND THAT IF I HAD TO CHOOSE, I WOULD

1. Writing And Being LS Harteveld

80775404_2796264213728586_4106800861752066048_oWhite clothes, blonde hair pulled back, makeup with nude beige lips, that’s me when I m LS Harteveld.
Meaning:
That is how I look 99% of the time.
.
Reminiscent of Vertigo’s Kim Novak and of course Basic Instinct’s Sharon Stone, the writer Catherine Tramell.
.
It has been said by many and one of them is me:
I am more LS Harteveld (Lauren) than I am the real me.
Being her is definitely THE priority, the only right decision to make, because not being her would be a violation of my very existence.
.
So, in practice:
Writing/blogging as LS Harteveld is my priority, straight after brushing my teeth I’d say.
I will not just treat it as my day job, meaning seriously, but really step up to being her the proverbial 24/7. 
.
LS Harteveld is a writer and speaker, she is not a coach/ service provider and not even an online entrepreneur.
So there is no clear cut monetizable formula, and that is strange. I m so conditioned that if you’re not selling at the end of your blog post or videos, you re basically doing a disservice to your audience.
And not only am I conditioned that way:
I actually, and with my whole heart, believe it.
.
The total mf-ing discomfort of NOT having anything to sell…. man, that might have been a major contributor too, to why it took so long.
Now that I have overcome that, or know that despite the discomfort I m going to do what I came here to do regardless, I m going with what I ALSO know to be true!
That the number one thing you’re selling, is always you.
.
The purpose of a blog or a video is never to sell an actual thing but to sell people on an idea, and on  – well- to sell them on you! 
And that?
Oh, that I can do!
.
So my number one job, hustle, and also the person I will be the most often because it is so automatic,
is being LS Harteveld.
.

2. Being Suzanne! 

Okay, maybe I have to eat my words that I am Lauren 99% of the time!

Because I am still the girl from the black leather jacket photo from 1995.
And I have actually found a completely new look, for the work or for being there under my real name Suzanne. I call it the Independence Day look or colors, and it was inspired by a 1990 MTV interview from Jon Bon Jovi with Julie Brown. 
It was shot on Independence Day (well, prerecorded in advance) and Julie was sporting a blue dress, a red bolero and a raging crush on Jon!
All things that are inspiring me to “be” myself and actually enjoy it.
.
Ever since we last spoke, I ve been trying to get my head around how I can have fun being me (real me), and how I can create or recreate a social life, how does my love for yoga and Bon Jovi fit in.
And a series of meltdowns and run-into-walls in June taught me just randomly connecting over those topics, was not going to cut it.
.
And that the yoga, regardless of how eager I thought I was to return to the mat and start making yoga videos that would combine yoga and Bon Jovi;
That yoga was not going to run itself either.
.
I didn’t create any yoga videos and I have been yoga free for weeks now….
Damn.
Just when I thought I was going all in on yoga/ being Suzanne, nothing came from it!
.
This is probably the biggest Tattoo To The Head part!
.
The biggest takeaway, the one thing I could have, should have learned years ago, but didn’t:
I am an online creator, and I post immediately..
So videos that require me to first have an offline Bon Jovi yoga routine so I can show up properly prepared?
They’re not going to get made.
It will get stranded in those preparation hours.
.
I don’t have a daily Bon Jovi yoga routine and months of postponing and start-stopping tell me I’m not going to get one either.
I want to create something, and put it out there the same day. Period. The end.
I do not want to study and practice yoga on my own, before I create videos.
My desire to create and share immediately, also explains why publishing my books is so difficult.
Publishing my books asks me to invest into something that cannot be posted that same day.
There is no short cut there, but just to point out this is not new information.

Gratification on the same day is required.
.
My idea of doing my own Bon Jovi yoga on my own mat (off-camera) to then create videos and make blogs to share or teach it made it clear the problem was the yoga.
I no longer enjoy doing yoga;
It’s offline, there is no audience, I m not communicating. It’s not social.
.
So the thing I am going to do now, and I am so so happy about this, is that I am going to do all my yoga on-screen, making videos.
Just like the people watching, doing yoga is not my work.
I m just as stressed out and tensed up from being at my desk as they are.
.
“I am not your guru” the Tony Robbins documentary on Netflix says.
“I am not your yoga teacher” is what I will say.
I am just someone who creates Bon Jovi inspired yoga videos, and we talk Bon Jovi!
.
It’s yoga for Bon Jovi fans, and instead of trying to explain what yoga is, we’re going to use the framework already in everybody’s head, which is the Bon Jovi catalog.
And we simply ATTACH the yoga to that!
.
Starting with first album, first song, Runaway.
A song that was recorded years before the band came into being, by Jon Bon Jovi solo.
The song Runaway was done, it was due!
.
So in that first 30 minute yoga video Runaway, we re going to explore yoga moves looking for things that were ready years ago.
Poses that feel like home, like you’ve done them a thousand times, even when it is your first time on the mat.
.
And for one song on that album that was pushed onto them, not written by Bon Jovi, a song that still gives them the shivers if you as much as mention the title;
For that song we’re going to do yoga poses that we are certain do not belong in yoga and something is seriously wrong with them.* 
.
And I m going to wear red lipstick, and really rock it.
And it will be totally fun and lighthearted, and I m not going to do any yoga other than creating those videos.
.
I ve changed Sara.
.
There was a time when I did like doing yoga by myself.
There was a time when I was a yoga teacher, and toyed with being a coach, an online entrepreneur.
And a time when I did not see that publishing my books is going to ask the impossible of me.
.
Publishing is the one area where I m willing to go the extra mile to get the books that I REALLY want out there.
Such as The Mistress Speaks and my book about Catherine Tramell, Basic Instinct, called “The beach. C.”
.
I ve changed in now knowing that there is no such thing as having a regular, non-Bon Jovi induced social life as Suzanne, and actually enjoy it.
The only automatic/ group connections I can make are if we can relate over rock music/ Bon Jovi. Other socializing in groups will always be really hard.
.
Sometimes I ve literally changed.
Sometimes my insight into who I am and what I can or cannot do has changed.
.
But this feels right.
Working as Lauren.
Playing around as Suzanne.
.
The 19th of July 2021 feels like my Independence Day.
Maybe I don’t need tattoos for that.
.
..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

[ * NB
If you’re reading this, and you think:
I would like to subscribe to that channel!
You can.
I normally don’t share my real name or work here, but in this case I ll make an exception because I ve talked about it in such vivid colors, it would feel wrong to not tell you.

