The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
“Any journey or task, however long, begins with one decisive action”
This is a phrase that I learned when I was young and still use in my own life principals and teachings today.
All of us at one time or another have thought “gosh, I would love to be… or I would love to do…” why do so many have these dreams but never do anything about them?
One of the main reasons people don’t chase their dreams, is because of fear. Being over overwhelmed, is one of the biggest triggers for anxiety that there is. We see this all the time with art students, business clients, and in every day life. (It’s amazing what you can see, just by looking.)
So how do we avoid becoming overwhelmed?
You will have heard the phrase “it’s important to see the big picture.” This is important. However, it can also be detrimental to progress. While it is important to know your goal, it is equally important to focus on the steps to getting there. We do this by breaking down and working out the steps we need to take to get where we want to go.
This keeps things in balance.
We only get so much time in life. If you saw our Facebook live a few weeks ago, you will have heard me talking about “Not wasting time… There’s only so much of it.” So, with that in mind, I want you to think about what you want to do with the time you have. Once you figure out what you want to do, then I want you to work backwards, listing the steps you need to take to get to where you want to go. For example, when the art school was created, these are the simple steps I took.
By keeping it simple we, (hopefully) will avoid becoming overwhelmed and frustrated.
What causes us to become anxious?
Anxiety has what I like to call the snowball effect or avalanche syndrome or even Armageddon everything is coming to an end feeling.
Would you believe anxiety is the destination, of many small steps?
- Mixing the wrong colour when painting, pricking your finger when sowing, hitting your thumb with a hammer or someone talking at you when you’re trying to concentrate are all small but as they mount up they have bad results.
- Stress or worry of work, family pressures and expectations or car trouble, disturbance in the routine.
(notice at this point how the load is starting to get heavier)
- An ache or a pain, an illness, hospital procedures.
Any combination of the above, can lead to an argument with loved ones or saying the wrong thing to a client.
Enough pressure causes diamonds to form, however too much pressure causes things to crack and snap.
That’s the way with anxiety. Enough pressure, for long enough and eventually we crack and snap. That is why, I firmly believe, that we are hearing more and more stories of people who, have just had enough and the loose the plot.
This might seem like a strange thing to add in when inspiring you to follow your dreams, however this is something you NEED to be aware of and to watch out for.
Living your dreams (well… taking the steps at least)
Preparation is key. Don’t rush. I spent years trying to rush success and it did nothing more than frustrate the life out of me. When I stopped trying so hard, things naturally opened.
You should never open a flower before it is ready to bloom.
Many in the world of the instant click, want everything now. However, this is dangerous. Trying to rush your work, business growth or force things to happen in your time can lead to disastrous consequences. You have to make sure that you are ready for success, because when it comes it tends to come fast and rapid. If you aren’t ready for it, it can become overwhelming and may be the worst thing that ever happened to you.
Many of these “so called” over night successes do not exist. It takes many years of trial and error to finally get to a place where you can just present your work/ product to an audience. This is when the real work begins.
So, why wait?
It is important to wait and build things up slowly, no matter how frustrating this may seem because if not this is what will happen.
If you pour boiling water into a glass, what do you think happens? The glass smashes all over the place and causes a mess, with very sharp and broken pieces of something that used to support so much. (Now there’s depth for you) However if the water is gently heated it gives the glass time to adjust naturally to the temperature of the situation. The glass will still shatter if put in extreme heat, but if a gentle heat is encountered, the glass (which is a metaphor for us) will be more likely to deal with the situations and not leave sharp edges, as a result of too much too soon.
So, to wrap up…
- Figure out what you want to do and start taking the steps towards your dream. No matter where you are right now.
- Let things naturally evolve and do what you can with where you are at.
- Don’t rush, adjust to each new level of success. Don’t become like the glass – too much too soon.
- Enjoy the journey, as the destination is just a stepping stone to new dreams to be unlocked.
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Memories fade but Art work is made to last ~ John Morris – Memories on canvas paintings