Recovering the Creative Self
The Artist’s Way is a book on creative recovery. I’ve been doing the Artist’s Way for the second (maybe third) time since 1994. I’m at Week 4.
Each week there are specific tasks. I thought this task was worth sharing.
The task is one of Time Travel – from the future
Describe yourself at 80.
I’m like Maude, from the movie Harold and Maude. But, I live in a bigger space, an earth ship or straw bale house. Lots of outdoor sunshine light pours in. I read my books, and I have large canvasses for painting. I love my garden where I get to pick fresh food, and there is water circulating in a little stream inside and outside my house.
I have sold hundreds of paintings and I travel all over – Denmark, Switzerland, Italy, Spain. I am a celebrated artist and writer. I still ride my bike everywhere I go – and I practice Kundalini yoga. I love my community, and I am beloved in my community. I still play music too, I’ve got gold records on the wall.
What did I do after 50 that I enjoyed?
- Biked across the US
- Walked the Camino de Santiago
- Made albums and toured with my music
- wrote a memoir
- wrote books of poetry
- traveled and studied astrology
- reversed the aging process through Kundalini yoga
- biked across Europe
- taught people time travel techniques
- became a world-renowned astrologer
- became friends with Joe Dizpensa and Bruce Lipton
- created a deck of tarot cards
- built an amazing art studio
- built a beautiful straw bale house
- wrote creative non-fiction
- wrote some great freakin’ songs
Letter from the future
Write a letter from 80 to now – what do you tell yourself? Interests to pursue? Dreams to encourage?
Dear Holly –
You have always known what you wanted to do with your life. You have always wanted to be an artist who is in touch with nature. And music is so natural for you – keep going with it.
So, you had some tough times for a bit over a decade. That’s when you let other people tell you how you should be living your life. It’s good that you stopped doing that! And now, that decade and a half is just a blip in your life.
Follow those weird passages. Keep being curious. Keep being curious. Kundalini yoga has many mysteries – it is one of the keys to time travel that you are so interested in. Pursue it. And astrology. There is so much wisdom to be had by connecting with the energy systems of your body, the earth, and the stars.
Spend less time on the computer (social media).
Practice your guitar. This world is not so much about youth as it is about having something worthwhile to say. You are walking through the time of the Kaliyuga – and now – keeping people stupid is backfiring on the corporations and politicians. Things are falling apart for the oppressors, it is time. There is enough for everyone to live their highest potential. As humans, we are being birthed into a new way of being.
Focus on what you want your life to be, and for the highest good of all.
WISDOM. KNOWLEDGE. MUSIC. ART. All solid and worthy pursuits.
Yoga. Yoga will keep your body and your nervous system comfortable and running efficiently.
Get out into the woods, in nature as much as you can. And write write write about everything. You are an incredible writer, you just forgot for a while.
Do your vocal exercises, so you can still sing at 80! I am still singing. I am still making music and people hire me to be on their recordings.
Take care of your body. Kundalini yoga helps, hatha yoga helps, exercise, outdoors. Enjoy cycling, have fun with it – and also, just enjoy movement. You don’t have to be tough – nurture your body and beauty. You will start modeling once you are in your 50s.
Take up African dance and bellydance. Capoiera. You’ve been wanting to do these things for almost three decades! You don’t need to be great – just have fun.
Smile a lot. Relax your jaw, teeth and tongue. Moisturize a lot! Sunscreen!
Write the memoir.
Write the poems.
Write the songs.
Do the time travel. Send love to your past, present, and future. And teach time travel. You will become a wonderful teacher.
Biggest best thing? Meditation. You know this. From there – ART, WRITING, MUSIC, TEACHING. It all stems from meditative flow.
Start lifting some weights, too. That is how I am so strong at 80 – you kept me strong. Green foods, ayurvedic diet and occasional fasting have been amazing.
You need to get out of town every so often and get to the ocean. Spend time – months at a time – near the ocean. Alone. or with Paul. To write and make art and think and detox and replenish your skin.
Book your tours in beautiful places – be strategic about your journeys. Your music and teaching can take you anywhere you wish if you allow yourself to make it so. And interview people wherever you go. There are so many wonderful ways to connect ideas, creativity, healing. Artists, healers, and activists are everywhere.
Keep embodying yourself in astrology, too. It ties in with your teaching, your art – with everything.
Teach, make music, make art. Get to the beautiful places – celebrate the beautiful places. You find beauty everywhere. More than ever – the world needs to celebrate beauty. Celebrate nature. Celebrate sound.
Live simply. Grow your own foods when you can. Go on green food fasts every month or season. Exercise everyday. Meditate! Write everyday. Make music everyday. Look at the stars. Ride your bike. Follow your intuition. Be visible – your taste is exquisite – even to this day.
What you say and do has value. Don’t get caught up in the news cycles – they are created to distract. Follow your heart. Always follow your heart.
Holly (80 years old)
PS – Drink at least a gallon of water a day
~ ~ ~
I guess I am interested in time travel! Who knew? Stream of consciousness writing is a blast!
It would be interesting to see what I wrote to myself when I was 23 years old – the first time I did the Artist’s Way.
Big message – do what you love! This is your life. Connect. Be kind.
Also – what will you be like at 80? What will you do after 50 that you enjoy? What would your 80 year old self say to your current self?