giving it a go: 2 hours and fear meets its match

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It’s a new year, a new decade, and although I feel apprehensive about new year’s resolutions, I made a few for 2020.

For Carrot Condo, I’m committing to 2 hours of creative work Monday-Friday. It’s week three of this, and proving much harder than it sounds. I am sticking with it nevertheless.

I’m learning to push through resistance: yesterday’s sketches seemed to be going nowhere, but I was also nowhere near the end of two hours. I kept going, and by the end, three projects started to take shape.

I’m learning that two creative hours pushes all other work and obligations to different spaces in the week: admirably, I found myself prepping Tuesday’s dinner late Monday night, but that made room for some creative work (not two hours, but some) the next day.

I’m learning that two disciplined hours can accomplish more than I’d imagined, but: I have to ignore hunger pangs (pretty sure they’re just my brain trying to distract me), the compulsion to check my phone–when it dings but even when it’s silent and staying out of my way, and the weird pull of my mind to go do something else…anything else…brains fear creation for some reason. Or fear expression. Or discovery. I dunno. I guess it’s just fear. That brings me to another resolution:

Another resolution for my life in general that applies to creative work is about fear. I experience it in all kinds of variety: dread, hesitation, worry, anxiety, fret. Fear is so familiar to me that its absence is actually unsettling. I think, “Oh no, I feel great, that’s bad, something bad might happen and I won’t be ready.” As if worrying is at all the same thing as being “ready,” and as if one can ever be ready for the unknown.

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There’s no getting rid of fear, it’s kind of who I am. But I can give it a counterbalance. So, when fear shows up in one of its many forms, I balance it out with an openness to opportunity.

It’s simple, and kind of a mind trick, but it makes room in my brain for imagining how things might work out well, even great. It broadens my perspective.

So, when my sketches weren’t going well, I stayed with it because my two hours weren’t up, but I also gave myself a pep-talk, telling myself it was good to be at the desk giving it a go, and maybe these sketches aren’t what I expected but what else might they be? That was enough openness to other possibility that I changed one sketch in a way I liked, in a way that surprised me. Whether I do more with it, I don’t know yet, but it resulted in one more possibility for a theme I’m working on, and it felt kind of exciting.

I’m back at it today. So, at least for 2020, I’ll stick with these two resolutions and see how they play out.

I hope the new year is starting out well for you, whether you made resolutions or not. I have much more planned for you to see eventually. Until then, thank you for your support of my creative endeavors!

–TRISTA

2 Comments

  1. I need to get back into writing again. I know taking time at least 3 times a week would be good. Now that I am no longer working and retired, I need to set some plans, First of all, my fiance and I need to make plans, and once he sells his 2 properties and I sell mine, we will be together! Lots to plan

    Like

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