Journal Entry No. 25

By The F&S Community

September 26, 2019


We asked. You answered. A special community journal entry to culminate our month long focus on self-worth – with words directly from friends of the Forme & Sens community.

 
 

 

PART ONE: SELF WORTH IS

 

 

01

FRAN MILLER / Founder, F. Miller Skincare

Self-worth is the maintained awareness, respect, and compassion I hold for my body and mind — however difficult or unnatural it may feel at times. It is the confidence and fortitude in my beliefs and decisions that I aim to sustain, without measuring against others, particularly when met with opposition. It is a work in progress.

 
 

02

DANIELLE ROMERO / Visual Artist, Flora & Form

Self-worth: A tornado of confusing thoughts and constructs I have always struggled with, only to conclude that it is more than likely that I often set my own gauge too low.

 
 

03

NEADA DETERS / Founder, LESSE

Self-worth is letting go of who you and they and everyone thought you should be and just being. It's not needing the last word. It's having boundaries. It's not asking the opinion of others. It's going your own way. It's being here now. It's getting comfortable with being wrong or second best. Because life and experience is all, every moment of it, subjective and, objectively, we're all f***ing equal. Yes, that guy over there— your equal. Yes. Yes. Yes. And that's okay because you're just as good as all of those people you thought were better than you because of their career or their marriage or their following or whatever bullsh*t you're spinning that has zero connection to or reflection upon you. You bring something so fundamentally individual, so impossible to replicate that you, your life and your future are going to be f***ing great. It's just up to you, to believe that you're enough. And let go of the periphery.

 
 

04

DANICA STAMENIC / Owner, Danica Stamenic Vintage

Self-worth means knowing that you are more than the sum total of your relationships, professional successes, or even creative output. Self-worth is a deep peace and love for your inner self that no circumstance or person can take away. It’s honestly something that I aspire to, but don’t always fully grasp.

 
 

05

NEYON / Movement Performance Artist

I remember growing up and equating my self-worth to how others felt about and perceived me. It was very hard for me to look at myself and truly feel connected to simple things that I could feel and identify with. I had a very hard time saying no, and practicing boundaries, always looking for ways to please everyone around me. Therefore, self-worth for me looks and feels like practicing patience and boundaries with not only myself, but with those around me. I consistently check in with how I am doing in terms of doing things with intention and direction, or just simply because they feel good for me, and not out of fear or desperation.

 
 

06

PAIGE MELKERSON / Stylist, Dimanche Creative

Self-worth comes with knowing yourself and feeling connected to yourself. I feel most empowered when I carve out time to learn more about myself and entertain my curiosities.

 
 

07

RYAN LOPES / Creative Director & Visual Artist

Self worth is fluid. It contains no boundaries and never any limitations amongst our desires. It’s to consider time and space and to form your own frequency. It’s not something physical, rather atmospheric— it’s an incentive to acknowledge our wellbeing.

 
 

08

KAMA KRYSTEL / Editor & Curator, Atelier Å

Self-worth to me means valuing oneself and surrounding oneself with respectful partners and friends; who appreciate you for your true self and similarly choosing a meaningful career path. Furthermore the basics such as, taking care of your diet and doing a form of physical activity or having a mini ritual you attempt to do every day. In theory at least as in reality, these are the toughest things to sustain.

 
 

09

KARINA ZIMMER / Writer & Poet

Self-worth gives me courage to do my work. Writing poetry gives me opportunity to practice listening to my self, to my intuition, and to let go of the people pleaser that has been residing in me for many years.

 
 

10

MORGAN WAGSTAFF / Owner, Two Fold Clothing

In order to love her, I must try to understand her. The journey of self -discovery is long and arduous, but worth the tiring voyage to get to the center of this inner being. She is worth discovering...Now, we walk side by side experiencing life together. I’m beginning to unravel all of the beauty, yes, beauty, that radiates from her. She is everything and more. As she begins to accept and truly believe how much I love her, external validation is void, unnecessary. Alopecia no longer has any bearings on self-acceptance. She is so much more than that. We’ve only just become cohabitators and have a long way to go, but now I see beyond what the beholder sees. Beauty is now in my control. I now say what is beautiful. She, my deepest self, is beautiful.

