Discovering your own essential nature and what makes you different, living in your own strength, and inspiring yourself and others has been the inner fire that drives me every day since founding my agency for make-up artists and stylists in 1999 and also as a business coach.
AWARENESS IS FIRE is the title for the twenty essences I’ve come up with together with Nicole Hardt and Axl Jansen.
Reflecting on and responding to these impulses will provide you with ever-new sources of inspiration for igniting your own creative approaches and ways of thinking.
#1 KEEP IT ROLLING - SLOW AND STEADY
Transformation as continual state of being.
Realize that movement is key, even if it’s just small nudges that keeps the wheels turning. Stay alert and always keep the next step in mind. Find the right balance between continuity, creativity and development. If you follow this approach, your own rhythm will automatically resonate with that of the universe
#2 WHAT IS YOUR INNER URGE?
What can’t I NOT do?
Recognizing and accepting your essential nature, acting, deciding and living accordingly. Being aware of your uniqueness without being manipulated either by the ego or the superego. Make decisions consciously and reflectively.
There are times when we forget our “inner urge,” the reason, the goal, the mission we are passionate about. Things can become automatic, but that doesn’t do us any good. We get stuck. Get tired. When we consistently create space for our passions no matter where we stand, we are spared the draining feeling of monotony.
#3 HOW VALUABLE ARE YOUR VALUES?
We need our surroundings to reflect our values.
Otherwise we produce beyond ourselves. We need to “re”-recognize our values and live them with conviction. Values are essential for lasting decisions and results.
The more clearly you are aware of your mindset, know your go’s and no-go’s, the more you can make reflective and fulfilling decisions that lead to coherent results. Processes become easier, more successful, and more satisfying.
#4 WHAT IS WORTH COMMITING TO?
Answering the question “what for?” reveals the goal to us and allows us to persevere.
Chasing opportunities or new projects. This habit has become part of every creative’s life. It’s an exhausting hunt that often doesn’t give us the space to ask “what for?” It’s too exhausting. There’s too little time. But we need to ask this question.
“What for?” tells us the reason behind our decisions. Where we want to go. Before every meeting, before every decision, before every new idea, we should ask ourselves this key question. Being clear about our “what for?” when making decisions makes us strong.
We need boredom in order to dream.
We do everything we can to avoid being bored. In our new world there are no moments without external screens or input. Or so it seems when looking around the streets; these images shape our everyday lives.
At some point our brain will no longer have room for dreaming. But without it, no revolutionary, creative ideas can take shape. And in order to dream, our brain needs yawning boredom. Our lives should be oriented around this attribute. Yawning means relaxation, relaxation brings fresh ideas. The power of initial naiveté allows us to start something new from an almost irrational perspective, free of fear or doubt. Naiveté shouldn’t only be reserved for the young, but should play a role at every age, in every life situation and business setting.
#6 SET YOUR INTENTION? WHAT DO YOU REALLY WANT?
Intention guides us in making all decisions.
We envision a scenario before us. And only a short time later this scenario takes place in front of our very eyes. This is the power of intention that we ourselves control. We often get lost in the world of offers, opportunities, and possibilities. Our intention is what guides us through this thicket. Without it there is no way to evaluate our path toward successfully realizing our projects and therefore no feeling of happiness when reflecting on what we’ve created.
Being aware of your intention automatically generates the energy needed to decide what to do – step by step. Sustained by love and perseverance until the desired result is made evident
#7 DEDICATE TO SERVE THE OTHER
Hold NOTHING back!
If we can support others unconditionally and passionately, our own success suddenly comes from a completely different, possibly unexpected direction. Only when you are committed to the well-being and success of others, without concern for your own self-advancement, can you access the unlimited universal energy at the core of your being and enjoy the pull of success and fulfillment.
#8 REMEMBER YOUR KEY MOMENTS
“Key moments” can be translated as feelings of happiness. They catapult us forward in life.
In our everyday lives we often overlook “key moments” because there are too many distractions drowning them out. But if we pay attention and recognize them, they can turn into feelings of happiness. In the long term, these guide us in the right direction. Every phase of life holds new “key moments” for us if we remain open to recognizing them.
#9 WHO ARE YOU? I AM THAT
We need a holistic knowledge of our own identity in order to have control over our lives rather than being controlled.
Looking at ourselves can be uncomfortable. Should we run away when things get ugly for us? We wouldn’t be doing ourselves any favors. Because we need integration and holistic thinking in order to understand who we are. Both shadows and light. This is how we can control our own lives without being controlled. It is crucial to question the purpose of each individual step – does it suit me and my essential nature?
