Art, Expectations, and Your Body

I recently watched an interview with James Frey, author of “A Million Little Pieces”. Oprah was interviewing him a few years after their fall out over the truthiness issue.

Frye was sharing how he had written “A Million Little Pieces” by sitting alone in a room everyday for 9 to 10 years writing. Initially upon hearing that my thought was “torture!” Then he went on to say it was like complete freedom. Huh? He wrote about whatever he wanted to write about in any way he felt like writing it. There were no rules and no one telling him what to do. No one knew what he was doing so there were no expectations.

EXPECTATION. Then it hit me. EXPECTATION is one of those words that create a tight knot in your stomach, that seems impossible to release at times. Why? Because it is totally outside of our control. We are basing our feelings, our thoughts, our worth, our belief in ourselves by how others will respond to us. What if we don’t meet their expectations? What if what we do is not good enough, smart enough, shiny enough, or brilliant enough. What if they simply say we suck?

Yes, expectation is a confidence killer and freedom eliminator.

Even after the bad publicity he received after the public found out he embellished his memoir (it was really more of a fictional work), he went on to write again. When asked how it affected him he said “It was like I got my freedom back. No one expected me to ever write again so I could do whatever I wanted.” He had initially written about his life falling apart and gained notoriety. Then when it fell apart into another million pieces he spun it around again by letting go of expectations.

Get the clue?

Ditch your expectations of yourself. When you let go of that, you are FREE. And with freedom comes a clear mind and healthy body. That knot in your stomach that used to turn into days of discomfort and pain will release because you have freed it. When you let go, it lets go.

When you flip that switch, not only do you gain clarity, a relaxed body, but life becomes fun again. Yes, FUN. It may seem a little uncomfortable at first, but the more freedom and less expectation you give yourself the more you allow easy and creative into your life.

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