The year of 2013 has been quite a doozie for me. I’ve had three different jobs and teetered back and forth between “my dream is to become a full-fledged professional artist” and “god, I really want to be able to buy this pair of boots”. It’s driven all of my friends and family crazy, I’m sure, but is also completely necessary for me to move forward. Underlying all of the insanity, my ultimate goal (which maybe I’ll see a glimpse of by the end of the year) is to navigate the roads to achieving balance. Balance between being practical and being a risk-taker, balance between being a homebody and a busybody, balance between listening to others and listening to myself. Balance between art and life.
Art and life have always been at war with each other within me. It’s always been, choose one or the other. Be great at one or the other. But I’ve never been able to give up on either and so I’ve been struggling, pulling both of them along at once, sometimes equally and sometimes not. It’s damn near impossible and since I can’t increase the number of hours there are within a day, I’ve had to endure the instability between the two as I’ve tried to become an almost-official adult. As the year is coming to a close, I’m realizing that the only way to cultivate peace and make the entire load lighter is to bring myself to a place where art is life (one supports the other) and it’s okay. Great, even.
I’m not quitting all jobs to become a full-time artist. This leads to feeling ineffective and disconnected. I’m also not going to devote 50 to 60 hrs a week to a practical application of my creativity for the success of others. Trial and error have shown me that these are not the answers. The next solution for me to test is to have an almost-40 hrs a week job that I do not take home with me. I repeat, do NOT take home with me; meaning I don’t think about it, don’t need to talk about it, don’t need to do anything about it once I am home. You’d be very surprised at how hard that is to find, especially for someone like me who naturally bites off more than she can chew. My body, mind, and heart have been signalling serious alerts to me that it’s time for me to stop. Like seriously stop. No one is a superhero and even less so at 26 years old.
Balance is the name of the game and I’m hoping that I’ve finally begun to understand the rules… at least for now. Any other creatives out there who can dole out some tips on how to win?