You just want to do your art. You may be a writer, a musician, a potter or creator in any of the fine arts. A strong urge from within is calling you to bring forth a masterpiece or just some evidence of your genuine talent. Yet, you have another life calling, urging you to pay the bills or feed the children or buy a car or all of the above. You do what you have to do as the urge within wanes from lack of attention. Only problem is, it keeps surfacing. It’s like a seed that needs nourishment to sprout and grow. It could eventually wither and die, remembered in times of nostalgic reflection as to what might have been. But no, that’s now how it has to be! There’s still hope, no matter how mired you might be in a life of practical delusion. There must be many ways to stimulate and enliven your artistic passions, but here are some I would consider vital steps toward making your own creative passions grow.
If you’re not active currently in your art of choice, start watering the seed by thought. Imagine what it would be like to be painting or dancing or acting in the theater–whatever your passion. Visualize yourself actually doing it, how good that would feel. See your product with as much clarity as you can muster. Allow excitement to arise and fill you with joyous anticipation. For some, that may amount to something like a feeling of accomplishment.
Let’s say you’ve been somewhat active, but you’re not receiving the payoff you would like. Perhaps you’re not satisfied with what you’ve been able to create. Maybe the Muse hasn’t inspired the kind of objet d’art of which you know you’re capable. Well, visualization can help you, too. It’s all about imagination. Be specific in what you want to achieve or manifest in your work. Let the details blossom in your mind and let your feelings about it all develop.
Schedule Creative Time
It’s vital to work on your art regularly, every day if possible. If you don’t get down to business on this dream of yours when you promise to, you’ll find it easier and easier to let it slip out of your life. I would be willing to wager almost anyone reading this is in that situation now or has been at some time in the past. So, put this self-nourishing activity on your daily calendar, virtually or otherwise and acknowledge it’s firmly in your life. If you can only carve out 15 minutes per day, so be it. You can produce an amazing amount of work in 15 minutes per day, particularly when comparing it to zero minutes per day every day.
It’s one thing to say or think you’re going to do something and another to actually do it. It may seem unnecessary to include this step, but no it’s not. Make good on that promise. Do what you intend to do, especially considering you’re striving to do something you love, to express who you are, to make the world a more wonderful place. Take it from someone who knows. Following through makes you feel better about yourself. Failing to do what you committed to do makes you feel worse about yourself. It’s as simple as that. So, place your body in the exact spot at the exact time as you scheduled and start weaving or photographing or whatever it is you visualize yourself doing.
This may be the least likable of my suggestions, but if you have a distaste for such structured activity in the world of the arts, I plead with you to get over it. Goals, short and long range, provide direction and a measuring stick for your accomplishments. When you set an intention to simply work on your art for a certain amount of time per day, you set a standard you would rather meet than miss and if you take yourself seriously, you’ll do your best to live up to it. When you say you’ll write two blog posts per month and it’s the night of November 30th, you’ll feel a strong inclination to get that second one done before midnight. Thus, you produce. You make works of art and your life is just that much better than before when you merely longed to be an artist.
When you complete a project, allow yourself to enjoy it. You brought an idea into physical existence. Pretty lofty stuff, right? It won’t be perfect, but it will be your own unique expression. That’s enough right there. You can improve on it and maybe uplift others with your art at some point. Try to find the sweet spot between egotistical self-aggrandizement and a humble wish to bring inspiration to others. Your artistic passion is a gift you have been granted. Nourish it and we will all be better for the sustenance you furnish the world.