As human beings, we are often wandering around trying to communicate with each other to get to where we need/want to be and accomplish those things that are important to us.
Most of the time, at least in my case, this is a flop. I flounder, I stutter, I second guess, I miscommunicate or hold back or am in a bad mood with a headache or something and think to myself later, "Man, I could have done that better."
I have to be incredibly conscious and forward thinking to ensure my clear communication. Even then, I'm not perfect and I cannot control what others hear or how they take my words, I can only do my best.
In my visual art practice I find that I am often considering the tiny details of shape and edge and materials and which paper to use, all in an effort to communicate more clearly what the art work is about, after all, aren't I trying to say something?!
Sometimes we lose touch with communicating with ourselves. We don't know what we want anymore or how to go about getting it, let alone that we are even disconnected. I think this is where often times our creative efforts fail or frustrate us. We are disconnected from ourselves or we allow too many other voices into that internal conversation when our fledgling creative idea is too fragile to uphold that harsh inner criticism voice that sounds like an unsupportive family member or stinker of a teacher we had in our past.
Here are a few things that help me out when I'm finding it difficult to communicate with myself and with others (when I remember them!):
1. Stop. Take a breath and think for yourself. If you need more time to answer, politely ask for it & give yourself some space. Most of the time you don't need to answer right away and can benefit from a little time to think things through.
2. Ask yourself what you want to accomplish. If you have a list of goals, dreams, ambitions or values, refer to it here. If you do not, take some time to go and make that list so that you can refer to it to re-anchor yourself. I call this a purpose list. What are the overarching purposes of my life? Does the choice or conversation in question support that purpose? Often times for me I am challenged with time. My time is limited and I have many things I want to accomplish within that time. I have to ask myself if proposed time-taking activities beyond what I have planned will support my artistic or personal goals and purposes many times a week. This is my big crossroads.
3. Choose confidently, knowing that it is not the end of the world (most of the time). Once I stop, breath and think through the communication issue or choice at hand, I make a decision, not allowing myself too long to do so for I am prone to getting stuck in indecisiveness and fear as well. Most of the time, it is not the end of the world or a big decision at all. Most of the time, maybe I chose a material for my art that didn't work out like I thought it would, so I move on. Or I invest more time than I expected in a project that did not pay off like I thought it would, I shrug my shoulders and determine myself to be thankful for what I learned.
These things help me in my own internal dialogue regarding my artistic or creative choices, in my relationships with others and in work decisions. Communication with myself about my purpose and my overarching goals helps me deal with the nitty gritty of the teeny tiny choices I have to make every day. It is one of the joy/pain in the neck's of living a creative life, where choices are not spoon fed and that there are more than just two of them most often. Sometimes there are an infinite number of choices in the way you could solve a problem artistically or a communication barrier, but to line those solutions up against who you are, what you believe and where you are going, that is another story.
To stay honest, you have to honestly seek to communicate, not only with others, but with yourself.
In honesty, daily I fail and daily I succeed. It is both. Sometimes I don't say things the best, sometimes I am not the kindest, sometimes I make a poor mark on my painting or drop the ball professionally. Next time I will pick it back up again. It's ok, I'm still here, I'm still truckin' along and so can you.
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"Court has a knack for supporting others in tuning into the artist within..."
"If preparing to work with Court you should know that you will be challenged to be your best self and you will be given tools for how to do so.
You may also find yourself realizing dreams and vocations that may have been easier in the short term to keep hidden, but overall will allow you to embrace this creative part of yourself and live more fully." -Faith Josephs