Wide Open Spaces

けんたま:KENTAMA

 

Last week I quit.

This week, I begin anew.

I was unhappy.

Now, I’m delighted. And deeply, deeply hopeful.

If you’re unhappy, too, we can turn things around lickety split. All we need to do is cut out all the ways in which you live inauthentically, and then use the space that creates to put other stuff that you love more.

If you aren’t sure where to begin, start here:

  • When do you smile when you really don’t mean it?
  • When do you go when you’d rather stay? Or go elsewhere?
  • Whom do you spend time with that you’d rather avoid?
  • What do you eat that no longer nourishes you?
  • What do you buy that no longer serves you?
  • Whom do you owe instead of yourself?

First you quit. Then you wait.

And pray your ass off for clarity. Avoid the temptation to fill the space up with commitments. Instead, use your newfound spaciousness for running a series of “life experiments.”

  • Take a new art class.
  • Get a makeover.
  • Go for long walks.
  • Make delicious food.
  • Pick something challenging to learn and study.

Notice what you notice and continue to live by this plan: refuse to give life-force to anything and anyone that doesn’t serve your greater good.

Of course, you won’t be able to cut everything and everyone out immediately. But you can protect your psychic energy in the interim by detaching from all outcomes. That’s what I mean by, “refusing to give life-force” to people and situations that are toxic to you.

You can be pleasant, you can be kind. But you don’t have to put your heart into it anymore. Save your beautiful heart-investment for the “good stuff” – the stuff that gives your heart hope, the stuff that gives your life ZING.

Love, Jen

P.S. This is our first piece in our new wide-open space here at Life After Tampons. I hope you like our new look. Many thanks to designer Kate Glover and Tech Wizard Lisa Brown for their help.

photo: flickr, けんたま/KENTAMA

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Why I’m Quitting

patrick denker

 

For some weeks now I’ve been thinking deeply about what I want and need in my life and what role, if any, Life After Tampons will play in my future.

Looking back at the three years that I’ve worked for Beautiful You, I can’t tell if I’m a huge success or a world-class failure.

I meant to build a business, but instead I’ve built a life. I’m profoundly happy with the way I live my life – the solitude, the creative freedom, the time I have to engage deeply with my husband and kids.

I meant to build a business, but instead I’ve made a difference – and I do acknowledge that LAT has often made a BIG difference to the women who have needed me here.

But, I meant to build a business. An Internet business.

I’ve hired every kind of business advisor you can imagine. I’ve worked for countless hours on things like product and service funnels, auto-responder series, social media campaigns, and the like. We’ve talked “scale” and “working while you sleep” and all those mythos of the Internet entrepreneur.

I’ve asked you what you have wanted, and I’ve worked hard to create that for you. We’ve reclaimed our sass and explored the Chapters of our lives. We’ve Crafted Comebacks and launched full-scale Midlife Insurrections.

And I feel like we’ve all grown.

But, I meant to build a business.

The spiritual conflict is probably mine – because the truth is I don’t CARE about the money. I’ve just wanted to matter. I’ve wanted to matter with a breathtaking yearning in my heart and soul from my earliest memory.

And I feel pretty sure that I have DONE that.

At the same time all of this internal conflict has been kicking my ass, I’ve also grown artistically dissatisfied with what I perceive as the limited range of the kind of work I can do here because of how I’ve positioned Life After Tampons.

So, I’m making some significant changes in my life and in how I show up here and I wanted to take a moment and introduce Beautiful You to some of the changes that are ahead.

The first thing that you are going to see is that I’m changing the entire look of our site. In a couple of weeks I’m going to unveil a new design that we’ve been working toward for some weeks.

It’s a fresher, brighter look. I think you are really going to dig it.

The next thing I’ve changed is our tagline.

Though I love the sassy tone of “Quit Your Bitching. Change Your Life,” what I really want to explore with you is the sacred journey of this stage of our lives and how we can embrace the spirit of the Wise Woman.

That means I’m gonna get a little more woo woo around here.

But it will be a practical woo, cause otherwise it’s just chit chat and horse poo.

The last change that I’m making is that I’m completely QUITTING worrying about whether or not Life After Tampons is supposed to become an Internet business or not.

I yearn to use all that toxic worrying energy on my writing and speaking craft instead, both here and at my new site, www.jenniferboykin.com, where I will publish whenever I damn well feel like it.

No More PUSHING!

Finally, and this is where the QUITTING REALLY COMES IN — I’ve decided to come back to the hearth professionally and, if they’ll have me, take a small part-time job crafting fragrant memories in a local bakery.

This will free up the financial pressure to “MAKE” Life After Tampons something it simply refuses to be.

It will also free up my time because what I REALLY want to do next is write my first book for Beautiful You.

So, here’s an overview of my vision as it stands today:

  • “QUIT” Life After Tampons as a business
  • Reposition Life After Tampons to delve more seriously into the spiritual unfolding of the Wild and Wise Woman over 45.
  • Work in the bakery (not a done deal yet) to make cake and memories for others – truly this was the happiest job I could think of.
  • Give Life After Tampons a style makeover.
  • Focus more on speaking, speaking, speaking.
  • Post at jenniferboykin.com on Sundays or whenever I feel like it.
  • Write my book
  • Self-publish it by next summer
  • Stick a man or two in the car with tents and such and take people across our beautiful country for book signings and to visit LATvians everywhere.

Whew!

Now that all of this worry is out of my head and shared with you, I feel so much lighter.

And I can see that I haven’t quit at all.

I’ve surrendered.

Love, as always, Jen

photo: Flickr, Patrick Denker

 

 

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Sit in the Chair

Paolo Marconi

 

Today, I’m practicing sitting.

It looks like I’m writing, because there is an open screen before me and my hands are moving across the keyboard.

But, really, I’m just sitting.

It turns out that a lot of creative work is about showing up for The Big Wait.

Inspiration isn’t even required. It comes. It goes.

But there’s this chair right here waiting for me regardless.

And, so I practice.

Sitting.

While I’m sitting, I move my fingers in combinations that produce words that don’t really say much.

Perhaps tomorrow something pithy will reveal itself.

For today, the sitting is enough.

photo: flickr, Paolo Marconi

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My New Site

15BW

Hello, Gorgeous!

So I’ve been itching to break out of my Life After Tampons comfort zone and write some other stuff.

Soulful stuff.

Sunday Supper stuff.

My insatiable “search for meaning” stuff.

A friend suggested I play around a little bit and create a site just for myself, so I did.

I’d love it if you take a look: https://jenniferboykin.squarespace.com

I’m only gonna publish there on Sundays. I’m calling it “Sundays with Jen.” If you’d like me to send you those posts automatically, you can sign up at the bottom of this page:  https://jenniferboykin.squarespace.com/blog/

I’m also going to change the look of our site here. I’m looking for something fresher, cleaner.

Basically, I want a new beginning. I LOVE beginnings.  I kinda sorta suck at middles. So I have to engineer starts and restarts.

You can try that too, if you’re a creative type and get restless unless you’re making new stuff.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the new site.

Love, Jen

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