I've been completing a 30 day challenge for artists on UArtsy with Ryan Kingslien, and man, has it been amazing!! I highly recommend it for everyone, and is free. Come check it out here!! www.uartsy.com/course/30-day-c…
Day 8, we were to list some excuses or limiting beliefs for ourselves in why we haven't followed our passion. Day 9 we were to then go over those beliefs and figure out what stories they told about us, and how they could be morphed into something positive.
Here are my limiting beliefs and my responses (took a number of days before getting back to the Day 8 exercise, and really feel like I knocked it out of the park. I believe in my responses. : D )
Let’s rephrase these stories, shall we?
1. “I am not good enough.”
You are as good as you can be right now – you will improve with time and practice. I’m sure of it, as you are very dedicated to what you do.
2. “Art is not a useful talent.”
A lot of people seem to value it greatly, and encourage you to pursue this that you love. It may not be ‘useful’ in practical terms, but it can make people think, smile, and appreciate. Sometimes that is exactly what someone needs in their life at that moment, and you have accomplished that feat in so many peoples’ lives without even breaking a sweat. You are doing something useful – enriching other people in many ways.
3. “I am not contributing to society with art.”
An excuse in the same light as #2. You cannot think too large a scale, or you will become overwhelmed and are doomed to failure. Start small, do what is in your power, and see the above response for some of the results.
4. “I am hesitant to confront people.”
This is an anxiety that a lot of people have, and many are just as or even more hesitant to approach you because you seem (yes I know it’s hard to imagine) so confident and intelligent in your own capabilities. There are people who look up to you. You never know if the next person you decide to confront will become a lifelong, cherished friend. If they aren’t, it’s okay. It doesn’t hurt to try, and you know yourself enough now that you can handle a truly negative response. I have faith in your abilities and understanding of what to do.
5. “I am afraid of if someone gets mad/upset.”
Thankfully you are now in a place where you can find support, validation, and comfort away from the source of these fears. If someone gets mad or upset, if you can understand why they might be so, sympathize with their position and show them that you understand where they are coming from. Stand firm for your point of view, however! If they are truly unreasonable, excuse yourself from the conversation/room, maybe tell them that you’ll talk to them later, or don’t if things go really downhill. You are the best at being able to compromise, and you are making great progress on standing up for yourself. You’ve gotten far enough to be able to be assertive without so much fear! You go, girl!
6. “I don’t deserve to do what I enjoy.”
This thought is a product of your decimation of self-worth from your childhood. Whether or not worth is an illusion, it is integral to one’s well-being, and by your own beliefs that people should be able to get an equal chance, you should give yourself that chance as well. When you are happy and not hurting others, you are at your most capable and open to opportunities to illuminate others.
7. “Art is decadent, and not useful to everyday people. You can’t eat art.”
While you can’t eat art, your mind can’t consume food to feel stimulated in ways art can provide. Your art provides a source of inspiration to others.
8. “There are already so many people doing what I do.”
While that may be true, no one, and I mean no one, has the unique background, neurology, and frame of mind that you do. Skills may be obtained, but the expression of those skills are individual to each person. See above responses for a reiteration on the value of your work.
9. “I don’t have anything unique to bring to the table.”
The brain can only process and retain so much information, and your upbringing and frame of mind has allowed you a certain perspective on what you have learned so far. It is inherently unique by sheer force of fact.
10. “I need to complete my major in Zoology.”
You wish to do this to obtain better opportunities to get access to jobs you’d enjoy. You do a heck of a lot of research on your own, already, though, and while a major in Zoology would ratchet your eligibility substantially, your own current aptitudes could get you into a number of jobs already – taxidermy, internships at zoos or aquariums, working from the ground up and learning the trade on the factory floor, so to speak. Keep doing what you do, and if you truly find you have the funds and ability to, go seek your dreams of going back to college! You love the learning atmosphere!
11. “I am not motivated to do what would truly fulfill me.”
Antidepressants and a lack of self-worth are to blame for this one. You are doing a great job working around the effects of the antidepressants, working on what you have to when you’re low, and taking those little moments where you do feel motivated to suck as much worth out of those moments as possible – be excited about the fact that you feel motivated (and you always do)! Those points in time in the early morning where the whole day is open before you to so many possibilities – grab that feeling and cherish it. Your self-worth is a work in progress, a positive work in progress, which improves with each small experience. Be sure to reward yourself for these steps as they are taken! You constantly search the depths of psychology for evidence-based minutiae; as you learn and understand that you are not what you perceived your parents to think you were, you stand more and more resolutely on the bedrock of evidence. You are worth the effort – those who appreciate you know it and want you to be who you are for its own merit. You are allowed to accept what you like and don’t like, and you don’t have to apologize for it.