How to promote yourself while falling apart emotionally.

by | Healing Emotional Wounds, This is me working on my stuff. | 5 comments

Reference photo for future painting. © Sarah Marie Lacy, 2011

Becca (reference photo) © Sarah Marie Lacy, 2011

So I’m just going to out and say it:

Things have not been pretty here at S. M. Lacy Art headquarters the past few weeks.

Quite frankly, I’m sort of falling apart.

I leave for France 2 months today. Which is all kinds of fabulous and terrifying at once. Mostly fabulous. Except for the part where I need lots and lots of money. That part is more towards the terrifying side.

And while this is scary, it’s sort of exhilarating and a challenge at the same time. There’s a part of me that’s all “Yeah! I’m gonna get all $20,000 and more! And send bunches to charity! And be fabulous and change the world! Woo!

This is great. I wish I could live in that headspace. I was there for a few weeks, and it was awesome. I rocked it out. I made $4,000 in 10 days. Life was fabulous.

For the first time, well, ever, I feel really and truly safe. I have discovered my own resourcefulness. I know for a fact that I am independent, self-sufficient and very capable of taking care of myself and making ends meet. I’m certainly making more money than any of my doctors ever predicted (more than $0!).

I’m with a guy who I am madly in love with, and who truly loves me back. I live in a fabulous apartment, in a wonderful city, and have some absolutely delightful friends who I adore. And by God, I’m going to France to study art in a way I’d never dreamed possible for 5 whole freaking months. And I’ve got new businesses brewing and all sorts of opportunities in front of me.

Yep. That is one whole helluva lot of awesome. No denying it. Life is fab.

Unfortunately, because I’m in this incredibly safe space, my brain has decided that now is the time to start resolving some trauma.

It started with the dreams.

About 3 weeks ago, I dreamed that I beat up my ex-boyfriend. The one who was abusive in all sorts of lovely ways. Most of those ways, I’ve dealt with and come to terms with, especially as I mature.

I never dealt with the sexual abuse. I didn’t know how. I spent years in denial and self-blame.

Yesterday, I officially started therapy to begin working through it.

All I have to say is:



So while I’m supposed to be kicking ass and earning big bucks to get my cute butt to France, I’m curled up in a ball in my bed staring at the wall because of the overwhelming grief.

And with the grief comes the memories. Which trigger more grief. Not to mention a crisis of confidence as I’m filled with old feelings of worthlessness, ugliness and humiliation.

This is not exactly how I pictured the next couple of months going.

I know that this is all part of the process. And that I badly need to do this. And that I will feel far, far better when I’ve worked through some of this stuff.

But at the same time – seriously, brain!? Seriously?! Now is the time when you decide that we need to work this out?!


I actually have no idea what I’m going to do. I’m supposed to be in the process of raising $20,000. I’m supposed to be rocking out.

And I can’t.

I just don’t have the emotional energy necessary to sustain the kind of promotion I need to be doing right now. Self promotion is almost impossible from under your duvet.

I need a new plan.

I’m going back to ol’ reliable – baby steps.

A little bit, every day that I feel capable. I might just end up being seriously in debt by the time I get back. That’s a possibility. Not one that I like, but a possibility. The important thing here is that I get to France. If I have to owe several thousand dollars, then that’s just what has to happen.

Someone wise said to me the other day, “It’s gonna take as long as it’s gonna take.”

Can’t argue with the logic of that. If I’m not capable of brilliantly selling myself right now, then I’m just not. I can’t force it. I can’t suddenly make all of this go away.

It’s not ideal, but then life usually isn’t. Honestly, I’m actually better equipped to handle life going horribly wrong than really well. When life goes well, I tend to get edgy.

So I’ll take some time to assess where I am, and come up with an appropriate plan. Maybe that plan is one tweet a day where I mention that I’ve got art for sale and I need to get to France. Maybe it’s mentioning it once in every newsletter. Maybe it’s writing one blog post a week where I talk about a painting I’ve got for sale. Maybe once a week, I mention it on my FB page.

The key here is to keep the steps small, manageable and easy.

For example, I want to tweak some of my sales pages. Normally, I’d tackle them all in one go. Well, that’s not going to work anymore. So maybe I tweak one or two sentences at a time. I take 5 minutes just to read a page through and make one change. Just one.

I just don’t have what it takes to conquer the world right now, and that’s okay too.

The other part of this equation? Asking for help.

Which is actually something I’m terrible at. So part of my plan will be making it easy for others to help. I’ve had tons of offers from people who really want to help out, but have already contributed financially. They want to do more.

So I’ll come up with a plan and I’ll start to implement it. One tiny little tortoise step at a time.

Step one!

I’m gonna be a big brave girl right now and ask you for help. Do you have any thoughts on ways I could promote this that are manageable? Do you have any ideas on how I could make it easy for people to help me?

Have you ever been in a similar position? What did you do that worked for you?

One thing: I don’t want any advice on the healing process – I’ve got my therapist for that and I’m not sharing details for a reason.

But I will take hugs. And cake.

Leave ‘er in the comments. Mwahhh!