#10 FEEL THE RIGHT MOMENT
Try to recognize when it’s time for a rendezvous with the unknown and make bold decisions. Learn to sense when everything is resonating together and becomes one. Reflect on your past:
When did you wait too long or when did you act too fast?
#11 WHAT MATTERS NOW?
Listen! Like a composer.
We hesitate... or we make radical decisions.
From one second to the next. Neither one nor the other leads to a sustainable outcome. We often force the next steps instead of calmly listening to ourselves to find out what is right. Or we take too long and miss a huge opportunity. It is important to weigh external factors and internal motivations against each other and draw conclusions when making the next steps.
#12 USE OR IGNORE YOUR EGO
Learn to negotiate and dance with your own ego.
Our ego has the power to destroy a project, an entire career. But that same ego can first get a project and an entire career off the ground. In other words, taking exclusive control away from the ego is good. On the other hand, it wants to be fed when it’s hungry. Being creative means negotiating and dancing with one’s own ego, evaluating when it helps and when it hinders – especially in interacting with those around us.
#13 NO FOR A BIGGER YES!
Figure out the YES behind the NO.
A NO can also mean that you still haven’t figured out all the conditions required to generate your desired YES.
Ask yourself honestly: “What’s holding me back right now?”
#14 YOU ARE THE REVOLUTION
We need the inner revolution over and over. When we become “followers,” we attain a status that traps us in satisfaction.
What if we become “followers”? Then we’ve attained a status that traps us in unproductive satisfaction. This is exactly what makes us vulnerable, since we miss out on the needed chance to redefine ourselves. The middle ground is our creative death. We need a revolution against ourselves and what we’ve created on a regular basis. Deconstructing things allows you to reconstruct things on the next level. Supported by those around you who not only allow this revolution to take place, but respect it as well.
#15 NEVER FORGET FORGIVING
Free from resentment, hatred, and anger. Without the burden of a time that’s in the past.
Ask yourself honestly: Who are the people you’re still caught up and not completely at peace with? Where are you struggling with yourself in relation to past events or behaviors? Every day, as creatives, we make all sorts of decisions. Ultimately, these decisions are based on what may be outdated ideas, old histories, familiar structures, or long-ago moods that we carry around within us. Without realizing it, we act out of guilt, out of resentment, out of disappointing moments. We have to realize that these are just memories that we draw from unconsciously and that often have nothing to do with our actual reality. We need a regular ritual of forgiveness, towards ourselves and others, to let go of the past. Only then can we authentically make the right choice. Free from the burden of a time that’s behind us. Made from a perspective of peaceful acceptance of all that once was.
#16 WHAT IS THE TREASURE OF OUR ORIGN?
Our origins hold unimagined sources of energy. Early passions and cultural propensities sustain us.
We leave the place we come from. The original family. Our roots. We seek this rupture, this disengagement in the first years of our creative lives in order to (re)define ourselves. But our origins hold unimagined sources of energy that we can only recognize once we accept where we come from, take this seriously, and put it to use. Good, positive memories, early passions, and even cultural propensities can sustain us on the path towards creativity.
#17 FEEL THE FLOW - Gratiude
Gratitude is the engine that can move mountains
Gratitude is the key that keeps our lives flowing and can therefore move mountains. When we focus on the things we are grateful for, our brain activity and our performance automatically increase and we get to enjoy “riding the wave.”
# 18 GENEROSITY NEVER SUCKS
– free from the intention and expectation of immediate return.
Partnering and collaborating used to be mostly about your own self-advancement, but from our perspective now it’s important to openly share your own knowledge in order to consciously contribute to the big picture. Individual aspirations therefore take a back seat to collective aspirations.
#19 COLLECTIVE MINDSET
Keeping the interests of the community in mind with your own enterprise.
The times of the author are over. This may be a strange assertion, but it simply means that the time of the individual creator, of the “genius,” is coming to an end. Keeping the interests of the community in mind with your own enterprise leads to decisions whose impacts are more widespread.
When we embrace a collective consciousness and contribute across the entire value chain, this sets the big picture in motion. Because without the support of a functioning team, we are nothing. Those who view the differences of others as an enrichment and extension of their own possibilities has permanent access to a committed support system that helps them grow beyond themselves.
#20 Awareness ist fire!
Which of our ideas do we pursue based on our artificial ego, versus those based on our essential nature? The unwavering discipline to distinguish the one from the other ignites our inner fire, our intrinsic motivation.