I've been thinking about some things since reading a post on Jen's blog about goals and motivation. Jen and I very much speak the same language on this subject. We both have BIG goals for ourselves, steps on how we plan to get there, but the real key is to follow your heart and let it be your guide. There's SO much I could say about "following your heart". It sounds so trite and cliche - it's not. There is a whole learning process of understanding your heart, putting the right things in your heart so you can draw strength from those dreams, aspirations, and lessons learned. Again, so much to say about that, but another day...
The gist of Jen's post was, why now, does she have the motivation, self-discipline and basically tougher skin (to take on the criticism and resistance she meets and still keep going) with this newest adventure she is on with Bird From a Wire and the book she is writing. She has a publisher lined up and many deadlines to meet that require much work and creativity. I replied to the post on her blog and said that all these things like the discipline and motivation come easier now because she KNOWS in her heart what she is doing in the right thing. There is a certainty about it. She's not guessing that this is what she is supposed to be doing - she KNOWS it. The "knowing" brings motivation like none other but with that comes the guessing game of when to step back and let it ride while you take a break from the constant drive.
Recently both she and I have lived parallel lives. It's kind of crazy. We were both pushing some pretty heavy deadlines. Mountains of work. Demand of high quality work and we were both "pushed". I'm sure we both grew from the situation whether we see it yet or not. Even if it was just one more high-pressure moment under our belts. Another experience to draw from next time we're "pushed", probably even further. Anyway, once the deadlines were met, the art was submitted for judgment (here's a piece of my soul - what do you think?) and all we could do was step back - we both kinda crashed. I'm not exactly sure what she did although I know some of that "crashing" is instinctively throwing yourself into your family to regain some sense of balance and connection. At least for a mother/wife - it's what we do.
But what else do you do to keep the mojo on the back burner simmering while you turn your attention to other things after such an intense time of pressure and deadlines? I don't think this is a question just for artists. I think everyone has their own "mojo" in whatever it is that makes them tick. The desire to pursue that "thing that drives you" never leaves but there are times that you need to create some distance between you and said dreams/bliss/goals.
I did find some quiet time over the weekend. Billy and I had dinner together, just the 2 of us - a couple of times. I think that's a record - 2 dinners, just the 2 of us, 2 times in one weekend - probably the first that's happened since having 2 kids. LOL I also created a digital collage just for the sake of creating without limits. It didn't have to be anything or meet any requirements - it was simply created to serve the purpose of enjoying the process and the quiet piece of time I had available.
Sometimes the mojo isn't to be used to move forward, it's to be enjoyed, savored, honored. It's not aways the number of steps you take that moves you forward. Sometimes it’s the time that elapses that changes your perspective allowing you to move forward in a new way - with a new heart - not just moving forward by putting one foot in front of the other. But doing so with purpose and knowing.
Today, the crash is over, my feet have hit the path once again. It's dusty and earthy and I feel it as it becomes a part of me. The journey continues...