Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Artist's Way

I've been slowly making my way through The Complete Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. It's a weekly program meant to break down your creative blocks by appealing to a higher power both within and without. I'm on week 6.

Every morning I write 3 pages. I alluded to this in a previous entry about my morning ritual. I take an early bus, go to the bakery, buy a cup of coffee, and fill in my pages. Then I read the Wall Street Journal until it's time for work.

It's an interesting process that forces you to ask all sorts of questions about how you function and what you do and how you allow yourself to play. I don't know if it's a good program for everyone -- it takes some faith -- but it's been good for me. Somewhere along the line I quit paying attention to details. I quit going through the strange door and seeing what was on the other side. I did the superficial things -- like change jobs -- but I grew comfortable with my rut. I didn't watch people on the bus. I allowed my eyes to glaze over. I didn't go to a new restaurant because I was alone and people would look at me. So? I lost out on so much fun trying to fit into my mold of a "grown-up."

Granted I still go to bed at 9pm most nights. I still break into a cold sweat if there's a chance I'll be late to something. But now I've given myself permission to have a little fun. Life is what you perceive it anyway, and this program is helping me perceive it a little lighter.

I can't wait to see what the rest of the program brings out.

Funny thing. When my boss "let me go" two days into my two weeks' notice, I walked directly to Borders, bought this book, and started the program the very next day. I had absolutely no idea what to expect. Lucky for me, it turned out to be a good thing.

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