recovering a sense of abundance
This week’s theme was about recovering a “sense of abundance.” This week, Julia Cameron’s essays talked about how artists often block themselves when they feel they don’t have enough money, and really “enough” in general. This week’s activities were all related to giving yourself a sense of luxury, and, more importantly, “authentic” luxury that is really meaningful to your creative journey. Dealing with the themes of money and luxury was interesting for me because I do often worry about money even though I have a relatively decent full-time salary. I always feel like I should be making more than I am, and often stress about money even though I’ve never really HAD to worry about money. It was interesting to examine my perceptions about money as well as how I spend my money, and to discover that I do have a somewhat good idea of how I tend to spend.
- How many days this week did you do your morning pages? How was the experience for you?
I did the morning pages all seven days this week. I’ve now added it into my normal morning routine so it’s been very easy to add it to my day and do it consistently. It’s nice to have a place to dump my thoughts in the morning before work and try to work on any personal or emotional or creative issues I am having. This week I found myself struggling a bit to think of things to write again, and found myself going back to my old habit of just writing what happened or what will happen. I did journal some about why I am blocked like I did last week, which was a useful exercise, and explored why I think I don’t deserve to have fun or be creative.
2. Did you do your artist date this week? (Have you considered allowing yourself two?) What did you do? How did it feel?
I finally did an artist date this week! I went to this really cool and charming old mill that was converted into a bunch of antique shops and art galleries, and spent a short amount of time there. My anxiety has been a lot better lately but I still get anxious about being away from home too long, but this was the perfect place for me to go because it was about five minutes away from me, was easy to find, and had easy free parking. I went to a chocolatier and got three delicious little chocolates, including a lavender chocolate that was absolutely delightful. I also checked out their used bookstore, and saw that they had a bakery, where I plan to go in the future to read or write. I really loved this place and felt so at home there and was delighted by everything I saw and found it utterly charming. I am actually now looking forward to future artist dates and trying to find other cool local things to do that are in my area near home.
3. Did you experience any synchronicity this week? What was it?
I don’t feel I experienced any synchronicity this week.
4. Were there any other issues this week that you consider significant to your recovery? Describe them.
This week I basically confirmed that I spend the most amount of money on food. When Julia Cameron talked about allowing yourself “authentic” luxury, that really stuck out to me, because I don’t think food is really the best way for me to treat myself, for a variety of reasons. This week made me realize that a) I could save a lot of money if I didn’t go out to eat so much and b) I have things I’d rather spend my money on that could actually enhance my creativity, help me pursue relaxation, and offer me more “luxury” and rewards in the long term.
The most helpful thing I did this week was to make a list of things I would get myself and do to reward myself if I had the money. I think I’ll actually share some of what was on the list:
- subscribe to Writer’s Digest magazine
- buy blackberries or blueberries every week
- subscribe to TBR to experiment with reading more adult books
- buy one music album every week
- do Francesca Lia Block’s writing class
- buy organization items for the apartment
- do more #bookishwish to get rid of unwanted books
Almost all of these things seem like things that would not only help me relax and enjoy life more, but contribute to my being more creative as well. I’d really like to do an experiment next week where I don’t go out to eat at all and try to treat myself to some of these things when I want to reward myself with food instead. I definitely plan to continue tracking what I spend next week and see how changing what I spend my money on makes me feel.
I also managed to do a little work on my Southern Gothic sapphic Jane Eyre retelling. I am debating counting working on outlining as my writing for the week, because I feel outlining would really help me and I’m rereading my useful book on outlining and am getting a lot of ideas for how to prepare to write this novel. I did try to write a little bit and got some words down, and even though it’s not very many and they’re not very good, I’m proud of myself for sticking to my goal of writing once a week. I also brought out my notes on Southern Gothic literature that I wrote when I first came up with the idea and bought a discbound notebook to write the outline for the novel in so I can move pages around and have it be more organized. Even though I haven’t actually written much or really started my actual outline, I feel like I am moving closer and closer to getting started on writing again and I am happy about that.