I have been off. I’ve been feeling off. I’ve been struggling internally the past couple months. On the outside, my life is wonderful. I have a stable job in an artistic heaven, a new boyfriend, wonderful friends and family, and I live by the ocean – what more could I ask for?
But lately, I’ve been struggling because I haven’t felt aligned with me. I’ve been avoiding my art. I’ve been avoiding my work. This whole year of post-grad has really just taught me how to navigate the balancing act of handling my life and my artistic life and where I want that to take me.
I have told myself that I’m no longer an actor, singer, artist, because it’s not what I’m doing right now, and staying disciplined is too hard. Why can’t I just be like everyone else and go home after work to watch TV and lay in bed? Or go out and drink? It’s what most of my co-workers/friends do. They seem to have no other personal projects for themselves, their life consists of work and relaxation, work and relaxation, and on the outside, they seem perfectly content. Or so I think. I actually get jealous of those types of people, because I know that I could never just be content with that.
I keep asking myself, why am I trying to make my life so hard? Why am I feeling so guilty for not doing anything and then I continue to not DO anything?!
I had been doing pretty well the past year, motivating myself artistically with my 30 day challenges, working on different projects a little bit each day and then a couple months ago, it all stopped. I got distracted, by relationships, the onset of summer and good weather, and got caught up in the changes of the place I was at.
Suddenly, I started to feel worthless and deeply unhappy with my everyday life. I felt so guilty everyday for not working on my art, but I told myself I didn’t care, that maybe I could just be fine with working in an office for the rest of my life or doing some other job where I was stable, secure, and not living up to my potential. I started to see what my life would look like if I did not achieve my dreams. I thought, “I could still be happy, honestly it takes way too much work and heartache and struggles to achieve my dreams, it’s so much easier to just not”.
To just, not.
I suddenly understood why so many people look up to people who truly chase their dreams, because I hadn’t realized how hard it was until now. All my life, I thought I would never give up on my dreams, because it was the one thing that made me the happiest.
And it is, it still is, yet I have caught myself falling into the trap of a monotonous, complacent adulthood, simply because it’s just easier. It felt like giving myself a cop out for feeling so awful about not working on my art, because I thought, well, maybe I’m not going to be an artist, so I have nothing to feel guilty about. Why can’t I just be a normal person living life?
But is it easier? Is it easier to have this internal battle with myself everyday for NOT living up to my potential and feeling stuck, uninspired, uncreative, and ultimately worthless?
I have to remember what it feels like when I’m aligned with me, and when I’m fueled by my creative fire.
I picked up a book today, called The War of Art by Stephen Pressfield and it’s exactly what I needed to read. He says, “Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands resistance.”
He also says “There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t…it’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.”
I have been resisting. Trying to forget about the unlived life within me. But I refuse to forget.
This is the battle of being human.
I vow to fight against resistance. All it takes is starting with the work.
P.S. I felt guilty ALSO about not doing a word/post for June. So even though it’s the 20th, my word for June is RESIST THE RESISTANCE.