I used to pride myself on how well I could multitask. I was a busy wife, mom, had a full time career, author, workshop leader and managed to fit in some creative endeavors..all without skipping a beat. Unfortunately, after years of this busy lifestyle, I took a hit health wise and had to slow down -way down- or maybe it was fortunate.
Now, when I think about it, I wonder how I managed it all. I think it was mostly because having all those roles- and responsibilities- it was just plain necessary. It’s what we do. At the time, it felt like there were no other choices.
I got a degree in art in 1984, but because I had to work, I knew then that making it as an artist was not going to pay the bills. I took a left turn and went into psychology making a career out of art, Jungian sand play, and therapy. I became internationally certified in both play therapy for children and Sandplay, and taught these modalities both in the U.S, Ireland, and Mexico. Although it was extremely gratifying and I loved it I didn’t get much time to paint or to play. But I always gave myself a creative time – maybe one evening a week- like a clay class, art class or something ( once I took a clogging class!) just for fun.
After 30 years and the coinciding health diagnosis, I retired from a busy psychotherapy practice. I wanted more time for myself; time to just play and do art. I wanted to have more time in meditation, nature, and just quiet time. Along with that, it was becoming impossible for my brain to keep everything going. Multitasking went out the window. Who I had been was no longer me. It was hard at first, but I have to say now I love being able to focus on just one thing at a time. I love going slower. Being mindful is truly a discipline but also a joyous experience.
I live more in present time now. This is what creates the pearls of our memories and lives. As a practicing artist now, I feel it is more of a mindfulness experience. It’s a mediation of spirit.
I also know that many of you reading this will relate and may feel frustrated with not having enough time for yourself. I know because I have been there. But if you can just find a day per week; an hour even to spend in reflective, meditative’ no time’, I promise you will find that the rest of the week days time will go much smoother. I used to say to my clients, if you run out of gas, you won’t be able to go anywhere, but if you fill that gas tank which takes only a few minutes, it gives you a week of benefits. So whatever it is, even if its a long soak in the tub, make it a priority! Make time for yourself a creative endeavor.
My artist friend, Gini and I had a wonderful time with our students in a recent workshop called: Painting with Mixed Media. Here are some of the paintings they did. These are done with paper and acrylic paint. One of them had never painted!
My next class will begin in Sept. – We meet once per month for 8 months. I only have a few openings left! You can contact me through my website: connierodriguezArt.com if you are interested.