2/24/2017

Friday Feels 10

Friday Feels 10 x Ashley Neese

Happy almost eclipse friends! Today I’ve shared the benefits of breathwork, tips for how to be a trans ally, inspiration for writers, the ways that your reason is limiting you, and an epic dance jam to get you through the weekend. More writing and lists coming soon! x

Learn to be happy with what you have.

The blog that inspired my daily writing practice.

How to be a trans ally and why it really matters.

A personal account of a wellness editors breathwork session with me.

Gavin’s dry cut is everything.

The limitations of reason.

A super inspirational meditation book for women.

My number one stop for plants in L.A.

The benefits of controlled breathing.

An epic dance jam to get you through the weekend.

x

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2/23/2017

Gratitude List 05

Gratitude List 05 x Ashley Neese

Reading back through everyone’s comments on the blog.
Setting aside time tomorrow to write everyone back.
Feeling incredibly seen, loved, and heard.
Morning prayers.
Extra long cuddles with the cat.
Fun photo shoot with the lovely Marielle.
Sun catching the belly of a soaring hawk.
Lots of folks sharing an article about my breathwork practice.
Walnut tree dreaming.
My amazing cousin Erin editing my book proposal.
Magic literally everywhere.
Emails with my favorite psychic.
Teaching breathwork to a group of high level executives.
A partner who really shows up over and over.
Forgiving myself every night.
Letting love in. Like all the way.
Indie tunes on the radio.
The crown.
Booking new clients for heart healing sessions.
Clearing pain that isn’t mine to process.
Protecting my energy.
Loving myself through challenges.
Falling down and picking myself back up with a smile.
Again and again and again.

x

2/22/2017

Gratitude List 04

Gratitide List 04 x Ashley Neese

The incredible love and support surrounding yesterday’s journal post.
Heartfelt comments.
Creating a safe container to share.
Being confrontational.
Taking up more space.
Reading my birthday card from Nic.
Late morning conversation with Megan.
Voice note from Lacy.
A community of authentic friends.
Feeling comfortable in my own skin.
The deep call to live closer to nature.
Prioritizing practice.
Carving out time for myself.
Noticing what I can let go of.
Projecting my desires.
Psychic connections.
Awareness that I am feeling drained tonight and need to pull my energy in.
My Mom sounding happy when we spoke this afternoon.
Coming home to a sweet cat.
Caring less and less what others think.
A healthy stack of books.
Knowing when to leave things alone.
Falling asleep in meditation.
Not judging myself once today.
Dreaming still bigger dreams.
Clean sheets.
A body that can’t wait to go to sleep.

x

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2/21/2017

An Open Letter To My Hater (and to my younger self)

An Open Letter to My Hater x Ashley Neese

Dear Hater,

I’ve been quiet and polite on this journal long enough and tonight I am speaking up for myself. I’m super riled up right now and grateful to be taking the time to use this frustration as fuel for a journal post. Since committing to a daily writing practice six days ago, I have worked really hard to check in with the journal and get some words on the screen. I haven’t written any essays or poems, but I have kept up with my gratitude lists and that has felt really good. I’m incredibly busy right now with clients and projects and between mountains of emails and everything else that needs to get done in a day, I am happy to set aside fifteen to twenty minutes to share something meaningful and thoughtful here in this safe space.

Tonight I received your very nasty comment on one of my recent gratitude lists and felt like I got punched in the gut. I’m a super sensitive person as you probably know since you are clearly paying attention to what I write and are checking my journal daily. If you had been paying a little closer attention you would also know that I have worked tirelessly for years to develop a thicker skin and not absorb your negative energy. While reading your incredibly hurtful and judgemental comments about how my gratitude lists don’t count as real writing I started to let your words take me down. Your words felt like such a slap in the face to authentic creatives who are doing their best to show up each day and stay devoted to their practices.

