A while back you might remember that I told you I’d applied to take part in the annual Great Sheffield Art Show. I had gone as far as getting ‘Harbour’ framed up, but just one day before the selection day itself, I still hadn’t chosen a second piece of work to take.
It felt like a pretty tall order all of a sudden, to fulfill this. It felt like too much effort to choose another work, to get it framed or ready for hanging, to drive to the selection building and leave my work for several hours before picking up the paintings and discovering whether they had been chosen or not…
…and right then, I chose not to do it.
You might be wondering ‘What?? Why??? How could you not???’
And the truth was, my heart wasn’t in it. In the middle of many other projects I was involved in; I had chosen yet another task to take on, something else to achieve and try to succeed at. In the swirling midst of everything else, I had presumed I could handle it and I hadn’t stopped to ask myself how necessary this really was in my Big Scheme of things and whether it was Possible.
Sometimes we have to take a big deep breath, and listen to our intuition which (in my humble opinion) is never wrong. Like a whisper, my intuition simply said Stop.
And when I had made the choice not to take my paintings to the selection day, not to (possibly) take part in the show, I felt a wave of relief flood through me. Within that moment I had cleared a swathe of fresh space for myself; I felt myself breathe more easily and the tension I had created by commiting to this event melted away.
And it’s OK to say No to stuff, to change our minds. If something feels like being Too Much, then it is absolutely OK to not do it.
In my quest to make life a little more simpler, happier and easier for me and my little tribe, I occasionally lose the way. I get swept away with the initial enthusiasm of doing something without questioning whether or not the idea is actually beneficial or doable for me. And then I feel those small needles of anxiety, I begin to read my To Do List and it seems unfathomably long and Undoable, mild panic follows, life feels too full to even achieve the smallest of chores, it’s a mess – oh my…
Learning to say No to things that I don’t want to do, or that I feel I ought to do in order to please others, or to look good (despite it feeling wrong) is something that becomes more important to me as I grow. My time is precious and I want to spend every moment of it doing things that nourish me and feel good. So I keep practising, checking in with myself and asking if it’s the right time to take on another project, attend an event.
Do you find it easy to say No? Do you find yourself saying Yes to stuff that doesn’t feel that great out of obligation or habit? Will you share your thoughts with me on this please, I’d love to hear them.
Sending you love today, so glad you stopped by.