Just remember I m Suzanne there, not Lauren, but then I m happy to give you a chance to sign up and see me there.
Subscribe here:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXpNMsIFP2U34A0yBKk8PUQ ]

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

June broke me and build me tf up in a way nothing else would

Brussels 1993
Jon Bon Jovi Brussels 1993

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

Who knew, who knew! 
I certainly didn’t.
In fact when last time I wrote you, over the moon that I was finally clear on my  calling as my alterego LS Harteveld, an identity that has long been more the real me than the real real me;
I thought this calling for this alterego meant I had figured out my professional life for 50 percent, if not more!
.
No, MORE!
More than 50 percent,  because when I knew “what went here”?

I knew it was also less difficult to figure out “which went there”!
.
If
– sexual wealth
– sex for solitary women
– and non-monogamy went here, under LS Harteveld.
Then yoga and Bon Jovi stayed “there”. Under my real name.
.
And also:
If I was the professional “here”, from the point of mutual exclusiveness it automatically meant my work under my real name would not be professional. It would be on the spectrum between leisure and side-hustle. A hobby.
Perhaps a profitable hobby or one that would make me world famous, but nevertheless; A hobby.
Nothing more.
.
I was very excited that my calling as LS Harteveld gave me permission to drop the last ambition under my real name. It was all fun and games now.
Or so I thought.
.
Because do you remember the assignment I got, not these two weeks, but the two weeks prior to that? The one I was supposedly done with, and that had not lead to massive shifts?
.
It was the assignment to take stock where I was out of sexual integrity.
Where was I sugarcoating, downplaying, or straight-up lying through my fucking teeth in order to keep the peace, not ruffle feathers and basically behave in a way that would not so much as scratch a two-thousand year old patriarchy of female sexual oppression? 
.
It bombed.
And it bombed hard.
.
And just like early June’s mind-blowing realization that I have little in common with people who accidentally run into me, connect with me in real life (not connecting to LS Harteveld);
That’s how the final week of June crashed and burned my “leisure” “fun” “hobby” work under my real name. As it turned out I had been out of sexual integrity there.
And now I was in it.
.
It burned more quickly than a polyester clothing, and all I can say is that it’s a good thing no one was wearing it. 
In fact, I was wearing a proverbial black motorcycle jacket that protects you even when you fall off onto the concrete so I m good.
Just that I realized that there had been things in my life that had needed clearing out and cleaning up, after all.
.
It was called:
A social life.
.
A part that had survived the pandemic and that had actually gotten better. It had proven one of those pandemic-proof spots in your social life that you didn’t realize how valuable it was until all else dropped out and this didn’t.
That’s where the bomb dropped.
.
And I realized;
Okay.
Thank you.
Goodbye.
.
And that stepping into full sexual and professional integrity here, as LS Harteveld, meant my social life would be cleared out of anything not that.
Anything not in sexual integrity or professional integrity, would be purged from my life.
Not by me, it would just be. Automatically.
.
It reminded me of the first day I was going to scout for yoga locations, in 2003. I had my first appointment at the end of the day.
My boss asked if I could stay longer, and I said No.
I lost my job right then and there, before I had even seen my first yoga space.
The moment I had determined my professional focus, and I was no longer willing to invest in my job what they had been used to, it blew.
.
And a similar thing happened now.
.
So the good news is that I am in total sexual and professional integrity. 
.
The bad news is that I realize my social life is not compatible with that.
Now in its defense: I already knew that being a writer is a huge strain on your social life too. I ve known that ever since I started writing 15 years ago.
It’s just that the being in sexual integrity part, seems to be the final blow.
.
So here I am….
.
Lonely road, Sara.
Lonely road. 
.
But I can’t remember I have seen her more clearly in my life. 
..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

* Want to work with Sara too? Subscribe for updates on Sara’s upcoming Academy here,
or contact her through her Facebook page for a one-on-one coaching request.

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

I received my sexual and professional calling

Basic_Instinct-593322829-large
Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone) in the movie Basic instinct 1992 would become one of the most profound aspects of my sexuality as well as my identity as a writer

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

This post is based on a copy of my previous “Dear Sara” post, which has the added “benefit” that I inadvertently get a glance of what I wrote last time.
And I saw I ve come back on so much of it…
.
It was an extensive blogpost that must have taken me 5,6 hours, and to see it was so off in many ways, makes it seem like a waste of time.
I also just spent 50 minutes going back and forth through my notes for today’s blogpost, as well as rereading the last one.
50 Minutes!
.
But I also see that if I start at the beginning, the first topic I wrote you about last time (Summer of Love), and let it unfold from there;
That everything I want to tell you in this letter will unfold by itself.
.
So let’s.
.
.

summer of love                

.
This one still stands.
We came to the conclusion that I, just like many of us, am still dependent on a partner to validate my sexual identity and generate my sexual energy.
People like my lover are running around with their pockets filled with sexual gold, figuratively speaking.
But because it’s not real money other people, and that includes me, think it’s okay to live off their wealth.

