Finding your Passion

Bellagio Artist

Bellagio Artist (Photo credit: metamerist)

Not all writers start out in life dreaming that they will one day become novelists. Especially if your life begins with a lot of trauma. Or if you are spending your childhood taking care of a narcissistic parents needs.  Or if you are dealing with a mental illness and your childhood is caught up in being diagnosed, becoming a guinea pig for psychotropics and in an out of hospitals. And then there are the addicts who spend their childhood getting high. Developing your inner self, part of this is finding what you are passionate about.

The first thing you have to do is not say NO to an exercise. If you are in a workshop and the speaker wants you to draw something that says something about you, don’t say “I am not an artist.” How do you know you are not an artist? Perhaps you are not a painter but maybe you are a writer, a musician, a dancer, or you are good at crafting purses or knitting baby caps.  If you spent your childhood and even part of your adulthood in some cases, dealing with mental health issues, a bad marriage, parent needs, whatever, you have blocked the creative you from emerging.

I am 50 and I have written two novels. Right before my birthday a few weeks back I purchased my first Djembe. I like making collages – the inner teen.  Once I even designed a house that I would like to live in one day.  I am not an architect and my friend who is, said it wasn’t half bad. She did point out it would be quite difficult to hook up the electricity and the plumbing. The point is not that I am doing these things to become a famous artist, drummer or architect – though I would like to be well known for my novels, the idea here is that I continue to explore and go within. What happens at the end of these journeys is that I have had a lot of fun, meet interesting people and fulfill a need to express myself.

To often we feel trapped in our world views, our expectations that only artists who are celebrities are allowed to play. If this were the case we would have never have seen a Van Gogh, a Frida Kahlo, or read a poem by Emily Dickinson. In case you aren’t clear why I am including them Van Gogh never sold a painting while he was alive, Emily was published (12x) but heavily edited and the bulk of what we read today was found after her death. Frida while she had Diego, lived in his shadow her whole life and though she struggled to stay alive from one surgery after another, painted in bed with a full body cast.

While I do include famous people here, I do so not to say that your mission is to become famous. They were lucky. I do so to bring up examples of people whom you have heard of.  You haven’t heard of all the people who are working on their talents, unleashing locked potential. Not everyone becomes famous for being an artist, it isn’t necessary or it isn’t part of why you are doing this – fame is pure luck and not always a measure of how good you are.

Why must you do this? People who do not tap in to their inner genius, who do not explore what might fascinate them end up hating life. They end up attracting negativity around them, as they feel unloved. They feel miserable and this leads to dis-ease. They become a burden on others; in their dependency for attention. You must do this to live!

Take a class at a city college, an adult school or neighborhood community group.  Take a few classes. Try everything that seems to be of interest to you. If you are not interested in anything (oh come on, really???) just pick one. Pick two or three and do it for research on yourself. People who tell me they are not motivated by anything are people who are holding themselves back by their worldviews. We are all interested in something. We are all capable of creating art.  If we aren’t held back by our worldviews than we are held back by the thought that what we consider art; others will think is stupid.  So what! Who cares if other people think it is stupid. Some people will relate and think it is great. Believe me I have been to modern art museums and I have seen so pretty ridiculous things that are purchased by galleries. Who ever thought that taking human skin from dead people would become an international exhibit? Its gross but this person has probably made millions from it.

Finding your passion in life is the key to healthy living. This allows you to unleash what is unlocked inside of you and become something more than your self. It allows one to step away from their sadness, their chaos, their anger and bring to life your soul where others can view what you can’t say out loud.

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