fear of the page

veru2_11_19

I view blogging as a practice. Kind of like meditation.

Blogging involves a discipline. It helps me show up. It is a conduit to my creative self – which goes way beyond writing.

It’s just the very tip of that self that blogging accesses. Blogging sort of sits at the outer entrance to my creative self, but it helps keep the door open.

It keeps fear of the page at bay.

I noticed in my drawing class the formidable fear of the page that pretty much everyone in the room experienced.

The teacher told us what to do and started a timer. We all just sat there and stared.

We eventually learned that the point of the timer was to force us past that fear of the page – to make us jump fearlessly onto it.

I experience this with creative projects of my own inspiration as well. I get a vision. I get excited. I can’t wait to bring it to fruition.

But then I notice that I am resisting it. I don’t have time to work on it. I don’t have the perfect supplies. I’m not, you know, in the right mood for that. I can’t find my scissors. I don’t know how.

Ha. That is one thing blogging teaches you. Mood, time, supplies, coffee, whatever, the point is to do it. Recognize the resistance and tackle it front on. Just make yourself go, dammit.

The longer you practice, you eventually learn that the creative self does inevitably show up when thus called forth – albeit some days better than others.

Even better, such a practice helps you to become more aware of the existence of that creative self and its awesome depths – as well as your capacity to access it and allow it.

And the more of that self that shows up, the better.

So, for today, just practicing. 🙂

practice

veru1_16_19bWe know the absolute value of it for our children. Practice, practice, practice. Math or music or handwriting. Memorizing, anything. Sports. Languages.

As adults, it seems harder to practice. Things move more along the lines of instant gratification, impatience for results, and, ultimately, abandonment of objectives. Hey, we’re busy people.

The thing is, though, practice makes some pretty damned amazing things possible, even for us grown-ups. There are things we think we can’t do that, in reality, just take practice.

I spent most of my life never having run a mile. Or a quarter mile. Never even really thought about running, or would have thought it was possible.

Until the day I wanted it enough that I started to practice.

Writing is like that, too. Writing – certainly good writing – does not just happen. It takes practice.

Meditation? When you finally, really practice, that’s when you begin to realize the effects.

There are about a zillion things to do on this amazing earth. Why settle for ‘same old, same old’ when we are capable of so much more if we just put in the effort? Practice.

Self talk is a practice, too. Either we’re telling ourselves every damned day that we can, that we’re capable, that we’re deserving, that we will, or we’re telling ourselves we’re not good enough, we can’t, and it’s impossible. That’s neuroplasticity at work. It’s learning. What would you rather teach yourself?

I am reminded of the power of practice in a drawing class I’ve been taking. It’s pretty basic stuff. We started off with the blind contour drawing, and we’re progressing with more detail and layers. Each time I am faced with the blank sheet of paper and the assigned exercise, I panic inside. I resist. “I can’t!”

But I can. It’s just a matter of practice. And it is so empowering to be reminded of that.

I have long believed it true: anything is possible. Commitment first. Then, practice.

What is it you are waiting to learn?

 

smiles

veru12_15_18Smiles are pretty awesome.

They generally come to us spontaneously, a happy, observable expression of joy or pleasure or contentment. A genuine smile touches anyone on the receiving end, too, usually evoking a similar response of happiness or pleasure. Good for everyone!

Even alone, perhaps reading a book or working on a project, when a smile comes to us, it is a small moment of transformation or illumination – an irrepressible flow of goodness that expresses through our face.

My best friend cat smiles at me. I don’t quite know how he does it, but he does. When he smiles at me, I just kind of melt with my own smile of love and happiness.

A dog that I visit regularly smiles, too. It is a ridiculously goofy, extravagant smile and simply wonderful to receive. There is no being down in the face of that smile.

Out and about, we come across strangers, some of whom acknowledge us with a smile, and many remaining aloof. The smilers change our day for a few moments, just lifting the spirit for a little way.

I have a couple of acquaintances who are big smilers. They smile all the time. There’s nothing fake about it, either. Their smiles are an expression of their personalities – positive, forward-looking, accepting, generous, fun. Their smile is kind of a habit. It affects everyone around them.

That’s not to say that people who don’t smile all the time are not all those things. I know plenty of non-smilers who are warm and fun and generous, too, and their smiles are all the more precious to receive.

I remember sitting in a waiting room at a doctor’s office years ago. I was kind of miserable. An older woman came and checked in. She was smiling. She took her seat in the waiting room, still smiling. Time passed, she smiled the entire time. I have no idea who that woman was, and I never spoke to her, but all these years later I remember her simply for that constant smile. I marveled that her inner state of being expressed itself outwardly like that. Even though we did not overtly communicate, she brought some peace and reassurance into the room with that smile.

No one likes a forced smile, nevertheless, I’ve been working on being a little more conscious about smiling. As a ridiculously introverted, overthinking sort of person, I don’t think I am much of a smiler. I tend to rather seriously and intently listen to other people – I am trying to remember to smile more during those times. That would be a true reflection of my feelings, too, because I am generally very appreciative of others and all that I learn from them.

Even when I’m alone, I’ve noticed I can change how I feel by smiling. Tasks are a little easier to do with a smile. I can make myself feel more optimistic or adventurous by smiling. I encourage myself when I smile.

Hey, it’s free and it’s easy. Why wouldn’t I?

Maybe I will have to tie a little string around my finger, just to remind me for awhile, while I develop my practice.