Hi, I’m Alice (ah-leece). This is a Tuesday (sometimes Wednesday) weekly newsletter to help you take advantage of the internet, one idea at a time. Don’t hesitate to reach out if something piques your interest.
If the voice in your head were your roommate, would you have moved out by now?
For years, I’d been wrestling this little voice. Perhaps it’s due to my perfectionist (or virgo) tendencies, but I’d had a habit of constantly berating myself.
You’re not pretty enough.
That opportunity is out of your league. Don’t bother.
God, you’re so awkward. Why do people even like you?
This past week, while visiting my college friends and sister in D.C, I remembered how bad it used to be. The bouts of melancholy in my dorm room, the panic attacks in the Foggy Bottom Whole Foods.
I’m able to say “used to” after my experience with microdosing mushrooms. I’ve hesitated to share this anecdote, as 1) it’s deeply personal and 2) I have a fear that my clients will be appalled upon realizing I have a life outside Google Docs.
Ava from Bookbear Express describes the experience of psychedelics best:
It wasn’t until I’d taken a smidge of mushrooms that something profound shifted. I distinctly remember waltzing into a bathroom, drunk from giggles and the cold, November air. I broke rule number one of psychedelics (never look at yourself in the mirror) and stared back at my reflection.
I saw me. A kind human being who was just doing her best. I was overcome with a wave of heartache, but it was akin to a big-sister energy. Why have you been so mean to yourself? You’re wonderful as is.
For the first time, I (literally) held a mirror to my dysfunctional patterns. I could appreciate who I was, in real time, rather than fixate on a future of what I could be, should be.
This isn’t to say life’s been a stroll through the tulips since then. Shit still gets hard. But, I feel more equipped to tackle it because I genuinely enjoy (and respect) my own presence.
So with that, my question for you this week is:
“Pay attention to the voice in your head. If it were your roommate, would you be best friends or enemies?”
🖼 On Becoming a Prolific Creator
This Week: Opportunity Kills Creativity
Few things are as intimidating as a blank sheet of paper.
It’s the endless sprawl of possibilities that leaves you completely paralyzed. There’s a million options to choose from, and you can’t seem to whittle any of them down.
The answer in escaping this creator hellhole is to give yourself parameters. Constraints plant fertile soil in your creative mind, and are how your ideas blossom. It can be applied to most creative pursuits:
Twitter: You only tweet about three topics (mine are writing, freelancing, and self-development).
Rapping: You formulate a freestyle around one word, like this dude with the word “dinner”.
Design: You pick one font and two color schemes for every design. A great example of this is by the Visualize Value legend, Jack Butcher.
Contrary to what your instincts might tell you, there’s value in limitations. Lean into them and avoid open-endedness. Or as American singer-songwriter Jack White puts it: “Opportunity kills creativity.”
🥒 Content Diet
👾 How to Imagine The Tenth Dimension by 유령 - It’s hard to explain this video. It’s a veritable mind-fuck and incredibly fascinating. It manages to take an extremely difficult subject – quantum physics – and make it easily digestible.
🤲🏼 The Science of Gratitude and How to Build an Effective Gratitude Practice by Dr. Andrew Huberman - This 2.5 hour talk is beefy, but it will blow your mind. Turns out, those “What I’m Grateful Lists" are a bunch of hoopla. If you’re not down to watch this two-hour long chat, don’t worry — I’m whipping something up soon. 😉
And, here’s a goodie from the Knowable newsletter:
✍🏼 Freelancing Journey
This Week: You’re Not Being Annoying, You’re Being Professional
As a freelancer, it’s easy to not feel “professional” but instead like you’re being a pain in the ass.
On any given week, I’m poking clients about late invoices, re-reading contracts and demanding to cut clauses, or reminding editors about a pitch.
In the beginning of my freelancing career, these tasks were the bane of my existence. I felt unbearably annoying, and each of my messages were sprinkled with a "Sorry!" or "Please let me know!".
But, if you’re trying to become a reputable freelancer you must to ditch this mindset.
Imagine you ask a rug cleaner for their prices. “It’s expensive,” you reply upon hearing their quote. Then, they hit you with a, “I’m so sorry.” Or, let's say they clean your rug. Then you’re weeks late on the invoice, and they email you, “I’m so sorry to bother you, but do you mind paying…”.
That would be ludicrous.
Whenever you think you're being "annoying", remember you're just running a business. There's nothing to be sorry for.
That's it this week, folks.
I hope you enjoyed this week's newsletter and that you have a beautiful week, wherever you are.