And may even demand they become monogamous! I mean wtf, right?
First you let someone pay the bill and then you rob them of their income.
.
My decision was this year would be my summer of love, and that still stands.
I want to fill my own pockets.
.
It’s called a sexual odyssey and it’s a series that runs here on this blog, and my facebook page.
.
The absolute most important conclusion so far is that my creativity and writing in particular, are my default sexuality. That’s how I fill my pockets.
Not physical sex.
If I was to go for 40 days without writing, the effects would be severe, whereas I ve gone without sex with a partner for months or years and I was fine.
.
Another thing that I might as well share immediately! Since I want to keep this a short letter!
Is that I ve received my sexual calling.
It was through a dream where I told someone I respect highly, a theory of how sexual wealth is often not acknowledged. And how it is entirely normalized to live off other people’s sexual wealth instead of developing your own.
And how this plays out throughout marriages as well, because the sexual bank accounts are not properly managed, nor even acknowledged.
.
I told her, this business coach I respect the very highest, that you could use all vocabulary from everyday psychology as well as investment banking and personal finance, and you could apply them to sex and a whole new world would open up for you.
You would wonder how we managed to miss this.
.
Rereading the previous letter I sent to you, I encountered a book title from a book I was not going to write.
It had a word in there, that is one of those words from psychology, but applied to sex.
Sexual integrity
.
This book title was:
.
UNBOUND
Reclaim your sexual integrity by quitting monogamy today!
.
We learn that No means No, but as long as we are not allowed to say yes if we want to have sex (and so does the other party) we are no longer in sexual integrity.
.
But you can also apply the trick of adding the word sexual to terms like:
Capital, wealth, resilience, revenues.
And just like with money, the hardest is getting to your first 100K;
That is the level where you have to overcome the hurdles of your past, and whatever oppression you experience for being sexual.
But once you’re past your 100K mark, feeling that wealthy or secure sexually, then it becomes easy.
.
Just like self-made entrepreneurs, you know you could go bankrupt and you would build it all again.
That the assets can be taken away from you just like a partner or ideal lover can leave.
But someone who’s hit the 100K sexual mark, will rebuild their sex life. Always.
Someone like that will never believe their sex life is dependent on that one person. Well it is dependent on one person; Themselves! Ha ha ha.
.
I didn’t say that much in my dream, it was shorter but a coherent story came out that I cannot remember ever telling before. It was as if the topic came out “fully grown”.
The coach looked at me, and said I should go tell THIS to the world, and how she would set it all up with her clientele, and we’d run a program together.
.
I woke up and knew I had found my calling.
.
And also that a how long, four? Five?  month period where I thought I would start working under my real name and let Lauren Harteveld be just a worksop, a hobby project;
That had come to an end!
.
This topic about non-monogamy and sexual wealth was not meant to be shared with the world under my real name. I would lose tremendous momentum, and get caught up in the hiccups of crossovers between my private or past professional life, and this new sexual calling.
.
So my conclusion in my last letter to you, that I wasn’t going to write that book “Unbound” was correct, because 2,5 weeks ago I was still going all in under my real name and if that book gets written it will indeed not get written under that name.
My sexual calling is as Lauren Harteveld.
And although I do not have a business model it does make this a professional account. For the first time ever.
.
I am the writer and speaker Lauren Harteveld.
I still feel I will never be a coach and business owner Lauren Harteveld, but (contrary to what I said in the prior letter, where Lauren Harteveld was merely a hobby)
Lauren Harteveld does speak. This is more than a writing-only account.
.
I am very comfortable speaking about these topics and I will reboot my YouTube channel which I left about two years ago.
.
Lauren Harteveld is my main gig, and my real name has become the leisure account.
My work as Lauren Harteveld is to show up in the conversation about sexual wealth, non-monogamy,  and sexual integrity.
.
Although I am still frustrated I ve experienced so much resistance publishing my (own) books, a shift has taken place in how important I find them.
I m no longer letting this publishing hurdle stop my other work.
.
This conclusion is not entirely new, I ve talked about this before. But what I knew then was that postponing going all in on your work until the book is done, means you re saying your worth or credibility is in your book.
When my worth is in being present, and joining the conversation. 
.
I am not defined by a book people may or may not read and may or may not like. The message is simply too important. So I knew that part a while back.
.
But the reason I m even more “relaxed” today, about not being as far with the books as I wanted, is because I now see books as a medium, are so not me.
I live in the day to day conversation, and like this letter shows, even a blogpost I wrote 2,5 weeks ago feels entirely outdated. So much changes all of the time, most of all me! 
I m not someone who will come up with one system and one book, that they will expand on for the rest of their lives. 
.
My value is in BEING in the conversation NOW!
Books are what is left of you when you’re dead.
Or not.
When I m dying they will be the last thing on my mind.
.
After the dream I woke up and changed my bio.
.
This is what it said:
.
LS Harteveld
Advocate for sexual wealth, sex for solitary women & non-monogamy
Current diaries:
1996 series, The Covid Diaries
& NEW: 2021 A Sexual Odyssey
.
It felt like a milestone.
No;
It WAS, a milestone.
..

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

* Want to work with Sara too? Subscribe for updates on Sara’s upcoming Academy here,
or contact her through her Facebook page for a one-on-one coaching request.

