It’s always a great joy for me to feature my clients, the magical women they are and the truly amazing gifts they bring to the world. The deep and talented Helen Yee was a part of this summer’s Circe’s Circle and wow, does this woman rock it out! May her story inspire you to pursue your creative dreams with boldness and imagination. And if you’d like to do that with similar support, registration for fall’s session Circe’s Circleis now open. Jamie
What are you creating in the world?
A few months ago, a friend pointed out a painting in a window to me. It was a beautiful statement on a small canvas which said: “To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.” I looked it up later — it was written by Henry David Thoreau. I am interested in creating art that is beautiful to experience and hopefully changes something within the audience. It might make someone feel something, or see something in a new way. I want to create art that affects the quality of the day.
How did Circe’s Circle help?
I have so many interests that it’s impossible to decide on one, so I’m looking for ways to bring it all together, to create a more integrated life of art, or art of life. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to be focused and feel like I’m making progress, so I came to Circe’s Circle looking to concentrate on creating a body of work. My intention was to more fully enter my power as a performer (musician/multi-form performing artist), expand my experience in composing, and make progress on creating a body of work and putting it out in the world.
Being in the circle helped me see that pursuing my creative dreams is a natural part of my life. It gave me new ways to look at some of our shared challenges: gremlins, honoring our own creative energy rhythms and cycles, knowing what we value and making choices that honor those values, and learning to trust our own inner messages. There’s power in sharing. I loved that in the circle we could inspire one another, cheer each other on, offer ideas and celebrate achievements. On my own I tend to forget to celebrate achievements, as I’m always looking toward the next thing I need to do, but taking time in the circle to let achievements sink in helped me believe in myself and see that I’m really moving forward.
Through participating in Circe’s Circle, what did you learn about yourself?
I have a habit of downplaying my strengths and feeling stuck because I lack this skill or that quality, but I learned that in reality I’ve got plenty of resources to bring to creating the life I dream of. One major “aha” moment was realizing a long-held pattern of “waiting for permission” was holding me back, and even making me miserable because it violated seven of my top ten values. Talk about not being yourself! Trying out its opposite, I found my thoughts and creative ideas were welcomed and I simply felt greater ease in being able to put things out there without bottling them up. I’d been hiding my power, but now there’s no turning back. So often, social fears can keep us from offering more and getting more in life. I learned that claiming my own magnificence can be powerful and inspiring to others, while hiding my light stifles the possibility of offering more positive energy and gifts to the world.
What would you like to celebrate?
The magic of Circe’s Circle! During our ten weeks together I was finally able to fully acknowledge and appreciate the body of work I’ve already produced, create new work in collaboration with others, and begin the journey of creating more work on my own. Miraculously, an opportunity to be profiled by an independent television program surfaced, giving me a great excuse to look back at my creative life and let those past artistic achievements truly sink in. Also, I co-composed music for a play mounted at the New York Fringe Fest, another opportunity that also magically surfaced after joining the circle. During the weeks of rehearsal and collaborative creation I had a chance to practice what we talked about each week in the circle, and ultimately the play’s success also gave me some solid evidence I could use to battle those nasty gremlins lurking in my head. During this period I also entered a new creative world, performing for the first time as more than a musician – combining improvised movement, spoken word, throat singing and violin playing in a duet with the inspiring Mark Lamb. I’m celebrating much more than I’d expected to!
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I’m optimistic about moving forward, making more art and creating the life I’ve dreamed of. Circe’s Circle has given me a huge boost in self-confidence. It has already helped me create more powerfully and I just feel in my bones that I’m more prepared for any new opportunities and challenges in my journey. Jamie has created a wonderful, nurturing, safe and powerful place for helping dreams come to life. I’d definitely recommend it.