I’m on register at work:
~waits patiently behind counter with absent smile until a customer walks close enough and/or shows necessary amount of interest
~has a set script of prompts in my head to follow during transactions
~cheerful yet non-descript customer service voice and can repeat same exact tone infinitely.
~breaking from prompts or skipping through parts may cause minor glitches, such as accidentally repeating the same prompt again or completely skipping necessary ones
~absentmindedly tends to my area using the same five or so actions in a continuous loop until new person arrives
~Abnormally knowledgeable in my craft
~wears same outfit every day
~Nothing unusual phases me
~walking away and coming back is like a brand new interaction. I have little to no memory of you
Oh, man. This letter has taken me an embarrassingly long time to write. Probably because I haven’t written anything but e-mails and Tweets for 12 years.
If the last year has taught me anything, it’s this: it takes a long time to get over yourself.
Last March, after 7 years on the road, I decided to take a break. I was excited about this. I’d imagined myself watching tv all day, being a “chill person”, eating doughnuts because I didn’t have to wear latex catsuits anymore. The reality was not quite the joy ride I’d been expecting.
I’ve been an artist for over a decade but up until this year, I hadn’t realised how much my sense of self had been defined by my role as an artist. I’d never thought of “Marina and the Diamonds” as a persona or a construct, and I didn’t think the stage-me was very different to the sofa-me. MATD was an exciting vehicle that helped me express ideas and thoughts to people. But just as people construct online personas, artist construct visual ones, and over time, the lines between art and reality can drift apart.
I can’t remember when I first became conscious of it but I started to feel like there were two parts of me, artist self and private self, and there was nothing in between to link the two anymore. I was one or the other, and neither part of my personality could be present in the same environment. Perhaps because I’d spent most of the past 8 years devoted to being an artist and this hadn’t presented many opportunities for other parts of my personality to grow. When one part of a personality dominates, other parts shrink and life can take on an unreal, two-dimensional quality. I felt confused as to why I no longer felt like I fit into the world I’d built. I don’t think my feelings are exceptional (particularly in entertainment) but I wonder if you are someone who has experienced this in a different context.
I’ve always been interested in identity. In my twenties, I felt frustrated by how regularly my identity seemed to shift and change until I began to consider the idea that a fixed self may not exist. I explored this in “Electra Heart” by deconstructing aspects of female identity in a portrayal of female archetypes. However, the past year has made me re-examine this idea. Not being able to equate my identity to a job, project or visible entity has created a lot of discomfort and uncertainty in me. Which has been a surprise, as I thought I felt secure in myself. How can I be so sure of who I am if I am so susceptible to change? A lot of what contributes to our idea of identity is down to pure chance - ethnicity, social class, upbringing, religion, job, relationships - who are we without those influences?
Everything in western culture feels so geared towards self-definition, but I wonder if having a looser idea of yourself could make life richer. The past year hasn’t been full of rainbows - I feel like my brain has been brutally rewired - but letting go of a perceived idea of myself has resulted in a new kind of personal freedom. My image is no longer a main source of identity, nor are previous signifiers like clothing (more on this in a future post), designer brands + other things I subconsciously used to define myself.
Lasting change rarely happens over night. This past year has been painful and slow. But I’m in a more genuine space than I was a year ago and I would never want to go back to that stunted way of being again. In fact, the only solace I had in this period was being able to read the books and blogs of other people experiencing significant life transitions, so I hope this might be of help to anyone who is going through a similar stage.
Truth is, I’m not planning ahead much right now. I am indeed going through my “what should I do with the rest of my life” phase that most people go through at 21. Which is… cool. But I’m grateful to have the opportunity to explore different interests, and starting marinabook is a part of that. I’m starting a Psychology course soon, which I am SO excited about, and I’m ready for a brand new chapter. I hope you’ll be a part of it.
Some people have been asking about new music and I’m always flattered to be asked. I know one year is like an aeon in digital time! The honest answer is I don’t know when that will be, but the connection I have with music has always flowered from an honest connection with myself, and I trust my instincts.
Whenever I get back on stage again, I would love to feel like I am the sum of my parts, not the sum of a persona or an image. That’s the goal. A lot of reality with a little bit of fantasy. So, marinabook is a way for us to stay connected while I work that out.
Because I sure as hell needed this post when I did.
1. Realize that it‘s okay. Accept that it happened. Forgive yourself for it.
Maybe life got in the way and you just didn‘t have the time or energy or possibility. Maybe something happened on your path that got you scared, frightened, panicked, or even disgusted so that you had to take a step back and retreat. Maybe your focus simply shifted. Maybe you got bored. Maybe everything just got overwhelming and you weren‘t able to juggle magick and the mundane at the same time. Maybe mental illness got in the way. No matter what the reason for your fall out was, accept that it happened, forgive yourself for it. Because it‘s okay, life happens in phases, and no matter the reason, how big or how small, it‘s part of your journey and totally fine. These things happen to the best of us, so don‘t blame yourself for it. It really is okay. Pinky promise.
2. Reconnect with your god(s) and/or non-physical friends, if needed.
If you‘re a spirit companion/have spirit friends like me or are devoted to a god or certain deity/ies, your time with them/devotion to them probably fell under the brick as well. If it did, reconnect. I promise chances are they‘ll understand. As I said, life happens, and they know that too. They probably saw what you were going through. Explain what happened to them, apologize, and move on, if they allow it. Just spend more time with them again, greet them good morning and wish them good night again, invite them to join you throughout your day again. I promise, any good relationship will hold, just show that you really are sorry and put in effort to show that you care again. I’m sure they missed you as well so it’s time to make up for the time you lost!
