Coach, healer, creative, visionary – a message about why your work matters now more than ever
| If you’re looking at the world right now and feeling like what you do is small beans, I want you to know that for a moment this week I felt the same about myself.|
But I was wrong. And so are you.
So let’s put this into context. This week I’ve been doing some last-minute volunteering helping a small charity deliver an important media campaign. They work tirelessly for the human rights of children, and it’s been a humbling experience.
They are all highly skilled and respected lawyers, doctors, communications experts, journalists, entrepreneurs – and they all do this work without agenda, expectation or desire for recognition or remuneration.
It’s about the cause. Full stop.
All the while of course, there’s also been the rumblings of war in Europe, and I’ve watched as Ukrainian teenagers line up in combat gear ready to fight a war someone else created for them.
And with these two worlds bumping up against my cosy little world this week, I found myself asking, what’s the point of what I do?
Why am I talking about silly things like writing and creativity and storytelling, when the world needs so much healing?
Clearly the answer lies in action and doing not in making and creating?
Then by coincidence (if you believe in such a thing) a quote from Toni Morrison found its way to me. She too was living in politically turbulent times when she shared it, and she too was feeling creatively blocked, until a friend said to her:
“This is precisely the time when artists go to work.”
That sounded like such truth to me – but I’ve been wondering for a while now, where have all the artists gone?
And that’s when I realised that we are here. You and me.
We are the artists.
Your art might not be words and stories like mine.
Maybe it’s medicine or communications or law.
Maybe your art is planting and growing.
Maybe it’s listening.
Maybe it’s creating community or making little corners of the world look, smell, feel or sound more beautiful.
Maybe it’s thinking differently.
Maybe it’s being a parent or grandparent.
Maybe it’s science, cooking, energy, rhythm…
It doesn’t matter what it is, we all have an art
(this is the important part)
Art = Love.
Not quite with me? I’m not sure I’m with it myself but here goes…
Here are 3 things I believe:
1. When they said “make love not war” in the 1960s, we were being given all the wisdom of the world in one catchy marketing slogan; only most people ignored it because it was delivered by a tie-dye t-shirt with a flower garland on its head, rather than a grey suit with brogues.
2. Art and creation = the frequency of love
3. Therefore ART IS ACTION.
So as artists, we must carry on making and creating. Living and leading from the heart. Because that’s how we make love.
Does it matter if it’s all we can do? No, it doesn’t.
Not every warrior or activist is meant to put on a uniform or fight a campaign.
You’re not small beans. You’re not doing nothing.
You’re an artist. And you’re love in action.
Now get to work.
Cate is a writing coach and book mentor who has helped hundreds of coaches, creatives and light workers share their stories with the world. If you’d like to explore ways of working with Cate one to one, get in touch here.