The Artist’s Way of Breaking Rules
This post is week III of the book The Artist’s Way – A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron
Have you ever started something and gave it up because, in the end, it didn’t suit your needs? I have. There was one time when I enrolled in a college course in accounting. Because of the “perfect” nature of numbers and grinding calculations, I gave up the course, not being able keep up with all math. Accounting, is a sport in itself, and I was losing fast.. I needed room to breathe, and this course was strangling me.
Many moons ago, I joined a gym with my friend. I received a “training plan” from the trainer and in ultimately tried to follow it to a tee. As the weeks went on I found myself unmotivated to go, yet before giving up, I told my friend if we continue, I am only doing the workouts I like. So I did, and I stayed longer than anticipated. We eventually stopped going to that gym for cleanliness reasons, however, I would have quit if I didn’t adapt my training program to my desires. I think my success in getting fit really dependes on how I looked at it. Thus…
Quitting was and is NOT an option!
I tend to quit things, I have given up so many projects, ideas, loves, and creations. Commitment to self was never number 1 in my book. However, this year I’ve learned to really pay attention to details. To listen to my needs, wants and desires.
“What I am really saying is that we need to be willing to let our intuition guide us, and then be willing to follow that guidance directly and fearlessly”. – Shakti Gawain
Last week in Taking The Artist’s Way Out – The Date , I discussed taking myself out to the church and how I tailored it to suit me, in order to feel comfortable. This week, I did the same. I decided, that with this 12 week program I am going to let my muse take me to where it wants to go….
… I found it in a 4-year-old.. my muse that is.
Making date commitments is really important in this program, and I am trying to stay true to this part. However, as I never made it wayside the river with my pencil and sketch pad, I did make it to a Canada Day Celebration I will always remember.
As I stated last week, dates are supposed to be alone, a time for me to be with myself and my creations. Yet, my day on July 1st just screamed “artist date” although my daughter and her friend accompanied me. Something magical happened. I met this little girl. She was bright, fancy, graceful, and oh so dainty. I admired the way she moved her fingers as if everything she touched was fragile and special. She most softly grasped my heart.
“The most potent muse of all is our own inner child” ~ Stephen Nachmanovitch
Lily, the brilliant child of a friend of mine, was loving Journey blare Don’t Stop Believing from the speakers ahead of us, and she was moving her little bottom to the music. I couldn’t help but want to dance with her. Her enthusiasm exuded joy, and I was brought back to the little girl who used to dance in front of her TV to Beatles songs.
Here Comes The Sun, and I say: Its alright!
For most of my evening, Lily was my date, yet most importantly she danced not with me, but with little 4-year-old Kim who missed this magical playful time. Kimmy, as I will call her, took Lily’s hands and as they spun around. They jumped up and down, and totally rocked the soccer field grass they were dancing on, way better than anyone there (ok maybe not but feels good to write it). We waved our arms, shook our bums, and screamed yay, woo and yippee! In the end, when the music stopped, Lily, secretly moved over towards me, and most gently grabbed my hand. What I felt in that moment was pure love. She looked up at me with her soft brown eyes and I knew I made a friend… Oh how I love the unconditional love of children.
I officially declared THIS MOMENT my Artist Date.
How could I not?
It is obvious, due to many factors, the act of tailoring these dates to my needs, is, in fact very important. Not only will the adjustments I make help me get to the end of the 12 weeks, it will help to enjoy the process of the trip I am taking.. As I was saying to my accountability partner Leslee Horner on our weekly “Check In” Skype chat: ”I think it is important to find those moments in our week that we can consider our Artist Dates.” I certainly declared “war” on conformity right then and there.
Julia Cameron is right when she states: “Your artist is a child. Time with a parent matters more than monies spent.”
I think Canada Day, even though I was accompanied by a 4-year-old (my daughter did go her own way at one a point), is a good example of spending time with my inner child. Thus, I broke the rules a little.
In the future, I know most of my dates will be by myself, however, I will not let “sponteneity” ruin my Artist life, if something comes up which I consider a date with myself.. It will be.
Breaking the rules IS what life is all about! (to an extent).
Which in turn opens the door to week 3 of The Artist’s Way: Recovering a Sense of Power
Accepting imperfection is a very powerful feeling in itself. The willingness to let go and let the muse take over in any creation allows for freedom of expression. Allowing for feedback, dealing with criticism, anger, seeking growth, and doing the detective work to find what triggers block us, is part of this week’s journey.
So, hang on to your proverbial hats, fan your fans, and break the ice! It is time to discover:
“There is vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost”
°~° Martha Graham
What rules do you love to break? How are you nurturing your “inner artist” this week? Don’t forget, a comment allows you an entry to the:
You can win fabulous prizes.
Contest ends Friday July 6th 2012 at 11:59PM EST