Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Joy Diet - Play

The Next Chapter: The Joy Diet

The Joy Diet
Martha Beck

Once a Day, Take a Moment to Remember your Real Life’s Work and Differentiate it from the Games you Play in Order to Achieve it. Then, Commit to Playing Wholeheartedly.

I have to say I really loved this chapter. I now “get it”. I guess I had two awakenings, I will call them awakenings instead of tragedy’s. I went to my dream college and I was working my dream career, a Commercial Interior Designer. I will say dream career because not all of the jobs or tasks I did as part of the career were a dream… Interior Design is a very dysfunctional industry. I worked very hard for the first 10 years, sometimes at 2 or 3 jobs, but I really did not play or even know how to play. My first awakening came after 6 years of infertility and the joyful day of adopting our first baby… a beautiful little girl… “A peach” as the nurse at the hospital called her. I still worked, but now it was part –time… 18-24 hours each week. If I had to put in extra hours I would work after she went to bed. My priorities became much clearer very quickly.
My second awakening unfortunately was cancer. I would love people to “get it” without having to go through a tragedy or such a major awakening, but then I myself really did not get it until I had to.

Interior Design was not as satisfying anymore… it really had not been for quite awhile but that is what I could bring in an income with. While I was fighting the cancer and healing I learned how to play with art again. I still struggle with what is my real career… what will bring in money… what is important to me. I am very fortunate that right now I do not need to bring in an income. I will always be a designer, but I am learning to call myself an artist and it was affirming to read that it really is not about the money.

I love the eagle and mouse vision. I too often get stuck hunting for that next piece of cheese. This really helped me clarify my real career right now. To be a Healthy Survivor, a Wife, a Mother, an Artist. Sometimes I get that mouse vision and forget that if I do not stay healthy then I will not be able to achieve the rest. This past week I really tried to fly up to the eagle position to clarify my goals. So I jogged instead of doing some other things that I wanted to get done. It is easy for me to put the exercise to the back burner, yet I know it is important for me to stay healthy. Before I die…I want to create lasting memories with my family and friends and create lasting art to document my life’s lessons, thoughts and feelings.

I am still learning how to play… that it is ok to play… it is ok to say no to requests that others ask of my time…. especially if it does not part of the “game” that I want to play.

This is a collage that I made for my daughter....

This painting was titled "Living with Cancer"...

This is an old painting titled "My Soul" painted while I was fighting cancer....
They sum up my awakenings...

1 comment:

Beverley Baird said...

Mary Beth - what gorgeous paintings! Your daughter will love this work for her.
I just could not get to this chapter but after reading your post especially, I know I will have to.
Having spent 30 years in education I will soon return (well - maybe 2 years) I have to plan for what will come next.
Thanks for sharing.


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