Every artist needs an amount of confidence in order to create work, to make a visual statement and to market our work.
But it is well known that confidence is a very fragile thing, and it never sticks around for too long.
Even among very successful people, confidence is a flighty thing that comes and goes.
Worldly achievements and success do not seem to translate into self confidence.
Many artists and many successful people are shy and lacking in confidence.
In fact, at times it seems that only those with limited understanding are bursting with confidence…. Most of us artists seem to lack confidence.
I remember once hearing an interview with Barbara Streisand, who said that many years ago when she had just become famous, she sang in a live concert and forgot the words to three of her songs, because she experienced tremendous stage-fright.
She said that she did not sing again in front of a live audience after that experience for 25 years… Until they invented Tele-Prompters.
(the board that reminds actors and newscasters of their lines.)
Cultivating confidence in oneself is a lifelong journey, and as long as you view yourself as flesh, blood and bones, you will never truly gain any.
It is a race against all odds.
No amount of success will bypass your ego, which will remind you that you are isolated, small, mortal and finite, with limited powers.
On top of it all, people will try to shake your confidence, and you must not let them.
It makes me sad, when I encounter those who, out of ignorance or jealousy and pain, try to shake your confidence.
It may be other artists who feel they should be more successful than you are, or just people who are unhappy, and do not wish to see others joyful.
The human experience is hard enough.
There are daily lessons and endless challenges.
Humor and keeping a supportive, friendly, and encouraging attitude, can help us all to pull the polarities together.
But instead people stand on opposite ends and argue, war and judge based on small differences in opinions and taste….. What a waste of time.
I am always amazed when I encounter those among us who try and put others down.
We need to HELP, support and encourage one another, remembering how hard it is to be human….. To be an artist…..
What good can come out of pointing out to another what we believe are their “faults”…
We face so many challenges in life that we need to surround ourselves and others with kindness….not to make others our opponents.
One of the biggest lessons that I learned in life, is that we must stop listening to ill intentions and to seek out our own inner guidance within us.
We must become our own best coaches.
Even if we are lucky enough to be surrounded with kind and encouraging people, if our own inner critic and judge puts us down constantly, we will never be happy nor truly take in any of the encouraging words we are offered.
No other person in our lives, can offer us enough courage and confidence to see us through bad times.
It is up to us to learn to cheer for ourselves, when we need support.
We have to learn to listen to our inner being, the pain and complaints that we feel, and to work with them, encouraging ourselves to rise up despite the pain.
We must dare to believe that everything can be filled with light and joy…
We must move away from ideas that keep us earthbound, tied to limitations.
Get rid of ideas that we are nothing but mortal bodies, and always keep moving towards spiritual growth and towards the Light.
Nobody else has the time to devote to encourage us, and to instill confidence in us.
Nobody can listen to us all day long, but our own selves.
We live with our own thoughts and ideas, and it is up to us to invoke within us the needed support, cheer, motivation, and inner kindness, to promote well being in us.
Turn away from any ideas that belittle your core creativity, even if they come from your own family, or those who are supposed to be encouraging towards you.
It is a wrong assumption that people even know how to offer kindness and support.
A lifetime of living in competitive societies that reward people based on individual achievements and excellence over others, have taught most people the wrong idea, that appreciating others, may take the spotlight away from you….
And this way of thinking has led many to live without generosity of spirit towards others.
Most people have no idea how to be truly kind and caring, or even to be aware when they are being rude or insensitive, or that they may be spreading wrong ideas or their own pain around.
We need to learn to appreciate not those who are famous and successful in our societies, but those who are kind and caring.
The other day I had dinner with John and Marilyn, my neighbors, who are a wonderfully kind couple.
They speak so kindly about people and it was heart warming to be around such sensitive people.
In order to have self confidence, you must understand your SELF.
You must discover and find who you truly are…
You are NOT a body… You ARE FREE.
And you CAN live in joy and peace and Light.
Do NOT listen to the voice of your ego.
Nor to the loud voices of thousands of other egos who scream louder everywhere…
Your ego will never lead you home.
It will make you wander aimlessly, seeking for happiness where it does not lay…
It will have you pursue lifetime after lifetime of illusions….
Turn into the Light….. Where you are a beloved, eternal child of Life… And rest in the knowledge that you are life itself….. ever loved and ever sinless.