The Artist’s Way week 5: fasten your seat belts

Last week I blogged about doing the twelve-week course in  Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way.  That was week 4: reading deprivation. This is week 5.

The topic

This week’s overall topic is barriers: self-sabotage/things you do to keep yourself stuck. Seriously working on week 5 results in a bumpy flight. (And why would you do the work of this course if you DIDN’T take it seriously? What a waste of time that would be.)

The tantrum

On Monday night around midnight, I was in the kitchen, tired and hungry and unable to sleep, making some hot milk with honey, and the honey bottle slipping out of my hand and knocking over the sugar bowl, which hit the floor and shattered.

Sugar is a lot like sand, on the floor.

I slammed the honey bottle down on the counter—WAY more angry than the situation required. The top to the bottle broke, something I did not realize until I tried to squeeze some honey into the hot milk and got about a cupful of honey to a half-cup of milk.

Honey is sticky, especially when it is everywhere.

What was strange about that situation was that I was angry at my inner artist. I blamed her for the broken sugar bowl, the spilled honey. I wasn’t just cursing myself for being careless; I blamed her.

What was THAT about? Was I just tired and frustrated? Was the artist grabbing for sweetness?  Whatever the motive, I’ve been calmer and more balanced since. Kinder.

The lesson

A task this week was to draw a cartoon that  illustrates “your favorite creative block.” Although I can’t draw, I drew a picture of someone standing next to a table on which was a cake. She was looking away from cake while reaching toward it. The caption was “I want this. No I don’t.”

Halfway effort is waste of time. It leaves you both satisfied and unsatisfied. Better things ahead.

14 comments on “The Artist’s Way week 5: fasten your seat belts

  1. sdormadyeise says:

    We all do things to sabotage ourselves artistically. I think the secret is to recognize this, and identify these blocks. You’re obviously doing a great job with the course. Kudos!

  2. You poor gal, Lindsay … I am picturing the clean up of all that sweet stuff and laughing. Laughing because I am prone to doing things like that to redirect my anger.

    I loved your idea for the cartoon. It speaks to what we do … or as Freud said … approach/avoidance … I’ve perfected avoidance/avoidance … then I swing back … what I am learning to finally perfect is approach/approach :)

    • Wordshapes_le says:

      I hope 2013 is approach/approach for both of us! The Artist’s Way course is doing me good, though I hold my inner artist responsible for the state of my kitchen Monday night. :-)

      Sent from my iPad

  3. nancyella says:

    Great stuff! This sounds like a dangerous book!

  4. Gloria says:

    It may have been one of those “kriyas” she talks about. A little inner artist tantrum. Or maybe just sleep deprivation:)

  5. [...] is third blog about The Artist’s Way course. The first two are Fasten Your Seat Belts and Reading [...]

  6. Debra Eve says:

    I started The Artist’s Way years ago and never finished. It brought up all sorts of stuff I wasn’t ready for. You’re inspiring me to tackle it again, Lindsay. (And in an amazing bit of serendipity, I’ve become an acquaintance of The Artist’s Way cover artist — she lives 10 miles from me. Time to heed the signs.)

    • I received the book as a Christmas gift and found out that another friend also received it for Christmas. It has been motivating to know someone who is also doing the course. Serendipity again! The morning pages are like going to therapy 7 days a week, except way cheaper.


  7. [...] is my fourth blog about The Artist’s Way course. The first three are Everything Is Connected, Fasten Your Seat Belts. and Reading [...]

  8. [...] about The Artist’s Way course. The first four are Do Fury Honor, Everything Is Connected, Fasten Your Seat Belts. and Reading [...]

  9. [...] is my sixth blog about The Artist’s Way course. The first five are Everything Is Connected, Fasten Your Seat Belts, Reading Deprivation, Do Fury Honor, and [...]

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