Caution: Soul baring ahead

…in the most hidden, darkest, dankest of places.

It’s where the ego lives and even though we do not want to swerve into this spot in our psyche, many times we just can’t grab the steering wheel in time.

Okay, so lovelies, I’m feeling brave today (probably because I followed the plan and made art today) and I do believe I might opt to delete this post later, but I thought it is worth exploring…because it really is a common thing…especially among women.

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Comparing ourselves to others.

It’s a slippery slope, friends…especially for creative types (guilty on all counts).

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It can rob you of so many things… I’ve learned some techniques that have helped over the past few years.

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This post  on this blog is one I love so much. It talks about responding with the heart…ending with “The more you tune out the noisy ranting of your ego,the more you’ll touch the deep and awesome value of your true self.”

Love that. Really do.

I had to stop looking at other photographers blogs. I actually switched over to looking at famous photogs and painters and artists…it gave me inspiration, but didn’t cause the freak-out that can happen when we look at colleagues/cohorts/fellow artists’ work. It helped a lot—I no longer had that annoying little voice (it’s a high pitched one with pursed lips–I can see it!) asking me if I really  was good at what I do.

The funny thing is, you know when it needs to be tuned out…almost like you want the internal music up to volume 50…but it rings through with a vengeance and won’t take no for an answer…like a spoiled, insecure toddler.

There’s another word for our little naked post today…INSECURITY.

Why is it that some days I feel so confident…so sure in what I’m doing…like I’m kickin’ a#$ and takin’ names

..and then there are the

gloomy

woe-is-me

why-can’t-I-catch-a-break

pity parties?

And you can only blame PMS so much, sweet MPG’s…am I right?!

It’s got a cycle (not talking about PMS here either) and I would love to break it…

Some ideas:

1) Keep a “Atta-Girl” file. I have a file folder at work that I stick all sweet compliment letters and emails in. When the pity party arrives, I bust ’em out with latte’ in hand.

2) Music..I was being metaphorical above, but I am so wired for music that sometimes just a little bit of Simon Webbe can pull me out.

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3) Call a friend who loves and wants you to see the good stuff (thank you, Sainta Maria).

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4) Chuck the activity that is causing such madness and do something completely different…like art-making or blogging about something frivolous…like new product finds or newly arrived Anthro catalogues.

5) RUN from it…literally…run as fast as your little legs can carry you and don’t look over your shoulder.

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..and finally I think it just comes down to one thing…something I know to be absolutely true, but it’s so hard to keep it front row, center cerebrally.

Just make beautiful things.

That’s it.

Make Beautiful things.

When you put your soul, heart and deep-down creative juices into a project (and keep those horse blinders on while you’re focusing on it), something wonderful will transpire.

When a person produces quality work that they’re proud of…

when a creative follows through with a concept…

when an artist gets lost in the zone of making something special…

MAGIC HAPPENS.

All of the ick of comparison falls away—

this overfed, hungry ego gets lost and  is overshadowed by the positive energy of making something amazing.

..and the cool part is that the rest of the world doesn’t have to think it’s amazing. If it’s amazing to you…it’s amazing.

Period.

If you made it to the end of this post, thank you…thank you for allowing me to spill a little of my deep-downs into this blog. I always feel better…especially knowing that some of you, dear lovelies, experience the same thing.

OX.

P.S. *One month ’til Brave Girl Camp, Jeanne! So excited. Wish it was here now.

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11 Responses to Caution: Soul baring ahead

  1. Beth Cozzi says:

    Great post, Lara. Wish you had been a fly on the wall when Pete and I were going on about how awesome your photography is (I swear, we really did have that conversation on our date night…at dinner!). Wishing we had it in our budget to do a family shoot with you – someday soon. You are so talented and such a sweetheart. No more pity parties, just keep making the magic!

  2. Kerstin says:

    Your are dead-on right – and not alone. Atta’ girl!

  3. robin says:

    i ‘get it’ lara. i really do.
    ox from my heart to yours

  4. M says:

    I love you L!!!

  5. kristin says:

    oh thank you dear girl for this post today!! sigh…i think it is just the thing i needed to get me out of my frump!! :0)

  6. Holly says:

    Love the pity party tools! Can I share them with clients?

  7. Jackie says:

    Amen to all of it!! I was taking an online jewelry class and people posted their pics and I just felt so bad…their things seemed so much better than mine…so I had to let that all go and just know that I was enjoying making things and learning new things and that’s all that matters…if I like what I’m making, that’s what’s important!! (and my daughter wants to wear some of the pieces, so that’s REALLY amazing!).

  8. kim says:

    This really resonates with me today. Thank you so much.

  9. Lori Mac says:

    OM goodness, thanks so much for posting your feelings…. it really hit home. I don’t start projects, because I compare myself to others! It helps to know how others feel. By the way, your photography is beautiful, what an inspiration you are to me. In fact I look at your pic and think “my pics will never look that good”. Keep up the fabulous blog and I am so jealous that you get to go to the Brave girl camp…. my someday!

  10. Valerie says:

    I totally get this. For me, it’s infertility. And even though I’ve “over come it” by having three children of my own…genetically-speaking…I still feel the pang of insecurity when a fellow blogger posts that they’ve conceived # 5 or #6…an impossibility for us. *sigh*

    Sometimes, I just have to stop reading and start “living” so that I remember all that is good in my life!

  11. Vicki says:

    Taking the ruler out to see where we measure up is so human. Everyone does it. It can be consuming. It is such a mind game and not at all based in reality. You have some fantastic tricks up your sleeves to combat the “force.” I so wish we could make ourselves immune to this yuck. One way to keep the yuck away is making sure your glass is have full. If your cup starts to feel empty that’s a great way for the yuck to move on in. So go on now…fill that love cup up….let it over flow!!!

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