As I explained last week, I'm letting my "inner artist" come to the surface this year as I explore my creative self with Carla Sonheim and Lynn Whipple's online Spark class. So far, I've had a lot of fun trying some new things . . . and letting myself go WAY out of my usual "box."
But it has been a little more challenging than I thought. And not because of the art-making.
Right off the bat, I encountered inner resistance.
You can't draw.
These people are REAL artists.
Who do you think you are?
I like to think of myself as a fairly confident woman. I pretty much do what I want, say what I think, and step boldly. I don't like to think of myself as . . . someone who can't.
When that Inner Critic whispers in my ear, it makes me feel like . . . Junior High.
So I decided to . . . go there . . . into the belly-of-the-beast. I decided to explore this Inner Critic of mine and see just what all the fuss is about.
First, I decided to just draw it.
Turns out . . .
It's a She.
And she looks like a cardboard cut-out.
Next, I used words to describe her.
"My Inner Critic . . . is blonde and has blue eyes. She looks perfect. But she is Not Nice. (She judges.)"
"She might look pretty, but it's only on the outside. (Inside, she's rotten.)"
"Her hands are behind her back. (So she can cross her fingers while she lies to your face.)"
"You might think she's your friend, but then, when you've made yourself vulnerable, she'll laugh behind your back and make you feel stupid for every trying. Or trusting."
"So then, you start to doubt yourself. And maybe . . . you even leave yourself and become cardboard. (Just like her.)"
Turns out I know just who my Inner Critic IS . . . and she goes right back to Junior High.
Discovering where this particular voice comes from helps me move forward.
(In this case, drawing without judging myself so harshly.)
This simple exercise has been quite cathartic for me, actually. My Inner Critic will probably always live there, deep in my soul. But I can deliver some counter punches of my own now!
And that feels really good.