Something that keeps coming up for me as a mother and an artist: I must be exceptionally discerning as to how I spend my time. I have huge giant consuming passions and responsibilities that compete for my attention. Every minute of every day.
If I misspend too many moments, I run out of time for the people, the work, and the tasks that keep my soul afloat in this dynamic tide of life.
Time is an illusion; we have enough time. It is priorities we often lack. For example, I log on to Facebook more often than I call people, which is unfortunate, a clear case of misplaced priorities. But priorities are not always so easy to place.
I love this blog with its real-time catharsis, yet it falls to the bottom of my priorities. Often I don’t write here because I don’t know what I can say that will bring value to other peoples’ lives. I think I was taught to think like this by a blogging guru. But I was taking advice from the wrong camp: the business man rather than the artist woman.
A wise and well-known writer, Elizabeth Gilbert, recently told me (through her book “Big Magic”) that I don’t need to create for other people. She said, “you are not required to save the world with your creativity… I mean, it is very kind of you to want to help people, but please don’t make it your sole creative motive, because we will feel the weight of your heavy intention, and it will put a strain upon our souls.”
She suggests we make art to save ourselves, or relieve ourselves of a psychic burden, or even for self-entertainment. Which lines up perfectly with my belief that we cannot save other people, we can only save ourselves.
I knew immediately that she was speaking to me, and telling me that it’s okay to create for myself. To write this blog for me, and let it be what it’s wanted to be all along: art rather than advice.
By fully identifying and accepting this motivation, and recognizing that it is an act of self-love and not selfishness, I am more excited about blogging; even when it’s uncomfortable, even when I can’t see the purpose in it, even when I’m not sure if anybody is reading to the end, because sharing is still caring, and I care deeply about this world and everyone in it.
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