Last night I watched a dozen women vibrate with energy when they shared examples of the art they create. Before each, in turn, came to the front of the room and spoke, you could see her anxiety and reticence, but once she started… Bam-o! What fireworks came out of each of them! It was an honor to watch. I am taking part in The Muse in Winter workshop with Jill Badonsky.
Karen belied her fairy size with a decorated shrine worthy of a Renaissance Medici house. Maureen told her favorite joke and had us all laughing from the belly. Freddi led us on a pictorial journey with her stunning photographs. Mary shared her re-purposed print-making, paper art book (genius!). Marilyn awed us with her chemistry knowledge and excitement as she described her new soap-making venture, RitualWaters.com. Her face and body zinged as she explained how certain essential oils affected the color of the soap as well as the scent. There were more poets than most towns usually claim and several brave, brave storytellers who willingly opened the closet door to their pain and shared it with us.
I mean not to short-shrift anyone by not calling them out specifically –there was so much beauty! What I saw and heard was vast and varied talent on display and a lot of other women honoring that talent with rapt attention, encouragement, and applause.
It’s so easy to feel jealousy at seeing another’s accomplishments. Why aren’t we taught how to help others produce art?
It’s so easy to listen to that voice in my head that tells me that I can’t do that. Why aren’t we taught to allow art to grown in ourselves?
I don’t think these answers matter so much. What matters is building up the encouragement muscle in ourselves by lauding art production in others. In learning how to support others, we will be able to do it for ourselves.
Denying the Call is the stage of the Hero’s Journey where 99.99% of the population sites. And they are sitting. Unaware.
Not you. You are in the .01%. First of all, you know that you have heard the call and you know the Journey stages. You are not sitting blissfully unaware. It hurts you to sit there and Deny the Call. It hurts you to leave that part of you unexpressed. Does it hurt more to sit there or to Step Across the Threshold?
Help yourself today by giving encouragement and applause to three others for their art. It doesn’t matter what the medium. Tell them how much you like it and what you like about it. Just ignore their self-deprecation and say, “Well, I like it. It’s awesome.” Next thing you know, you’ll be saying that about your own art.