What is "High Vibe" anyway?
In my most recent IGTV video I talk about movement and how important movement is for me to stay grounded and aligned with my most authentic self. It is the absolute most necessary step in setting a healthy environment for my higher self to thrive. Even more important at its root than creating via painting or drawing. Crazy right? Not really. Sometimes when we stay so connected to the ether and in our heads with ideas and mind-centered rabbit holes of inspiration, we get swept into the current of concept and completely forget to ground. If we follow those concepts straight to creation without skipping a beat, we forget to pee and even forget to eat sometimes.
I used to live for those extreme tidal waves of inspiration. But the more that I move towards making this my full time job, the more I am seeing how freaking important it is to balance and ground. Those crack-out sessions of creativity often made me feel super low energy and anxiety ridden- even though I’ll have spent like 14 hours in a row working and supposedly was being “so productive.” At my worst, I’d forget to grocery shop, wouldn’t cook a meal in like a week, and lived on last minute Sonic/Taco Bell/McDonalds. I mean it can get HORRIBLE, people. And while yes, I have so many new paintings started and drawings and write ups that come out of it, somehow, none of that makes me really happy. Because by the time it’s all said and done, I need about two days of not doing anything but cleaning and cooking and stretching to bring me back to life.
So, I’ve started to really tune in. What is it that makes me feel amazing? What is it that makes me feel healthy, and energetic, and like a total boss?
I mean, we can never have FULL and total control of a situation. And while in order for true Magic to happen, we are required to relinquish some control and embrace the Water within us, we DO have a say in how we show up in the first place. We can lay the groundwork so that as we flow and move through the gentle and more treacherous passages in life, we are firmly grounded in our most authentic and rooted self. This can definitely be tough sometimes, and as Pisces I tend to get carried away by the current before waking up and realizing where I’m headed. But becoming consciously aware of how I am setting my environment makes it easier for me to navigate my day as efficiently and effectively as possible. For me this happens through a body conscious practice of movement.
We have been given these great, beautiful vessels. Before all else, we must remember to honor the very thing that carries your creativity and ability to make something out of nothing. A healthy movement practice is a necessity in how I set a “high-vibe” environment for myself.
In a recent video on the WitchyPreneurs Membership Program that I’m apart of, Shawn Engel denotes how she sets a high-vibe environment for herself in order to operate at her healthiest and happiest. For her, this can range from weight lifting to eating more veggies, morning gratitude rituals, meditating with her legs up against a wall and doing deeper cleansing work like writing down negative thoughts and then tearing them up and literally flushing them down the toilet. By raising our vibes and thoughts, we attract the things into our lives that match them in frequency.
In another podcast that I recently tuned into called Yes Please Podcast, Hannah McKeel Young discusses how by saying “Yes!” to all of the things in life that make you feel genuinely good, you have the power to ultimately manifest your dream life. Rather than staying centered on just the hustle and grind, Hannah talks about the importance of shaping your lifestyle to fit YOU rather than the other way around.
This conversation about becoming our most aligned selves and raising our vibration is literally EVERYWHERE and I am so happy that more women (and men too!) are becoming conscious of how we can shape our reality by choosing what we let into our lives, environment, and routine.
Now, for the fun part. I know there is some disparity (is that the right word here? You know what I mean) around the whole high vibe/low vibe thing- best worded by Virginia Mason Richardson in an Instagram post from August 22 -
“High/low vibe ideology creates a false dichotomy between high and low, good and bad. It takes fake science and uses it to make certain people feel better about themselves while shaming other people It also has a nasty tendency of causing people to repress their true experiences in order to convince themselves that they’re all love and light and HIGH VIBE.”
I have definitely been guilty of throwing that around (with best intentions), and Virginia’s post made me stop and think about it. It made me analyze how I see myself when I think of “high vibe” or “low vibe.” Such language has worked its way into my daily understanding of myself- like I can honestly say when I’ve lived off of Takis and energy drinks I definitely did not feel what one may call “high-vibe.” Similarly, when I’m really grounded, cooking, and keeping up with laundry I truly do feel more in control and on top of things, like I can handle anything that is thrown my way, and like I am truly in sync with my higher self. I have definitely used high vs low to divide how I feel about certain things that do or do not serve me. The two biggest examples that come to mind right away are 1) spending too much time on my phone or social media which leads to physical headache/eye ache, insecurity and negative self image, and 2) eating really good, fresh food and spending an hour each morning working out. Those are probably my two most extreme influencers when it comes to feeling “high vibe.” Or simply put, how I feel.
