As artists, it’s important to value the process but it’s trusting in your art that helps deliver it to world. When I find myself doubting my art, it’s brings me down. I get writers block. I can get overly frustrated while I’m creating so I can’t get it finished. And that’s when creating isn’t fun for me anymore. So, we need to trust our art because it helps us to be confident in what we’re creating. And we need to create because art makes the world go round. So here’s seven ways to trust your art so the world can keep on spinning.
Know your purpose
Once you know why you’re arting, it makes it easier to stay committed to your work. It gives your work a rich touch that’s unique to you. Use your purpose, goals, and values as beacons to get you through the rough patches. There’s a million reasons to quit but you only need one to keep going. Discipline is great. Motivation is great. Determination is great. But none of those things are going to push you through your doubts, your blocks, and whatever else the universe throws at you. Find your purpose and let it destroy all the parts of you that want to quit.
Understand that you’re contribution is valuable
What you have to share is irreplaceable. We are still discovering artists from centuries ago. Just because no one appreciates your work now, doesn’t mean it’s useless. Also you never know who you are inspiring by putting your art out there.
Are you tired of giving more than you getting? Are you straight up miserable in your life? It might be time to cheat on your lovers with yourself.
There comes a time in your life where you have to step back and look at the bigger picture. What is the bigger picture and how do you step back? How do you become an observer? These are questions to ask when you’re feeling like life isn’t going the way you’d like.
When I step back to observe, I like to think about the decisions I make and how they will affect my future. I’m not usually an in the moment fuck up my future type of person. But don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy a little spice here and there. Now that I’m focused on my goals and I’m able to step back and observe, the things that may have fucked up my life in the past have become the things to propel me toward my goals. So how do you look at the bigger picture? First you have to know your goals. What do you want for yourself? What do you want to leave behind? Does any of that matter to you?
When thinking about these things it doesn’t matter how much you fucked up yesterday. All that matters is that in the present you are consistently trying to work toward your future. Working towards a future means a lot of failing until you get there. So, for me, as a writer, it looks like, today I will write 1000 words and I will not sleep until those words are written because I want to write novels for a living. Start making commitments to yourself. Start small and forgive yourself when you miss the mark. Then get back on track.
Another way to look at the big picture is to think about how your choices will affect your environment. Your environment impacts the paths you take to get to your long-term goals. Your environment is impacted by those whose opinion you’d most likely listen to. So, surround yourself with those you respect and support and who would do the same for you, not because you did it for them, but because that’s just who they are. So, you need to build and nurture relationships with those who are interested in you. I’m not talking networking. This is building valuable relationships with people that you’ll miss while they’re away from you. These are the people you invest in on your free time.
And what about those who drive you away from your calling?
It also means staying away from those who drive you away from your calling. Who are they? They are the ones who: ask too much of you even after you say no, don’t support or respect your calling, don’t respect your time, bring you to the point where you’re unable to function properly. Those are the ones you have to love from a distance.
The best way to focus on your goals is to get your goals to weigh heavier than anything else around you.
I had trouble with my temper in the past. Thankfully, with a lot of hard work I’ve learned to control my temper and walk away when I feel myself losing control. But when I’m angry there is no bigger picture. The only thing I can see is the thing that stands in my way. In those moments, I can’t see around it. Even mantras didn’t work for a while because when I reached that point in my anger, the mantras had no weight. They had no meaning. I say this because your bigger picture must weigh heavier than anything else. Your reasons, your values, your disciplines, they have got to be fleshed out so that when something tries to deter you from your goals, you can walk away and feel confident in that decision. And when you start getting confident in yourself, your life is little less miserable. For that moment at least. Then you have to go at it again. You might fail but that’s ok. You’ll get eventually. And your confidence will grow. And you life will become fuller because you’ll start making better choices for yourself and for your future.
I have copy and pasted some different viewpoints on Codependency. Codependency looks normal in a society that sweeps mental health under the carpet. Makes me want to print this out and tape it to my wall for when I feel a bout of reactivity taking over my brain space.
