It Takes a Village

I’m looking forward to my trip out to Santa Fe. I have a new dress. I have a tan for the first time in my life. I have my hair done. Painted toes. Sexy heels. I’m ready for the show. The hard work is done and I’m ready to celebrate. I’m ready to share my paintings in person with people at the exhibition opening Friday night. I’m ready to explore. And ready to relax. Every trip to Santa Fe has been wonderful and I am hoping it will be more of the same and even better if possible.

If you are reading this, you know by now that I LOVE Santa Fe. I love the people, the landscape, the sky, the food, the art, the way I feel when I’m there… and I love that I feel so valued and respected for my artwork. I work so hard to keep a high level of quality in my paintings and the success I’ve had with the gallery out there has been absolutely, positively incredible. I have been and continue to be blessed to have such an incredible support network. My gratefulness helps me acknowledge all the people in my life who support me and my dreams. I try my best to support those in my life as well, but I want to try to do a better job of that as I know I can tend to get so absorbed and distracted with all that I need to keep up with, that sometimes I don’t show as much support as I would like.

I’ve been thinking about this a bit lately. How much we all need support and our “tribe” around us. What a difference it can make to have a network of trusted people around that really believe in what you do.  They want you to be happy. They want you to be successful. They want you to grow. They want you to thrive. You know when you’re around the right people when you feel good. They want to do business with you. They genuinely believe in and want to be a part of what you’re doing.

A couple of weeks ago I randomly picked a show on the Sundance channel to watch called All on the Line.  The series features Joe Zee (the creative director of Elle magazine.) First of all, I think this guy is tops. I’ve seen a few other episodes of something he was in and I admire his focus and he really appears to know his stuff. Anyway, All on the Line is about Joe helping struggling designers keep their businesses and careers from ruin. The episode that I watched and LOVED was the one with Gemma Kahng. Her business was about to finally collapse and she only had two employees left. One was a model whom Gemma considered her muse. However Joe watched the dynamics and realized the model was really just a chick who enjoyed wearing cool clothes to parties. I can’t help but giggle and say I don’t blame her! ha! The other was a friend and partner Gemma had working with her who was very negative… (or so this is how these people were portrayed) and so Joe recommended that she STOP surrounding herself with anyone but the best. Seriously. Surround yourself with people who are going to encourage you with positive energy! People who are good for you. Surround yourself with those that inspire you. Surround yourself with greatness. It was a huge lesson for her. She fired her only two employees, got back to work on her designs and with the help of Joe, had an amazing breakthrough and is thriving again. I was so inspired watching this episode. Joe really helped this person out… I can only imagine how far she’s come since that show. I really believe that more people could benefit from these kinds of stories. It REALLY does make a difference who you keep company with. How you spend your time, thoughts, energy, etc.

It takes a lot of people to get us to wherever we want to be. We meet lots of people along the way. Many are our teachers and just as many are our students. We figure it out as we go. It’s important to remember all these people we meet along the way. Some people unfortunately just aren’t ever going to be genuinely happy for us. They just might not be able to. So let them go. They are trying to figure out their own stuff and will only hold you back. You’ll know who the right people are in your life by the way you feel when you interact with them.  Additionally, if we happen to be the people holding others back, then again, let them go. I struggled with this a great deal. It turned out I wasn’t very good for someone extremely dear to my heart. The only thing I could do was to finally let that person go. There is beauty in letting go. It can actually be a gift to let people go who might be better off if we aren’t in their lives. It sounds a little sad, but sometimes it’s true. Our egos and our hearts would tell us something different, but we aren’t always the best thing for others. We have to be extremely honest with ourselves to figure it all out. This isn’t to say that we might not be in those peoples lives again at some point as something positive, but it starts getting better by the act of letting go. After that, time will tell.

I’m grateful to all those in my life who have helped me along the way and are still helping me. I take a step back and see all those who truly have given me their love, attention, time, interest, and guidance. My friends, family, lovers, collectors, clients… even strangers at times. The support is amazing. I know I have determination and focus, but I might not be where I am today had it not been for all of you out there. Thank you. Truly.

On a lighter note, if I had about $800,0oo. I might consider purchasing this little Italian village that’s up for sale. I could have an artist retreat for my “tribe”. A little village to call home. All the people in my life could come and stay whenever they wanted. Wouldn’t that be something!

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