To begin the month I was asked to forgive myself and forgive myself for all my previous failures. I think in the last 10 years or so, I have been able to do this and so pretty much breezed past this section. Although, I did complete the exercise at the end of the first week, because I thought it seemed pretty cathartic:
Take a pencil and mark on a piece of paper a line for each of your failures throughout your life (perceived or real). One by one erase the lines while forgiving yourself for each one. As you do this, admit that maybe this one was a failure and let yourself move on from it. Learn and grow from your failures.The next several weeks were filled with more forgiveness. Forgiving myself completely then forgiving others. By the third week I was ready to wrestle all my demons for one final time. It was here that the mission of the book and my creative journey all made sense. The way to being an everyday creative isn’t bound by learning artistic techniques and skills but rather by manifesting your potential as a creator. Just this slight difference made all the sense to me.
With that epiphany I was ready to move forward with my challenge. The exercise that accompanied this week is meant to have a cleansing effect. The cleansing effect, however, is to improve not your studio space or even an actual physical space but rather your self-talk. I find the concept of cognitive behavior therapy techniques so fascinating and so powerful, which is why this exercise really resonated with me. It asked me to consciously pay attention to my self-talk, and if I heard that it was saying something negative about creating that I was to respond to it with a casual, “How dare you say that.” Just that brief shift in thinking was enough for me to see how my thoughts were affecting my creating. And at the end of each evening, when I thought about the day and my negative slips, I just forgave myself.
By the end of the month, I had stepped into my humanness and forgiven myself and others, who may have interfered with my creative journey in the past. Plus, I learned some skills that would get me through the rest of my journey. So much so that I coasted through the last couple weeks on deflating your ego (I hardly have one!) and boredom (I am too busy for that!) instead anticipating to “Be Mindful” for next month’s challenge.