Taking A Stand & My Quiet Summer

Happy September friends!

I’m ready to step out from my quiet summer.

Back in April, I had the insight that it was time to take a break from living in NYC. After 7 years of living in this awesome city, I felt ready for a change of pace, change of scenery, and a new personal adventure.

I asked myself, what would be my dream summer? The answer came easily - to live close to the beach. The next ah-ha came quickly. Since my family has an awesome beach house… just maybe I could live there for the summer!

And so I made the arrangements to move out to the beach and live in our family’s summer home back cottage.

With many moving pieces to handle in the month leading up to the move, I decided to lessen my daily “noise.” I deleted Instagram off my phone, committed to only look on Facebook on my laptop and deleted all the dating apps. I also committed to less Netflix and less overall computer time.

I thought this would last for a week or two or at longest until the move, but as the days went on, the quiet was really really nice.

Once I got settled on Fire Island, it was so special to have friends and family come out to the beach and feel zero pressure to document the moments for my Instagram story. When my cousin Rachel came for a few days, we kept laughing that we wanted to take a photo of ourselves to have, but both of us kept leaving our phone at home! In the end, we snapped a pic on our way to the ferry as we said goodbye, and it felt perfect :)

As someone who normally loves sharing the little moments, for this summer, as I’ve lived on and explored the gorgeous Fire Island and traveled to Mexico and Canada, it still felt great to share less and enjoy the moments for myself.

Here are a couple shots from my summer on FI :) 

The other week when I was in the city, I had brunch with my dear friend Holly.  She recommended that I check out the book “The Soul Of Money” by Lynne Twist so I immediately added it to my library digital loan list. While in Mexico, I got off the waitlist and have been savoring this book for the last 2 weeks.

I 100% recommend everyone to get their hands on a copy and give this book a read. As humans, we all have to interact with money on a daily basis to survive. Money holds a lot of weight in society and guides mosts of the choices we make in life, and sometimes even defines our sense of self and self worth.  

I had so many takeaways from The Soul Of Money, but one in particular I’d like to share with you today.  

“You express your stand in the way you earn money, choosing work consistent with your values.

You express your stand in the way you use money to provide food, clothing, shelter, or education for your family. It can be in the money you use to support others in your community or beyond, through food depositories, or shelters for battered women, troubled children, or homeless people.

It can be in the money you use to empower your own creativity and self-expression, or otherwise nurture yourself through classes, books, or music.

It can be in the money you pay for the products you buy, supporting the companies that produce them.

It may be money you contribute to local, national, and global causes that inspire you, and the opportunity you offer others to do the same.

If you are an employer, it can be the money you invest in the resources to make your workplace an expression of integrity, where employees and management have what they need to express their excellence.

We each have the power to arrange life so that the stand we take with our money and our life is a right-now, every-day, every-week expression of our core values, not a someday, next-year, or when-I-retire or when-I-have-enough expression of our core values.

Every moment of every day there are chances to participate in expressing your individuality and creativity, in contributing to your vision for yourself, your family, your community, city, or world.

When we bring this consciousness to our choices about money and use our resources—money, time, or talents—to take a stand for what we believe in, we come alive. We are flooded with a sense of purpose even in the smallest action, and a feeling of power and energy opens up in our life.

Money carries the power and intention we give it. Endow it with your stand. Empower it to change the dream.”

Every single day, we are taking a stand with the money we spend. The question is, does the money we spend reflect our core values?

Right now, I’m taking the time to reflect on what I take a stand for and how my dollars can reflect that. Instead of searching for the best deal and how can I get something as cheap as possible, I’m starting to think about the full picture and how my dollars can support a person or brand I believe in, even if it costs a little or a lot more.

What clothing companies, houseware companies, and grocery stories have eco-friendly practices and treat their employees well?

I morally don’t support poor working conditions, child labor, or harming the environment, but often many of my dollars do when I buy products (food, clothing, household items) from companies that support these things.

I’m challenging myself to go the extra mile and look into the brands I’m buying from so my everyday purchases can be a reflection for what I take a stand for.

I’d love to know how this looks for you in your life. Are there brands you love that reflect your values? What organizations or people to you support in your time or money?  

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The second idea I’ll pose today is “if all jobs had the same salary, what would you do??”

Lynn talks about how so many of us choose work to “make a living” that is not in integrity with our values or gifts but simply do it for the money. She shares that many people who are “making a living” are actually “making a killing” by either killing themselves with stress or poor working conditions, or are doing work that is harmful to others health or the environment.

It got me thinking about the idea that if all jobs on the planet had the same exact salary, would we choose the same jobs we are doing or do something completely different that’s more aligned with our passions, interests and skills?

When I asked myself that question, my first answer was I’d be a homemaker -- making and selling homemade sauerkraut, kombucha and other delicious and health supportive things.

And I’m sure as I continue to ask myself this question, there will be other cool creative things I will come up with.  

I’m still going to keep doing the work I’m doing because I enjoy it and know that the skills I have are important and can have a big reach, but I am planning to weave more DIY / using my hands creations into the mix too. And who knows! Maybe I’ll start another side gig ;)

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If you had any cool insights or downloads about your own life or the world from reading this post, please message me and let me know! I’d really love to hear from you and keep this conversation going :)

Wishing you an awesome first week of September!

Xo

Jess