Give Yourself the Gift of True Friendship
True friends have your back. They support you and help you when you are struggling. They nurture your dreams and give you the reassurances you need when you need them. True friends don't try to sabotage you. They don't try to undermine your confidence or discourage your dreams. Build your support network with the people that truly care about you and nurture you.
You are not in competition with anyone; certainly not with your friends. Don't worry about what others are doing, about whether they have a better car than you or a bigger house. Just focus on yourself. Curate your life to be the way you want it.
If you've been following along as we work our way through "The Artist's Way", we are on Week 11: "Recovering a Sense of Autonomy". You may have been experiencing fundamental changes in your life. Your way of thinking may be shifting in new and positive ways.
Checking in with self daily through our Morning Pages can create a sense of clarity and self knowledge that you may never have experienced before. Keep going. It only gets better from here.
Over the past eleven weeks, you may have seen parts of your life fall into place. You may have experienced opportunities presented to you; had doors and windows open for you in unexpected ways.
You have been recovering your sense of autonomy; your belief in yourself and your awareness that you possess power in your own life. The divine light of the Universe shines through you. You are so much more wonderful than you ever gave yourself credit for. You are a recovering creative rediscovering the inner fire of your own creativity.
Chapter Eleven does remind us that there are more pitfalls to avoid on the road to our recovery, even those people in your life that you've considered your friends. True friends build us up.
As you recover your creativity, don't compare your work with others. Your artwork is your own. Comparing what you are creating to what others create is not a good idea.
You are not in competition with anyone. You are a creative force in evolution. What others are doing does not matter. What other people are creating does not matter. How much artwork someone else is selling doesn't matter.
You are on your own individual path. If you want to compare, compare where you are to where you were. How far have you come since you began your journey? If you want to compare work, compare what you were creating a year ago or five years ago.
Who has had your back this whole time, who has supported you and encouraged you along your recovery path?
When I first went through "The Artist's Way" program seven years ago, I possessed very little faith in myself or my work. I don't know if I believed in myself as a creative being even a little, but I went through the course and everything began to change.
I applied to local art markets and festivals. I found myself accepted into proper juried art exhibitions and received awards from actual artists and judges.
I still suffered from Imposter Syndrome but my confidence began to shift a little. Very soon, I was supporting myself as a self employed artist. Everything was shifting. My world was opening up in wonderful and unexpected ways.
Over the next few years I published a book of poetry and a book of meditations. I was accepted into more art festivals and exhibitions. I was well into completing my first large scale art project: a Tarot deck. Things seemed to be falling into a comfortable sort of rut.
Then 2020 happened. Everything changed. I couldn't stay on the same path I'd been on. The markets, festivals and exhibitions were closing. I wasn't confident about shifting into online sales. I began to flounder.
I circled back around to where it all began: re-booting "The Artist's Way".
I spent the quarantine creating an Oracle deck which I was able to publish through Indiegogo. I stared experimenting with video. Gradually I became more confident in my videos and even started appearing in them in person. I started live streaming and forgot to worry over how I looked during the livestream.
Everything was shifting but I was able to find the silver lining and the opportunities that were available to me. I remembered to believe in myself as a creative and go back to the wellspring and to try something new that would have completely terrified me in the past.
We are constantly evolving; spirally around and around. Sometimes it feels like we're covering the same ground, but we can learn something new every time.
Whether this is your first time through "The Artist's Way" or the twelfth, there is something to be learned; to reconnect to our creative self, to remember to nurture that sensitive Inner Artist Child, to seek out friends that will nurture and support us, just as we can build them up in return.
A supportive network of friends and family is the greatest gift a creative can work towards. Nurture and support them. Love them deeply and truly. Encourage them on their journeys and embrace the potential in your own.
Embrace who you are and who you are becoming. True friends will be there with you, through every twist and turn; through every evolution.