For those who don’t know, the Artist’s Way is a course developed by creative Julia Cameron to restore your creativity. My goal with this course is to feel more comfortable being creative, especially in regards to writing.
Here are some of the themes that stood out for me while doing the week 3 reading:
- Shame & criticism. This week, Cameron discussed why blocked artists become blocked in the first place some more. One of the major reasons she noted as to why artists become blocked is shame caused by criticism and other things. This stood out to me because shame about showing myself through writing is definitely a huge reason writing is so challenging for me. However, Cameron also discussed how to deal with criticism when we do receive it, which I think will be helpful for me in all aspects of my life, not just creativity. Additionally, she stated that artists don’t create art with the future criticism in mind. I know for me, thinking about how I would market some of my writing ideas has stopped me from writing at all, which is ridiculous because I can just write for myself.
- Nurturing yourself. This has been a big theme so far for all of the course thus far. Julia Cameron talks a lot about how to treat yourself and your inner artist and why that’s important for replenishing the creative well. Through doing this course, I’ve realized I don’t really like treating myself or spending time with myself anymore because it feels selfish in comparison to what I should be doing with my time. This was a big step for me because I didn’t realize I felt this way until I did this course, and I think it will be important for me to explore why I feel spending time with myself is selfish now even though I never used to feel that way.
- Synchronicity. Week 3 also introduced the concept that Cameron calls “synchronicity” which is basically coincidences or answered prayers, depending on your life outlook. I don’t know if I really believe in synchronicity, but I suppose I’ll try to be open minded toward it this time around because I want to be successful in this course.
- How many days did you do your morning pages this week? How was the experience for you? If you skipped a day, why did you skip it?
I did the morning pages all but one day this week. I skipped the day because I woke up late because I’d had a breakdown the night before and went to a crisis intervention center instead and just didn’t have the energy to do the morning pages.
- Did you do your artist date this week? What did you do? How did it feel?
I think this week I’m going to count going to Trader Joe’s (a cool grocery store, basically, for non-American friends) as my date this week even though grocery shopping seems like a weird artist date. But honestly, I think it can count because I always feel good after going there because I find shopping there so relaxing but also weirdly stimulating because they have cool stuff, and it’s nice to shop there because the people who work there are so kind and helpful.
- Did you experience any synchronicity this week? What was it?
I don’t know if this counts, but I’d been hoping I could somehow have October 31 off to celebrate Samhain, a pagan sabbat, and now I’m on leave for health issues so I’ll get to celebrate it. Does that count?
- Were there any other issues this week that you consider significant to your recovery? Describe them.
This week, one of the tasks was looking at your habits and how they sabotage yourself/your creativity. Looking at my bad habits made me realize I do a lot of things just to punish myself and keep myself depressed because it feels safer than trying to get better. Exploring this made me realize I need more serious help because this is not a normal way to feel.