This week it has been bitterly cold in NYC (and everywhere else apparently). Like any piece of exposed skin goes numb cold, like always wearing four layers cold, like stay under the covers cold! However, my week was not a week for bed covers and books.
If you ask, it will come – that one is proven right time and time again. I’ve been really craving a sense of direction recently. I’ve felt like everyone around me knows where they are headed. Recently, I looked up and thought, “Hey wait, where am I going?”. These times of confusion (swiftly followed by inner panic) seem to be a natural part of my journey. I’ve been thinking about it a lot and therefore sharing it and I’ve gauged that it’s a common problem. When you aren’t being propelled by fear, money, or just plain old necessity it gets very easy to look up and wonder what the hell you are doing and why. These dirty little things can really help us all get off our ass and get moving. But when things finally settle, when there is enough money, when your fear has subsided, when you’re getting by just fine, that can be when it’s hardest to know what to do next.
This sounds terrible. Fear, money and necessity are the opposite of what I want to be motivators in my life. I want to be so inspired by art and the world around me that genius pours out of me and I can’t move away from the laptop/canvas/typewriter or whatever it may be. That’s all well and good and there are definitely times in my life when I do feel so inspired and motivated. But then there are the cold winter months, dreary and dark and looming. In these months my creativity starts to feel like a broken clock that can only tick forward one second and then back the next. Moving and standing still all at the same time. There is no great rush to get things done and time idles slowly on. This is the moment I am learning how to navigate. If there isn’t a looming catastrophe ahead and no necessity pushing me from behind, can I still move? The answer is yes. The answer is to go forward into the nothing. Into the empty. Into the world I cannot control, understand or predict. It is so very strange that this is the harder task for many of us. When faced with the obstacle I will doubtlessly work through it but the fear of the obstacle can stop me in my tracks.
So, this week I am working through some lack luster motivation by spending my afternoons in the quiet studios and living rooms of my friends working alongside each other. I’m taking evenings to rest with hot baths and hours discovering new music. Reading my book on long subway journeys and catching up on all of my favorite blogs. I am working at focusing on the work and beauty that has come my way thus far and trusting there is more to come. There is no end to opportunity.