An Artist's Struggle
I'm late in delivering this piece to all of you because I really had to process what I was about to say before I said it.
Let me start this by saying, I thank God DAILY that he gifted me with Music as a source of expression. I believe it is one of the most powerful means of communication because it is something that all people can experience and appreciate.
This past week, after my spiel on faith, I realized I had a was not as faithful as I thought...
Money got tight, as usual, and I started working more vigorously to make more money to add to my sense of security. I was not worried about whether money was going to come, I was certain that it will, that wasn't the issue. The issue was that I had a desire to make more money so that I could feel more secure.
Let me count the ways I was trippin' for y'all.
1. MONEY DOES NOT EQUAL SECURITY:
I know for a lot of us, we feel more secure when we have a cushion of money to fall back on. When we have a steady paying job, a guaranteed source of income, and a substantial savings. Up until last week I felt like I needed it! For those just in case moments, for the "what ifs", and the "ah shits...." I think our societal structure is set up that way, and I understand why I and many others find security in money (this piece of paper that holds no real physical value). We are taught to seek it, attain it, and spend it to attain things. It pays for food, and shelter, and clothing, all of which are necessities for our survival. I get it, but a person that is insecure without money will be insecure with money. A person that is insecure without things will be insecure with things. A person that is insecure without relationships with be insecure with them. Our security comes from within.
2. I was living in the "What Ifs" of the future rather than taking it one day at a time:
When I think about this momentary relapse I had, where I was frantically seeking ways to make money, I think to myself, "What do I need this extra money for?". I have a habit of putting aside rent money at the beginning of each month. I think it's a damn good habit.. I pay my bills when they're due, and consistently add to a savings for investments.
This month, there were some set backs, nothing major, but my investment money took a hit, and I was left with only rent. It made me nervous. I felt like I wouldn't be able to invest in myself, my career, the enhancement of my music, any of that. My creative-self felt neglected, forgotten, and last in priority, even though my spiritual-self wanted to prioritize the creativity within. An imbalance formulated, and my security was gone. I had spent too much time trying to move forward rather than acknowledging that IN THAT VERY MOMENT, I had everything I needed.
3. I let my lack of security keep me from creating:
This is where I screwed up THEE most. It took a very encouraging and tough love moment from my man to truly understand why having my security in money was an issue. He asked me, "what is this money for", I said, "so that I have some cushion", he said "what's the cushion for", I said, "so that I can get back to creating". WHOA.
Here I was going to let this invaluable piece of paper stop me from doing what God sent me here to do. Who do I think, I am, letting the worship of money come between me and my God-given birth right? If God is the supreme creator and we are all made in his image then we must continue to create.
Do what you need to do (make money) to do what you want to do (create). THIS RIGHT HERE is the root of my issue, entirely. And I know MANY OTHER ARTISTS face the same struggle! It is difficult to create when you have to worry about paying rent, bills, and maintaining and managing your artist-self. Art takes TIME. And if you haven't yet made it to the point where your art is sustaining you, then you're balancing your artist time with the work that supports you... Which is me right now. It's a balance that is devastatingly difficult at times.
Even so, it's a balance I'm figuring out. And I can only figure it out one day at a time. And it's only a struggle if I allow it to be!
So until I can say I can sustain myself off of my work with music, I will just have to work harder and smarter. And that I'm ok with....
I already have big plans for the next 90 days. I can't wait to see how much I evolve by the end of it...