I was recently working on an original mixed media art project and struggling. As I sat there cutting paper, drawing and painting I kept hearing voices…the kind that dismantle me. I kept hearing one say, “You’re not good enough,” and another that said, “If you do that, you’re just copying that which has already been done.” The sad part about these voices was not necessarily the statements themselves. Instead, it was the realization that the barrage of statements coming at me weren’t even recognized at first, and that I even agreed with them and thus struggled to find my creative self.
It was at this point that I felt the urge to write. I’ve learned after all – through writing – how to somewhat quiet that voice. The voice that tells me to correct everything along the way and the one that tells me my grammar is incorrect, and the one that often says, “Hey! You misspelled that word.” Heck, sometimes I just misspell words on purpose…and don’t even cross them out. (To bad, I just corrected the word misspell…as it was mispelled.) 🙂 Just keepin it real!
At any rate, as I wrote, all those statements came out and it hit me that they were all there, telling me I wasn’t good enough. I’ve learned over the last several years through counseling that this is my inner critic. We all have one. It comes from the negative voices we’ve had along the way in each of our own journeys. I wanted to tell that dang voice to SHUT UP! So, after writing it all out, I started creating and in doing so, felt as though I did indeed show “the voice” who was boss, and in turn quieted it. The result? This girl, who I’ve kindly named, “The Encourager.”
She is my reminder that I need to be aware of the negative voice – the critic. And, that I need to hold those thoughts captive. For God tells us in Philippians 4:8 to think on things that are good, honest, praiseworthy and of good report. I think the part that made me most angry – in the end – was the realization that I wasn’t even aware the thoughts were coming at me as they were AND that I was agreeing with them. I don’t want to listen to those voices. I have enough on my plate to be down about, I don’t need an additional critic sitting on my shoulder bringing me further down. Soooo, my encourager – the art brought forth in that moment – will now be sitting on my desk as a reminder! I’ve taken the original art, turned it into a print, added the words and mounted it on wood. The result, is this bright cheerful reminder that tells me, to tell the voice, to shut up! Needless to say, I love this little piece 🙂
I hope you enjoy her as much as I do!
Til next time,
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