The Artist’s Way – Recovering a Sense of Identity


Picture by Naomi Walker

This week I went back to work with a rejuvenating trust that I was going to write every day – stay connected to my passion, use the anger and frustration that procrastination gives me and give right back by writing! Well my “Monday” which is actually a Tuesday was filled with getting up, going to the gym, going to work, getting home by 5:30pm, preparing dinner with my partner, and then somewhere between going to work and getting home I turned on the auto pilot and after dinner I went to the sofa, sat down and watched a few episodes of Entourage to get ready for the upcoming movie in the summer. (Love Ari & E)


I became upset with myself for not going into my writing room to do what I know I should be doing…writing. I wasted another night away when I professed I would change, this week. I need to know why I’m procrastinating so much lately. I am drawn to Julia Cameron’s words about gaining sanity.

Trusting our creativity is new behavior for many of us. It may feel quite threatening initially, not only to us but also to our intimates. We may feel – and look – erratic. This erraticism is a normal part of getting unstuck. It is important to remember that at first flush, going sane feels just like going crazy…As we gain strength, so will some of the attacks of self-doubt. This is normal, and we can deal with these stronger attacks when we see them as symptoms of recovery.


I trust my creativity, it’s my ego, the old behavior that I don’t trust and I don’t know how to let go of. I feel like I’m in limbo at times and this is part of the erratic state. I’ve gone through this process more than once which is the real frustrating part. I make so much progress and then I sling back like an elastic, back to the old self with much self attack talk. Julia, speaks about the self attack talk:

Common self-attacks are: “Okay, so I did okay this week but it’s a temporary thing…. Okay, so I got the morning pages done. I probably did them wrong…. Okay, so now I need a plan something bit and do it right away!…. Who am I kidding? I’ll never recover, not right away….not ever…” These attacks are groundless, but very convincing to ourselves. Buying into them enables us to remain stuck and victimized. Just as a recovering alcoholic must avoid the first drink, the recovering artist must avoid taking the first think. For us, that think is really self-doubt: “I don’t think this is any good….”

self talk

Wow! right there, black and white on the page, Julia spells it out for us, for me directly that my heart center is pulsating. I am in that place where I don’t think I can move on, when I know I have moved forward before and I sure as hell can do it again! I can not let any of my self-doubt lure me in any longer or I have given into the self-sabotage that I recognize in other people and wonder why they do it. Now, I can ask myself the very same question. They say you meet people for a reason and sometimes those people annoy you, do things that you don’t like, and sometimes it’s those annoyances are the very things that you don’t like about yourself. The first time I heard this I denied it, but if I look at what is happening around me, I have people around me that are self-sabotaging themselves with self-negative talk and I want to drop kick them. So, in turn I want to drop kick myself, I know better and it’s time to step out-of-the-way (again) and let the true self take over and kick my self-attack-self-sabotage self in the ass.


Do you self-attack? How do you over come it? How is your creativity this week? I’d love to hear from you.

Until next time, keep on typing…


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