Thursday, 13 September 2012

A Few Things I Should Know.

Poppy Abstract.

I am always in a great rush. I have been all of my life a person who burns energy like it was going out of fashion. I was giving this some thought this morning as I began to prepare myself for a week of running in the mountains. I love these days but I am also conscious of the fact of the raised level of danger from the normal daily running I do here at home.

I run in the mornings and walk in the afternoon/early evening then fall into bed exhausted to be ready for the next day.  I became very aware of this after reading the blog of Sherry, Conservatively Bohemian.  So I sat down and gave thought, here is the bones of my time of thinking, of what stops me being all I want to be and the artist I dream of being.

I think the first thing is this rushing and trying to fit things into something else I am doing. I plan a walk and set out. During the course of the walk I take out my watercolour box and do a painting, but all the time my mind is on the clock and the time I have yet to walk. The end result is a bad walk and a bad painting. I need to learn that when walking I am walking and when painting I am painting. I need to schedule if I want to do both.

Next. If we continue to repeat a story in our head, we eventually believe that story and embrace it – whether it empowers us or not.  So the question is: Does my story empower me?  Do I place my mistakes in my mind; where their weight may crush my current potential.  Instead, I must place them under my feet and use them as a platform to view the horizon.  I must remember, all things are difficult before they are easy.  What matters the most is what I am starting to do now.

I also need to stop  being  s hard on myself.  There are plenty of people willing to do that for me. I need to do my  best and surrender the rest.  Tell my self, “I am doing the best I can with what I have in this moment.  And that is all I can expect of anyone, including me.”  I need to be proud of everything that I do, even the  mistakes.  Because even mistakes mean I am trying.

Lastly; stop waiting for tomorrow; I will never get today back.  It doesn’t matter what I’ve done in the past.  It doesn’t matter how low or unworthy I feel right now.  The simple fact is that I am alive and that makes me worthy.  Life is too short for excuses.   I have to; Stop settling.  Stop procrastinating.  Start today by taking one courageous step forward.  If I am not sure exactly which way to go, it is always wise to follow my heart.

This blog is linked to my blog  Poppy Abstract


  1. Wow, Ralph, what a kind, thoughtful post and spot on! Today will be a great day because I won't have it any other way! Another gift and I will make the best of it.

  2. Lovely post. There are legions of people out there in sketching/walking groups. but you are right...these things must be "scheduled" so that one doesn't feel hurried. And that's the key thing...if one feels hurried the painting / drawing many times will tank! On the other hand, I've seen some gestural drawing/paintings that were done in minutes that are heartstopping-ly great. I'm glad that you do find time for both running/walking and painting....oh, and blogging too! :)

  3. Lovely poppies Ralph.. we enjoy them as long as they are fresh and those moments matter! Beautiful post.
    I had many of these similar thoughts this week..I think as long as we are enjoying what we are doing, we slow down and do our best. When I am walking, sometimes I am worrying about the day that is ahead of me and I lose the precious joy of the walk moments. Slowly I am learning to be in the present moments all the time.. it is taking off a hug burden off my fragile mind :-)

  4. Wise words, Ralph. I wish I had less have tos and more want tos in my life. Unfortunately, I have to work. LOL Motivation is really missing these days.

  5. That's a very good idea :) I'm glad you're doing that for the soldiers. It is a beautiful painting conveying hope and peace. I like it.

  6. Ralph..I needed these thoughts today..thank you

  7. HI Ralph. I love this post! You hit the nail on the head. It isn't enough to say you want to do something. If you truly want to do it and do it well, no matter that that something is, you must make time in your life to do it regularly and often. I paint almost every day and often all day long. It's my passion. Even when I'm teaching, I'm painting. I'm not a teacher that only goes around from student to student. I paint right along with them.

    Sometimes I think perhaps I should learn a little yoga, but even in my mind the amount of time I'm willing to give it is so fleeting, that I haven't bothered. I know it would take a greater commitment than I'm prepared to give it. If the desire becomes great enough, I'll be ready to give more of myself to it.

    If running is your passion, than give it your all. If art is your passion I offer the same advice. It is possible to have passion for one thing and leave the other for a hobby. In which case, cut yourself some slack, because a hobby is just something you do for fun! It shouldn't be compared to the accomplishments of someone who is doing it for passion.

    A perfect example. Men getting together after work to play baseball are there to have fun, laugh and get some exercise. They never expect to be performing at the same level as a professional team. If art is your hobby, allow yourself to have fun, for that is the purpose of a hobby!

  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  9. It may be calming and peaceful if you can forget the walking for at least one day and devote that time to painting - on your own watch - at your own pace, and the hell with everything else. It may take a time of practice following another kind of habit, but how rewarding the aftermath. When one is calm, wonderful things enter the soul and exit outward.