3. Don’t overwhelm and overestimate yourself.
Chances are the longer your fall-out was, the more your “psychic muscles” lost in strength. Your intuition may be a bit more out-of-tune, you may have more trouble hearing/seeing/feeling/sensing spirits and energies. Maybe you have more trouble programing things or adding energy to objects than before. That’s okay! It’s totally fine and normal, just don’t be surprised if it happens and know that with practice you’ll be back to old strength in no time! Until then, start small and work with what you have.
4. Start small, don’t rush it, one step at a time.
Start drawing a daily or weekly card again. Start carrying crystals with you again. Start laying them out under the moon to charge again. Do small rituals like maybe doing some bath magic before you rush head-first into a huge complicated thing again! Again, you don’t want to overwhelm yourself. Also, you want to build a routine again to not risk falling out again. Some ideas on what to do when building your practice up again:
lay crystals, items, water, anything out under the moon/sun to charge
talk to plants
draw a daily/weekly card
pick a crystal to carry with you throughout the day in the morning
say mantras in the morning
infuse your tea/coffee with intent
send out your energetic sensers when comfortable and at home. slowly but surely
meditate. 5 minutes in the evening, 5 minutes in the morning. at least.
go for a daily walk at a certain time
look through your grimoire/bos if you have one. write in it again
doodle little sigils in your free time
and many, many more
5. If needed, make a schedule.
As I said, you may want to build a routine. If those work for you, make a daily or weekly plan. Look up transits and check when you have time, then create your own magical schedule. If need be, set some reminders on your phone. Just try to be disciplined about it for a while so that you get back into your practice smoothly!
6. Reinvent your craft.
You probably changed since you last practiced, or maybe there was a reason IN your practice that caused the fall-out. If so, identify what it was. Reflect on yourself, your practice, your life. How can you make everything run together more smoothly? Maybe you want to focus more on the mundane than the spiritual, and if so that’s totally fine. Adapt your practice in a way that fits and feels good, it’s all yours so feel free to do whatever you want! Maybe you want to shift the focus IN your practice, or maybe you want to stop doing something, maybe start doing something else (instead).
(Optional) 7. Talk to others.
Sometimes it is so, so hard to not feel incredibly bad and like you fucked yourself or your life or your relationships up when this happens (and not just in relation to magic but other things as well). Please know that you’re not alone on this and if your own up-lifting thoughts and words are not enough, seek validation outside. I promise that’s not a selfish or vain thing to do, it’s natural and human and you deserve to be told that you’re doing just fine. Go to a trusted friend, family member, maybe blogger, anyone. If you want, you can always come to me. Talk to someone about how things are going now, talk to them about the things you just did to make yourself feel good about doing this.
💗 No matter what, it’s all good. I promise. These things just happen and there is no reason to blame yourself - please take good care of yourself and know that you come first - magic and everything else second. I hope this was useful to some, I know it helped me as I’m just getting out of a fall-out, too. I hope you all have a magical day~! 💗
35 Powerful Affirmations That Can Change Your Life
Life extends from the thoughts and emotions that you experience. This means that employing affirmations of positive words can have a powerful effect on how you feel and help boost you to new levels of achievement.
Affirmations are proven methods of self-improvement because of their ability to rewire our brains. Much like exercise, they raise the level of feel-good hormones and push our brains to form new clusters of “positive thought” neurons. In the sequence of thought-speech-action, affirmations play an integral role by breaking patterns of negative thoughts, negative speech, and, in turn, negative actions.
Repeat the below aloud and with conviction in the morning and after a few days you will notice the shift in your mood, perception, and interpretation of any given situation.
1.) I am the architect of my life; I build its foundation and choose its contents.
2.) Today, I am brimming with energy and overflowing with joy.
3.) My body is healthy; my mind is brilliant; my soul is tranquil.
4.) I am superior to negative thoughts and low actions.
5.) I have been given endless talents which I begin to utilize today.
6.) I forgive those who have harmed me in my past and peacefully detach from them.
7.) A river of compassion washes away my anger and replaces it with love.
8.) I am guided in my every step by Spirit who leads me towards what I must know and do.
9.) (If you’re married) My marriage is becoming stronger, deeper, and more stable each day.
10.) I possess the qualities needed to be extremely successful.
11.) (For business owners) My business is growing, expanding, and thriving.
12.) Creative energy surges through me and leads me to new and brilliant ideas.
13.) Happiness is a choice. I base my happiness on my own accomplishments and the blessings I’ve been given.
14.) My ability to conquer my challenges is limitless; my potential to succeed is infinite.
15.) (For those who are unemployed) I deserve to be employed and paid well for my time, efforts, and ideas. Each day, I am closer to finding the perfect job for me.
16.) I am courageous and I stand up for myself.
17.) My thoughts are filled with positivity and my life is plentiful with prosperity.
18.) Today, I abandon my old habits and take up new, more positive ones.
19.) Many people look up to me and recognize my worth; I am admired.
20.) I am blessed with an incredible family and wonderful friends.
21.) I acknowledge my own self-worth; my confidence is soaring.
22.) Everything that is happening now is happening for my ultimate good.
23.) I am a powerhouse; I am indestructible.
24.) Though these times are difficult, they are only a short phase of life.
25.) My future is an ideal projection of what I envision now.
26.) My efforts are being supported by the universe; my dreams manifest into reality before my eyes.
27.) (For those who are single) The perfect partner for me is coming into my life sooner than I expect.
28.) I radiate beauty, charm, and grace.
29.) I am conquering my illness; I am defeating it steadily each day.
30.) My obstacles are moving out of my way; my path is carved towards greatness.
31.) I wake up today with strength in my heart and clarity in my mind.
32.) My fears of tomorrow are simply melting away.
33.) I am at peace with all that has happened, is happening, and will happen.