The Artist's Way
My raw and emotional journey down a spiritual path of my creative self.
The Artist's Way is a spiritual journey to your inner creative self. By doing the exercises and tasks in the workbook, I have gotten in touch with my inner creative self. It is time to let the inner creative self out into the sunlight and shine.
This is my personal experience working The Artist's Way workbook, results may vary.
Do you let other people into your inner world? Do you accept compliments or brush them off with a negative comment? Everyone has a public persona, a family persona, and their inner persona. The inner persona is where the work begins with The Artist's Way. Do you care enough about yourself to look deep within, even to the darkest corners, and allow yourself to let go and heal?
I wasn't sure if I cared enough. I was so used to being stuck and comfortable even though it was self-destructive. My self-destructiveness manifests in many ways but the end results keep me stuck where I am with the false sense of security. I had years of resentment built up. I had perceptions of others within my family that I had for years, not seeing them for who they are now. I stayed stuck in distant relationships, not allowing people to get too close, keeping a self-made wall that I could run behind when scared. I wouldn't allow others to love me. I would brush it off and say, if you only knew me you wouldn't love me. I didn't love myself enough to let myself feel the joy and intimacy of love.
I rationalized that it would be difficult to dig deep at my age, and why change now? I came up with excuses to stay miserable, stay stuck, and not allow my inner creative self to shine. I wasn't good enough, I don't deserve it, etc. The fear of change, growth, and knowing the results kept me behind my self-made wall. The results of fulfilling relationships, accepting love from others ( really letting it in), and being content in life were the results I was afraid of. I didn't know how to do that.
I desperately needed The Artist's Way in all areas of my life. I desperately wanted to change.
I was an adolescent and family counselor, went to school for it, and even got a master's in nonprofit. I had become the do as I say, not as I do. I told myself doctors don't operate on themselves and I don't need The Artist's Way self-help workbook, it wouldn't be useful to counsel myself. Unbeknownst to me, that's exactly what I needed. Years ago, close to 30, I came across The Artist's Way and thought it would be useful for my clients, not me. I did peruse the book and did some of the exercises, however, due to mistaken beliefs and where I was at in that stage of my life, I skipped over most of the exercises and tasks and selectively did what was comfortable. It was useful for you, not me.
I have heard when you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, you will do what's necessary to change. I was exhausted. I was sick and tired of the same scenarios creeping into all my relationships with the common denominator being me. I was sick and tired of pulling people close only to push them away. I was sick and tired of being aware of all these behaviors and cyclical patterns and having misery and loneliness as my payoff. In the counseling world, we call that dysfunctional.
I had taken on so many layers of protection, like an onion, it was time to peel away each one and allow my inner creative self to shine. I started and haven't looked back. My fear of connecting, being loved, giving love was coming to an end. I have been stating affirmations on a regular basis for years but not letting them past the surface. It was time to get clean and clear from within. It was time to let my creative self out.
I also have heard, that when you're ready, the teacher will appear. The Artist's Way workbook was suggested by a friend and I couldn't say no. As I said, I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. It was time to work The Artist's Way workbook. The interesting part is that there are a few people that I know from a business group working The Artist's Way workbook too. I say that because I being behind my wall in the beginning thought, how nice and grr, they gonna want to share.
I started chapter 1 determined to be brutally honest with myself, dig deep, and not share any of it. As I continued, I realized I needed support and to share the process I was going through. I just finished chapter 5 and hosted a Twitter (x) space all about The Artist's Way. Onboard60 Real Talk Twitter (X) space was now Onboard60 The Artist's Way Space.
How did I get here?
I read and did each exercise and all the tasks to the best of my ability. I started with my core negative beliefs. They come from my parents, my culture, and the friends I grew up around. The AHA moment was reading that these are beliefs, not facts. I have taken on these mistaken beliefs as my values and how I saw myself. I took them and wore them as layers over layers of my creative self. Those beliefs were who I became. As a counselor, I remember hearing you are what you learn, and what you learn has consequences. The consequences are who I became. I was told I wasn't capable when I was a child. I grew up believing I wasn't capable. I took that mistaken negative belief further to I wasn't capable of being a part of society. That one core mistaken negative belief snowballed into so many more negative beliefs. Those became who I thought I was going to be for the rest of my life. They became how I saw myself and I acted accordingly.
I am doing a reset of my values and who I am. I am allowing my inner creative self to come out. There's an exercise in The Artist's Way called an "Artist Date". You take yourself on a date that is creative in nature. I paint, draw, go to the beach and make sand castles, take photos, and write in my journal. These dates have me being kind to the child within, the one who initially took on all those negative mistaken beliefs. I am healing from within by doing these exercises.
Another exercise from The Artist's Way is morning pages. That is brain-dumping first thing upon waking up. I have to admit, the morning pages were not fun in the beginning because I had so much hurt and resentment to get out, the layer of armor that protected the child within was coming off. I have been doing the healing work of The Artist's Way for 5 weeks, I just completed chapter 5. I feel somewhat naked, vulnerable with some fear. I am determined not to go back behind my self-made wall. I am determined to finish this workbook and be open to letting love in and loving others.
Chapter 5 was examining my own self-destructive patterns and asking myself "What was my payoff for staying stuck in those behaviors?". What was my end game hanging onto these negative mistaken beliefs? This chapter has been all about owning that, yes, I have these negative mistaken beliefs and I can let them go, work on them step by step, and replace them with healthy ones.
I have a lot more work to do. I am not resisting it.
This process has been a long time coming. I am doing self-care exercises that are becoming habits, affirmations becoming values, I am letting people into my world, I'm connecting with others, and I even have a real friend. Someone who when I pushed away came back even harder and said, "You are loveable". It's been a difficult thing to stay open and allow the friendship to grow, however, now, I wouldn't have it any other way. I no longer want to be stuck. I am working on accepting compliments and recognizing my creative self is fabulous and deserves love, positivity, and growth. As the saying goes, let's f**king grow, let's flow gold, LFG.
If you'd like to join us on X, Onboard60 X Space The Artist's Way is Mondays at 1 pm, EST.
Thank you for reading,
@SababaLens on X (formerly known as Twitter)