Marble cubicles symbolizing the boxes we put ourselves in. It's time to lose the labels and change our story. MaartjedeBoer

Don't put yourself in a box

Choose what defines you, change your story.
Surely you've been there too: not being (or feeling) productive. Making plans and not sticking to them, feeling full of energy one moment and ready to go, only to get distracted and not do what you set out to do.
I'm in one of those spells right now, after months of being in a massive life change: my mum died in early June, and I'm just getting my bearings again. There is a lot to process. And that took up a lot of my time and energy, leaving nothing for making my mosaic art. Or writing blog posts, for that matter, this being the first one in a while.
The only thing I seem to have energy for is decluttering, organizing, and cleaning. I am doing everything except making my art.
Such a weird thing to experience for an artist. It is not a creative block. I have so many wonderful ideas in my head, and I can see myself executing them in my mind's eye. I know what I want to make and how, but I can't bring myself to it.
This is a first for me! I've never been here before. I'm not worried I won't get my mojo back; it will happen someday. To me, the most interesting thing about this is the way I'm dealing with it. Because boy, o boy, the way this messes with my head is just crazy and pretty f*cked up, to be honest.
Part of me, the part I call my old self, hates me for it. It blames me, stresses me out, and wants to punish me for not doing what an artist is supposed to do. You know 'the voice', right?: "You call yourself an artist? You haven't made a mosaic in months. How can you take yourself seriously when you are wasting all that time?"
I can tell you that part almost convinced me that I am not a real artist and should feel bad and ashamed of myself. Never mind what the definition of 'a real artist' is; that internal voice doesn't care for those finer details, it just wants to scold me.
Now, I'm at a point in my life where I'm aware that this is only my old self trying to make me feel bad. It fears change and wants to keep me in my place, doing what I've always done.
And even though this is not who I am anymore or who I want to be, it still got to me, stressing me out. So today, while taking a long walk, I decided to explore this, and I asked myself, 'Why is this getting to me the way it does? Why does it even make me doubt my worthiness?'.
The answer is simple: it has to do with how I perceive and define myself.
Before this episode, I was so driven and busy making my art and working on fulfilling my dream to be a full-time artist. This was what I identified myself with. And straying from this course did not match that self-image. It felt like wasting time, like letting myself down, like being a fraud even.
But today, I realized being an artist is not what defines me. Nor does being productive. That was just the box I had put myself in. And I had made that box to be the whole of who I am, my reason for living, instead of the box being one part of me. Granted, it is an important part, but it is not what defines me. And I also realized I have control over how I choose to define myself, whether I want to box myself in or not.
This opened up a whole new line of thinking for me. I can throw that self-imposed box away and expand my definition of myself. If I still need a definition, for every definition would be limiting, and why limit myself any longer? But I feel that is a step too far; for now, it feels better to choose a new story for myself.
And today, that would be something along the lines of:
I am free to do what I want
I am energy
I am expansive, forever evolving
I am aware and aligned with higher consciousness
I am love and self-love
And what defines ME is sharing my light with the world. In whatever shape or form I choose.
I don't know if you noticed, but the words ´productive´and  'mosaic' do not enter that description. Nor does writing. I realize now that they are instruments, a way of expressing myself, but I'm not limited to them or obliged to use them all the time.
At times like this, it is enough to be. Being and raising my vibration, feeling satisfied, knowing all is well. And if organizing or cleaning is what makes me feel good right now, so be it.
So I am telling the voice inside me to shut up and say to myself: I am who I am and where I am, and this is just fine.

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