Creativity and Self Compassion

One of the best practices we can use to keep our motivation high is self compassion.

Be your own teammate not competitor.

This is an idea from Dan Millman and his book Body Mind Mastery.

I love this idea because as an artist that practices daily I “screw up” a lot.

If I beat myself up every time I screwed up a drawing or painting I wouldn’t be still working today, on my 3124th day of consecutive art days.

Dan Millman says:

“If babies held the same tendency toward self-criticism as adults, they might never learn to walk or talk. Can you imagine infants stomping, ‘Aarggh! Screwed up again!’ Fortunately, babies are free of self-criticism. They just keep practicing.”

Most of us probably wouldn’t have walked until we were much older if we criticized ourselves from birth.

How can we be more like babies and go through life with joy, playfulness and curiosity?

So that when we inevitably fall down, we laugh, brush ourselves off, learn from it and keep moving forward.

Dan Millman continues:

“So be gentle with yourself; show yourself the same kindness and patience you might show a young child—the child you once were. If you won’t be your own friend, who will be? If, when playing an opponent, you are also opposing yourself, you will be outnumbered… You probably would find it cruel and unnecessary to say to someone, ‘You are really stupid; you keep making the same mistakes; you should give up; you’ll never be any good!’ Yet we think it’s okay to say the same things to ourselves.”

I love this!

Don’t outnumber yourself by being your own competitor.

We want to be our best ally and friend cheering ourselves on after each bad drawing or painting.

Because let’s face it, only we are going to know when we actually mess up something.

Who else is going to give us encouragement when we need it?

So back to you…

Are you criticizing yourself more than you should?

See that we are all human and these experiences are universal.

You have your unique qualities of course, but we’ve all been self criticizing one time or another.

How can you criticize yourself less, see the opportunities in your experience and practice, and have a little more self compassion today?

Chris Beaven

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Malesuada proin libero nunc consequat interdum varius sit amet mattis. Sapien et ligula ullamcorper malesuada proin libero nunc consequat interdum.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *