Getting Unstuck | Do things you know are good for you

I was at a conference this week with a popular speaker who talked about how vulnerable you get when you are tired.  He said that suddenly exercise, eating right and sleeping–things he had once thought were overrated–were now a big part of his life so that he was healthy enough to live his dream.

There is something to that.

While most of us would never write a $10,000 check when our bank account has $2 in it, we regularly write emotional checks and time checks that our souls and bodies can’t cash.

Artists are especially vulnerable to this.  We resent routine and all that it implies. We love to break the rules and push the boundaries.  That streak of resisting the ordinary and ignoring the “should” is part of what makes us great.  It allows us to say things that others leave unsaid and engage the soul at levels others can’t touch.

But when it comes to our most important asset…our physical being…we need to fight our nature and get better at the “should.” Self-destructive patterns will ultimately destroy our art.  And we know what they are–because they are uniquely personal to us. It can be as simple as running on a diet of coffee and nicotine or as complex as engaging in harmful relationships.

The “unhealthy” can leave us stuck.  And quite frankly, it is easier to ignore the patterns and pretend like we don’t have control. That it is happening to us rather than a situation we are creating.

We control what we put in our mouths, if we carve out time to rest, if we find a physical activity we love. It is up to us to get help with our addictions, to choose healthy friendships and to embrace the small things that create joy.

There is a romance to Van Gogh cutting off his ear and there is no doubt that the Kurt Cobain’s of the world produced powerful music.  But for every great artist with a tragic story there are a thousand the world never hears of because they self-destruct before they have the opportunity to truly become great.

Engage the strength of will that creates your art as a positive force for your well-being and find out where that takes you. You may unlock things you didn’t think possible.

:::Read more of Cathy Hutchison’s posts in the Getting Unstuck series.:::

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One Response to “Getting Unstuck | Do things you know are good for you”

  1. I don’t think it was an accident that I got strep one week before Art N Coffee. It forced me to set aside other activities and allowed much needed time to prepare mentally. I was able to frame and mat in my condition, but not go to dance rehearsal or run all over town doing less important things for other people. It forced me to stop and do what was most important – to rest, a thing I should always do – not just when I’m forced to. Rest is something I take for granted way too much.

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