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

The Summer Of Love Playbook

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

I have no idea how to live up to the idea of this title saying “playbook”.
b75330c6f6bf6be1ae0b5296367fb599But since everybody seems to be using that term nowadays, and on things that have absolutely nothing to do with play and are in fact more of the anti-play or dead-serious or boring-as-f book, I reckoned at least I would TRY to make it
inspiring and fun! 
And make a point there is a difference between serious playbooks and taking play seriously!
.
So Summer Of Love Playbook it is.
.
The last time we spoke, we had some great breakthroughs. I say “we” but I mean you had breakthrough thoughts, or I had breakthroughs that I would never have had without you.
So hail to you, and I m absolutely thrilled you have been coaching me for all these years.*
.
One of the breakthroughs that stood out for me, was that I was still not grounded in my own sexuality, which on a practical level translated itself to being dependent on other people around me, and in particular my friend/ lover.
But it’s broader than that, I know it’s a pattern.
There are people to whom sexuality comes so easily, who are fearless of consequence and are just IN it! They are sexual spiritual naturals, completely in the now. 
.
Which then of course results in complications because their partners want to claim that treasure for themselves!
So it’s not that they don’t have their own challenges in life.
.
Imagine running around with your pockets full of gold, and people chasing you for your money.
That’s how they get chased. 
Just because it’s sex no one acknowledges there is a great inequality, and they’re claiming something that does not belong to them.
And I know, because I also chased the fortunate ones. Maybe even more deliberate because I knew what to look for and what to secure.
Instead of learning how to generate sexual wealth to fill my own pockets.
.
It’s not my lover’s task nor the task of the liberated women, to share their wealth with me.
.
I am planning my own summer of love, and rock my own sexuality.
Not to chase a sexual prince to first rob him and then beg him to stay so I can rob him more in the future!
That is not how this works.
.
Have I told you we have boutique vaccinations in The Netherlands? 
It means we have all four vaccines rotating, but in very small quantities and you have to do your absolute utmost best to get your hands on one, and that is AFTER your year of birth has been opened up for application!
And then you just have to settle for whatever vaccine they gave to your year
.
And if you book online you first go through a painstaking process that requires the installment of a minimum of one VERY privacy sensitive app on your phone, which I never intend to use ever.
It feels I m carrying my panties in a public place. On my head.
And then you get four options on three locations at a minimum of an hour door to door public transportation of your house.
Don’t book online!
.
The only people who get to choose and will probably get that vaccine door delivered by a popular boy band are the ones who do not get vaccinated now, and just wait until “the price” goes up.
Only losers get vaccinated now, Sara.
.
In 6 months you can get any flavor drop-in vaccinations at the mall.
Like it should.
.
Oh and I m one of the suckers who of course scheduled her vaccinations regardless of the fact I know I m paying full price, and all the perks go to those who stand their ground but okay.
I want my summer of love! 
.
So half July I m fully vaccinated, and although the test and trace regime is still identical for those vaxed and those not;
And therefor the social pressure and the fact that every social interaction can cost you 5 days of quarantine and two Covid test, also still persists;
And despite the fact that infections are on the rise in Britain, when that country is well under way to becoming fully vaxed.
Despite all those things I m calling it a day half July, Sara.
My summer of love begins, hell or high water.
.
And together with some major decisions, inspirations and insights for my creative work, this has put a smile on my face no one can take from me!
.
Already giving you the disclaimer that I m probably forgetting half of the things that make my heart sing, or that will eventually be the reason this whole thing succeeds, let’s get this thing on the road!
.
.

Stopped with everything that was a great idea in theory

.
The first point is one for the work under my real name, not for this alterego Lauren Harteveld where I don’t do anything I don’t want. Everything I write here, I can’t NOT.
Like today, I was also looking forward to do a financial project – more on that later.

But I just couldn’t!
This letter to you just wanted to be written and the words and sentences kept going on in my head.
.
But for the work under my real name things have been a bit rocky because I lacked, and still lack really, clarity.
.
There are so many topics I know I could write THE book about, a game changer. 
In particular in the field of non-monogamous relationships, just try to shut me up about it!
I even came up with a title for a book I could write in a weekend flat, if I wanted to. 
It would be called:
.
UNBOUND
Reclaim your sexual integrity by quitting monogamy today!
.
Probably to be improved by adding:
The playbook to, reclaim your sexual integrity by quitting monogamy today!
.
And of course there is truth in that. There IS a story to tell.
But it is a story of privilege!
A story of “if all things in your life went super-well and then you skip getting kids and go all-in your sexuality and rock that shit!”.
Sure, then why in the flying fuck would you choose monogamy?
.
But in essence, monogamy is a solution for existing problems, dressed up as a moral choice.
And not seldom, monogamy is one of the few ways the more vulnerable partner is protected. Monogamy is often the only thing that shields relationships from being handed down to brutal capitalism where the winner takes all. 
Monogamy takes the edges off all kinds of injustices. And it does so discretely.
.
Monogamy, is the great equalizer.
It is where the cards that have been in possession of the same people ever since high school, are suddenly worthless and the rules of the game have changed.
.
Until we all have the same chances of getting the great cards sexually, emotionally, and economically, I do not want to be the one advocating promiscuity!
.
I see monogamy, as a consequence of inequality and scarcity.
But when we are all free to get up in the morning, and do whatever the fuck we want and still thrive socially and economically? 
I ll be happy to write the book.
.
This all to illustrate there are topics I would be able to CONTRIBUTE! 
And so so much, on the fields of sex for singles, and “open relationships”. I would design really cool relationships, nothing like you ve ever seen!
But there is a reason things are as they are.
.
Just like I think doing yoga exercises doesn’t help your body, because it’s an outside tool and your body started moving and being because you were inhabiting it that way from the inside out –
the same way I think self-improvement doesn’t work.
.
Things are as they are and they are so with reason.
Stop fucking messing with them. 
.
Another aspect of this topic of quitting with things that were only a good idea in theory, is to stop doing things that I would like to be able to do, but that I seem to have no talent for.
They ve drained me of time, energy, and notebooks because I took countless new ones hoping better stationary would do the trick, 
Those projects too will be eliminated.
The only work that will remain under my real name is: 
– topics that excite me which do not open a can of social economic worms
– methods I excel at, or that I can hack or compensate by throwing myself in headfirst
These methods brings me to the second major decision.
.
.

