deep loving attention
and the seismic shifts in my digital world
Squishy little fingers wrapped themselves around the ball of clay I had plopped on the middle of the potter’s wheel. I dripped water from a sponge, so the tiny hands would be slippery when he slowly pushed the pedal down, spinning the wheel around and around. A teeny giggle - clay feels funny! - a big toothy smile turned into a scrunched face of intense concentration. My focus completely on my little student’s hands, and the heart and mind guiding them. His focus completely on the lump of clay. How it feels when it’s too dry and needs a ‘sponge squeeze please!’ What it’s like to push a little finger in the center just far and wide enough to fit a candle stick for a cozy dinner with his family after it’s glazed and fired.
Two hours later I emerged, looking down at my phone to catch up on anything I may have missed. And, by my own design, there wasn’t much to find in my little mobile digital world. A few texts from people close to me, everything else unknown until later, when I was home, at my desk, with time to sort through emails. The lack of urgency I have implemented in my life this past week has lightened my heart, made room in my mind and space in my life for sorting through what’s important - what’s really, actually important - to me and my heart and my goals.
These small (and some larger) changes I’ve made to my iphone this past week have created a seismic shift. The colors of my life have changed (quite literally) and so has where I put my attention, and how I think of attention to begin with. My love language may be quality time, but as I see it, all love languages distill to one very important thing: attention. Where and how are you spending yours?
If attention is love, I definitely love my partner and how we eat dinner together every night. I love my dog and the walks we take every day. I love my friends and the meals we cook together. I love my family that lives far away and the visits we make longer and longer with each passing year. I love my customers and sending out packages with notes inked on the side - fragile pottery! take gentle care! - made by stamps I carved with my own hands. I love my students and clients and the special pieces and projects we create together. I will spend as much attention as I can muster on these people and things because they are important to me and I love them.
I also very much appreciate my car mechanic and my dentist and my new PCP and my yoga teacher and my gynecologist. I need these people to know my deep appreciation for them, but they do not need to feel a special loving attention from me.
I realized recently that there are a few things (mostly in my digital world) teetering in between these two containers of love and simple appreciation. These things clearly belong in the container of necessary appreciation and not loving attention, but they’ve been holding my attention in a way that even the most important things in my life don’t access.
So this week, I finally did something about it. I made shifts that felt dramatic and a little scary and wobbly at times. I’m processing it all in real time, I don’t know what will happen and I certainly haven’t figured it all out, but I’m showing up for myself. I’ll dive deeper into these shifts in the Personal Peace Toolkit below, and will check in with updates as I travel through this digital time and space adventure.
May the most valued characters in our lives receive our deep loving attention.
I love Saturdays and I love love small businesses and also I love sales, so I’m extra excited that we get to combine all three next week!!! As a newsletter subscriber you get to be the first to know that I’m offering 10% off my whole site (!!!) with the code SUPPORT Saturday 11/26 - Sunday 11/27. Stay tuned into my instagram and my webshop newsletter (you can sign up on my site if you haven’t already!) for updates on some extra goody giveaways too :)
Have I told you about my new illustration offering? I’ve been working on some illustration commissions and it’s been so special, so I’m opening it up to the world! For a housewarming gift, a holiday gift, a I can’t believe we’re moving I never want to forget this sweet place we called home gift etc etc. Details here!
And my messy studio photo this week is handles in the making - can you guess what the mini ones are for?
The personal peace toolkit is your own catalog of accessible mindfulness to fold into your life in 30 seconds, 5 minutes, and 10 minutes, bringing a little more thoughtful calm to your days.
This week, I’m sharing some seismic-feeling shifts I’ve made to my relationship with my iphone (like seeing the world in grayscale), along with mindfulness prompts from a few notes I’ve scattered around our apartment this past week. Little reminders for myself, and now you, about lingering in discomfort, the beauty of the ephemeral, and failing on purpose.
If you’re not already a paid subscriber, I hope you consider joining and building some peace and reflection into your life with me <3