 
 

11

PAIGE GEFFEN / Artist, Designer & Founder, Object and Us

Self worth is stepping into true power. Not the power of the ego, but the power of being in your truth. Discerning between the two takes bravery and confrontation. Self worth is being able to take your insides to dinner, even when they are gruesome and far from appetizing. It is knowing that your outsides have no bearing on this internal worth.

 
 
 

 

PART TWO: RELATIONSHIP WITH

Processing the things that both challenge and reinforce our self-worth.  (Above,    Self Worth Set   )

Processing the things that both challenge and reinforce our self-worth. (Above, Self Worth Set)

 

01

CASSIE EBNER / Founder, Palo Santo Studios

I spent much of my life wanting, yet when I received, it was never enough. It seemed like I had been born with a void, an insatiable black hole. I began to search beneath those things, the reason why I wanted them. I set out on a journey to confront and to heal, and there beneath the debris, the pain, the indifference, the confusion; there was my self-worth. I am now living as my authentic self, in my truth, able to love myself and love others wholly in a way I never thought possible.

 

02

LAUREN MCGINTY / Owner, Shop Ergo

Being a small business owner involves considerable personal reflection, motivation, accountability and reward. My sense of self-worth is inextricable from the perceived success of my output.

 

03

NEADA DETERS / Founder, LESSE

When I consider the facts of my body, it reads like a gently easing stock market dip. Weight creeping up, definition fading away, grey hairs entering stage left. But the way my body feels is so incredibly strong and connected — so completely full of me and no one's idea of me that I have felt transformed these past few years. Sometimes an unflattering photo emerges and insecurity rises, but it's a reminder of the misery of living without inner confidence and I go back to my loaf of bread and being okay with skipping that yoga class and life is great again. Will I ever look like I did when 19 again? No, but I would never want to go back there. That me and that life isn't worth the 15 lbs. And mind? Never felt better. I just wish I had felt this at ease with who I am from the beginning.

 

04

DANA COVIT / Writer

Self-worth can be tricky, volatile. My relationship with self-worth is sometimes like a placid lake of deep, subconscious knowing — It just Is; many other times, it's a tumultuous, choppy little beast that requires plenty of gentleness and coaxing. When I'm in nature (especially the desert), the edges of my perceptions of self-worth seem to spread out and soften; if I've been in nature for a few days, I notice they tend to dissolve, receding into the background almost entirely, probably reclaimed by the earth and the plants and the sky.

 

05

DANIELLE ROMERO / Visual Artist, Flora & Form

Through the practice of observing my thoughts, I have been able to detect a few distinct sources of identity formations that have led to these low perceptions of self-worth, and thus begin their unraveling. The work seems never ending really, but each breakthrough brings renewed motivation to continue focusing deeper and deeper within.

 

06

RYAN LOPES / Creative Director & Visual Artist

I feel confident, strong and capable in my body. Comfort is constant and there are shifts that take us out of that sentiment. That is what I am grateful for, the knowing of when something is causing challenge or conflict. I can make change. I make decisions solely for myself— finding myself pleasing others more than I should, too.

 

07

CARLY SMITH / Photographer & Art Director, Dimanche Creative

My self worth is very much tied to my work and creativity. Because I’m an art director and photographer, I am constantly sharing my ideas and perspective which feels infinitely personal. Sometimes it feels impossible not to judge myself based on reactions to a pitch, rates, or the complexity of an idea. I’m also incredibly critical of my work and I frequently compare myself to others on social media. The past two years have been specifically challenging for me and more than ever, my feelings of confidence, strength, insecurity and doubt have been in flux. I’m in the process of learning how to separate my idea of myself from my work, while still making my work personal. It’s been important for me to recognize the moments I feel most stable, the things that bring me comfort and the ways I can recharge.

 

08

DANICA STAMENIC / Owner, Danica Stamenic Vintage

I have always felt confident in my ability to think, absorb knowledge, and make clear creative decisions. I didn’t really start to feel confident or strong in my body until after I had my daughter. I don’t think having a child is at all necessary to ‘find yourself’ or ‘learn to love and appreciate your body,’ but I personally experienced a shift in my self-perception following the experience.

This is hard for me to admit, but so much of my life has been predicated on pleasing others or avoiding conflict. My need to make others feel happy and comfortable has been a blessing and a curse. I’m still learning how to verbalize my own interests and needs without fear of burning bridges. But it’s an absolute necessity for me to preserve my sanity, especially as life gets increasingly complex and busy!

 

09

NEYON / Movement Performance Artist

There are many small acts of kindness I tend to extend to myself in alignment with what self-worth looks and feels like for me. The first act is usually writing. I feel most empowered when I am able to voice what I am feeling, and put it out into the world without the attached feelings of how it is received. Writing is the only space I do not feel heavily critiqued, and can focus more on my own personal mental and emotional development. Everything unfolds for me, as I take the time to really delve into the crevices of my mind. It truly is healing, which in turn feels empowering.

 

10

KAMA KRYSTEL / Editor & Curator, Atelier Å

I’m certainly feeling more confident than I used to when I was younger. I think that working on your confidence and strength should be an ongoing journey so I don’t believe when people say that they feel perfectly well in their bodies and mind all the time. As human beings, we’re in a constant movement so everything can easily fluctuate depending on external factors. I also think that the real strength is to show some vulnerability, sincerity, and openness, which a lot of people are afraid of. Commonly, confidence and strength are associated with the lack of the above but to me, it’s the complete opposite. However, with age, I'm learning that it is important to evaluate with whom you’re exposing yourself which could lead to more damage than good.

 
 
 

 

PART THREE: EXPERIENCE OF

Instances that have caused us to feel either a high or low in our self-worth.

Instances that have caused us to feel either a high or low in our self-worth.

 

 

01

RYAN LOPES / Creative Director & Visual Artist

I experienced a house fire, got fired from a job that opened many doors for my optimism and desires as a creative. Throughout those great losses, at once, I was granted much more. My experiences and relationships grew healthier and stronger. I gained much more than considered lost. I’m sure that was the representation of things happening for a reason.

 
 

02

DANICA STAMENIC / Owner, Danica Stamenic Vintage

Since my shop is so closely tied to me personally, it’s always easy to get discouraged when there’s a slow month, or when someone you respect doesn’t get back to you about a collaboration idea. I’ve developed a much thicker skin in the last year or so, and don’t let these things make me catatonic anymore. I’m trying to be more measured now in how I respond to successes and failures and not dwell in either as much - of course it’s a PRACTICE, I’m not perfect at this.

I was commissioned by a few friends to source their engagement or wedding rings this year. Being entrusted with such an important symbol in their lives helped me step into my confidence and pushed me further into the work I want to pursue, which was such a gift.

 
 

03

NEYON / Movement Performance Artist

I feel more comfortable and stable in my body then I have in some time. It’s taken almost two years to heal from injuries that not only affected my physical body, but my mental. I did not feel strong or connected for a very long time. Everything hurt. I cried a lot. Movement is truly a form of meditation and a way for me to not only express my feelings, but purge them. Being unable to do anything that truly felt good for my body put my mind in a stagnant place. I found new ways to be in my body, through silent meditation, breathing and performance art. I have redirected my attentions and focus on what I am currently capable of instead of feeling completely restricted. It has opened up other parts of myself I had tucked away. I currently feel healthy and have even put on some weight which I am thrilled about. My injuries are healing and I continue to send my body love and appreciation for all that it does for me, daily.

