Creativity and cosy rest: what Winter is teaching me (and the power of the pause).

Daylight delights

It has been cold and frosty recently. As I write this, on a dark January morning, a deep sense of peace and contentment is enveloping me. I am cosy and well-rested.

Self-employment requires a massive amount of work behind the scenes, and today I will take it easy. Wrapped in four layers of soft clothing, writing in the morning stillness like this is a pleasure.

A patterned blanket cocoons my waist and legs. It is thanks to advice from a friend many moons ago that I learned to keep my kidneys and lower back snug in this way. Like myself, he had some unhealthy habits back then but he also had nuggets of wisdom to share. I smile at a memory of us both sitting cois tine with steaming hot mugs of tea, smoking and chatting about the grip that tobacco had on us. ‘ Twas a demon, we both agreed, a feckin’ demon. It had to go!

Peace pledge

2023 is my sixth year of smoke-free living. Quitting was a simple process in the end, if not always easy.

I cut back many times and reduced my smoking, but I could never keep it steady. Eventually I accepted that I was incapable of only having ‘the odd one’, so I offered it all to the fire. I wrote something then chucked the paper, my tobacco, and everything else into the flames. I watched it all blaze and knew that it was time to quit smoking completely.

My pledge was made in silent solitude, and I believed that the ritual would change my life for the better. It did, and today I feel peace within because I honoured the promise to myself.

Quietness and creativity

The only sound this morning is the drumming of dawn raindrops on the window. Soon the birds will start singing the day awake and I’ll check out how my latest painting looks in daylight.

This mixed media piece is almost finished. Making art at night is something that I enjoy in Winter, but artifical light never shows me the true tones of a painting . Only daylight reveals the depth of each colour, the texture of every mark.

Good news

Have you ever been on the verge of giving something up, but then a sign comes, or something happens to show you that you are definitely not meant to quit?

I got some news this month that makes me feel like soothing waters have swollen up into a wave to carry me safely ashore. My tribe are waiting and we have a lot to share. Many of us are lifelong are creatives. It is a soft landing, and I am delighted with the news.

Read more in my Spring newsletter (sign up below), and if you want to buy art or to make a booking, get in touch anytime. Please bear with me. Tiredness is cloaking me this month, so I’ll reply in February, which isn’t far away. Thanks for your patience.

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