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YOU ARE FUCKING AMAZING | BRAND NEW SOBRIETY CARDS

After months of quite frankly an extremely emotionally draining lockdown, I have re-emerged from my cocoon and re-entered my studio! 

It had been my intention for a long time to extend my range of sobriety celebration cards, and I’ve now added four more sobriety cards to my collection.

YOU ARE FUCKING AMAZING

‘You are fucking amazing’ greeting card – click here to buy

The first card is not exclusively for those celebrating sobriety milestones. It can apply to absolutely anyone who is quite simply, fucking amazing! Or it can be for you, from you 💖

If you’ve survived the last few months, you are fucking amazing.

If you’re still trying to get through this, one day at a time, you are fucking amazing.

If you’re committed to your healing journey, despite how much pain you may be in, you are fucking amazing.

If you’re trying to shift your mindset from shame and judgement to compassion and curiosity, you are fucking amazing.

If you keep picking yourself back up after you fall, you are fucking amazing.

If you’re feeling your feelings, or even trying to, you are fucking amazing.

If you have reached out to ask for help, even when it was the last thing you wanted to do or felt capable of, you are fucking amazing.

If you’ve had to exercise flexibility and adaptability when these things don’t come easily to you, you are fucking amazing.

If you’ve managed to limit your scrolling for even a short period of time, you are fucking amazing.

If you’ve managed to unclench your heart and loosen your grip on old, unhelpful ideas and beliefs to allow space for new ones, you are fucking amazing.

HAPPY SOBRIETY BIRTHDAY

‘Happy sobriety birthday’ greeting card – click here to buy

I wanted to create a gloriously bright and sunny yellow sobriety card and after months of thinking about it, it finally came to fruition.

This was the first piece I created with the inks after a 6 month absence from my studio. It was made with alcohol inks on ceramic tile, scanned into my computer at high resolution, then collaged butterflies and text added later in Photoshop.

SOBER AS FUCK

‘Sober as fuck’ greeting card – click here to buy

This one pretty much does what it says on the tin! For all your sober as fuck, sober AF buddies and loved ones out there, help them celebrate their enormous achievement with this beautifully vibrant rainbow card. Blank inside (as are all my cards) for your personal message.

YOU’RE A FUCKING MIRACLE

‘You’re a fucking miracle’ greeting card – click here to buy

Any addict/ alcoholic who gets sober is a fucking miracle. It’s literally the hardest thing I’ve ever done and still, 11 years in, I’m constantly in awe of others people’s recovery journeys.

When you’re so deeply entrenched in a pattern of self-destructive habits and you find a way out and a way to heal, it’s truly miraculous. So many people don’t and it’s utterly heartbreaking.

If you know one of the lucky ones, please celebrate them. Addiction is an illness, not a choice. To recover really is a miracle and takes work every single day.

 

For Olivia’s full range of sobriety cards, shop here.

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Feeling the Fear & Doing it Anyway | A decade into Sobriety

I’m not usually one to sit and ponder a whole year or a whole decade – possibly because it feels too overwhelming, possibly because I often have a sense that I haven’t achieved ‘enough’, possibly because I practise self-reflection Every. Single. Day as part of my daily routine so I don’t feel the necessity.

It’s also very easy for me to focus on where I think I ‘should’ be, instead of looking at how far I’ve come, so with the intention of redirecting my focus, here’s a little reflection on what I’ve learned, and relearned, this year.

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🌈I can handle it 

Despite my experience of achieving what I thought was impossible (a decade of sobriety and abstinence from self-harm, one day at a time) my old thought patterns can still persist. My default whispers of ‘I can’t handle this/ It’s too hard/ I want to give up’ have limited me immeasurably over the years and I am again relearning that I can handle it/ I can do it/ and that perseverance yields results.

The messages we tell ourselves have an unfathomably enormous effect on our lives and so by transforming our inner dialogue, we transform our outer lives. Telling myself ‘I can handle it’ (when I’ve often convinced myself I can’t) has truly been life-changing.

