Inspiring Enchantment & Illumination with Tarot & Intuitive Guidance

Weekend Homework

If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.
— Lao Tzu

As we get ready to take our next step, there is one more task to complete. This might be another micromovement exercise, or it could be bigger. You can read it in The Artist’s Way, but I am going to embellish it just a little bit, based on some work I’ve done with coaches, as well as some of the inspirations from another favorite of mine, Sarah Ban Breathnach, author of Simple Abundance.

Take a walk-through of your house sometime this weekend, with a clipboard or notebook and imagine you are seeing everything for the first time. You might imagine that you’re a benevolent but honored VIP of some sort. Seeing your home with fresh eyes, what things would you like to change or improve? Room by room, take notes. What little chores have you been skipping, thinking you’d get to them later? What irritating bits do you put up with because you’ve learned to tune them out? And if issues come up that are not home-based, include them, too!

Be gentle with yourself on this. But be honest. Having to move that table over every time you want to close the door is just one small thing. But, over and over, repeated, say, twice a day, year in and year out, it is stealing your good energy, and driving you a little crazy; or else making you settle for less than comfort and ease (not to mention the awful feng shui of such a thing!). If we can’t have comfort and ease in our own homes, what hope is there for us?

So walk through and make an inventory of what you’d like to change or fix. And again, if non-domestic concerns occur to you, like things at work that are bugging you, include them as well.

From this, Julia suggests that we pick ten changes “you can make for yourself, from the significant to the small or vice versa (‘get new sheets so I have another set, go to China, paint my kitchen, dump my bitchy friend Alice’).”

She recommends that when we pick our top ten changes to make, we write them up like this:
1. I would like to
2. I would like to

And so on. As you can see, this turns them into positive steps that encourage us.

“As the morning pages nudge us increasingly into the present,” she writes, “where we pay attention to our current lives, a small shift like a newly painted bathroom can yield a luxuriously large sense of self-care.”

So, this weekend, select one small item from your list and do it!

And as we conclude this second step in our process, I invite you again to check-in. How many days did you do your morning pages? Hopefully every day! How are they working for you? Any surprises?

Have you been doing your artist date? I personally find this the hardest to do for myself. It seems sometimes like a selfish indulgence I don’t have time for. But I am finally beginning to understand that it is absolutely critical for my artist recovery. If I don’t treat my artist self to some regular playtime and unsupervised fun, I get really crabby and depressed.

How about you?

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  • April 11, 2009, 6:10 am Star

    My artist date this week was to visit the Paper Cutters art exhibit at the local arts center. WOW! What a fine, detailed, creative craft. My eyes were opened!

    I have been challenged lately noticing that my fine motor control for doing precise work has been diminishing as I age. This is frustrating as I drop stuff, squeeze things too hard and break beads and findings, mess up my coloring by a random stroke of color outside the line…etc. I am learning to use new tools – magnifying glass, tweezers, etc and to be satisfied with an end result that may not be as precise as my perfectionist self might want. Sometimes I feel frantic to accomplish what I can before my body takes my abilities away from me. So, I am not procrastinating these days, but trying to get the most out of each day with my arts.

    I have a long list of tasks to make each room in my house work more efficiently, and some of these tasks require money or assistance from a professional to accomplish. I try to balance taking time to accomplish the smaller of these tasks with the time for my art. Most of the time my art wins and I procrastinate on the tasks. During this year of working The Artist Way, I have decided that the art takes precedence. Yesterday, I rearranged my studio/work room to be more efficient for me to work. This created open space for the art to flow more easily and for me to use the natural light from the windows.

    I am grateful to have this path to work at this time in my life. There are other frustrations in my mundane life that are not so pleasant just now. Doing my art helps me regain an emotional balance when I am knocked off course (like I was the past 2 days…) and offers a refuge where I can renew my inner energies.

    Thanks to all for your stories and posts. I am getting a lot from this sharing.


  • April 14, 2009, 5:04 pm Thalia

    I am not sure what to do with this homework as I live in a shared space that does not feel like my own, though it literally is. It’s kind of a long story. Um, hmmm. Okay:

    I live in the house I grew up in, with my mother. Though I’m only 40 she is 82 (though she’s still pretty spritely and doesn’t need day-to-day care or the like, I still feel better keeping an eye on her); and a few years back the house was signed over to me for legal-type reasons. So it is, technically, my house. But I don’t feel like I have any kind of right to do anything to it, because it’s still my mother’s house. Oddly enough this extends to feeling like I don’t have the right to *clean* it. I am working on this issue or whatever you want to call it but it has been slow going. My mother is kind of territorial, I guess you could say.

    Anyway, so faced with homework like this I am kind of baffled. I am converting the guest bedroom to a proper studio room for myself, though (this is a BIG step in the whole process of coming to terms with living here for me); so what I did was look around that one room and make a list of micromovements to do. Not that I’ve gotten as far as doing one yet.