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 Letter no. 10 — December 2022

Editor's Note

Dear reader,

I am many people and so are you. I'm a father, a husband, a son, and brother, a boy, a man, a friend, a neighbour, a photographer, a painter, an actor, a designer, a musician, a consultant, a teacher, a colleague, an ex-colleague, an ex. I'm good in some roles, not so good in others, and terrible at some, but this is who I am.

However, I can take it a bit far. I even dress differently, depending on the ‘hat’ I’m wearing. My musician persona dresses differently than my consultant persona. Arne ‘the street photographer' wears a different jacket than Arne the ‘father buying groceries.’ I think it helps me step into the role, believe in myself and mute my inner editor. You know, the voice in your head continuously criticising what you do. 

The best thing I’ve ever discovered is how to neutralise this negative inner chatter. At one point I had an experience that made me realise that no one really knows what they are doing. We are all insecure beings just doing the best we can. 

This has been a liberating thought. I am just messing about and so is everyone else. Some people are just better at hiding this.

So, how many ‘personas’ do you have? Do you listen to your inner editor? I’d love to know. 

In the meantime, enjoy our newsletter.

Warm regards,

Arne

This newsletter is brought to you by the Blue Sky Republic's Editorial Team: 
Arne van Oosterom, Maarten Jurriaanse, Pak Chiu, Hope Seidman, Morgan Duta, Wouter Smeets, Kylie HoffmanYvonne Wen and Mimp Jiamton.

"The Story of Morgan Duta" 

Morgan Duta is Arne's guest for this episode and they have a lot to talk about. Covered topics: When are we allowed to call ourselves an Artist? What if we are wired differently, and what if trying to fit in gives us anxiety? 
Listen to the podcast

"Self-image" 

Article by Maarten Jurriaanse
My biggest change in self-image occurred during a personal leadership training that I was following about a decade ago. I signed up for this intense, 3-day training because career wise, I was somewhat lost. I was running a modestly successful company, enjoying my warm family, and had just completed a master’s degree, but was struggling to find a new direction. Looking back, it seems I was entrenched in the frame of my identity being defined by my professional accomplishments — and more importantly; how these compared to others...
Read Maarten's personal journey

"Discovery of Self-Empowerment (2018)" 

Project by Mimp Jiamton

Tackling body image stigma and self-confidence, in 2018, Mimp created a fictional narrative where she went through a simulated training routine of a Korean pop star and became part of a girl group she idolised as a teenager, whilst learning to not conform to industry beauty standards and making her own definition. She then directed and released one of their songs "Genie" in her own version, tweaking lyrics from a love song to promote women empowerment and self-love, with the hope to encourage more positive messages among other women, young girls and herself. The music video shows the behind-the-scenes of this project, as well as Mimp's journey in regaining self-confidence.

Watch the Music Video

"My identity is a superpower - not an obstacle" 

TED talk by America Ferrera

Hollywood needs to stop resisting what the world actually looks like, says actor, director and activist America Ferrera. Tracing the contours of her career, she calls for more authentic representation of different cultures in media - and a shift in how we tell our stories. "Presence creates possibility," she says. "Who we see thriving in the world teaches us how to see ourselves, how to think about our own value, how to dream about our futures."
Watch the TED talk

"Little White Lie

Directed by Lacey Schwartz

Lacey Schwartz grew up convinced she was white. She has copper skin, black curls, and full lips - features which distinguish her instantly from her Jewish parents. But it wasn't until she was 18 that she learned the truth: her real father was black. Eight years in the making and put together by Lacey herself, Little White Lie tells the compelling story of an uncomfortable, unacknowledged truth.

Discover the documentary

"When a DNA test shatters your identity

Article by Sarah Zhang

Catherine St Clair who is 56 years old, found out through AncestryDNA's customer-service rep that she only shared enough DNA with her brother to be a half-sibling. She also didn't match any family members on her father's side and figured her biological father must be someone else. The DNA test recast her entire life. Whilst processing this shocking discovery and wanting to find those who went through similar experiences, St Clair created a Facebook community with now more than 1000 members and founded a non-profit with the aim to help others find their biological families.

Read this article

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