Making as a Ritual
Updated: Dec 10, 2018
There are unavoidable (well, not necessarily unavoidable) parts of our days that we subconsciously choose not to avoid because our brains/bodies thinks that they're worth the reward. This doesn't make sense because all they do is leave us feeling ALMOST satisfied.
For instance, let's talk about rushing through the necessary parts of every morning because we NEED to snooze our alarms at 5:25, 5:35, 5:40, 5:45, 5:50, and 5:55. All articles say this habit leaves the sleeper/waker feeling tired all day. I know I definitely feel tired for most of the day, but do I change that small habit that nearly gratifies me for 10 minutes before I roll out of bed in the morning? No. None of it makes sense, but that's humanity for you.
I could go on forever about all the little things I do daily that have negative consequences, but I'm going to focus on one of my positive habits. The one that brought me here and maybe the one that brought you here, too. Expression. Artistry is so ingrained in my life at this point, that just in respect to it, I'm going to refrain from referring to it as a habit (even though that's what it is).
Creating is a way to get everything that's inside outside. I'm not saying that everything I paint, sing, draw, or play is representative of something that I'm feeling or thinking, I'm simply saying that when creating, I am funneled into a head and heart space where it's possible to work through the "stuff" that's tough to talk about, that's not expressible in an obvious way, or that I may not even know I need to work though. Many times I make difficult decisions during times of making. Without explanation, when I'm finished working physically through the making process, I just know what should be done even if I wasn't consciously trying to solve that problem. It's that simple. A subconscious, abstract voice that hums kind little acts of healing and confidence over my heart and mind has been grown by allowing myself to make expressively.
Not only is "making" a way to feel a sense of pride and ownership, it is a way to explore oneself internally, to see what comes out when the wall that holds back all of our ideas is taken down or climbed over. It is obvious in my students, friends who make in other ways, and in myself. Piece by piece this good ritual (a way better word than habit) has been built. It is one that pulls me up and out of the feelings, tasks, or thoughts that quietly overwhelm me. It brings me close to my own Maker and provides me with a space to speak in my own way. I want to share it because I know it can do the same thing for others. My goal in life is to teach that, to live and breath that, to offer the overflow of that gift to others. Thank you for giving me the chance to do that.