How to find your calling as an artist

Several people have mentioned recently that they know they have a calling in a creative direction but that they aren’t sure where to start to figure out what it is.

This is something I specialize in — helping you get clear not only about your life purpose, but also honing in on the specific expression of your life purpose that you can do in your daily life.

Life purpose versus the specific “thing” you do

For example, if your life purpose is to be a “Messenger” or “Mass Communicator,” the specific expression of that might involve being a broadcast radio announcer, a book author, a keynote speaker, or a journalist.

Similarly, if your life purpose involved “Creative Expression in the Spotlight,” we’d want to get clear about whether you’d rather be a stage or movie actor, a painter doing studio exhibits, a creative writer, or a dancer, for instance.

Most coaches will tell you that the way to do — once you know your broader life purpose — is to figure out what you are passionate about.

The problem with starting with what you are passionate about

The question of getting clear on what you are passionate about is one that fascinates me.

Why don’t we just know what we are passionate about? Is it simply that it’s been drained out of us by our cultural programming? Are we numb to the world because of the pressures we face and the constant onslaught of choices and information?

A while back I said that I think we might be asking the wrong question, to ask what we are passionate about. I say that because — particularly in the business coaching industry — there’s a kind of “well, all you have to do is what you are passionate about and all your problems will be solved” mentality. *blinks brightly*

No pressure there.

I mean, people come to coaching to find their life’s direction — if they knew what they were passionate about they’d already be doing it. And just point blank asking, “What are you passionate about?” triggers a bunch of remote answers that don’t have a lot to do with anything meaningful and makes people feel like they’re just stupid or blocked.

Which they are.

Blocked, I mean, not stupid.

Here’s the funny thing.

Deep down, some part of you that you’re not tapped in to — your soul — does know.

And it’s your job — just like it is for each one of us — to learn how to connect with that deeper inner wisdom and guidance that’s available to you and listen to it.

Listen to it like your life depends on it.

It does.

But wait a minute, Jenna, I can’t hear that voice!

I know. It’s hard to find, right?

It takes practice. Patience. Quiet time.

Journaling.

Listening.

Make space in your life for that deeper voice of wisdom to speak, and you will hear it.

And yes, you are avoiding it by numbing out, being so busy you can’t think, and constantly being online. Those things don’t help.

Go outside. Touch the ground. Make something REAL. Put your hands in that big planter filled with mint and breathe the scent.

Look at the sky and let your soul touch the clouds.

And do it again.

And again.

Then tell me what you found out.

xx

Your turn

I’d love to hear what you think! Your comments are always welcome.

Warmly,

 Jenna

 

Coming Attractions

 

~> April 19th, 2012. Last day to register for my next Life Purpose Breakthrough Group on May 17th. Only 1 spot remaining. These groups consistently sell out, so if you’d like to join me, reserve your spot ASAP. Register here.

~> April 19th, 2012. Teaching a live webinar for Writer’s Digest, “10 Practical Tips for More Consistent, Productive Writing.” Register here.

~> April 25th, 2012. Second date, same class, different graphic, different venue! A live webinar for The Writer’s Store, “10 Practical Tips for More Consistent, Productive Writing.” Register here.

~> May 1st to June 5th. My new Spotlight Study Group for sensitives, artists and hermit types who are ready to take their call to the spotlight more seriously and clear up the obstacles getting in their way. Details.

 

What I'm Up To

~> Ongoing. Writing in the ProSeries class at ScreenwritingU. I have a fancy marketing campaign printed out and on my wall now. It’s a thing of beauty!

~> Sacred writing time. Early mornings and Fridays.

~> Still reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire with my boy. Can’t watch Downton Abbey right now since it’s backlogged on Netflix. Up to other things in the meantime.

 

 

Comments

  1. “Look at the sky and let your soul touch the clouds.”
    Very nice turn of phrase that.

  2. Ann Hodges says:

    I have been trying to find my passion for a while now. I have gradually pieced together a collage of what makes me tick at a very fundamental level by doing a bunch of different personal assessments and by asking people who know me well for their input. Sometimes their answers surprise and delight me; sometimes their words are difficult to hear. But the process has helped me recognize my gifts and trust my instiincts. It has made me more confident of what I want to bring to the world, and I find myself “showing up” much more often and with much more integrity as a result. It is not easy to see oneself–don’t be afraid to ask for help from the people you trust.

  3. Clare says:

    There are certain specific things which put me in touch with my passion, with my soul, like a key opening a door to a precious world. Sometimes I start to cry (just little tears of joy) from the release of connecting with it. Certain artists’ music, my parents’ wild garden in which I spent much of my childhood, sitting under the waterfall in it. Just sitting with my notebook and a pen, wherever I am, starts the creative flow.
    Likewise, I’ve noticed that certain things “disconnect” me too. Being online, unfortunately, is one of them – Facebook, e-mail, and so I have drastically reduced this in my life. Too many distractions, and feeling like there are things you “have” to do, or are “obliged” to do too. For me, anyway, a big part of being creative is deciding what you want in your world, in order to encourage and nurture your gift.

  4. Hi Jenna,

    Yes, folks are constipated creatively. We train them to be that way. Some escape. The rest shop at the mall for pleasure or sit in giant sports stadiums watching others run around on the field while they sit.

    It’s all ridiculous. We need to get un-numb to our creative sides.

    I draw, write or sing every day – juggling them. It keeps me feeling like a human rather than a cyborg.

    fun! G.

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