Posts tagged #matthew stillman

Living in the Gift Interview Series: Matthew Stillman - Part 1


This is the first part of me (Carolyn Elliott) interviewing problem-solver extraordinaire Matthew Stillman of about creativity and living in our genius with grace.

I asked Matt to tell us about his radically generous experiment wherein he sits in Union Square and helps folks solve problems.

I also asked him an ever-thorny question: how do we make a living while living in the gift?

We touched upon Jesus' far-out injunctions, Charles Eisenstein's gift business model and the importance of getting in touch with our own inner greedy stock broker.

An illuminating and wonderful time. Part 2 coming soon.

Please excuse any awkward cuts. I kind of suck at iMovie right now.




Dead poets + Peace pilgrim + Bare Songs

(Pssssst! Whenever I send out a new letter I also post an old one here on this blog.  As you can see, I send out three marvelous gems culled from the oceanic interwebs with each letter, along with updates. If you want the gems hot and fresh, you have to join the list by clicking here.)  

Hello wanderer through the universe,


The end of October always has an ominous feel to it. I offer you a strategy for meeting that feeling of autumnal dread which involves listening to weird twentieth century poetry, trying to surrender all self-centeredness, and a handful of home-recorded songs.


The Gems


John Berryman reading from Dream Songs


With Dream Songs, John Berryman set out to write a series of poems that would rival Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass (regarded by many as the greatest American poetry). Whitman's poems are written in the first-person-- they're expansive, and while they speak of mysteries, they are never obtuse. Berryman's Dream Songs are written in the third-person, about a character named "Henry" who seems in many ways identical to Berryman himself. The Dream Songs are cramped and often obtuse, as they range unpredictably through various registers of diction-- everything from Shakespearean epithets to black-face vaudeville slang.


This video features the wild-looking Berryman himself reading reading "There Sat, Once, a Thing on Henry's Heart." For all the strangeness of the language and the jarring pace of Berryman's delivery, I find the performance to be immensely comforting-- and the final line to be revelatory.


Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work in Her Own Words


While researching gift economies, I came across this book by Peace Pilgrim. Peace Pilgrim was an ordinary woman living in New England who one day left her home and began walking across the country with very little money and only the clothes on her body. She sought to carry the message that we could create outer peace in the world through first creating inner peace in ourselves, as she herself had done.


On her walk, she often received hospitality from kind people, but she often also slept out in the cold and rain, and ate only berries that she found in the woods. She delighted, though, in this life and said she felt very loved and protected by God.


Peace, as her friends affectionately called her, spoke often wherever she went to share her message. After her death her friends collected her writing into a book-length volume, which is available for free online.


This week I've been feeling especially inspired by Peace and her principled decision to release all attachment to her own comfort in order to call attention to truth. I'm hungry for the kind of inner peace she speaks of having.


Bare Songs - a petit album from yours truly


I don't play any musical instruments. But I do sing and make up songs. I couldn't seem to work out a collaboration with my music- playing friends. So I went ahead and just recorded myself singing my songs. And now I offer them to you.




I had the rich pleasure of talking on the phone to Matthew Stillman of Stillman Says the other day. He creatively solved a few problems for me (which is at least one of his talents) without even trying. Now I'm reading his eye-opening book on the spiritual dimensions of improv comedy, A Funny Thing Happened at Mt. Sinai.



I recommend for your own rich pleasure that you check out Mr. Stillman and his book.


If you'd like to talk with me about any old thing, please don't hesitate to send me an email.

Love! Carolyn

Getting Started with Digital Entrepreneurship - for Artists and Other Fluffy Types


Why? Because most jobs just suck.


I'm heavily disillusioned with the world of jobs and bosses and the general lack of dignity afforded to wage slaves. Most of my friends are, too.  This means that we're often broke because we refuse to work for people and companies we can't stand.


So we've started talking about entrepreneurship.


Don't get me wrong. I'm no unqualified fan of capitalism (especially the globalized corporatism that we have now).  I'm thrilled with the Occupy Wall Street movement and plan to stay for the long haul with Occupy Pittsburgh.  I look forward with high hopes to us one day having a sacred economy and I offer a lot of what I do as free gifts (Talk to Me - Gift Economy Style).  But I do however recognize that I need to make money. Without having a boss.


How to Succeed in Business By.... Really Trying


So I plan to launch my book Awesome Your Life: The Artist's Antidote to Suffering Genius later this year via this website. I'm inspired by all the success stories and great resources I've found around the web, and I'm eager to share these stories and resources with my friends.  I guess I've become something of an digital entrepreneurship evangelist.


So here's what's helping me:


The Business Goddess eCourse by Goddess Leonie Allan

As you may have noticed, I'm kind of fluffy.  I needed someone equally fluffy to explain online business stuff to me.  Goddess Leonie makes her living online offering lovely hand-illustrated creativity guides and she happens to dress in flowy velvety dresses.  So I felt like she might be on the same wavelength.  Boy, was I right.


In the Business Goddess eCourse Leonie breaks down all the technical stuff that just plain mystified me (how to set up a shopping cart; how to receive payments via pay pal; how to create digital products; how to get the word out).  And she does it all with such guileless kindness! Click here to view more details - this'll take you to the Business Goddess eCourse page


Dave Navarro's Online Business Tool Box


The online product launch coach, Dave Navarro, recently decided to take a break from the interwebs.  As a parting gift, he made available an incredible resource-- ALL of his programs (which formerly cost 100's of dollars) for FREE!


Sadly, Dave is not very fluffy and does not dress in long flowy velvet dresses.  His style is rather more gruff.  He has a kind of "grab 'em by the balls and sell 'em stuff" attitude which doesn't completely vibe with me.  But he offers really great in-depth information, so we'll forgive the hyperbolic guy stuff.


As a caveat, I don't know if I would have been able to grasp all the technical stuff in Dave's free offering first if I hadn't already taken Goddess Leonie's course.  But you might be a bit savvier than me.


Here are just a few of the (ball-grabbing) courses you'll find in the Toolbox:

Creating Products That Sell

Building a Responsive List

Becoming a Big Player in Your Niche


Click here to view more details - this'll take you to the Launch Coach Online Toolbox


The Middle Finger Project by Ash Ambirge


I may have said it before, but I'll say it again: I love Ash Ambirge. A lot of what you really need to get started as an entrepreneur is attitude and willfulness and Ash has plenty of it to spare.


The Middle Finger Project is a blog that wakes you up and gives you a swift stiletto kick.


The title of her brilliant book, You Don't Need a Job, You Need Guts rings through my head about five times a day, each time I consider giving up.  I'll catch myself looking at "help wanted" sign and I'll think to myself, "Hey, Carolyn-- you don't need a job, you need guts." And then I smile and feel much better.  Because I just feel in my heart that it's true.


Click here to visit Ash Ambirge - This'll take you the page for You Don't Need a Job, You Need guts


In Conclusion


I hope you find these resources as useful as I have.  I'll be sure to keep you posted about my own entrepreneurial progress.  Right now, I'm working on increasing the readership of this here blog.  So if you like it-- tell your friends!


Also-- be sure to sign up for the weekly Genius Updates letter below.  I send it out every Thursday with 3 incredibly rad FREE gems that I find during my web surfs (fantastic whole books, video series, and albums that are... FREE) and updates & offers concerning Awesome Your Life.


Here's where I brag: last night no less a personage than the urban shaman of Union Square in NYC, Matthew Stillman, told me the letter was "brilliant."  So. Maybe you'll like it, too.


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