From Holley, With Love • Monday, 101821
"The process is the prize." - André Anderson
On my heart this week.
After a best of three rounds wrestling match with my ego, my Higher self took the wheel last Sunday when I made the decision to defer my graduate studies. I’d been resisting the choice for weeks because somewhere along the way, I started to believe that postponement was synonymous with failure but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
It’s fascinating how no matter the cost, if you’re not careful, blind ambition can trick you into racing toward impossible finish lines for the promise of a prize it can’t deliver on. Because I’m clear that I am so much more than what I produce, there is no reward (or sense) in competing in the validation olympics.
The minute I hit send on the email to my programme director to let him know that a good old fashioned come to Jesus moment brought me back to what was real, I felt immediate relief. It was liberating and challenged me to zoom out and look at all the pieces of the puzzle that have made this dissertation journey fun and worthwhile thus far — and all the moving (and often neglected) parts of my life that my fixation on the end result instead of the process made it difficult to be fully present for.
Needless to say, I’m excited to be present again while taking my time to make and share the behind the scenes of something I care deeply about. This week in the micropodcast (press play up top), I shared more about my choice to defer and invite you to consider this with me — what does it look like to honor the process as the prize and how are you making space to do more of that as we round out the calendar year?
Gifts for your growth.
🌱 Please keep the FHWL survey responses coming! I’ve been sinking my teeth into all the candid answers and I love hearing from y’all, learning about what you’re up to, and getting your feedback for the next iteration of the newsletter. If you’ve got 10-15 minutes to weigh in, click here to take part in the survey.
🔥 A Profession Is Not a Personality — a beautifully timely essay on the dangers of self-objectification and reduction in the workplace.
Fuel for the week ahead.
📥 I spotted this post on IG last week and absolutely love this email auto-reply. I hope it serves as inspo for you to reclaim your time (+inbox) and help steer us all away from a “culture of irrational immediacy.”
💎 Shout out to my friend Wes for putting this interview on my radar. Music executive and entrepreneur, Ibrahim ‘IB’ Hamad, takes us behind the curtain of his journey to building Dreamville Records with J. Cole and the lessons learned along the way about self-belief, execution, partnership, creative confidence, succeeding/defining success \ and more. So many gems!
“Every time something feels scary, it’s usually where the best idea is at. There’s magic in that risk. And there’s magic in that fear.”
🎧 🎶 The Seven Bops playlist is back and I’ve been spinning this set of songs for the past couple days. Perfect for a pensive mood or a barefoot slow dance. Find it on Apple Music or Spotify.
Wishing y’all an abundant week ahead. See you next Monday!