How often have we thought that art is something created outside of ourselves and our daily life? I am finding art to be more, in-truth, much more than the time we actually devote in ‘doing’ art, as how I have been living is always clearly reflected in the work I have done throughout the years.
Recently I had a meeting with a client and a photographer I am working with for the first time. I woke up that morning feeling a little tired. It was awesome to just observe how I was feeling and not go into judgment immediately or wanting to fix myself up because of the meeting later on.
Not waking up in my full vitality is something I have always to take responsibility to feel into, but looking for a quick fix just to ensure I will be at my best for the meeting did not feel supportive either.
So I took some time to feel into myself before selecting what to wear. When I did that, what was honestly felt was beautiful: it felt far from the slight tiredness that my body was experiencing. So I decided to honor myself and to dress how I truly felt.
I took the time and care to be even more tender with myself while I got dressed. I selected a most beautiful floral dress, not because I felt it would complete me or distract myself or others from feeling my slight tiredness, but because that was how womanly and beautiful I was truly feeling: momentarily, this choice did feel a bit surprising.
“Really, this is what you will wear to a meeting?” Immediately, my body resounded with an absolute “Yes!” What it confirmed to me was a choice in saying no to presenting myself in any way less – tired or not tired, meeting or no meeting – how can every day not be the same amazing celebration when I am the same amazingness?
The dress was put on in the gentlest way, the straps delicately tied around the waist. When I sat down to do my makeup, instead of being in the usual routine, I tried something new – perhaps I was feeling a newness within myself? That definitely felt nurturing, and so it opened me to a fabulous experience. When I completed the outfit with a pair of super comfortable heels and a silk scarf around my neck to keep myself warm, what I felt was a gift of harmony. None of the clothing or makeup items were expensive, but they did not feel less, because I did not feel less.
As I walked down the street, the long dress flowed with my present and steady gait in the wind, and my two feet were firmly feeling the ground: by this time the walk complemented and re-confirmed entirely how I was feeling inside and out. Just by walking, heads were turning because I was walking with all of me!
Some people smiled at me, others began whispering, a few blank faces and even some unpleasant faces were witnessed, which were all great to observe and acknowledge, but nothing could stop me from walking me.
When I went to the meeting with all of me, there was no part of me that needed recognition for this job to work out. I just allowed myself openly to meet my clients – the purpose of the meeting was irrelevant. When there was no expectation, I simply enjoyed every moment of connection with them, and miracle upon miracle was presented. As openness and honesty was the foundation in how I have chosen to express with myself that morning, it was openness and honesty that guided our entire meeting. At one point in the meeting the photographer was near to a decision to not go forward with this job, as the customary pattern of art teams is working with people we already know or have worked with. But as there was no investment in the outcome for this job, there was no anxiety either.
I simply enjoyed hearing what everyone had to say, and equally expressed my part. I went a bit further than I usually would in my expressing, without stopping at what could be the conclusion of a ‘formal’ meeting, but went further as I felt there was more to say – from my heart.
We concluded the meeting with a complete turnaround. Not only were we to go forward as a team, it was a team that felt a connection, although we were working together for the first time. It was a team decision in saying; let us step up to something new together.
When the meeting was over, the photographer very graciously offered to snap a picture of me. As I looked at the picture, what came to me was – why would we ever hold back and hide our true self?
By not holding ourselves back in expressing, don’t we all become living, breathing, walking pieces of art? And everywhere we go, everything we touch, every job we do naturally brings in this quality. Through our choices to self-care and self-love, connection is our natural way. Naturally and in simplicity, the way to true art is fully open, fully welcoming and full of joy, committed to life and all about people. Isn’t the expression of this truth already art?… Which is our natural and magnificent way.
By Adele Leung, Image Director and Fashion Stylist, Hong Kong