A few years ago I was asked for an Artist Statement to go with artwork I was submitting for an exhibit. Being a musician I never thought displaying a piece of art would be something I’d ever do. I realized putting my personal story down on paper, along with my 2 framed CDs I recorded, would count as a piece of visual art. I had to give it a shot! The theme was “Second Chances”…a perfect match for my story.
Here is what I wrote:
Artist Statement: “Second Chances”
Music has always been my passion, my language. It is how I most comfortably communicate that which is nearest and dearest to my heart. My guitar has always been my partner in this process. Having lost the ability to play for 5 years I struggled with things I’d never imagined: constant pain, depression, great loss. God showed me mercy by introducing me to myself. I discovered I was skilled at songwriting! God knew I needed my guitar out of the picture so I wouldn’t be distracted by it. He then showed me amazing grace by providing me a “Second Chance”. I can play again! Now I write, play and sing!! So, I rejoice and am glad in it!
I encourage you to spend time figuring out what your story is! It matters! When you do I encourage you to write it down. Of course there will be more to write as each day passes but write it down, at least up to this point. You just might find some insights into what God has been doing in your life. Looking back will also cause you to slow down, reflect, and see all the blessings He has already given you. Who knows it might give you some hints into what He might be up to in the future.
However, it might leave you with a lot more questions. Hang on though! You’ll get another piece to your life’s puzzle. Who knows, you just may start to see how your stories become interconnected, one leading into another. Hmmm…it’s almost like someone is orchestrating your life.
One of the best things I have discovered from getting to know my own story is that it is the KEY to being able to naturally and more comfortably share God’s love with other people. God is in our everyday stuff. He is truly the co-author of our story. He has given us the freedom to make our own choices but you can know He is still weaving Himself into our lives in ways we don’t realize. If we look hard enough though, we can sometimes see His handy work.
If you were to write an artist statement for your life what would it be? In other words, what’s your story…so far?
Maybe there’s a new story in your life you still want to “write”. What would that look like?
Please share and add to the conversation. We would love to learn your story!
Yesterday we looked at 5 crucial steps for evolving our resolution making, so that by a year from now you’ll just have to smile at what you have achieved. Today we look at the other 5 steps.
10 Tips for Resolution Evolution, cont.
The following 5 tips act as a companion to each of the first 5. Resolve yourself to using them.
STAY GROUNDED: At first glance, this seems to contradict the first step of making big, BIG goals, but not really. If your primary goal next year is to win the lottery, you’ll only meet that goal by buying a winning ticket. The odds of that outcome are astronomically against you. Thus, it isn’t grounded. On the other hand, if your goal is to lose 50 lbs even while it might feel absolutely insurmountable–just because…or because you just haven’t been able to do this before–other people have done it. Lots of other people. So that goal is a BHAG for you…and grounded.
TALK ABOUT THEM: Part of the “stretch” many people avoid when making resolutions is to make them known to someone else. Face it. In most areas of life, we all need a little accountability. Note that accountability isn’t a bad word or a bad thing. It just means you’ve drafted another onto your “Team for Success,” who can give you encouragement, or a kick in the backside, once in awhile.
ASSESS & REDEPLOY: As you look at your goals throughout the year, monitor how you’re doing. What’s working? What’s getting in the way? Is it time to move your workouts to a gym, for access to a coach? Or is it time to leave the gym and go solo, for better focus and less distraction? Be honest with your assessment. Redeploy as needed.
GET INSPIRED & SHARE: Moving towards intentional, written BHAGs is work. It can be difficult and require discipline; many people avoid both while complaining about their life. Frankly, it’s easier, right? You’ll want to slip sometimes. So, grab something inspirational–read a motivational book, listen to a great podcast series, attend an inspirational workshop, etc.–then tell someone else about what you’ve learned and how its helped you.
BOW & GIVE THANKS: American culture is steeped in the notion that you “must pull yourself up by your own bootstraps.” Besides presenting a laughably improbable image, this pithy quote is built on smoke and mirrors. Does anyone really want to be so independent that no one else matters? Is that something to aspire to? No. Nearly every goal we reach is attained through the support of others. Even if that support isn’t directly given from those nearest you–such as family and friends not supporting your efforts–we can still be grateful for incredible support systems beyond them (see the previous bullet). Nurture an attitude of gratitude. We’re fortunate to be able to even think about making positive changes in our lives.
Again, remember that virtually everyone that has succeeded in some area that you wish to grow into used the same steps that you will. Their resolve isn’t any more special than your own resolve.
The 11th (bonus!) tip is this: make one of your goals for 2013 to make a lasting, meaningful, welcome improvement to someone else. That will keep your motivation high while you make a positive contribution to the world around you.
So, what’s your highest aspiration for the new year? Will you share one of your BHAGs?