Updated: May 30, 2019
I decided to start doing posts about women who inspire me - since they're everywhere. I feel like, as women, we've been taught, trained and conditioned to put other women down, rather than lifting each other up. As someone who has considered herself a "feminist" for over a decade, I've recently had some feelings about what that word actually means and whether or not it's still "for me".
Without diving too deep into the F-word (I'll save that for a separate post), I decided it doesn't matter what we call ourselves. What matters is the work we actually do. Regardless of what it might mean to be a feminist in 2019, I know what it means to be a good person. A decent human. A caring, inclusive, open-minded individual. And with that, I'm choosing to highlight a different woman each week who inspires me with the work they're doing.
Social media is an integral part of our lives - and has had a bigger impact on our world than we probably ever could have imagined. I had a love-hate relationship with it for a while, but I've decided it's here to stay, so I might as well find the good. And the good I've found? Well, connecting with other creatives that we might not ever meet IRL. People who are like-minded (or completely different) that we wouldn't have had a chance to ever meet, had it not been for social media.
To believe that we can really be effective in life - that we can take risks and create and share more of ourselves - we have to dissolve the structures that say we can't.
Reprogramming our hearts, minds and spirits with acts of self-love, self-trust and self-authority, allows us to be the kind of solid people that can lead, teach, activate and inspire.
We accelerate our healing process when we do it in #community. We can go further together than we can alone. In our ever-changing and evolving realizations, we return to our edges with greater consciousness, more tools and resources, and greater awareness to go deeper than we could have before.
With that, I'm very excited to introduce my very first #wcw to you all:
First up, ALEX (@sun_poured on Instagram).
Alex focuses on self-love, positivity and shining a light on the stigmas associated with mental health by encouraging people to talk about their issues in a safe space, rather than try to battle everything on their own. She does most of her work through an art medium, which you can check out by visiting her account, @sun_poured.
Alex, 22, just recently graduated from the University of Kansas with an illustration degree. She is engaged and currently planning her wedding, which will take place in July. Her hometown roots are based in Amarillo, TX - where she discovered her greatest passion for creating, where she became comfortable in her own skin, and learned the importance of being gentle with your words. Her passions include:
Creating art that reminds people of the truths we often forget,
taking photos of moments she never wants to forget, basking in the sun, and looking for the next coolest brewery.
"There are so many incredible bloggers out there, there’s so much to look at nowadays - and with that being so fun and great, it can take a toll on how we view ourselves. It doesn’t seem fair to compare our bad days to the highlight reels of someone else’s life. I wanted my page to remind my followers they are not alone, we all have our struggles and we can be joyful while working through this."
What role does #SelfCare play in YOUR life?
For Alex, it's about her own life being far from perfect. Yet, here she is, embracing her life for what it is and creating with "way too much yellow".
There’s so much darkness in this world and being a light is my biggest priority. Because there is so much good in this world and sometimes, we just need someone to remind us.
Isn't that the truth? Alex struggled with anxiety all throughout high school, but like most of us, thought it only meant she was a little "crazy".
"I have always been a very positive person; however, I struggled with the bad thoughts that filled my head from time to time. I did not understand how I could be so happy, yet so sad at the same time and I did not understand how my joy could be present, but I [still] felt so strange so often."
"I started taking my mental health seriously about three years ago and I haven’t looked back since. This is not what I am, but it’s a big part of who I am and I am proud of each part of myself - even the yuckiest ones."
Alex's work has been featured on accounts like The Financial Diet and has been posted by Hello Giggles. Her work has also found its way all across the internet and Pinterest, being re-posted by bloggers (particularly her custom pieces, which are made-to-order).
If you'd like to inquire about a custom piece, you can visit her site, Sun Poured, and reach out via her 'contact' form. You can also send her a DM on Instagram :)
You can also find some amazing "lock screens", which are kept in the highlights section in Alex's stories. Take a screenshot and add it to your wallpaper on your phone. My personal favorite is the "Take It Easy" design. See them all here.
"Sharing my progress while creating art is the perfect place for me to be. I am not entirely sure where Sun Poured will end up, but I am hopeful for the conversations it will start and the many phone screens it will pass through, reminding people they are good, they are enough, they are valid, and there is happiness on the way."
I hope you enjoy Alex's work as much as I do. I hope you'll visit her account to see what she's currently working on. Feel free to repost your favorites, but be sure to tag her (@sun_poured) if you do share to ensure she receives the credit she deserves!