We all have narratives about ourselves, so many of them negative. These are the things we tell ourselves in various situations. We drop something: “Clutz!” We misspeak in a social gathering: “I’m such an idiot!” Someone wants to play Pictionary: “I can’t even draw a stick person!” And on. And on.
These narratives often get in the way of the creative life we want to live. Tell us if you heard some variation on these words surfacing in your thoughts or coming out of your mouth at one time or another:
- I don’t have time/I’m too busy.
- A creative life is frivolous.
- I’m not really creative.
- I don’t have talent.
- I wish I could be artistic like so-and-so.
- [insert name here] will think it’s stupid.
- What if people laugh at me?
- I’ll probably fail
Hoo boy, that gets oppressive pretty fast.
The beauty is narratives can change. And you have the power to change them. It may not happen over night, but after the first time you actually hear yourself saying one of these stories about yourself, you’re on your way to changing that story.
My wife and creative partner, Ginger, puts it this way, “If you wouldn’t say that to another person, why would you say it to yourself.”
You’ll be surprised how just that initial recognition can put you on the way to being kinder to yourself and open you up to the possibility of living the creative life you imagine for yourself.