I can only do one (1!) thing a day which means many days will suck balls because I can’t blog

.
A blog post takes me three hours but it is usually closer to five.
Six is no exception and seven or eight also happen…

Sometimes it is less than 3 hours, but I never know when that is, so there is no real way of taking advantage of that. 
However, I have thought to tackle this by the doing a little each day.
The most notable ones were, and I m not going to say “the best ideas were” because they were terrible ideas:
1 30 minutes of book publishing each day
2 30 minutes daily of sorting out correspondence and tax statuses regarding my former business

And something I had high hopes for until I started writing this email and the hours are just pouring itself in here. So now I know this is out of the question as well:
idea 3: blogging each morning and then do tasks 1 or 2 for a few hours later that day

Not going to work Sara. None of it. 
Even in these final months of chosen Covid confinement, I spend hours every day going out, exercising, doing yoga, making smaller social media updates.
There are no two times X hours in a day.

There is ONE X hours in a day, where X is however long the task will take.
And the rest magically disappears into the abyss.

A few weeks ago I worked for days archiving and displaying all my notebooks, agendas and diaries (the last ones stayed in my filing cabinet).
It were the most satisfactory days ever! It felt like a holiday, and I came out entirely rejuvenated.

That is the way I want to sort out my finance, including that correspondence I mentioned.
ONE day!

I want to do the final edit of my first new book, which I ve got here in test copy, but I want to review and reupload and order a new test copy.
ONE day!

Second book, same story; ONE day! 

Any project I do: One day Sara.
Or two days maximum, a weekend.

But out with the 30 minutes this, 30 minutes that, and doubling down on multiple hour tasks a day.
They have driven me mad!

.

Lauren Harteveld doesn’t talk

.
Ever since I stopped being a yoga teacher and work as a writer under both my names, things have gotten more complicated in the blog, book and ideas department. 
Under which name should something be published?
So I ve come back to a decision I made a while ago, but this time it’s starting to get ingrained:

If I m willing to speak publicly about it, it goes under my real name.

But if I want to write it yet don’t want to talk about it, like all that high-handed monogamy stuff but also all my diary entries in particular the ones with sex, like yesterday’s blogpost here on the blog by Lauren 1996;
then it stays here.

Lauren Harteveld is the candid one.
The daring one.
But she writes and then she leaves. For 1996 😉 
It’s writing only.

And then, finally, my summer of love.
Were you worried, that I forgot?

.

My Real Name moves to 1996 as well

.
Alterego Lauren Harteveld has lived there since 2019:
1994 it was at the time.

But now it’s time for my real name to move back in time as well.
.
I keep finding there is a mismatch, a feeling of finding 2021 not the right atmosphere for what I have to offer. Being in the moment, a writer of the times, means you have no idea what will last and what will not.
You miss so much context. There is no context!
.
A storyteller has a pretty shitty narrative if you re actually still living IN the times.
So Lauren Harteveld moved back to 1994 (in 2019, it’s 1996 now).
And I ve now rechosen that.
.
I ve committed to come at “it”, life, topics, SUMMER!, choosing 1996 as my home.
.
So Lauren, the 23 year old graduate, who is figuring out her relationship with Bear, and her place in this world publishing her books, and her work for the Bon Jovi fanclub;
She will get to expand her work, her world, and her voice to everything I have to offer her under my real name.
She 
– types on her computer as often as she can.
– plays cd’s on her cd player next to it.
– writes her diary for this site
– writes her pieces on Bon Jovi and art on her other site

– and she writes her friends Sara and the bootleg trader Nikki, here on this
.
And now, everybody gets three guesses, what Lauren 1996 is going to do this summer?
.
If it wasn’t for the fact that she/ we are living in 1996 I would have ended with:
* insert vegetable emojis *
.
.
.

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

* Want to work with Sara too? Subscribe for updates on Sara’s upcoming Academy here,
or contact her through her Facebook page for a one-on-one coaching request.

