that's what I had to do as I read this chapter.
you see, I have had numerous, (dare I say countless?) rejections in this artistic career.
Way more rejections that what the world would call successes.
My success is that I am here, in the studio, doing this work that I believe in despite what the world does (or does not bother) to tell me.
On page 57, the challenge is to list all the times you have felt rejected - ouch ouch ouch.
I just don't believe this to be a useful practice.
I have been at this long enough that I know my reasons for going forward, and the reasons the world keeps me from going forward are NOT what I need to list and stew on.
So I reject that advice.
I know this path is not swift or easy, I know this path is not going to be rewarded heavily, if at all, in this one short life, yet I still believe in what I am doing.
I still believe that my work means something to the fabric of life, even if I am not payed to do it, and I reject the idea that I have to join the machine just in order to get it into the marketplace.
The weird thing about those creative types who get to write these books, is that they have achieved some level of success or they wouldn't be writing the book!
So I take their advice on rejection with a grain of salt.
A dear friend and talented writer who went to a writer's workshop was told this, and brace yourselves:
"If you want to be a writer, the first thing to do is either have another way to support yourself, or marry someone who will support you."
That might sound like really depressing advice, but maybe it is the best idea ever -- to know our work is not going to be MONETARILY successful means we are freed up to make it have its own unique and powerful voice outside the pressures of the marketplace.
I do have to teach workshops and do graphics work to make some money, but that is SEPARATE from the art I do for my inner voice to be heard.
I will keep at it, and I won't let anyone's definition of rejection influence how successful I feel (or don't feel.)
and today instead of a journal page - I share with you my ritual candles - I light these in the studio whenever I am painting and they remind me of the sacredness of this work.
They SHINE for me and if the world of money wants one day to shine on me, too, I will accept payment, but for now, that is not the reason I do this work.
"Learn to eat rejection – it will make you stronger." --Bob Ragland