Secret 5 - Committing to Self-Focus
from the 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women:
This chapter is a doozy, isn't it?
How in the world do we commit to self focus when there are children, husbands, parents, friends, work colleagues, all who want our listening ear, our helping hand, our sympathy and TIME?
It is a constant, constant thing with me to work at keeping my boundaries - my three kids are still at home (ages 13, 19 and 23) and my husband works long long hours. So of course, I have lots of caretaking to do.
But I, very slowly and with much much struggle, have been learning to do what I need to do - I have a studio separate from my house, I do very very little housework or cooking (sadly - because I love a clean house and a beautiful home-cooked meal, but I love nurturing my own artistic voice more).
I have people who need me, and I do what I have to do to help them, but I have to be very very careful to not make that circle larger than I can handle.
and I take myself to the studio and do the work.
I don't get money for it.
I don't get a lot of praise for it.
My family doesn't always even understand why I am in the studio.
but I am doing what I feel called to do.
and let's not even start with the pressure to earn money . . . .
It's taken me a long long time to get here, but I am so glad I am here.
and it still is work every day to make sure I stay here - there is so much guilt about not doing more for my family, friends, all the others in my life. . . .
and I have just come off of a two weeks of solitude retreat - I managed it by doing a dog sitting favor for my brother - and it was awesome.
So I know there are creative ways to get what we need - I am learning to have clear intention with my goals, and not let the many many demands on my time eat away at those intentions.
I loved that bio pic about Frida Kahlo - she did her art. Through illness and relationship tragedy, she just did her art. Her body failed, but she did her art.
I use her example to quiet that nagging voice that asks "What the hell are you doing messing around with collage and paint? There is REAL work out there to be done."
To that voice I say:
WHAT WOULD FRIDA DO?
so I dedicate this journal page to Frida:
"I am the co-creator. I am my own authority." --Gretchen Little