Sometimes, however, using such defining terms can serve negatively to elevate one group of people while demonizing another. And it’s true- when we create those barriers and division we tend to create divisions between our very selves, sometimes pushing our Shadows right back into the dark, and this can get sticky. It’s like, me saying “Kimmy is the low-vibe version of me” gives the illusion that she is this dark, yucky aspect that crawls around the underbelly of town, when really her emotions range from jealousy and low self esteem to a whole slew of fun but maybe poorly-thought-through plans as well as overly naive and friendly behaviour towards the wrong people. (Yes, I named my Shadow after Kimmy Gibbler from Full House because...well, lovable yet annoying.)
When we draw lines and distinctions, like high vs low, we do draw those very lines right through ourselves and through the very truth that we are all connected, all little mirrors of each other. We are all made of the same beautiful life force channeled into and through a billion different bodies, as many fleshy and blood-filled vessels full of thoughts and emotions and ideas as there are cosmic particles in the galaxy and celestial beings in the Universe. We are good and we are bad. We are life and we are death. We are balance. And that is necessary to know if you ever want to love yourself fully and heal and grow beyond go-to divisions that let you only showcase your best side.
So to me, when I use a phrase like “high-vibe”, what I mean by this isn’t the exclusion of anything that is not only the most positive aspects of myself. It’s more about embracing actions and routines that allow your full being to thrive and grow. It’s what I need in order to set the stage for my highest self to radiate, and for my everyday self to come into full alignment with that version of myself. A “high-vibe” environment is a space I set for myself to nurture all sides of myself, including my Shadow.
This is why movement is SUCH a key factor to creating this sort of environment (Side note: In my super fast dyslexic typing, I totally accidentally wrote “SUCH a key factor to creating shit” as my fingers tried to write “this” and I thought that was such a perfect happening. There are no coincidences! Movement is so necessary for me to create shit!). Movement allows me to show up exactly as I am each morning and work through all the sloth, heaviness, anxieties and block. I start out slow and sometimes lazy, and by the end I’ve sweat and moved and shaken and jumped all of the negativity out. But the end I am red-hot and freaking radiant with all of the energy that has been released and the power that has been stirred in my root chakra. So far it is the only ritual I’m realizing that I need to keep and grow, and if I stay with that then the other things also fall into place- a healthy eating routine, writing, painting, other rituals that make me feel aligned, and especially connecting with others. Giving myself that space to just exist as I am and work through built up energetic blocks through movement allows me to show up to everything else in my life the best way that I possibly can.
So follow what feels good!! Make time to do those things first and foremost REGARDLESS of anything else on your to-do list. Like a fellow Earth goddess, friend and my trainer/ HIIT inspo forever, Lauren Bentley, of Move to Connect told me a couple weeks ago when I was feeling stagnant and disconnected in my movement practice, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” So there ya go, vibes, cups, love and all.
Below are photos from a shoot styled and photographed by Alexandria Black with a disposable camera. Concept was the separate personalities we sometimes assign to our higher and lower selves.
Both are fucking majestic. Your Shadow isn’t your enemy. Your Shadow is you. It’s a part of you for a reason. Forever trying to protect you from getting hurt, helping you maybe take the easy way out, confirming your fears because it doesn’t want you trying new things and getting burned. Or maybe it wants to encourage a rash and spontaneous approach for fear that if you don’t do something now we never will. Its timing isn’t always great, and it does tend to act out of Fear. But. We need to accept and embrace both in order to continue moving forward in the most authentic way we can. What are you afraid of and how can you overcome it? Take a look analytically- see both sides of the form. Maybe sometimes we need to try something new and get hurt in order to grow and step more truly into the most aligned, highest version of ourselves. If we never try or fail, we never learn from those mistakes.