🌈 My feelings, my choices, my actions are MY responsibility

I was introduced to this truth when I first entered recovery and it was probably the most difficult lesson for me to accept. I’d spent my life blaming others for the way I was and the way I reacted; it was always somebody else’s fault, never my own. If I was miserable and suffering, it was your fault. To therefore be asked to digest the unpalatable truth that I was in fact responsible for all these things… I was horrified.

It has taken me years of oscillating between acceptance and resistance of this notion, consistently feeling the pull back into blaming, but this year, having read some incredible books (eg. Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway) and working with an incredible breathwork practitioner (Olga Circles) I have felt a truly pivotal shift in my understanding of self-responsibility.

🌈 To reconnect to the spiritual path after heart ache and disappointment

Throughout the last decade my morning practise has proved to be an integral piece in my healing. (By morning practise I mean my *almost* daily routine of reading spiritual literature, journaling, affirmations, gratitude lists, yoga and meditation – *almost* every day I utilise a combination of these tools.) Despite knowing the profound impact this has had on my life, I have frequently experienced resistance to it and over time had become complacent and even negligent – possibly because it can feel counter-intuitive (my ego doesn’t want to be silenced), possibly because it’s hard, possibly because growth can be slow and I allowed my impatience to win.

This year however, after quite an extended period of ‘slackness’, my life circumstances shifted and I was left feeling bereft and desperate. Instead of reacting emotionally and destructively, I miraculously felt the pull to reconnect to my spiritual path and began a gentle but regimented daily practise (incorporating all of the above tools). Within weeks I felt transformed and was reminded that ‘doing the work’ really really does work!

🌈 Resistance (for me) is inevitable, and that’s ok!

Some people seem to heal effortlessly – they seem to grasp new concepts and new ideas with fervour and embrace growth & change whole-heartedly. I on the other hand seem to need my claws prizing away from old ideas and old beliefs. I judge myself for being this way, often wishing I could just let go of my resistance, but have recently been reminded (through exploring Buddhism) that this is NORMAL.

Growing can be uncomfortable. Facing yourself can be uncomfortable. Sitting through pain and discomfort is definitely uncomfortable. It’s not surprising I experience resistance. Knowing this and introducing self-compassion to my daily practise has been hugely helpful.

🌈 Humour is everything

When faced with what we label as ‘awful’, laughter can be transformative. It lessens the pain, it takes away the shame, it connects us. In the midst of my old life I don’t remember having a sense of humour. Now, the ability to laugh at myself and inject humour into a situation full of pathos is one of the greatest gifts I have.

🌈 I can walk through fear

Despite consistent evidence in my life that walking through fear is possible, my thinking can still default to old patterns. I have been reminded again this year that pushing through fear is far less frightening and far less painful than sitting in inaction (thank you Susan Jeffers!) Walking through the discomfort and asking for support has led me to achieving things I never imagined I could.

🌈 To live with uncertainty

To lean into it with an open heart and ride the wave in the direction it’s going, wide eyed to possibility. It is only through practise and willingness that I have been able to do this, as for me, uncertainty gives me itchy blood. To sit in ambiguity, to let go of expectations and mental scripting, to dissolve all the ‘shoulds’ – this is where the work lies. It’s hard. It can be disorienting. But it’s oh so freeing and I have deep wells of gratitude for the gift of this practice.

🌈 My ‘tribe’ is everything

Without connection I would simply wither away. I am fortunate enough to be deeply nourished by two tribes: my recovery group and my ‘home alone’ group. The women in recovery who walk this path with me are my life line. To share our lives together, our experiences, our struggles and our successes keeps me afloat. No one gets me like they do. We have a wordless connection, our hearts are interwoven and our stories save each other. My heart surges with gratitude when I think about them. I owe them my life. And the women who comprise our ‘home alone’ group – our incredible network of sole business owners/ warriors – support and inspire me everyday. They are awe-inspiring, resilient and brilliant women and I am privileged to call them my closest friends. I learn and re-learn all the time how important these GODDESSES are to me.💖🙏🏻