I find it very useful to inquire into the “Shoulds” that pop up in my mind about me or others or the world. Shoulds are all about the idea that Life SHOULD Be Different to How It Is Right Now.
Well, is that really true? It’s so interesting to get curious, to take a look at that idea, see what happens when a Should is running my life in the moment, what the effect is of that thought.
Here’s an informal but nevertheless serious inquiry into a thought that’s been lurking around in the corner of my mind for a few days….today I nabbed it, sat it down and questioned it.
I should feel creatively inspired right now.
Is that true?
Really? What’s your reality right now?
I don’t feel inspired. I feel tired and spent. My neck really aches!
So how do you treat yourself when you believe this idea?
I judge myself, put me down, see me as all used up as an artist, nothing to say, nothing to give, pointless. I get depressed. Feel hard done by. Feel flat and empty in my chest. Feel resentful at life. It’s not fair! Do a bit of inner tantrum.
And how do you treat your recent artworks when you believe this idea?
I devalue them, discount them. I disconnect from them. Ignore them. Compare them with other artists’ work and see mine as washouts.
So is this idea that you should feel creatively inspired right now, a stressful thought or is it peaceful?
Very stressful, really painful.
So who would you be without this idea that you should be creatively inspired, right now?
Mmmm……I notice I start to let go of some holding in the body…. start to sink into and accept the tiredness……that feels better…… I actually expand…… relax more.
Without the thought I get more present…… feel more at ease…….mind quietens.
Turnaround: I shouldn’t be creatively inspired, right now.
Truer – I’m committed to do a lot of work this week. I‘m now recognizing this just isn’t the moment for getting creative in the art studio. Now is for taking a rest between work activities.
I step out of pushing to be the “ideal me” into a more real view of this moment.
And wow, now my neck hurts a lot less! Aaaaahhhh….better!