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Art as a Path to Self-Discovery

Art as a Path to Self-Discovery

Art can be a space where you truly find yourself, embarking on a journey of self-discovery. We often struggle to understand and trust our emotional processes. Since childhood, we have sadly learned to disconnect from that trust and stopped recognizing our needs.

We turn to art as a means to feel, allowing whatever emotions arise without judgment and simply expressing them. Art serves as a great teacher. Whenever I feel confused, sad, angry, or lost, if I give it time and space, those emotions eventually shift. Giving myself that time is a precious gift.

We begin by meditating, observing our inner state, and giving it a color and shape. We can move our bodies and start following the rhythm of our emotions. When we paint, we can observe and acknowledge the critical voice in our heads, the inner critic. By becoming an observer without attaching to that voice, we notice it gradually quieting down.

Trusting the process and letting it unfold, we paint and make decisions. We may add or erase, transform and evolve. This movement can be painful, easy, funny—it's simply what it is. We continue with presence and patience, dealing with whatever arises as an observer without resistance. We can move, change perspectives, turn around, or close our eyes. We create that connection where we seek to understand what the painting is asking for, getting a little outside of ourselves.

Moment by moment, something new emerges. We may or may not like it, but that's okay—it is what it is. We can take risks, change direction, turn it around, or use different colors. Sometimes, we find a brushstroke that works, and we connect with it.

We often gravitate toward monotony, sticking with what we believe works, but it can become boring or overly comfortable. We should aim to step out of that comfort zone where we sit down and stop exploring, trying, and having fun. This process can be never-ending because we are always changing, and our paintings can change constantly. It's interesting to observe how change makes us feel, how we make decisions in our art, and whether we're willing to let go.

Making decisions can be challenging. You might have created something you love, and changing it or letting it go can be difficult. It's not about destroying "beauty," but accidents can happen, and colors may not always be controllable. Making a daring decision can lead to transformation. Painting teaches you about life. You can move, play, experiment, and take risks.

All these practices are not only important for painting but also for your life outside of it. The practice is to carry these lessons into real life. Not knowing is the beginning. When you start, there's nothing but an empty space, a white canvas. We need to identify our feelings. Embracing silence and allowing space for emotions is crucial. Stopping our minds and making space may not always be comfortable, but it can be life-changing. If we learn to create that space, it becomes easier to recognize our emotions, and reality will continually present new challenges.


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