I mentioned that I have started The Artist’s Way by request from my therapist. I started reading it last week but to make life easier, as it works week by week, decided to call yesterday ‘Day One’.
Week One’s topic is: Recovering a Sense of Safety
I started the activities last week Thursday already, beginning with the Morning Pages. Basically every morning when I wake up I have to write 3 pages of “streaming consciousness”. So whatever comes to mind, whether it makes sense or not; whether I write three pages of “I don’t know what to write” or three pages of nonsense or three pages of what I need to do today: it doesn’t matter. I’m finding it pretty helpful to clear my head and find now and again something that I wasn’t even aware was floating around my brain has popped up . I have written quite a few lines of “how the heck am I going to write three pages” and am pretty good at getting distracted (squirrel!) but I manage to draw myself back and finish all three pages. The book says NO READING over them just yet, so I don’t look back.
The other task I have started is “Blurts”. Basically looking at all the negative thoughts that come up when I think something good about myself/say affirmations/someone says something nice about me in relation to my creativity. So I have started my list and have things like:
You can do better
That wasn’t your best
You’ll just mess it up
Wow that’s ugly, told you you’d mess it up
You always mess things up
You’ll never be as good as “insert whoever”
You can’ make money off of creativity, it’s just a hobby
You’re not talented/exceptional enough to make a living off your creativity
It’s not that good
They’re just being nice/polite
It’s pretty dismal to look over that list and realise this is what goes around and around my head. The next step is to “time travel” in to your past and look at where each of those blurts come from – mum, dad, third grade teacher, bully in high school, etc. and to then take each blurt and turn it in to an affirmation. It’s a little more in depth than just that but I’m not going to write out the entire book for legal reasons.
I am really battling with the ‘time travel’ exercises. I’m not sure if it’s BPD and the stressful time I had growing up but I really struggle to remember my past. I can remember periods of emotions but not specific events and certainly not who my biggest influences were between the ages of 1-5, 5-10 and even 10-15. My whole life is fuzzy. And I know I see it completely differently to how it probably really took place because, as mentioned, I remember things by the emotions (not necessarily mine) from that time. Like I could tell you that my first years were filled with a loneliness and sense of abandonment, between 8-10 years there was lots of rage and emotional abuse and confusion, my early teens were made up of violent anger, rejection, and severe sadness. I remember happy feelings too but not as much as the negative, sadly. Anyway, I find myself getting very cross and frustrated. I feel I am somehow failing at this already because I cannot remember three people who were ‘enemies of my creative spirit’ and am not able to write out one scenario clearly (the book says write about the room, the way people looked at you, what was said or wasn’t said, etc) or remember compliments given to me about my creative skill when I was 5 or 9 or whatever. I’ll look over it again tomorrow and see what little bit I can attempt; small steps are key I guess. Cue voice saying, “You can do better. You’re not doing your best. I knew you’d just give up. This isn’t good enough.”
I’ll also check in and post about the other tasks later on in the week as I get to them. Right now though I am suffering another IBS flare-up. Had one on Saturday and just can’t seem to recover. Am going to contact my doctor as soon as I pluck up the courage and see about having more tests done. I’ve been convinced people think I’m making this all up. In fact I’ve been told so many times that it’s all in my head that I am beginning to think it is and then I get very cross with myself because why can I not control it!!
I am now down to 53kg/117.9lb and am literally to scared to eat anything because of the nausea and pain it generally causes. Never mind that Ana is over joyed at all of this.
Okay okay,enough blabbing. Good night…