January 13, 2017

My lesson in gratitude

Ingratitude. Jealousy. Anxiety.

I knew I had one of those three issues. I’ve had anxiety I think all my life, but it’s dropped dramatically in the last two years.

But the other two? I was sure they didn’t apply to me.

Of course they apply to me.

I have a coach I meet with weekly on Skype. Martin Stellar. All he does is coach creatives to help them be their best selves.

And damn it, he’s good.

I say damn it because he doesn’t let me lie to myself. He starts picking away at something based on…I don’t know…intuition? What I’m not saying? My actions?

It doesn’t matter how; he picks a little thread and pulls hard and unravels my stories, my self-deceptions and how I’m standing in my own way.

Having this kind of person on my team is invaluable.

I’m bolder. I make bigger moves. I don’t waste time wallowing. It’s simply not allowed.

Today we covered being grateful. Because, let’s face it, I’ve moved bigger and bolder in a year and a half than I ever expected. Instead of enjoying where I’m at, I’ve spent time complaining I’m not where I want to be.

I think Yoda said it best:

“A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one a long time have I watched.

All his life has he looked away…to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing.

Hmph! Adventure. Heh! Excitement. Heh! A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless!”

For me, when things like this get pointed out, it’s often a switch. Flick. Done.

I had instant relief. Instead of feeling like I was running to catch up to the artists I look up to, I’ve got permission to pause and look around and enjoy being in the space I am now.

So maybe I was ungrateful and definitely jealous. But now? I’m not going to look around anymore. And when I feel the bug of jealousy hit, I’m going to acknowledge it and then banish it with gratitude.

I am where I’m supposed to be.

But guess what also left? Maybe not completely but definitely dropped to almost nothing.

My anxiety.

I can feel my jaw unclench. The need to run and catch up is gone.

Now I can focus on what matters: painting.

This is why I have a coach. My own Yoda. If you’re a creative and want to get out of your own way, check out Martin’s site.

And if you want art, let’s talk.