Taking Things One Week At A Time And Playing With Shimmer Sharpies…

Well, I think this week’s blog may take on two different themes because I just don’t think my brain has been thinking in a solid frame of mind all week. I am feeling the pressure of the semester and just trying to keep my head on straight throughout this online semester. Also, I am trying to allocate the time for myself to open up and feel creative without the pressure of needing to post something about it.

Let me start with the not so fun stuff, like laundry that has piled up to the point where you have no more clean pants. Or that therapy appointment you know you should go to, but you are insisting to yourself that it’s going to take up too much time, so you don’t go but instead of being productive you just scroll through social media. Not to mention the hours’ worth of homework you are actively procrastinating while you imagine all of the ways your classmates could be judging you during zoom classes.

Life is moving so fast that in one moment I may feel like I am rocking productivity and the next I am literally laying on the ground crying because I don’t think I’ll have enough time to read everything. I am the type of person who is always looking ahead, trying to plan and strategize for any future inconvenience while still trying to put out all of the current fires in life. In some respects, I think this has helped me throughout life because I am hardly ever surprised, but when I am surprised it sends me off my rocker.

I think as I grow older the number of things that can be planned out and strategized for continues to dwindle because with age comes the wisdom that nothing is predictable. So, my ability to constantly look to the future may help me with school projects but for the majority of life that isn’t schedulable, I think it makes it harder for me.

That is why I have been practicing taking things one week at a time since I have started the fall semester. Breaking my energy up into weeklong segments allows me to focus my time on the tasks at hand while still being able to look to the future but just for a week or so. If I try to think of all the projects, I’ll have to turn in by the end of the semester I just end up stressing myself out. Each week all I need to worry about is doing the reading for each of my five classes, complete two to three quizzes, post to discussion boards, complete two to three weekly projects, and of course attend my classes.

Within that week, each day I just focus on finishing whatever tasks are due first and I cannot explain how much this way of thinking has changed my life. So, maybe a week is too short for you, or too long but either way I truly believe that at least consciously knowing every task you need to complete and when is a game changer to productivity.

With this method of mental organization, I usually end up leaving my painting or creative time for the weekends. More often than not I just find time for my creative endeavors in the evenings or early mornings when I can convince myself I have caught up on homework. There have been a few days that I chose to focus my mental energy on something for my little business rather than homework and I quickly regretted it when I came out of the creative trance.

Needless to say, creativity sometimes takes a backseat when I feel like I have a million other responsibilities and I couldn’t tell you why it makes it harder when I feel the pressure to post on my social media outlets. Considering I don’t want to see myself fall out of practice, or worse just stop altogether, I have been channeling my inner silly and trying to have more fun.

Since I try to finish a painting every week, this week I wanted to add a little something extra to the art. I painted a typical scene I find easy, some clouds and a mountain top, but the dried product was so bland I decided to add some sparkle. Metallic Sharpie’s are always fun to write with, so I picked some up and went to town on my boring painting, trying to create something new and exciting.

The first stroke was the scariest because I knew that I couldn’t really paint over it unless I wanted to completely restart my painting and video. Once I placed that shimmering gold sharpie tip on the canvas I just hoped for the best and glided it across the slightly defined mountain tops. By the time I got to decorating the clouds I was just playing around with different shapes and patterns but eventually decided on a simple dot effect, this meant I had to fill in quite a bit of my mistakes.

In the end, I was left with a simple sparkling design (if you catch it in the right light). It may seem silly and I’m not sure exactly when else I could use this technique, but I did enjoy getting to do something brand new to me. I think it freshens up creativity and hey now I’ve got a new multi-medium art piece. Thank you for reading this week’s blog and make sure to check out the video of my sharpie creation!

Copyright © 2020 Serra Isabella. All rights reserved.

Learning to Rest

05 – 12 – 2020

This past week has taught me a lot through finishing my spring semester of college to unmet goals to tragic losses. In the previous weeks I have been plowing full steam ahead towards my goals but last week my body was just telling me to slow down. I thought in the two-week break from the spring to the summer semester I was going to get so much work on here done, working none stop. I still will get a lot done but I also allowed myself space to not worry when I wasn’t able to do everything that I planned done earlier than now.

When your friends and family need you, it is especially important to take time for yourself and the ones you love. I could not have been supportive to my friend or the one love if I was also fixated on completing work anytime, I had the chance alone. I would be exhausted. When I am exhausted, whether it be from physical, social or mental work, I get cranky and sometimes mean. I don’t like being mean and cranky, so I have to be careful of how I spend my energy and learn to pivot my energy to the most important task in the moment.

I didn’t fixate on all the work I was mossing out on or the time I was divvying out in support and I’m still exhausted. My significant other took off work and the both of us didn’t spend much time at home while we cared for loved ones and celebrated Mother’s Day. I like to categorize myself as an introvert so just being around people as much as I have been the last week was hard for me. This week tested me to go with the flow of the universe especially when the unexpected happens. To rest when it is necessary and to work your ass off in the times that passion fills the air inexplicably.

I used to get upset at myself or others when change would happen, or when what I had hoped would be the plan for the day doesn’t pan out. I guess I just didn’t know as a kid that change is inevitable so whenever change did occur, I did everything in my power to stop it. I have always been somewhat of a planner too, so when I expected my day to go a certain way but then circumstances made my previous plans impossible, I would panic because I didn’t know how to cope. I still panic if things don’t go along with my expectations so I can tell you it is all a learning process.

Maybe it’s that I’m in college or maybe it’s that I’m growing into adult hood far from the protection of my mother, but it is like my eyes are finally open enough to see a bigger picture. Change is constant and sad and beautiful and sometimes happy, but it is the only thing you know for sure will happen. Nothing stays the same. So instead of asking myself why is this happening? I am trying to change my perspective to one of understanding that the unexpected must and will happen no matter how much we may fight it.

I tell myself of course this happened because for some god-awful reason this is what changes us into who we will become. In order to continue surviving the winds of change I must believe that whatever is happening will make me a better version of myself in the future. I may preach what I want but I still wonder sometimes what the point of losing my thirty-nine-year-old dad at the age of sixteen was. I am not perfect; I struggle everyday with the loss of my dad and I overthink every situation to oblivion, but I do know that everything I am going through is what will eventually make me the wonderful woman I aspire to be.

So, when the universe throws me a curve ball and I have to switch up my plans (which I hate to do) I will learn to adapt. Change plans and don’t feel bad about it, forget about responsibilities to save your mental health, and stop pondering what if’s. This is where we’re at, the card we’ve been dealt, and the only way to make it better is to use what the universe has given you. Stop trying to fight to natural pattern of life and instead trust in it because I truly believe the universe gives you exactly what you need when you need it.

By Serra Isabella

Copyright © 2020 Serra Isabella. All rights reserved.