Right now that’s the message that I keep getting from all around me. I swear it feels like life just keeps telling me to “relax and be still…” I’m currently in a recovery phase with my heart condition, myocarditis. I have to slowly ease my way back into activity without overdoing it. That’s a tough thing because from experience I’ve learned that taking it slow could mean not being productive. And in a world where self worth and success in life are commonly aligned with productivity (i.e. how much money you make, how many degrees you have, how many houses you own), it can be plain old SCARY to just sit back to do nothing. Yet somehow, this is what life is calling for me to do right now. My health and well-being depend on it.
So what do you do when you HAVE to do nothing? Do you watch tv all day, do you read books, do you catch up with old friends, take up a hobbie, reflect, etc… What exactly does it mean to do nothing and to be still. I, for one, had no idea. We started a blog, I’ve been reading books, catching up on old movies, trying new recipes, and still I feel something telling me to be MORE still and to do less. I had been constantly asking myself, “What does that mean?? I mean seriously??!!”
Deep down I feel like I’m supposed to be learning to enjoy the sweetness of stillness and real mindfulness. In the stillness you can actually SEE the world in front of you, rather than watch it race by as YOU race by even faster. It means to embrace the beauty in the simple things and to realize most of our “productivity” is just stuff we make up to feel important. Because when you stop to be still and you realize what’s most important in life, you realize that those things we stress about most, are waaaayyyy down on the list (the new car payment, keeping up appearances, how many new fans you gained on the latest social network, etc…). You realize that peace, joy and happiness are usually wayyyy at the top but when we’re in the rat race of “productivity” we sometimes forget that. Running around trying to make my artistic dreams come true, I forgot that life is but a dream and that by whizzing by, I was missing how “dreamy” and beautiful life really is. That’s insane! As an artist, my job is to capture the dreamy and beautiful things and reflect them in my work! I must’ve been REALLY slipping! lol…
It dawned on me while looking for a location for this shoot…. The trees always grow, the sky is always blue, the grass knows to be green, and the birds always fly south right on time. There’s no human being tirelessly pulsing behind these things. They just are….and they are beautiful. They work perfectly. There’s something there that just works. Some might call it God, some call it love, the universe, cosmic energy, etc…. Whatever this greatness is, it shows itself in the simplest of things. And I’ve come to realize that by running around trying to be productive, trying to be great, I was missing life’s purest inspiration. I was missing how fruitful certain things are…that just ARE. I’m learning that sometimes the most productive thing to do is to “let things be” and to let the higher power that’s working do it’s thing. I’m realizing that I’m apart of something greater than even the human race…how dreamy is that?? It’s sooo inspiring, empowering even!
After being forced to do nothing, I’m learning that if you ever wanted to know what real fruitfulness is, real productivity??!!…just relax and be still. I promise you will be amazed.
I’m sharing this because it’s the theme for this shoot. Fashion is a reflection of self and life and that’s where I am. Jasmine and I have been spending so much time together, that by default, she’s in that place too. I think it’s kinda cool, but I’ll let the art speak.
Check the end of the post for outfit details.
Jasmine (@JasmineAlston): Dress- Joyce Leslie, Cowboy Boots- Vintage, Body Chain- Melanie Marie, Necklace- Melanie Marie.
Jade (@JadeAlston): Dress- Joyce Leslie, Shoes- Anna Michelle, Accessories- Melanie Marie
Photos by Jade & Jasmine Alston for Jasmine Alston Photography
This is a random outtake from after our shoot with our friends at American Dreaming Magazine. We’re working on stuff together. Stay tuned!! 😉
your clothing line is HOTTt. Much success :)))))
Relaxing and being still is an excellent thing. It teaches you how to be more patient and present. Remember Jade, masterpieces take time.