The shamelessly happy introvert


I’m a highly introverted woman. Not in the least bit shy, not afraid to meet new people or speak publically when it’s called for, but my need for time alone is massive. I revel in solitude, in silence, in the slow and the moment to moment appreciation of beauty around me.

I’m a thinker, a dreamer, a watcher, a listener, and inside this quiet, sometimes reserved frame things germinate and grow. Tender things. Wild things. Powerful things. Secret gardens with an unpredictable, ancient beauty to them. Endless fields that I get to roam at will. And I’m unbelievably happy there.

Or, as some would have me believe: Inappropriately happy.

I read a post in the Creative Doer community on Facebook the other day that reminded me how strong the prejudice against introversion still is in our culture. One participant, writer Anne Linn Kaland wrote beautifully about the longing she felt to turn inwards as winter draws near:

“I would slip into the otherworld if I could. Now, for a long time, and emerge in spring. Darkness, silence, quiet. Moving from window to window, to see the fire in the mountains, the white sky, the dark trees leaning in. To hold a cup of hot tea and breathing in its steam, its herby scent. This is what I want. A long falling into quiet, and listening to the voices in-between, coming from a deeper place, a deeper world.”

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

Don’t medicate your overwhelm with productivity

“When everything on your to-do list is equally important how do you devote your attention to just one thing so that you can make real head way in that area? And how do you calm your body, mind and soul as you neglect or put on hold equally important aspects of your life?” Alicia asks.

The common productivity advice is to remove all the unimportant stuff from your schedule and your life in order to free up time for your dream projects. That’s all good, but what do you do when you’ve removed the unimportant stuff and you still feel completely overwhelmed by the length of your to-do list?

This is the topic for today’s video, where I’ll point out three things that will help if you find yourself stuck in the same stressful place as Alishia.


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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

The truth about procrastinators and over-achievers. And how you can find a smoother way forward


My sister Eva is the most conscientious, trustworthy worker there is. She’s your dream employee. Always on time, always pro-active, always kind and service minded.

But when it comes to doing her own thing, making her own creative and entrepreneurial dreams happen, she procrastinates with the best of them.

It drives her crazy, and it drives me a bit crazy too, watching all that goodness and beauty she wants to offer come to nothing. Over and over again, delaying and postponing and procrastinating until whatever plan she had has gone dry.

I haven’t been able to wrap my head around it. How can we, who are so alike in so many ways (people often mistake us for twins), be so radically different when it comes to this? Because I rarely ever procrastinate.

I’ve always been at the opposite end of the spectrum, pushing and overworking and making things happen. Rarely resting. Always getting my fix from DOING, from being busy (=important).

I read a great blogpost that made me think about this in a new way, and I realized we’re not that different after all. I might be a recovering workaholic, and she might be the queen of procrastination, but both of us are reacting to the exact same triggers, only in different ways.

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

Everything starts with “no”



Creativity requires space. Empty space. It requires time, and since very few people (older than twelve) have free time available, I have to plan my free time. That’s perfectly fine.

A creative life demands focus. It demands I make active choices. It depends on me sharpening my ability to say no. Because I have to say no, more often than I’d like.

I have to exclude a lot, in order to include what I truly want.

I don’t stop at clearing my calendar. I clear my house, my fridge, my mind, my Facebook account. Only that which truly supports and nourishes me can stay.

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Written by Anna on . Posted in Creativity & Inspiration, Life, and how to live it

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