Growing up, we often hear the phrase “follow your heart.” In today’s post, let’s think about the things we do that make our hearts fill with happiness.
When I started my art business, this was something I had to unfortunately realize and learn to cope with. I realized that I loved making art, but it was difficult for me to monetize my art because it was a form of self-expression. It was hard to work on customizable projects, I felt restricted in my creative expression. It’s led to long periods of no art-making, pure avoidance on my part due to it feeling like an obligation rather than a source of enjoyment.
It was during these dry-inspiration times that I found what art meant to me, art is self-discovery. Referencing Andy J. Pizza’s The Creative Pep Talk, he talks about two modes of creativity: strategic and exploratory. With communications my mode of creativity can be strategic, I can plan and start from a number of ideas while working my way towards a point. Like an inverted triangle. There is a destination, a result, maybe not a correct answer but there’s an answer. With art, fine arts at least, my creativity flourishes in exploration. I love the idea of expanding, starting somewhere, anywhere, and turning an idea into more than…
I’m not very surprised that this is how I perceive art. My favorite part of creating through drawing/painting/crafting has always been the surprise. The astonishing realization that, “omg, I made that!” Even if the creation is a failed attempt at something. And when I’m in my zone, the world disappears – time and space seem to work only for me.
We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.John Keating played by Robin Williams, Dead Poets Society
When I think about art, John Keating’s message about poetry from the film, Dead Poets Society, always pops in my head. To elaborate, the things that call to us are usually what keeps us going. It’s the simple things we love doing that makes life worth living. When it calls, we feel it deep in our bones, it’s an embrace to our soul and it feels like home.
The times have been tough, making time for sustainable efforts to cultivate joy and love in our lives has never been more important. Joy and love are so significant, the lack of or abundance of it can affect us internally. Which then affect our lives externally in how we interact with others, our attitude, and many other areas. In the past few months, I’ve made time to work on my mental well-being through avid reading. One of the books I read was The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck and I read it with the intention to understand myself and my relationship with others. And I am so grateful for this opportunity, to have the resources and support I need to focus on areas I need to improve on.
Recently, I started creating again 🙂 just talking about it makes me so happy! This process has been exploratory and most importantly, for fun. Just a week or two ago, I bought a set of polymer clay – a medium I have no experience with – and just started discovering how I can interact with it. As we start nearing the holidays, it also got me thinking about gift-giving ideas for my loved ones. And surprisingly, I have some ideas of art I can sell because for the first time, I’m in the right mindset for it.
I know how easy it is to get stuck in a thought, I am still learning how to get myself out of it and have set methods to help pull me out. Activities that bring me to the present help the most. For me, it’s getting my hands busy with creating. And so this brings me to this…
I implore you to do the following:
1. Reflect on the last time you did something that made your heart feel giddy
2. What were you doing – writing, reading, art-making, volunteering?
3. Do you have the means to take at least five minutes to do it when you read this?
And I hope you do, I hope that you make room in your life to do the little things that bring you joy and love because you deserve it. You deserve at least five minutes doing something for yourself, to better yourself.
Thank you for reading, if you would like to share your answer for #2, please comment or email me privately! It would be amazing to hear what inspires you!
Follow me on Social Media for more content: @thejessmariem on everything.