 
 

04

NEADA DETERS / Founder, LESSE

This focus on decisions of the past defining who we are is something I'm moving away from. We all make decisions because, in that moment, it felt right. However we justify it to ourselves and to whatever end it leads us. But the thing is, we are all evolving constantly and a decision made a decade, year, or even hour ago might have been made differently in this moment. Because life is happening and we're influenced, yes, by the people around us, but also each proceeding moment that layers one on top of the other in our lives. But when it comes down to it, I'm really just making decisions for me. And with who I want to be and the impact I want to have on the world in mind.

I was in my early twenties and working a job I didn't like and dating a guy I didn't love in a city I wanted to leave. It was a Tuesday or a Wednesday, some very ordinary day of the week and I was wearing a green skirt suit that my boyfriend at the time hated but I adored, and I was at my desk about to leave to get lunch. Instead, I got in my car and drove to my friend's brother's travel agency office and booked a one-way ticket to New York. I didn't know it at the time but in that moment I recognized my self-worth — that I didn't have to accept an existence that was handed to me and easy to take; I could create my own.

 
 

05

KAMA KRYSTEL / Editor & Curator, Atelier Å

Every time I manage to release the new Å Journal book I feel an utter joy that so many months of hard work have paid off. Since it’s a non-commercial project I need to motivate all of the contributors to work voluntarily. It’s a huge challenge! However, I always do it out of a true passion so that drives my ambition to pursue such challenging projects. Therefore, I think that working on meaningful projects can elevate your self-worth and make you feel empowered in the long run.

 
 

06

MORGAN WAGSTAFF / Owner, Two Fold Clothing

Alopecia has formed a hard relationship with myself. 'Self' is hard to see, really see, in all her glory, splendor, and beauty. Oh that word, ‘beauty’. The depth and complexity I can’t fully understand. 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder' or so they say. With eyes closed and silence screaming louder than any sound ever can, engulfing me with fears and anxieties, self surfaces with rawness and honesty. We stand face to face, guns raised, ready to shoot. The battle of a lifetime.

In the stillness I hear my creator telling me to love and cherish her. To give her everything I wish to receive from others. But how am I to love her when she comes with a hardened heart and clinched fists? She’s hurting from the weight of enough-ness and acceptance. Wants so badly to be wanted that she can’t see that I want her more than anything else in this world. I want her to be fully her own self. To look in the mirror and love the person staring back, not for looks or external features, but for the woman she’s becoming. The need for validation from others will only subside when I can accept her, that mysterious figure staring back at me.

 
 
 

 

PART FOUR: PERSONALLY

A note from the editor.

A note from the editor.

 

 

TIANA PETRULLO / Founder & Editor, Forme & Sens

Living with depression brings surprise moments of illogical negativity and a complete lack of energy. I am fortunate enough to have periods of relief and my low moments eventually subside. The negativity affects every aspect of life and leaves me feeling unhappy with my place in the world. I want to take immediate action but feel incapable and lost without motivation. It's a cycle.

Rationally, I know that I am taking steps in the right direction, but sometimes I can be impatient, wanting everything here and now. I compare myself to friends and peers, wishing that my circumstances were different, questioning how I could ever make things happen for myself. Results are slow. I'm hard on myself – every aspect of my life and who I am, both inside and out. It's work to change these thoughts.

It's relieving to list of all of the things in life that I love that are only mine.

 
 
 

 

PART FIVE: PHYSICALLY

SELF_WORTH_IS
 

 

To bring this conversation into the physical space we partnered with Kye Intimates on an exclusive pairing of her pieces, plus your choice of Transparency Pendant in limited edition Topaz or original Transparent. Meet the Self Worth Set.

From the ethos of both of our brands, this set exemplifies both the importance of externalizing, sharing thoughts in transparency, and bringing a feeling of comfort to you in your body.

 
 
 

 
 

The Forme & Sens journal is curated by Tiana Petrullo in collaboration with a beautiful community of contributors who have offered to share their personal experiences with mental health. To encourage a contribution of the most raw and real experience, minimal guidance has been given. All stories have been willingly shared and written to reflect what is personally most prevalent to the writer. Together we offer knowledge, awareness and acknowledgement.