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

Don’t look back

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

“Owls are wise. They can predict the past.”
Two Women, by Harry Mulisch

Dear Sara,

I never understood the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice in school, because we never got the Greeks. Either our school had strategic reasons not to include them, for instance because they were no longer part of the final exam.
Or my year of first graders had fallen into a historic loophole in the education system. A glitch, where for a few years the national program for history started with the Romans and not the Greeks.
But I never got them, and learned them self-taught, when I was in my late teens. 
.
If I had had the Greeks around the age of 12, 13, I doubt I would have been into them as much as I was years later.
The story I think of most frequently in daily life, is the one from Orpheus and Eurydice.
Not because I got it literally from text, but because someone explained how a book I liked was inspired by the tragedy of Orpheus and Eurydice.
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be8ab849-7a63-4723-9971-799d30812a3aBoth Eurydice and Orpheus are women in the book. The book is called Two Women by Harry Mulisch, and it has been turned into a movie in 1979 and 2010, both times called Twice a Woman.
The Eurydice in the book leaves her female Orpheus suddenly, but in hindsight she has done so to get pregnant by Orpheus’ ex-husband.
She returns pregnant, on “Orpheus” doorstep. But it does not end well because Orpheus makes Eurydice go back to her ex-husband to explain and make things right.
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She should have welcomed Eurydice back without looking back to where she had been.
And in particular without sending her back. To the underworld!
Even if it was just to have coffee to make amends.
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Maybe the entire book is a plea to stop trying to smooth everything over, but that is not why I thought of that book today. Although it IS a good truth to keep to mind! 
Be a grateful receiver of what comes back to you, and do not interfere with other people’s life choices. Even when that other people is your partner.
But like I said, that was not the hook this piece was about.
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This is about classic Orpheus, and classic looking back.
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It is this story that has come to mind when I find myself anxious and wanting to know where my Eurydice is.
And when I actively search for him. Or them.
It is good to point out this has happened in the past with multiple men. A sudden urge, desire, curiosity, to Google them or check their social media. And almost always with staggering, disturbing, and at the same time important results.
My most mixed-emotions moment was when I found out someone’s real wife had the same name as I was about to choose for his fictional wife.
And this was someone I had not spoken to in years, the last time we spoke he had not even met her.
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Going to look for Eurydice is even in today’s world, hardly ever without serious consequence.
And yet tonight, I went looking for her again.
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After a week of feeling on top of my game, I feel I have fallen into the underworld.
And that BOTH are connected! Either I went looking in the underworld, because I felt my energetic tie was glitching like Dutch historic school programs in the mid 80s.
Or I could no longer hold my curiosity, and wanted to know if since I was thinking so much about him:
Was there a sign it was mutual, and that things had been shifting?
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If I looked over my shoulder for just a sec, would I see him there behind me?
The one whose presence I could feel so strongly?
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And then I lost him.
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In quantum science they say the atom is where you think it is.
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I felt my Eurydice so strongly, his presence. I didn’t connect it to my happiness, I was too egotistical for that. Or had learned not to get burned and to never focus on the presence of a man for my happiness. Not energetically, and not physically.
But last week, if you would have asked me:
“Do you still think of Eurydice?” I would have given you an ear to ear smile!
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And then it comes: I don’t know what my motivations were.
Was it an energy shift in the negative, after being days on a high, and did I want to look if “he” was still there?
Even though it is questionable how I would be able to see anything, if it was indeed something energetic that I had felt. 
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Or, alternatively, was I still on the high of knowing my Eurydice was there, and did this Saturday seem like a good day, to just give the door a little push, to see if it was unlocked and would open by itself?
The perfect night to, after an entire week on an absolute high, to just help chance a tiny bit and give God and the Universe a chance to tell me what I had already known and felt.
That my Eurydice was there.
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I don’t know, which one it was.
A response to feeling I lost his presence, or a desire to get a confirmation in the real world that reflected what I had been feeling all that time.
But I do know what happened after.
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And those who know their classics, this will know it too.
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“As Eurydice dies again, she bears no anger toward her husband.
She understands that, just as it was love that compelled him to journey into the Underworld to get her, it is love that compelled him to look back and make sure she was there.
It is a very bittersweet, tragic moment.”
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Quantum science got it wrong.

The atom is where you think it is. Until you look.

~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

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Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

Sexuality Loading

226ab3b141efd46df49ad9c9361ca99e
very rare photo of Sharon Stone, probably from an official promo photo shoot, during the time of Basic Instinct.

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

It was almost as if I had been preparing for these two weeks, where I would not have time for my creativity.
The last time we spoke it felt overwhelming. Like I was not up for it, and that I had somehow made, I don’t know, some kind of “planning mistake” or something?
But the truth was, that I had done everything right.
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It was as if part of me had known months in advance, this was coming.
Or maybe the correct way to see and say it is;
It wasn’t these two weeks, as some sort of solo event.
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The last two weeks were the most visible and most recent part of a way longer time period, starting at the beginning of this year, where I no longer just sit behind my desk and write for however long I want.
Where other obligations seem more important -and from a money making perspective are more important!- and together with the daily outdoor exercise which I ve been consistent at for half a year or so;
Little time is left for writing. 
Even less if I also want to publish my books.
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When I was a yoga teacher I used to write all day, and then rush to get showered, eat and get to class.
I did not do any exercise aside commuting (on my bicycle), I did not see daylight from like October to February, and I probably needed those yoga classes more than anyone else;
But boy did I write.
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I’m publishing my books, and as you know the number of blog posts under this name and my real name, is daunting.
I received the test copies from the first two books!
“The Mistress Speaks” and my book about Basic Instinct/ Catherine Tramell “The Beach, C.”
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I have to correct/ improve them, which I ll prioritize. I hope to have the new test copies ordered before the end of the week.
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So the bad news is that although those two weeks I was making such a fuss about, have ended;
I find myself still not having time to write.

