The virus never left us, and is back stronger en spreading faster then in march…
Our politicians choose economy and productivity over well being. We’re going in “half-confinement” : culture and leisure are closed but we’re “allowed” to work and to shop to keep the economy going. Asd if life were only about economy. So the rich are still getting more rich. And the poor are getting more poor…. We live in a culture that measures our worth as a human being by our productivity. The one that brings in the most money to the company earns most. Not the one that has the hardest job. Or why do our nurses have such a low salary compared to other people that have a less hard job? Bringing only productivity forward takes away our capacity for JOY and wonder that make a life worth living.
I try to “choose joy”, to follow the beautiful 14th learning from 14 years of “Brainpickings” by Maria Popova:
“14. Choose joy. Choose it like a child chooses the shoe to put on the right foot, the crayon to paint a sky. Choose it at first consciously, effortfully, pressing against the weight of a world heavy with reasons for sorrow, restless with need for action. Feel the sorrow, take the action, but keep pressing the weight of joy against it all, until it becomes mindless, automated, like gravity pulling the stream down its course; until it becomes an inner law of nature. “
Play and Joy as an antidote to Resistance
I got this very interesting and important question by mail from Rob I want to talk about, because it’s something a lot of people struggle with:
“(…) However I am still struggling. The most important reason is that I can’t seem to start. I enjoy landscapes but seem to have difficulty starting, knowing what to include and what to leave out. (…). I can look at pictures for ages, literary hours on end, without even putting pen to paper, always thinking that I either can’t do it, or not knowing how to start. Probably just excuses like not having time, or all the other ‘valid’ reasons people don’t start. Thanks a lot for your blog. I’ll keep reading it until inspiration hits me and I will finally start and never stop.”
It’s what Steven Pressfield in “The War of Art” calls Resistance: Resistance is self-doubt, vanity, fear, and self-sabotage.
I grab a book and read. I escape in the words… That’s also resistance.
The resistance is the inner critic, the voice in the back of our head telling us to back off, be careful, don’t show up, don’t make a fool of yourself, go slow, compromise…. The resistance is writer’s block, the resistance is what prevented you staying an artist when you grew up.
I found this great article about Picasso on Intuition, How Creativity Works, and Where Ideas Come From on Maria Popova’s great website :
“To know what you’re going to draw, you have to begin drawing.”
Amen to that! It’s the only way to conquer resistance: just grab your pen and start the work !
“I don’t have a clue where my ideas come from”, says Picasso. “Ideas are simply starting points. I can rarely set them down as they come to my mind. As soon as I start to work, others well up in my pen. To know what you’re going to draw, you have to begin drawing… ”
Ideas and inspiration will come, but they have to find you working hard!
Neil Gaiman is also a great stimulation:
In his speech about making good art he says: You have to accept failure. The problems of failure, discouragement, hunger,… are hard to deal with and can be paralyzing. They’re hard. But “If you are not making mistakes, you’re not taking enough risks.”
Make a drawing everyday, even if it’s only a 5-minute sketch: all small work will make you progress and all small work is the start of a bigger one!
When you choose JOY you get rid of resistance and fear: fear of making a bad drawing, fear of judgment of others, fear of not being able to draw this or that, fear of missing out the important details, fear of making a fool of myself… That’s when you’ll be able to get into the beautiful peak state of inspiration, to make a great drawing. And most important you’ll be able to PLAY ! Are you playing enough? How does it feel for your creativity? When are you most free to play?
We might even let go of our ego and laugh about ourselves…
I’m adding this video to give you ideas of how you could play : try new techniques and new colors, a new way of drawing ? Alternate drawing and painting like I do in this video ?
When playing, your left rational side of your brain will stop worrying about making a bad drawing. You’ll be able to enter a creative flow and relax !
What are your tricks to overcome Resistance?
Tell me in the comments below, as it can help a lot of people
And finally I want to share again this beautiful text with you from Leslie Dwight:
“What if 2020 isn’t cancelled?
What if 2020 is the year we’ve been waiting for?
A year so uncomfortable, so painful, so scary, so raw –
That it finally forces us to grow.
A year that screams so loud, finally awakening us from ignorant slumber.
A year we finally accept the need for change.
Declare change. Work for change. Become the change.
A year we finally band together, instead of pushing each other further apart.
2020 isn’t cancelled, but rather
the most important year of them all.”
Please take good care of yourself !
Protect yourself and protect others.
Let’s all take good care of each other and help each other and spread love.