That thing you love to do - do it. Especially if you are navigating change.
Do you wonder what a name of the painting has to do with the painting itself? Every artist has their own reasons about how they name their paintings. With abstract art, there’s much more leeway in how to decide a name. Most of my art is abstract, with few exceptions. All the names for the In Between collection are phrases I’ve told myself to keep working through change. Change has been central to what threw me into art making when Covid-19 hit, and this collection in particular was inspired by my recent circumstances. A change of career. Many of us are going through this right now. If not a career change then perhaps a change in job. It is being called "the great resignation". A whole big chunk of working population collectively looking for something better. I wonder if it has ever happened in such large numbers like this at the same time. We are rethinking our decisions. I’m jumping into web development and I am currently taking classes. I am studying to be a full-stack developer with Lighthouse Labs. They are a tech education company that offers 3-6 months up-skilling programs to move people into the tech sector. I'm thoroughly enjoying it so far and learning more than I ever imagined possible.
While I navigate these strange and frightful waters of change, art and art making has helped me immensely. It’s crucial to have a constant during a transition. When in doubt, I turn to making art. Bad art..good art…it does not matter. It’s all in the process of making. You focus your mind on the process and its like meditation. Things start to fall in place. Thoughts clear up. It eases my mind. I have a thing I love to do no matter where life will take me. This is valuable regardless of whether it makes me money. Never before now did I realize how much value having such little pleasures holds in life. It allows me a certain confidence to walk through life. I do not say this lightly. It’s crucial to have such a thing of your own outside of your professional and familial responsibilities.
I am currently reading the book, The Unicorn Space by Eve Rodsky and she explains this so well. I highly recommend this book. There’s often not enough time in our daily lives, I get it. But try to make time for things you love to do. It doesn’t have to result in a money making side hustle. Sharing your thing helps double the joy, but you don’t have to do that either.
Whether it’s dance, writing poems, short stories, taking photographs, pottery, gardening, writing music, learning a language….set time aside for you and you alone and do this thing of yours for your own joy. It will be your time. As we grow our careers, there will always be more things other people and even our families will demand from us…..and rightfully so. But, this little chunk of time where we do this thing we love should be ours alone. It is not selfish. Rather its necessary for a healthy life and for proper relationships around us. In this time we recharge. We recuperate. We come alive. And, somehow we fall in love with life.
Do that thing you love to do or are curious about trying "one day" and don't wait forever to start. There's only so much time we are afforded in life and before it's too long...we will retire from our jobs, our children will leave our homes to make their own life, our friends and families may or may not be with us. So, do that thing you love to do.
Do it small if you like, but start now.