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But the two weeks went by fine.
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Not just because they were far less out-of-the-ordinary as I had assumed they were.
But I also had the vision board card deck with the laminated cards, which I set up last summer but I ve been tweaking and updating it ever since and keep rearranging it, keeping spares for that moment in my drawer.
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Next to these cards I found reminders of my goals and dreams, in my notebooks.
And to top it all off, I encountered a very explicit tab on the browser of my phone. Every time I went by them all to see if I could close a few tabs, I would see this one and smile!
I remembered setting this open tab up in February, March at the latest, being very deliberate in my actions.  I knew the explicit content would be a nessecary reminder that I was a sexual being.
Regardless of whatever scatterbrain state I would be in, the moment I mindlessly browsed over my tabs to shut them.
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So the two weeks were better than I expected, because the shock was not as strong as I feared, and because I had Lauren’s Past Self having set up reminders for current day me.
“Hold the course.”
“You re sexual.”
And “Ps: here’s a photo of Jon Bon Jovi in the 80s. Yeah I thought you needed that.”
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Another very positive aspect which I had not seen coming, was that I had sex too!
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Not the perfectly orchestrated best sex of my life – date, we had in February.
But a really nice quickie, that felt so good. Maybe because it was not anticipated, and also because it was the kind of sex you can only have if you know each other very well. 
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Because we are not a couple, and because of the hiatus we had last year, those moments when something happens that kind of “reveals” what’s underneath, are so special. 
And the sex was very welcome. Even when it was at a moment when I could not process or relive it by writing about it. I could not magnify it, in any way.
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It was normal, grounded sex. That together with all the notes in my journals, and together with already being in the habit of writing less, got me through. 
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As much as all this was good news, it did also point to a problem that I had unconsciously been aware of (hence: the reminders to myself) but that I had not tackled.
After “fruitless 2020” I knew that if I kept writing, and/or kept creating videos for my work under my real name, my books would not get published. So I had prioritized publishing.
But by now it was also clear that the opposite was also true:
When I was publishing I did not write
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With over 600 blog posts on both of my accounts, publishing my books is not a sprint activity.
I don’t know what I was thinking when I thought I could muscle through a couple of months prioritizing the books, the publishing, and that the problem would then be solved..
Because publishing will never be done.
It’s like a marathon with no end.
And I have to find a way to bring my sexuality = creativity = writing, back into my days!
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It’s all well and good that I m now publishing my books, getting daylight and exercise and doing yoga every now and then. And some would even say it’s a sign of maturity that I can have sex without needing to bury myself in my writing immediately after.
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But I’m not saying that.
And to me it’s not well and good.
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Needing a sexually explicit tab open on your phone browser because you’re afraid you’ll forget who you are below the belt, is a sign of spiritual and sexual poverty.
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A sign that writing needs to come back on the menu sooner rather than later.

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~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

.

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/

Diabolic

my favorite “diabolic” relationship: Detective Nick Curran and writer Catherine Tramell in Basic Instinct (1992) Promotional photo.

This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup.

Dear Sara,

This letter was originally a letter to my pen pal, the one I call “Nikki” in my 1996 series.
He had written me last week, and as excited as I was with it, I just realized this morning (Sunday morning):
“Fuck! I still have not written Nikki back!”
And in my mind I saw my week calendar coming up, realizing I would not get around to it before Tuesday at the earliest, if I did not do it this morning. 
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But before I could shift gears to the sexual, the cheerful, the playful, I needed to share what had happened here in the Netherlands, that had upset me so much.
That had in fact, cost me an entire week.
Including all the days where I could have been writing him back, and – in all honesty – that WOULD have been the better time investment.
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But then after 800 words, and still trying to understand how two scandals had been able to hijack all my free hours so effortlessly – what was the common denominator? how were these two scandals  linked? – I realized I did not want this in my relationship with him (Nikki).
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Writing him would have to wait, until I felt playful and sexual.
..
But the 800 words I had already written, were valuable.
I was certain that I would not have been so mesmerized by the news and Twitter, if it had not touched on something deeply personal.
There was a lesson in there that had already cost me 5 days, multiple Facebook diary entries (the C diaries), numerous tweets, and now 800 words.
I did not want to let those investments go to waste.
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So here it is:
The story about what happened this week, the coachable version where I grow and stuff! 
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And then later today I ll see if there is still life, under the belt. 
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Welcome to The Netherlands!
Where You Can Spend 1.6 billion But Not Have Sex In An Unequal Relationship

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(Dear Nikki,)
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Okay it’s a Sunday Morning now and I wish I had written you sooner!
Not because I owe it to you or something, but because I was so happy to hear from you.
But I think the damage had already been done.

The tone of the week was already set, the ship had sailed, and although I did not know it back then, I was basically going to throw away one week of my life.
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It had already cost me my joy, peace of mind, sexuality, and possibly my future if I had not, finally, yesterday night, found a way to untie myself from the horror that was going on in The Netherlands.
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It was not even my own accomplishment that I could break the spell and pick up the pieces of my life.
It was because by then I had witnessed for 48 hours that everybody on Twitter was (finally?);
Equally appalled.
Equally angry.

And also; Equally trying to find the nuance on a second topic that had been bogging me since Tuesday, just like the first topic had.

It is frustrating to have TWO political topics “escalate” (I think the word escalate suggests too much simplicity in the matter, when of course these things are never simple), but “escalate” in the same 24 hours (Tuesday), and to then have that day in, day out, feeling that something is so very frickin’ off!
Yet
you keep refreshing all the regular, official, news sites, and the most obvious point of view or opinion is never on there.

But by Friday it had turned around.
The news sites were still mild, or only addressed it in a roundabout way:
But on Twitter there
was not a single message, that was favorable to the ludicrous plan of our minister of public health to “invest” 1.6 billion dollars in a shadow “test for entrance” society, which he has set up and is already running without any democratic process.

He’s rolling out a (commercially run!) dystopian Brave New World layer over our entire society.

Even when you’re vaccinated, you will have to get tested first (with a €7,50 personal fee) before you get a 24 hour time window to visit a restaurant, cinema and so on.
EVEN WHEN YOU RE VACCINATED!

The first 0.7 billion will already be gone, {Dutch tweet thread that estimates the costs of first months at 1.6 billion euros}
but next week the minister has to pass a law to get his way.

Even though the regular news sites are not yet entirely up to speed with the anger and the rage of the Dutch;
I m convinced that by now this law cannot be passed through parliament.

We will not have a society where we have to buy back our freedom, one 24 hours at a time.

The other topic that bothered me was a politician who has been sent home because he is a 40+ gay man who has been grooming barely legal teens for years.
And now these boys have come out with their stories, about how they felt dirty or used, or just weird.
Again: This topic was on Twitter 24 hours before the first news site even mentioned it.
Basically, it was kept off the news sites, until the decision to fire him was already made, but that is extremely weird if you read on Twitter all these stories from those boys, and to then not have national media mention it;
It’s very surreal.

