I've hit a road block. We all do, and don't pretend like you haven't yet. Whether in love, our studies, our careers, our friendships, a blockage tends to occur somewhere down the line. I've found myself graduating from college (or university for you Brits out there) last May and not finishing out the way I once had anticipated from my elementary years. You assume the best outcome, not the most realistic, and trudge forward with as much desire inside of you until you've overcooked your hard-work to the point of drying yourself out. I've become a bit over-dried. As an undergraduate I had it all: room & board, getting cast in our main-stage productions (regardless of how wonderful or not they were), a meal plan, parent's practically throwing money in my direction (which you'll later learn is an issue), and too much social time; getting to the point, I've lost myself creatively in the process.
Many of us wish we were half as creative as those we look up to. Many of us wish we were more creative. Many of us instinctively know that we are these kindred, artistic spirits just looking for an outlet. I'm currently eluded by my ambitions and have yet to reap the benefits. I have many creative longings I have yet to endure, but that's where this blog come's in. I'm hungering for more and there's no quick fix. In order to expand my creativity, I've taken advice from other artists and have made a smart purchase: The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. For 7-10 hours a week I will be giving into my higher creativity by choosing to follow the yellow brick road down to rediscovering what I love about my art. I hold the keys to my own process and need to discover what triggers me into surrendering myself. I'm going to struggle with some of the exercises, I'm sure, but with pushing past my ego and bargaining with myself I will push to my ultimate level of higher learning; probably more education than I got out of most of my liberal arts courses, all Pace-rs would agree. I pledge not to abandon this process and to give into a new sense of self. Since I have ample amount of time on my plate, now with my beau back in Pennsylvania and very little money to spare on a good time out, I'm vowing to make a social standstill (not 100%, maybe just...in-between 50 and 75%) and take a risk. Isn't that what life is about? Risks? Trial and error? Choosing to eat that last bite of cheesecake or jumping into a new lease? Well, I'm taking that bite and getting that new apartment, at the same time.
Julia Cameron points out in her introduction, "Many of us find that we have squandered our own creative energies by investing disproportionately in the lives, hopes, dreams, and plans of others." Fact. We grieve or gain jealousy of other's success and have little time to pat ourselves on the back or put that gold star on the fridge due to other's successes; I'm not the only one at fault, we've all has the green-eyed (or one-eyed...potato po-tat-o) monster on our shoulder from time to time. We are allowed mourn in order to effectively recover, artistically. "We must allow the bolt of pain to strike us." Cameron points out, "How do you know if you are creatively blocked Jealousy is an excellent cue." Denial is too, sister. "Are there artist's whom you resent?" That's a given. "Do you tell yourself 'I could do that, if only...'" Maybe. Do you tell yourself that if only you took your creative potential seriously, you might..." Great a list.
-Stop telling yourself it's too late.
-Stop waiting until you make enough money to do something you'd really love.
-Stop telling yourself, "It's just my ego" whenever you yearn for a more creative life.
-Stop telling yourself that dreams don't matter, that they are only dreams and that you should be more sensible. ----Very Disney, but it's true.
-Stop fearing that your family and friends would think you crazy.
-Stop telling yourself that creativity is a luxury and that you should be grateful for what you've got.
Ultimately this guide through my own self-discovery will bring out emotions of fear, angst, excitement, frustration, fear, joy, and hope. So warning to those in my life who come across me on a bad day, just let me have that bad day and I'll let you have your day of peace. I'm just looking to find myself...
Only this time, creatively.