creative recovery.

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shine any way you can.

happy holidays everyone! i hope it's been a good festive time for you all and no one is stranded in airports and if you are stranded in airports that you are talking to the person next to you and finding out that your cousins are best friends and the you have the same favorite book.

it's been a good one here. it's been busy, full of family and food and a good round of trivial pursuit (my brother and i being the winners always makes it a good round). i didn't feel like i fully got the downtime that i've been craving but i figure that can wait until kauaii in just a little bit less than a week! oh my, i am so looking forward to being on that beautiful island with such good people.

so it's the end of the year, which means that i am one week away from finishing up my round #3 with the artist way. i had to answer these questions for this week's activities and i was surprised by how clear i sounded in my answers. the idea of a "creative recovery" is such a big, amorphous one but it's true that i really do see a lot of tangible results and changes and ideas.

five ways i've changed since beginning this creative recovery:
1. i have become clearer, more organized in my creative time
2. i have made self-care more of a priority and seen the massive benefits
3. i have become better at taking little steps toward a bigger goal and trusting in the power of them even when my mind is telling me its pointless (like picking up the book again yesterday when i really wanted to skip these last two weeks)
4. i now more fully recognize the value of having fun and playing
5. i see how important creativity is to my overall health as a person

five ways i'll change as i continue:
1. i'll become more disciplined in giving myself creative time
2. my artist dates will become as important of as practice as writing my morning pages
3. my creative community will become more defined and take on a greater importance in my life
4. i will say "no" more often and with less guilt
5. i will have more energy to do what excites me and to connect fully to the people in my life

five ways i'll nurture myself in these next six months:
1. i'll go to spa world at least once a month
2. i'll sign up for a class on making creative sketchbooks at the torpedo factory
3. i'll make time to practice/give thai massage once a week
4. i will use tuesdays as my time to make art/create and take my artist dates
5. i will go to poolesville, md to see the buddhist temple and to baltimore to go to the visionary art museum

writing these lists down i see that these changes are really not big glamorous things. the artist way is really just about a commitment to doing the things i know make me feel good and help me to go in the direction of my dreams. it's kind of like yoga for me. the more i study yoga, the more i see that this practice is all about learning how to see beyond the negative patterns of the mind and thus connect with the bigger whole of myself. it's all about the practice of treating myself well when my mind is telling me that i am not worth that kind of treatment.

so yeah, it's been a great 2010 and i am excited about the possibilities for 2011. i'm going to do my yearly round-up in the next few days here so check back for that. in the meantime, enjoy this ted talk which made so much sense to me: