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The Artist Way- Chapter 10 and 11- Recovering a sense of self protection and a sense of autonomy

I cannot believe that the 12 chapter experience is almost over.  After Chapter 10, I was starting to get worried that I would get to the end of this journey and have nothing to show for  it.  i have often heard it say that some of the biggest changes in life are subtle and not readily noticeable. With that in mind, because I have introduced the desire to recover a sense of creativity in my life, the actions towards that desire has already set off a chain of events that will in fact benefit my highest good, whether I feel it now or later does not matter. It is in process, and I just need to trust the process as a good friend reminds me often.

Chapter 10 had me looking at the blocks that sabotage my creative flow.  It had me setting boundaries as to what I will allow and won’t allow into my life. Then it had me surrendering to all of it. I think the most important less that I took away from this chapter was the gift and blessing of self approval. The freedom from tying my self worth to another person’s validation of who I am. It is interesting as I completed this chapter, the federal government was shutdown from a lack of consensus in Congress. This has a direct impact on me in that I am a federal employee deemed to be nonessential.  Now, if I was basing my self approval on my employer’s determination that I am nonessential, then I allow another entity to set out my worth. Well, what I have learned is that I may be powerless of what others think about me, I am empowered as to my own belief about myself.  And when I am joyfully creative and expanding my talents then I am free to explore all that is within me.  The lesson is that I must learn to approve of myself and show up for the work.  My favorite part of Chapter 10 is the list of all the things that I love: velvet, any color, makeup from MAC, spa days with friends, coffee frappucino lite, gratitude, ruby red slippers, beautiful dresses, Ann Taylor and White House and Black Market, kisses from my kids, kisses from my dogs and so much more!!!

Chapter 11 is all about the ways to accept ourselves and nurture ourselves as artists.  Being true and authentic to the artist within following through with the need to create what your spirit intends to create.  It means surrounding yourself with people who support your inner artist.  It all talks about your dreams and how important it is to follow them regardless of how others perceive them or you. God made us all creative and we need to honor that as it is naturally expressed by each one of us.  And, it reminds us that to be the best artist we can be we need to use the artist’s tools, the morning pages and the artist date, to keep fueling the fire.  It also encourages to exercise to let the creativity flow through. Walking, running, swimming, moving, dancing- it is all a part of the creative process to keep the flow.  And then my favorite suggestion that comes with this chapter is to establish an artist’s altar. A place where we can center ourselves and awaken our senses.  By establishing rituals through whatever speaks to my soul, I get to stir up the creativity within!!!  So I will pull out my incense, set up my totem and repeat my mantra that I am a creative being destined to live out a magnificent creative purpose in this life.  And just go with that! Of all the amazing tasks for this week, the one’s I will be sure to do is to write myself an encouraging letter to keep me moving towards my creative destiny and my 6 month plan.  And of course the one week plan of daily nurturing!

So, as the second day of the furlough ends and it is mid week for Chapter 11, I have a lot to think about and towards the home stretch of this experience- I will make a conscious decision to surrender to the creative flow and trust the process.  And stand back and smile as I am grateful that I took the leap to act to nurture whatever comes through me. I wonder what my artist’s date will be this week- any suggestions????

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