You cannot be the art and the audience at the same time.
This is one of the most valuable messages I received as a young artist, and it serves as a meaningful manifesto for embodiment practice as well.
Many of us spend far too much time trying to see ourselves through the eyes of others, basing our sense of self off of a perception that is shaped by an entirely different biological and cultural timescale from our own.
No matter how much others love us, seeking validation through someone else will never fully satisfy the quest of wanting to witness ourselves or feel fully expressed.
The only direction to go is within.
Have you ever had a psychedelic experience staring at yourself in a mirror?
The first time I had an experience like this I was around 11 years old. It was a profound moment in my life. I wondered how the sense of presence I felt within my heart matched the skin, bones, and eyes staring back at me. I'm not sure if I was fully embodied or disembodied. Was it enlightening or traumatizing? Either way it sparked a lifelong devotion to getting to know my true self.
And like others, I have discovered (mostly through loss) that feeling seen is not nearly as important as feeling heard. And that in order to be the person I want to be in the world, in order to feel the way I want to feel, the best think I can do is listen deeply.
My invitation to myself and to you this month, is to notice all the ways in which you seek to know yourself through others. What happens if you rely less on what's outside, and more on what is inside?
Warmly & with Gratitude,