I have always admired people who can paint. Or draw. Or sketch. I don't believe at this moment that I am one of those.
I decided in about 2nd grade that art was not my thing. I settled over time for my stick-figure drawings. My creative outlet took the form of words, thoughts and ideas and it has served me well.
So, imagine my surprise when, after signing up for the Brene Brown/Oprah extravaganza to begin next week, I realized I needed to purchase approximately $70 worth of art supplies. Ugh! Even shopping online for the items I know nothing about makes me feel inadequate to the task.
Vulnerability means risk. Suddenly this feels like work. It will be my mission to find joy in the process of making a mess. Guess I'll find out if art really does imitate life or vice versa.
I crack myself up. You'll never guess what I did (or didn't do) this month.
I didn't order art supplies for the class I am now half-way through.
I shopped for them.
I whined about not knowing what I was doing.
I blogged about the risk of creativity.
I worried that my supplies hadn't arrived.
I checked my email for order confirmation - and - nothing!
I checked every plastic card I own for a charge to the art supply places I might have used. Nada.
So I have done all of the homework in Brene Brown's online class - except for the part that challenged me the most...playing with paint.
Here's a handy little Self-Compassion Scale developed by Dr. Kristin Neff, a researcher and professor at the University of Texas at Austin that helped me extend some compassion for this faux pas. Hope you enjoy it, too!
Here are my "aha" moments from day 1 of the Gifts of Imperfection with Dr. Brene Brown.
Dr. Brown found in her research that 85% of adults recall a time that was so shaming it forever changed what they thought of themselves. 50% of those were around creativity.
Whoa - like the time in third grade when I tried to make a gift for my mother in a school art project that involved, clay, paint, and firing. It was torture for me because I am not naturally artistic. Finally I found something I could put together that involved little more than rolling clay into logs and putting them together to fashion some distant relative of a wiener dog.
My wonderful mother prominently displayed it in our home forever it seemed, and I cringed every time I saw it.
So here I am, voluntarily making another attempt at art...for the heart, this time. Here are the new rules:
What do you need to give yourself permission to be, do or have?
Success breeds success.
Find someone who has what you want, and do what they did to get there. Simple, right?
Brene Brown is a researcher who bared her soul and shared her findings about the power of vulnerability in a Ted Talk three years ago. Now she's partnering with Oprah and OWN Network to offer a very reasonably priced 6-week course based on her book The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be, and Be Who You Are.
That's exactly where I am in my personal journey and where the women I work with most need to go.
Some things are better experienced in a small group of like-minded women instead of open to the public via Facebook.
Still, if you're feeling brave and want to practice being vulnerable and visible, I invite you to drop in, join the forum at Facebook and come along with me if you like. Or lurk. Or don't. The choice is yours.
I am an entrepreneur living in the leap from the life I was programmed to live into the life of my dreams.