So often I think of writing and drawing as products to she publicized and promoted. Nearly every sketch I produce ends up uploaded onto the World Wide Web, while the words I link together all have the soul purpose of trying to get them into print (digitally or conventionally).
I recently stumbled across a post by Dwayne Johnson (aka the Rock) where he espouses the benefits of working out (or as he puts it: getting my ass kicked and coming back stronger). In my mind, I’ve always mentally separated creative endeavors and working out. But perhaps that was a mistake.
Why can’t we think of writing, drawing, music as just another form of exercise? The key difference, in my mind, is the final product. Many folks who work out will never run a marathon or compete in a professional sport. The physical exercise is done for the sole benefit of bettering one’s self.
This is a psychological shift with a huge impact. Instead of thinking of every story I write as destined for publication, I can think of it as “working out” only with my creativity. This is a hard thing to overcome. All of us want that recognition for our sweat and effort. I imagine there are those who frequent gyms for just the same reason, so show it off. But the testament to the true athlete and artist is to do the work for your own benefit.
Another bit of advice from The Rock (he’s always giving out nuggets of advice) is the shift form “have to” to “get to”. When you’re passionate about something, you can to stop saying “I have to” and start saying “I get to.”
It has a transformative effect. Instead of saying “I have to practice guitar” I can say “I get to practice guitar until my fingers go numb and come back stronger.” Instead of saying “I have to stare at the blank page until I figure out what to write” I can say “I get to stare at the blank page until my brain comes up with the best words.”
So in the words of The Rock:
Now, I get to write these blog posts. And I get to illustrate them. It certainly is a privilege to be able to express my creativity.