I m still coming to grips with it, why this sexual scandal disturbed me so much and I think I’ve finally gotten my head around it:
It’s because I resent how we allow for all kinds of power differences, dependencies, and allow for the giving away of power not just to exist in society, but we actually encourage making disempowering choices all the time.

What we call “security”, usually means a dependency on one employer or one relationship partner.

What we call “health care”, usually means a dependency on the medical world. The moment something is wrong, we throw it over the fence of the hospital and expect them to fix it.

What we call “economy”, means that we support ALL life styles where money exchanges hands, at the legalized level of life.
That’s why (street) drug abuse is not supported: Regular business and government do not make money off of selling street coke or heroin, which is why that lifestyle is frowned upon.
But because the legal businesses and government make money selling alcohol, potato chips and donuts; You can get those all you want.

I even read an interesting article about “active mobility”, doing your commute by foot or on bicycle: 
(Dutch) Fietsen is veel beter voor het klimaat dan elektrische auto

Active mobility, meaning getting everybody to walk or cycle to work, is a much faster route to getting clean transportation than to develop electrical cars.
But cyclists are not a part of economy, the way car buyers are.
So that solution is never pushed/ facilitated and we’re supposedly dependent on an affordable Tesla which will still cause much more pollution than cycling.

Dependency, is so interwoven with our society, that we don’t even see it anymore.

None of us are taught, EVER, what the difference is between having  power and not having power.
And that people who have it, will almost automatically use it for their own gain or that of their friends, so that they can gain even more power.

If you look at the FACTS, there really is no other conclusion than that human nature, is either inherently evil, or accidentally evil;
And that it takes a lot of things to have gone right in the way you were raised and in who you are, and THEN it will also take an incredible amount of resources in the broadest sense,
for you to not grow up a 40+ politician who has either just spent 1.6 billion euros of his people on a megalomaniac project that will bring his country to bankruptcy or civil war in the upcoming years;
Or a politician who has been grooming barely legal teens just dropping his name, and making sexual remarks and not taking any responsibility for hurting and damaging these boys who deserved to be protected and guided.

It takes a lot to NOT become that.

And the only difference between the two is that spending 1.6 billion  state funding on commercial parties, goes by unpunished.
Maybe you’ll be halted in your tracks after the first 0.7 billion, but that’s basically as bad as it’s gonna get.

Whereas for the sex with the teen boys you will be fired and Twitter crucified.
Which by the way, is not because the boys wanted that, but because Twitter thought that was the appropriate punishment and after 24 hours your employer/party agreed with Twitter. 

In hindsight the situations with the two politicians behaving badly, and only the sexual one being sent home, raised a VERY FUNDAMENTAL question for me!
And one I will totally bring home, but first:

By now this letter is of course entirely fictional!
There was no frickin way I was going to let it come THIS far, writing this much heavy ass stuff to my pen pal “Nikki”.
The part that was initially written for Nikki, ended paragraphs ago.

But let’s move on and bring it home.

The relevant questions is this:
Shouldn’t any discussion about financial violence or sexual violence , or simply “violence”, or maybe even “any discussion” FIRST be preceded by a fundamental analysis on dependency?

That you cannot discuss abuse of power, or power differences, before you know how there is a dependency, why, and what the instruments or weapons in the toolbox are, of both parties.
How could the outcome have been different?

For example, discussion on Twitter is now around “empowering” young gay men, or what type of protection they could benefit from.
However, there is also a lot of push back to this, because it is in part victim blaming.
It has the suggestion that if you have not properly defended yourself, the victim is to blame.
Which is of course a horrible suggestion.

However, if you start from the viewpoint that both politicians are inherently evil (meaning without empathy and selfishly going after their own gain), or that they are incompetent;
You can easily see that no solution can be expected from them.

So unless you have an idea on how we are going to turn every man to the path of the righteous and the enlightened;
The only way to deal with financial and sexual violence, is to empower the ones who can fall victim to these predators.

And that is the discussion where, if you do it from a broad perspective, you can start making lists of your resources, your weapons, your desired outcomes.

What do you need (f.e. extreme financial independence) to no longer be disturbed by government spending 1.6 billion and risking civil war?

What do you need (f.e. a tribe that supports you) to own your sexuality and therefor also be totally immune to grooming?

The reason I stared for five days at my news feed and Twitter, is because I needed that time to realize that I refuse to start discussing something at the level of the problem.
Because the problem is always the same:
People are inherently evil or inadequate.

And the solution is also always the same:
You have to strive to be completely independent.
You have to strive for FREEDOM

The moment you are willing to give up your freedom, and let someone else make decisions for you:
You re fucked.
(because: People are inherently evil or inadequate.)

You must have a clear view of why you do things, even when you do them for money. Even when you do them for your own gain!
And in particular:
If you do them to survive……

Whether it’s a normal job to live a normal life;
Whether it’s dating a 40+ year old because at that moment in time he’s the only one who can bring you further to where you want to be;
Or whether you get away with 1.6 billion euros;
Keep. Your. Eyes. Open!

Look death in the eye.
Look poverty in the eye.
Look evil in the eye.
Look in the mirror and see if evil is there!

Be there on the brink of the inferno of your life, always on the edge between what is right and what is wrong, knowing that you will most likely make the wrong choice.
Knowing that most people that evil.
And that you’re either going to end up being hurt, OR you re going to end up hurting others.

And train yourself, coach yourself, and never let go of yourself;
To be okay with that.

Because in order to find God:
You must first be undisturbed by the devil.

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~Lauren
An unexamined life is not worth living

.

Books 

My diaries are available at LULU 
New books will be added.

The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.

Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld

Nederlands blog:
https://zegmaarlauren.com/