last night i thought i would have today off. the goal was to get my website live, rebrand my insta, and my youtube all before going to bed. i “knew” i had the whole night so i took my time getting to the task. there was only one important phone call i HAD to make, another for fun though still fruitful, and another quick sync with a homie whose call i missed earlier. then there was the eating, beating-off, listening to music, and texting. all of this again, while work (albeit however slowly) was getting done.
then the email arrives.
suddenly i’m working tomorrow and i most definitely need to go bed in order to do so. now, there are many paths available at this juncture: push through and work regardless aka fuck sleep. try and wiggle out of work aka fuck my bill-paying 9 to 5 responsibilities. also a third, learn the lesson: the present. NOW. is all i have. that’s all i can ever spend. THE PAST is gone. THE FUTURE isn’t mine to command. only the present. whatever i spend that on is what i’m prioritizing. it’s what matters. this means whatever i choose REALLLLY BETTER MATTER because the next moment may not be mine in the same way a very focused moment in the present might be.
oh, as for what i did choose– i went with sleep. a bruised ego. and the resolve to use my time wisely going forward. thank you universe.
today i optimize. judgment, don’t need it. that’s just seeing all the things i want to do and feeling bad because i haven’t done them–pointless. overwhelm, don’t need it. that’s just imagining a movie (which won’t mirror life) and feeling small–pointless because i only can live second to second in the present.
so what am i doing?
getting my youtube channel in order. getting my website up. rebranding back to stock henry on insta and facebook. i’m stopping to reflect on what i’ve learned recently: (1) my brand is stock henry & (2) i need to organize my social platforms to reflect that. as for the laundry list of life things i need to do in addition to this or all the other things i COULD be doing in relation to art–fuck u. that’s overwhelm in a different form. i’m starting to understand thoughts a lot better post sam harris. “they,” thoughts, simply appear. that isn’t truth calling. instead, it’s more like a commercial coming on screen while i’m watching a tv show. it just happened– “it”, these thoughts, these distractions, doubt, etc, whatever–they all just appear. i cannot deny their influence. but i can practice the art of RECOGNIZING their presence and FOCUSING on what i want to do IN THE MOMENT. so, today i make use of my after work hours and transform.
love you universe
a close creative-in-arms (this guy) really cleared a lot up for me. i was (yes was) confused about where to house everything that i’m doing. what url/website name? what is the brand called? what is the service? what goes where? how many instas? blah blah–noise. and it was genuinely confusing. am i badkneestudios? (btw the twitter handle and the url for badknee are both snatched) am i stock henry? (i have the url and it’s fairly easy to change the names on insta here and there) should i clean up and go nigel philip? (eh. just not hype on this one but i get why first name/last name personal brands are a super idea)
buh man did he help cut through the noise… he pulled me right out of my identity crisis because he, like myself, have really been listening to one each other’s struggles.
he made it clear that i’m ALREADY functioning as stock henry. imma one-man band and that’s how i’ve been getting my creative rocks off. some people already know me as stock. it’s my rap name. it’s my creative name. and oddly enough as Chase put it (yeah, that’s his name, it’s getting too monotonous to keep referring to him as “that guy”)– i’m not a company or entity yet. i’m not a “studios.” ironically Chase also referred to one of my earlier posts (see, “quitting art“) where i stripped off another identity that kept causing me grief, the idea of calling myself “an artist” and the pressures that came with viewing myself through that lens. it would seem in putting down that lens i got out of my own way and thus proceeded further down the creative rabbit hole than i’ve ever been. all the way down until i reached here. now i’m blogging daily. now vlogging weekly. now i know my brand. i know my name. i’m building a team. beginning to flourish. i’m seeking out the truth and taking the next lesson be it scar or trophy.
while i’m on this kick let me get it all out. another close creative-in-arms qazi (see some of him here–i say some because this mofo is doing a lot) has also begun pushing me to post more to youtube. i avoid it because i see it as sort of a main stage..a bigger canvas. the unspoken rationale is that: i don’t have my “creative” project together yet and so i’m afraid & embarrassed to dance on stage. but like gary vee champions, “document” OVER “create.” show the journey. in fact, it’s better to capture it all. the WHOLE story. and while i recommend this pill all the time, i’ve never taken it. so. thank you both–chase and qaz. i know my name. and i know i must both document the dance AND honor the creative baby that will follow in it’s wake.
love you universe
i’ve been following sam harris off and on for a few years now. he is the epitome of articulate speech incarnate. he does many things but i admire how he endeavors to house a lot of what is amazing about religion, human connection, and philosophy in to a secular wheelhouse. i think he does a wonderful job. anywhoo that’s neither here nor there but he said something recently about free-will and our thoughts that really struck me.
now i won’t go butchering what sam’s already done such an excellent job of explaining (see “free will pt 1” if you download the app) but in an attempt to illustrate a point which undermines the idea that we have free will– sam shifted things for me in a big way. i’ll try and leave the bulk of that shift here free from any other tangential conclusions/topics:
- my thoughts just APPEAR, i don’t get to choose them
- when i make choices, i don’t review all the possible options (let’s say my favorite movie for example) instead what i do is simply load to scroll through the ideas (or in this case, movies) that i have strong or very recent associations with. is loading from such limited and often emotional based “RAM” if you will– free will?
