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The art of showing up

Photo by Mahir Uysal

They say part of creative work is showing up every day to do the work. They’re right. But it’s the showing up part that’s sometimes harder than doing the work.

Excuses like: work, no time, food shopping, laundry, or even good old quality time with your spouse can (and will) take priority of showing up. Why is that?

I have two theories about that:

  1. There is no immediate return of the work. You may create something that works, it may suck, or it may work, but will never see the light of day. The only gratification that it will give you is that you’ve done it. And in a world that is result driven and needs hard numbers that is just simply not good enough.
  2. Fear. Sitting down and creating something means you have to look deep into yourself. Into your own soul and not be afraid of what’s there. And most of get uncomfortable when it gets too deep. So we avoid it. We hide from it, rather take a detour than to face what’s there.

I know for my part both of these have been true. Results are always too slow for me. And there are times I’m afraid of my own mind and feelings. Afraid of what’s there and what it will tell me.

Yet, at the same time, not doing that is creating a very deep feeling of unhappiness. It’s making me restless, and it makes me feel trapped. Like a caged animal wondering if this is it.

The simple act of writing every day, of shooting every day and even painting (aka mashing colours together on a canvas) releases that. It’s like opening a window in my head to let my soul come rushing out to play.

Every time I create I release a waterfall of feelings into the world showing myself: I am not afraid. Not anymore.

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