True Artistic Freedom

I am free to think
wonderful thoughts.
I move beyond past
limitations into freedom. I am now
becoming all that
I am created to be.

-Louise Hay

 

How have your holidays been?

As the ball approaches dropping in a few days, how you you feeling about 2018?
Specifically, how are you feeling about your Art?

The holidays can be a time of great intensification.  Whatever we are dealing with, can be magnified under the bright lights and holiday frenzy.

While we crave rest most at this time of year, we are usually running around endlessly trying to cram in, and take advantage of the season.

I remember coming home from college and literally passing out as soon as I got to my bed, the build up of exams, not sleeping, and trying to get everything done before the break.

The break…..

So vital in the course of a college career.

And something I have come to deeply respect as a mature Artist.

The place of confusion I feel I was in for so long, was what I DID WITH that break.

There’s the cards, the gifts, the parties, the travel….the family gatherings.  Depending on our dynamics, being with family can be deeply connecting, or horribly triggering. Either way, it’s a lot for the system.

As Artists, we tend to feel very deeply.  Many of us are more sensitive, and empathic.

I spent many holidays, especially POST holidays, sick.

My body literally gave out.

And this year was no different.

I was at dinner with my family, the day after Christmas, and could feel my energy dropping.  I ate about half my dinner and my appetite just stopped. They all finished, and I took my dinner with me to the living room with the full intention of finishing it….

But I couldn’t keep my eyes open, and soon fell asleep.

I woke up just about 15 minutes later, and felt really nauseous.  We all had the same dinner, and they weren’t showing any symptoms.  The TV was loud, and I wasn’t sure if I was going to be sick or not, so I came upstairs, closed the door, and curled into a ball.

And closed my eyes.

I really felt low….unsure…..and this is where I did something I NEVER did when I was a college student.

I said,
This too.

I hate being sick, especially nausea. And as a child I suffered from migraines, strange rashes, and many other odd ailments.  For so long, I fought what was arising.

But I had a feeling underneath all of this; the feeling my body was shutting down TO heal.

As I lay there, I could feel the EDGE of,
I can’t get sick right now!
I’m traveling in a few days!
WHY is this happening??

And in the space of all of this, I simply said,
This too.

An hour later, the nausea passed, and that night I slept solid with vibrant dreams.

And when I woke in the morning, I felt ready for my day.  I was able to be present for my family, had energy again, and was inspired to create.

Is this what you want?

 

When you look back at 2017 and your Art, how do you feel?

When you stack up your challenges, your failures, and your frustrations, how much are they impacting you moving forward?

We all have our breaking points.  We all have the moments when our body says,
ENOUGH!

But, as Artists, it’s vital what we are doing in that space.  Even more so, how we are treating ourselves in that space.

It’s such an easy choice to just disconnect, and make the choice NOT to feel, and beat ourselves up in the process.

But, if we keep disconnecting, we are robbing ourselves of truly regenerating.  And the reason regenerating is so important is simple:

We are the conduit FOR our Art.

For some of us, our actual bodies ARE our Art, and for others, it’s our hands, feet, and minds that create the Art.  Either way, we need to be nourished and fed to create. This is especially important to attract our audience.

We can’t be empty inside, and create a strong raving audience.

And what’s most important is knowing the starting point, a vital step BEFORE freedom, especially the kind that Louise Hay speaks about….

Acceptance.

This too.

Within our Artistic journeys, we will hit walls.
We will become overwhelmed.
We will be in high pressure situations that test us.

And we will experience the intensity of the holidays, year after year.

Your choice,
Your FREEDOM comes in HOW you approach it, and what you make it mean.

Acceptance is always the first step, and when the overwhelm hits, take a moment, and don’t fight.

Accept what has occurred this past year, and know you are not TIED to your history.

You are not tied to the nausea, the fatigue, and fear.

Change is constant.

This is a new day, one that has never been lived before.
This is a new year, one that YOU have never lived before.

So, if this is true…….what is possible for you?

 

I am free to think
wonderful thoughts.
I move beyond past
limitations into freedom. I am now
becoming all that
I am created to be.

3….2…..1…….

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Clearing 2016

bookshelf-jar-of-miracles

2016…..are you over yet?

I have heard this phrase repeatedly this past week from the PTSD people are still feeling from the election to the slew of celebrity deaths that have left all creatives just staring at the ball saying,

DROP ALREADY!