Accodring to Wikipedia, “Codependency is a behavioral condition in a relationship where one person enables another person’s addiction, poor mental health, immaturity, irresponsibility, or under-achievement. Among the core characteristics of codependency is an excessive reliance on other people for approval and a sense of identity.”
According to Psychology Today, “Growing up with an unreliable or unavailable parent means taking on the role of caretaker and/or enabler. A child in this situation puts the parent’s needs first. Dysfunctional families do not acknowledge that problems exist. As a result, its members repress emotions and disregard their own needs to focus on the needs of the unavailable parent(s). When the “parentified” child becomes an adult, he or she repeats the same dynamic in their adult relationships.”
According to PositivePsychology.com, “The main consequence of codependency is that “[c]odependents, busy taking care of others, forget to take care of themselves, resulting in a disturbance of identity development” (Knudson & Terrell, 2012).
20 Signs Of Codependency (Via PositivePsychology.com)
What does codependency actually look like? Some of the things that have been found to correlate with codependency include (Marks et al., 2012):
Unconditional love is an act worth living and dying for.
Yesterday, I posted something on Instagram but archived it because I wrote, my love is only for those who can face me with the truth.That is such a false statement and doesn’t describe my philosophy in any way. I act in love no matter what is going on outside of me or inside of someone else. Another person’s journey shouldn’t limit my ability to show love. I want to act in love no matter what.
What this means to me
My opinion is that love comes down to action. It’s not some theoretical abstract concept for me. It is knowing and understanding that we are all learning. We are all either acting out or healing from past wounds. We are all trying to survive and for some, survival requires a robotic lifestyle that doesn’t allow much thought. Let me make this clear, I absolutely do not belittle this behavior or mindset. I understand survival is innate and some of us are simply trying to live another day. I accept this. I listen. I use my own past mindset as a tool to empathize with the survival mindset. Loving unconditionally for me means showing acceptance to myself and others no matter where we are in life.
What this doesn’t mean to me
My desire to love unconditionally absolutely does not mean I will allow unhealed wounds to destroy my space. One of the most beautiful acts of love is stopping toxic behaviors. Whether that means loving myself enough to step away or owning up to and apologizing for a toxic behavior of my own. I understand why you are toxic. I understand that you are not ready to heal. I understand what you’re healing from regardless if you tell me with your words or actions. But what you are not going to do is manipulate me and treat me of little value. I will step away from manipulating words that have yet to be backed up with actions. You may choose to live that way and I can smile at you and hug you, but a line will be drawn once you attempt to limit me into submission. Not gunna happen.
The only way love can last a lifetime is if it’s unconditional. The truth is this: love is not determined by the one being loved but rather by the one choosing to love.
― Stephen Kendrick, The Love Dare
I am going to continue learning to love myself and others unconditionally. How does it look to work on unconditional love?
1. working on my values so my character has something to fall in line with.
2. knowing and understanding myself
3. challenging my own limiting behaviors and beliefs
4. learning to value myself and my space
5. spending time alone
6. finding different ways to encourage myself
8. find ways to hold myself accountable
9. tell the truth
Doing these things for yourself is doing it for others. It helps after doing it for yourself because when you mindlessly limit yourself, you will unintentionally limit others. When you mindfully accept yourself, you mindfully accept others. These steps toward unconditional love listed above help you to bring your limiting beliefs and behaviors into a more concrete thinking space, or in other words, into awareness.
These actions are easy to suggest and write down but putting these into action is only a small piece of the hard part. When you begin to work towards unconditional love, it’s going to irritate the few who don’t feel they deserve it for themselves and they will automatically reflect that self-limiting belief on you, acting as if you also don’t deserve unconditional love. This is a lie. You deserve unconditional love for yourself.
Then there’s going to be a few who see your ability to love unconditionally and it will cause a ripple of acceptance, and what else has anybody ever wanted in their life?
There are things that should be handled directly. And then there are things like flirting, that have a casual build up. I think it’s ok to be indirect with a sweet smile when you’re flirting. Because most times it takes so many words in order to really process what a problem is. It takes a focused conversation. It takes patience. So, I like to think of flirting as an escape from needing to be articulate and that it just makes a suggestion in few simple words.
