Choose Must

When I get fixated on something, it can consume me and I may not emerge for a few days. When I discover someone I don't know much about, so begins an internet stalking frenzy where I try and find out as much as possible. I read their blogs, interviews and websites. Scroll through portfolios, Twitter, Instagram. I watch their talks and buy their books. I order their temporary tattoos and subscribe to their newsletters.

Elle Luna was no different.

Knowing absolutely nothing about her I started to see her name pop up all over the place—Medium, CreativeMornings and The Great Discontent. I actually started the 100 Day Project without realising she was the one backing it this year, a concept that has been around a while now, however has gained a lot of traction with her support. Naturally, when I saw she was just about to release a book based on her insanely popular article from last year, I ordered myself a copy from Amazon.

Choose must.

I read this in one sitting as it's not a large book, but it's message is. It’s about crossroads in your life and how time and time again we choose Should over Must. How sometimes we have no idea what we are doing but we know exactly what we are doing. There are so many lovely little nuggets written, painted, drawn and doodled onto the pages. Of course, much like those who believe in horoscopes, anything can be moulded into your current situation and feel like it's speaking directly to or about you.

I admit this is one of those.

She talks of solitude, something I have gained significant experience in over the last six months. I’ve always liked having my own time and space and find it comforting that I enjoy my own company. While I maintain this is generally a good thing, it’s also the easiest way to isolate and protect yourself from getting hurt. You let the fire that burned inside you fizzle to a mere flame, until you remember the question that set it alight to begin with.

What if?

What if I quit my job? What if I lived in Berlin? What if I booked a one way ticket and just took it a day at a time? And so my Must began, long before I read this book. But like it goes on to tell you, Must is a choice we make every single day, especially when things are tough and every arrow is pointing in the direction of Should.

Standing at the crossroads of Should and Must, we feel the enormous reality of our fears, and this is the moment when many of us decide against following our intuition, turning away from that place where nothing is guaranteed, nothing is known, and everything is possible.

— Elle Luna (2015) The Crossroads of Should and Must. Page 117

If you’re not much of a book worm, you can watch San Francisco’s CreativeMornings talk, which is a condensed version of what is written in the book.

All illustrations property of Elle Luna
Video property of CreativeMornings/SanFrancisco

Gabby Lord