And yet, this week, even in the midst of taking in losing such icons as George Michael, Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, I found myself staring at something quite new.

Open Space and hope.

But it took me getting rid of something…actually two things to feel this.

Two things, that took me four years to fully let go of.

 

In front of me, a sheet, with two columns, listing every item in the apartment, in my home.

Or what was my home.

The words keep blurring as I look at the list, my mind still in shock and my eyes red from crying.

Who knew I had the capacity to cry every day?

Who knew I was going to have to split everything directly down the middle…..

In front of me a list, and for these two items, it was pretty easy to decide how to split.

Two bookcases, one to each,
Two cd towers, one to each.

And so it is.

 

When I moved into my new apartment post divorce back in 2013, I had anxiety about bringing furniture from my married home.  How was this energy for healing?

But my parents had also brought up family pieces from my grandparents, and these pieces brought a great balance to the space.

And I liked these two pieces.

Didn’t I?

 

Over time, I watched the bookcase become more and more crowded, and the cd tower a joke, as all my music was digital.  Yes, I had a huge library of music, but no disc player, and in front of me every day, this tall piece that felt so out of date.

I thought, maybe I can us the cd tower for something else?

And then did nothing, and let it sit….taking up space.

Have you done this?

 

Last month, while I was in Hawaii, I was getting a ride to the airport with the brilliant Christa O’Leary who is a feng shui expert, and actually services the royal British family.  I asked if she had any advice for ways I could clear my space and she said,

It’s good you have been away from your apartment for a bit.  When you return home, leave your bags at the door, and then enter your home.  See if anything feels off, then you will know what needs to go. And just out of curiosity, is there anything that comes to mind right now?

Oh yes…..

Two bookcases, one to each
Two cd towers, one to each

Taking up space, harboring my past.

And then it all came flooding in, as it wasn’t the pieces themselves..it was the last memory associated with them.

And a story poured out of me in Christa’s car…..both of these pieces were handmade by my ex father in law.  I was very close to him. He was a second father to me, and I thought for sure in the face of the divorce, he would fight for me, that he would pull his son aside and say what a mistake he was making.

Little did I know.

I told the story of calling him, in the midst of the storm to beg him to help me, and his resounding answer…

NO.

And Christa said to me,

Even if it’s subconscious, that energy is still playing out in your space. 

NO.  This is not what I wanted. 

I want a space of forgiveness, I want a space of creativity, I want a space to grow and create the life I desire.

And sure enough, when I walked back into my apartment, after being gone for three weeks in November, it was crystal clear.  I felt like the cd tower was screaming,

TIME TO GO!

 

So, as it was three and a half years ago, when my parents moved me into this apartment, they helped me move OUT these two pieces.

Two bookcases…..now just two
Two cd towers….new owners

No more divide.

All those cds?  I began to slowly import what wasn’t in my iTunes and donated to my local library.

And the bookcase?  It was replaced with a new one that actually could hold my new life, my booming business, and my library of scores, scripts, and fiction.

I placed items onto the new shelves, beaming with the space, beaming with this huge step.

The last thing I placed on the shelf was a glass jar I had with a colorful blue sticker that read,

A Jar For Collecting Everyday Miracles

Inside….small white pieces of paper that had been folded over this past year, of moments I felt were small miracles.

I picked up a small empty piece of paper, and wrote simply in blue ink,

Got rid of the bookshelf and cd tower

I then folded it in thirds, placed it inside, and put the jar on it’s new shelf.

Out my window, I looked at both pieces of furniture lying sideways on the cement sidewalk,  their wooden frames in repose.

And then I turned around within my home, to see what lay in their wake.

Space…sweet space.
My God…what a difference.

 

We can’t change the past.  And what we hold on to can be subtle, even sneaky.

It could even be a piece of furniture. It really depends of the story you have lying underneath.

If you are truly desiring to make a difference and turn 2016 into an incredible 2017, then there is really only one question to ask,

What are you holding on to?

Take a moment, and take a breath.  Look around and ask if what you are surrounding yourself is keeping you rooted in the past of your failures and smallness…..

And instead ask what will help you GROW.

We create in space, not in constriction.  We need to feel the freedom of possibility.

You may have taken a beating this past year, but now you have the chance to rise above the divide.

Now you have the chance for collecting Everyday Miracles.

So, who’s with me?

3, 2, 1 HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!