I might just like you, Ms. Johnson.
It’s vague, seductive, sends the point home, not articulate at all, but does its job. This is in my opinion an acceptable form of flirting. If you really Ms. Johnson, of course. If you don’t, well, that’s manipulating.
I grew up as a dreamer in a single-family home. I wasn’t that different from my peers. However, most TV shows depicted two parent families or co-parenting which involved parents that were separated but did whatever they had to do to make it work out. The sad thoughts that come with the idea that someone that should want you like they do on TV, starts young. It’s not an obvious thing. The TV parenting style sat in the back of my mind while the humor was in the forefront. But at bedtime right before I’d fall asleep, I’d wonder why no dad would fight that hard to be in my life. Why no man at that point would do anything to ensure that I grew up with a mom and a dad.
That’s a glimpse of where my abandonment issues began. Everyone has at least a small dose of abandonment issues in their blood because people leaving us high and dry is a part of life. Some may have lost a loved one from death, some from a heartbreak, or some from losing their best friends when they got into high school. Loss isn’t easy on anyone and it looks different for everyone.
Yes, sad sad, but I grew up and slowly began to understand
It is not the consciousness of man that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness.
Do you think your status affects your consciousness, does your consciousness come from above, or somewhere between these two?
I read the quote above today and decided to share it with my Instagram family before I did my research. I wanted to know what people’s opinions were before I started digging in.
What does the quote mean?
Well, Karl Marx was a materialist who, unlike his teacher Hegel who was an idealist and believed in spiritual forces, [Marx] believed that consciousness came from social ranking. So, he believes that if you’re in a lower class that determines one form of consciousness verses being in the upper class which determines a different form of consciousness.
I don’t believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive. — Joseph Campbell
I have spent far too long waiting for my life to finally begin.
We are going to die, and I refuse to live one more minute of my life keeping my mouth shut in order not to ruffle any feathers. If my mouth ruffles your feathers, get out of the way because this mouth isn’t going to close. I’m going to say exactly how I feel. I’m going to explain why I’m upset. I’m going to walk away from the things that try to make me smaller than I was when I woke up. I’m not hiding my voice anymore.
Joseph Campbell said,
The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure.
I’m going to say yes to being alive. I’m going to dive headfirst out of a plane in the sky. I’m going to approach the tough topics no one else wants to talk about. I’m not just going to approach them I’m going to rip those topics out of everyone’s minds and place them front and center so they have nothing else to look at but the ugly truth.
Being alive for me means walking down as many paths as I can. Finding as many stories as I can. And bringing people along with me here and there for the ride. We’re here, on this flying rock together, but most of the searching is done alone. My only interests in life are for my own growth, to admire the growth of others, and to do it all with as much hard work and enjoyment at possible.
I sign off with words from the great Hunter Thompson,
I vividly remember when I finished reading Charlotte’s Web in fourth grade. I cried when Charlotte died. Her loss left me in a strange place where I was contemplating death for days. I also remember the day my grandmother died. These two experiences are not the same. The loss of Charlotte did not prepare me for the loss of my grandmother. There is no book that can prepare you for some life experiences.
Literature supports in experiences we are going through or have gone through. When I thought of death without the real life experience of losing someone, the understanding felt distant. It was something foreign to me that I wanted to grasp without gaining it through my own experience. I was left with a world full of uncertainty and hugged my mom a little tighter after reading it.
Trying to prepare someone for a new experience is like describing what an orange tastes like to someone who’s never tasted an orange. We can explain how to eat it and that the peel isn’t the good part. We can even tell them the juicy fruity part is on the inside, but we can’t tell them if they will enjoy it or how much they will enjoy it. They may even find a different way to eat it than we taught them. That’s how I feel about literature. It can explain what to do and give some insight on how to do it, but an individual can not be prepared for how they will feel in new experiences using literature.
I do believe seeing how characters react to an experience can suggest the right thing to do and it may even give some insight on how someone else is feeling. I don’t think literature can prepare us for how we will feel going through our own life experiences. I do feel it can help readers learn to use understanding and empathy toward someone else’s experience by seeing the world from another characters point of view.