Today was a full day and I am exhausted this evening. I miss my partner Nic, I spent most of the day writing copy for a sponsored post I have coming up, dealt with the intensity of folks at the DMV, and I held space for several clients who have a ton going on in their lives. And you know what, I moved through my entire day with ease, joy, and grace, no small feat for a woman who used to be just like you, a serious hater and judger. In fact, you might want to revisit my essay about judgement, it’s a really powerful post.

After a long day I sat down to eat dinner and check in with the journal. I always get excited to receive a notification that someone left a comment and was looking forward to reading it. Tonight was a bummer. Reading your shitty words made me feel, for a few minutes, like I was failing. They made me feel like I am not doing enough because god knows if you had to do as much as I do in a day you would not have energy or time to leave people rude comments on their blog.

But hey, I get you girl. And I see you. I spent years judging other people. Though I didn’t troll their journals and leave disrespectful comments, I did more than my fair share of gossiping and stalking their websites only to txt my friends so and so did xyz, can you fucking believe her? Yes, girl, I was you, which is why after just a few minutes of feeling crappy from your words I snapped back into reality and patted myself on the back, because you know what? I am actually doing it. I am writing, in one place, everyday, and the fact that it doesn’t meet your standards is absolutely irrelevant and meaningless to me.

I am living.

And I am living out loud. As Brené Brown says, I am in the ring dancing with my fears of not being lovable and those annoying and thankfully infrequent voices that tell me I am not enough. And you my dear sister are in the bleachers, screaming your self doubts at the top of your lungs to those of us in the ring. I heard you for a moment and recognized you as a younger more discouraged version of myself. I took a deep breath and kept on dancing with that fear, fire, and passion that burns deep within my belly and drives me to keep showing up and doing my work because it gives my life tremendous meaning.

The truth is I cherish my life today. I am proud of myself for committing to a daily writing practice, something that has been very challenging for me in the past because I put a tremendous amount of pressure on myself which it sounds like you can relate to. That comment that you wrote struck such a chord because it was exactly the kind of unsupportive and mean spirited bullshit I used to tell myself all day long. And I remember, when I was in that place how much pain I was in. Oh girl, I really see and feel you and my heart aches for your suffering to end.

Looking back I wish I could have been in the place I am this evening earlier. I am reminded of the first time shared in an incredible writers group that I received a nasty comment on my blog and was very upset. It really threw me off. My teacher encouraged me to write a post like this on the journal but I wasn’t quite ready for it. I needed to do some more healing. Tonight I am taking his advice and wow does it feel liberating. To write something that in the past felt like it would be too much or viewed as too negative, to just let the words fly and use the fire to out create the frustration. Damn does this feel good.

So my dear hater child, tonight I have nothing but gratitude for you. I know deep down that you are angry, longing to be seen and heard and are fighting hard to make yourself known. I get it. I’ve been there. Thank you for taking the time to express your disdain with my writing practice. Thank you for preparing me for a glimpse into the reality of growing my platform and reaching even more people with my work. Thank you for reminding me that the best litmus test for my spirit is living with integrity, not measuring my worth against your limited idea about who I should be. Thank you for bringing to light what an incredible and supportive community I am part of with radical women who are in the ring, dancing with their fears, and living with their gorgeous hearts open wide. And mostly thank you for showing me that when the rubber meets the road, I have everything it takes to be a damn fine writer.

All my heart.

x

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2/20/2017

Gratitude List 03

Gratitude List 03 x Ashley Neese

Keeping up with writing something even when I want to skip it.
Commitment.
Six hours of podcasts.
Staying inspired.
A fun photo shoot this afternoon for Apartment Therapy.
Talking about real stuff.
Revisiting the role of ethics in teaching.
Opening my heart to possibilities.
Taking the day off Instagram.
More support than I imagined possible.
Nitsa taking such good care of Falcor and the house while I was away.
Friends that truly care.
Being of service in some small way.
Plans to be a little social this week.
Recognizing I won’t be missing anything if I leave.
The city will keep spinning without me.
Deep breaths.
A desire to feel what I am capable of.
Strengthening my intuition.
My ability to read people.
More clarity about my path as a teacher.
Willingness to make space for creativity.
The details.

x

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© ASHLEY NEESE 2017