Life is art. It’s not a painting, a sculpture, a novel, or a piece of music, but it has a lot in common with these things because living is a creative undertaking. Each new day presents us with a blank canvas, and it is up to us to fill it with shapes, colors, work, play, and joy. External forces and events beyond our control also influence our days, and sometimes they bring with them hardship and sorrow. Even so, we remain the artists. In the end, how we live and how we respond to the challenges of life is up to us. Life is not only a creative enterprise – it’s also a learning process.
The quote above was taken from a small but very powerful booklet that was given to me by someone at work, entitled, Honor Yourself. It took many weeks to actually sit down and read it, however when I did, the wisdom within the pages deeply touched my heart and soul. What I found especially inspiring about this book is that it didn't sugarcoat the author's challenging experience. He was extremely honest about the fears he felt before he was able to see the gifts that the experience had given him.
I think the main reason this book touched me the way it did was because of my own experience back in October of 2015, when I was hospitalized for two weeks and struggled with my fear of the unknown, yet came out on the other side with a better understanding and "bigger picture" of why this experience was necessary and the lessons it taught me.
I seem to gain the most inspiration and strength from the personal and intimate stories of people who experience adversity by embracing it, viewing it as an integral part of their life journey and choose to grow from it.
I believe that each and every experience that comes into my life is there because it is needed. And that there is no such thing as an accidental experience, whether it be pleasant or challenging - neither are accidental.
Of course the pleasant experiences are easy, it's the challenging ones that seem to rock my world, causing uncertainty and disruption. Yet they are also the experiences I look back on and am so grateful for, because in their disruption they also caused me to expand.
Yes, life is a canvas of continual art. Some of that art is free-flowing and easy, other parts can be challenging and disruptive.
But as the quote above says, in the end, how I live and how I respond to the challenges of life is up to me. Because my life is not only a creative enterprise – it’s also a learning process.
Have a fantabulously creative weekend everyone!