Zachary's Perspective

Okay so this week has been one of those spiritual growth spurts for me. I started this blog and have pretty much let it sit here because I just COULDN’T figure out how to get it started. I have known all summer that I have wanted to do this, but I was having so much trouble burning through the unnecessary fear of self-expression! But guess what? I have arrived!

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I’ve been wriggling around for months now as I got my business started, began preparing to start Yoga Teacher Training (I start on the 14th and I am #giddy), starting the Fair Trade Campaign, and my transition to UIOWA. I was trying to start all these projects at the same time I was still trying to figure out who I was at a soul level. I am a self defined over achiever and so often my restless nature gets the best of me. This last week I was blessed with a few days of having literally no energy, which allowed me to meditate, listen to myself at a deeper level, and most importantly: RELAX. I never let myself relax and a boi has GOTTA learn how to chill a bit more. While incorporating mindfulness into my daily life has dramatically improved who I am and has allowed me to form healthy, positive thought patterns, I still struggle with balancing my desire to achieve, with my need to just exist; to be.

I took a hard look at all my priorities this week and really sifted through what I wanted to focus on most, and what I was making myself focus on most. In doing this, I have taken a huge step forward in differentiating between what truly makes me happy and what I do out of habit.

Let’s start with Intrøspection: Introspection (introspectionic.com, go check it out, it is good stuff!) is the website / online shop I have been working on creating this summer with my friend Joe. I wanted to have my own job, while spreading awareness about the slow fashion movement, the fair trade movement, and by creating a platform for nonbinary fashion in the midwest. SO, I created Intrøspection! I sell vintage clothing, antiques and fair trade products, and do so in an inclusive way, being sure to find pieces that are of all sizes, and present them in a way that makes it clear that each piece is perfectly suited for any and all gender expressions. It supports sustainability because we are selling second-hand, quality vintage clothing, and antiques, which encourages REUSE, instead of buying new products that are not ethically made or sourced. So yeah. I am SUPER proud of what Joe and I created in Intrøspection, however, I would be lying if I said that my relationship with the site hasn’t been a difficult one. I realized that the lingering habits and subconscious motives I collected from my management career were still very much so playing a role while I was working on the shop. I never was satisfied with our progress, I was constantly pushing myself too hard, reprimanding myself for not having more sales, more followers, more more more… but all the while, I was telling myself: “I should feel good! I am where I should be! You created a whole-ass brand buddy, please be proud of yourself!” The thing was, while my higher-self truly did believe all this, the little-ego-zach-dude inside me had not caught up to the program yet. The little-ego-zach-dude was still trying to grind away 15 hours a day, win awards, gain recognition, etc. Little-ego-zach-dude was still screaming (although I will say much more quietly than before): WORK YOUR ASS OFF UNTIL YOU HAVE A COMPANY WITH 6 LOCATIONS 50 EMPLOYEES AND DON’T YOU DARE TALK TO ME UNTIL YOU HAVE CHANGED THE PURCHASING HABITS OF EVERY PERSON IN THE STATE OF IOWA. The funny thing to me is that my intentions, both of our intentions (me and the little-ego-zach-dude), have always been so so pure. I take pride in knowing that I am a good person but my approach is always to work too hard and to sacrifice my own well-being. I end up getting lost in the over achieving sauce. Wanna know what is even more funny? INTRØSPECTION ISN’T EVEN THE MOST IMPORTANT PROJECT I HAVE GOING ON RIGHT NOW! Not to my heart, anyways. And the only reason for that is the fact that Intrøspection requires me to participate in retail, capitalism, and makes me ask people for their monies, and I do not always want to do that. However, at the end of the day, a girl’s gotta eat, and a girl is not about to get a job that they don’t enjoy. PLUS I can feel good claiming my own space as an ethical merchant, spreading a good message and super groovy good vibes, yeah? Yeah. No one else in Iowa is doing what I am doing. I am a cool kid after all! Lmao.

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