- i didn’t choose any of the circumstances before me (parents, religion, economic tier, country, language, etc) much of what has a profound impact in shaping my thoughts, beliefs, interests, traumas, reactions, etc were all determined before me. this is true for all. holding on to this reality breeds empathy.
- i can learn to focus and relax and observe my thoughts rather than just react reflexively to them
i find ALL of this very empowering. why? because if i am indeed “a process” constantly reacting to all around me and not an unchangeable “thing” piloting my life behind these eyeballs then so much of the confusion behind “why” i do what i do and “why” others are the way they are, melts away. remaining are the small measures i can participate in to slowly shape the tide. building the habits, practices, values, etc that i hold dear. and while this “shift” serves as a change based on a billion other factors greater than my simply valuing and deciding to go in this direction, even as a passanger, i can decide to no longer be a slave to whatever “thoughts” come across my screen. i can see them for what they are: reactions to stimuli all around me. and unless i am calm, focused, and looking at these thoughts.. i’m simply lost at sea, reacting.
thank you sam
love you universe
i had (or maybe) still have an opportunity to submit a demo or proof of concept for a documentary that could get me a very significant pay check. all i had/have to do is ship the demo, stay persistant in following up about it’s reception or any critiques, and cross my fingers. i’ve done none of that. why? well nai, ‘why” isn’t the problem. the why is the current state of affairs. the why is the bad logic i’m running on. the real question is “what now?” that will lead somewhere new. and that’s a better why.
another sucessful day of shooting. another blog post missed (this post to be specific—as of writing this i’m late by an 2hrs 3 mins). another challenge accepted— only 3 or 4 more days to finalize my business landing page and attempt to link with a client aka the oath i took a few days ago.
so what do i think about all of this? life is amazing. positive things are happening. there’s also the occasional setback. and throughout i’ve been able to remember this fun fact— how i view things is entirely up to me. shoutout this week’s lessons and victories.
love u universe~
i am not on this journey alone.
one of my inner sanctum members and closest creative comrade-in-arms challenged me. another push through the gate. i’ve been nudging myself along but his callout was a fucking speed ramp. no hype talk. here’s the contract.
5 days to:
- buy a domain for a site which will serve as a point of contact/portfolio for business
- script a pitch
- sign-up to a service that pairs me with clients (e.g. thumbtack)
- reach out to clients
time to be a motherfucking boss. next step. GO.
5 days and counting.
oh. so let me explain it. in a way i’m sorta realizing the change i want to make AS A PERSON isn’t really about “feeling differently.” the goal isn’t to cease having feelings of doubt or confusion. what then? in spite of WHATEVER feelings come up, i want to act based on (and stay true to) my values.
so if “feelings” that aren’t really conducive to my agenda come up i’m dedicated to going forward regardless, and (hopefully, MAYBE, possibly..) over time that’ll shape a new atmosphere. an atmosphere where the feelings i feel innately match my values–and reaching this state isn’t necessarily the goal, merely some kind of benefit that either could or could not happen. in spite of that there will always be things coming up that kinda shake me, that kinda throw me. and these “things” or challenges will eventually join the list of things i can “handle” or “do.” there will always be new things on the fringe, challenges on the border. less “when will i not be having a hard time” and more “these things come up and i don’t shrink. i don’t shy away. i don’t recoil. i step through them and step forward.”
stop having the conversation. the “way out” conversation. the, “does this qualify” conversation. the “maybe if i plan better it’ll be better” conversation. any and every thing that impedes immediate action is a barrier. sure there are lessons learned from the past that inform future choices, that’s called experience. everything else may just be an excuse. a closed loop of anxiety. stop having the conversation. do.
i almost missed it. another post. once more a snooze + forget combo almost got me. my my. the save? accountability partner. another like myself reaching.
i see the same growth/value-honor paralleled on the indie shoot i’m on. i must surround myself with like-minded souls. i’m not doing this to be “the one” doing it. i’m doing this because this is who i am. honor those heeding the same call.
love u universe