I don’t know what’s been going on with me lately, but I haven’t been able to write. I don’t know what’s been stopping me though. I have all these ideas and thoughts in my mind, but there’s something blocking it – like a dam. I can literally imagine the ideas building up behind it, unable to pour through. I had been putting this aside for weeks and weeks but today was the day. Today, I felt like it was time to let it pour through. I told myself, “What does a writer do when they begin to think to themselves ‘I can’t write’? (pause) Write about it.”
So here I am.. It kind of reminds me of elementary school, when we would come back from recess and our teachers would make us free-write an entire page in our journal without stopping. You know, you try writing some random sentences at first to fill up the page, but before you know it your subconscious comes up with some sort of truth like, “Why was that kid with the striped shirt sitting alone under the tree during lunch. I think I’m gonna ask him to play with us tomorrow.” Well, today it’s “Maybe the reason I think I can’t write anymore is because I’m holding back.” Whoa where did that come from?
“It’s so dark right now, I can’t see any light around me.” “That’s because the light is coming from you. You can’t see it but everyone else can.” -Lang Leav
To be totally honest, when I started this blog I didn’t envision it to turn out like this. At the time, I wasn’t having any luck job hunting; I kept trying to tell possible employers – “I’m really good at xyz” but nobody was listening. So I thought, “Whatever, nobody hears me so I’m going to show them.” I made it thinking it would be a single, organized, presentable space where I could curate all my professional projects. Almost exactly a year since, I went from starting a blog called HasWestCoastSoul.com to being Has WestCoastSoul.
I took a U-turn, did a backflip and totally tangented off from the super-professional-portfolioish-blog side and allowed myself to use the power of creating. As I became more and more conscious of my skills and the true volume of my voice, I taught myself to use it purposefully. Needless to say it’s been the catalyst to my growth professionally and personally. I’m extremely thankful that I’ve built this platform for myself to create with and that I am constantly using this as a tool in my evolvement – but here’s the real curveball..
“I handle my failures way better than I ever handle success” – Royce Da 5’9
This blog hasn’t just affected me personally, but somehow it’s influenced others. That means other people actually read it too! I mean yea, of course I see the stats, I know people click it, but I didn’t get it that they actually READ it. I know that people hate reading nowadays if it’s more than 140 characters, so I didn’t expect much. But the fact that people actually take the time to read and reflect.. is just so… beautifully overwhelming. THEN, they actually approach me (either physically or virtually) and tell me how it’s inspired them?! I think when it finally hit me that there are more than just a couple of pairs of eyes on this and that people actually read this, care what it says and let it affect them, the pressure was on. I think all this accumulated positive energy made me overjoyed and I put myself in denial of the true, strong, positive power this little blog held; With all the great feelings positive feedback brings, at the same time, it’s undeniably nerve-wracking to have people except great things from you. It’s like when you’re out enjoying yourself, but once you feel someone staring at you, all of a sudden you forget how to walk in a straight line so you decide to just sit down for a bit. But where does that get you? Nowhere. Literally, nowhere. Worrying and holding back gets you nowhere.
“Being an artist means forever healing your own wounds and at the same time endlessly exposing them” -Annette Messager
An artist first and foremost, creates for themselves. This is the most precious form of self-expression, process of healing and act of celebrating we have. The acceptance and enjoyment that others receive from it comes secondary to that. It is a possible result, not a factor of creation. And as an audience, we must remind ourselves that we are only able to truly understand the creations of an artist from our own perspectives. We must remember to avoid making assumptions about the artist, assumptions kill art. Fear of these types of assumptions leads to lack of focus and eventually creating with the wrong intentions. As soon as an artist creates for pure commercial purpose, it looses its previous rawness. It’s not personal anymore, so how can we even expect you to relate? We are all human, we all need to do things in our own way. We can’t always make moves to make things comfortable for others. Don’t dim your own shine, don’t walk on eggshells, don’t sugarcoat your words. Keep it raw. Artists have to remind themselves that. I think that I needed to type that all out to remind myself as well. This was a free write afterall.
Bottom line, I am thankful for 2014 because being Has WestCoastSoul has given me so much strength and inspiration. With this, I am able to inspire others. Therefore, I will stop holding back, take out all self-set limitations, and continue to create and grow. If any of that resonates with you, I am beyond happy. May 2015 bring us all peace, strength, faith in ourselves, creative energy, a powerful momentum of hustle, good vibes, growth ad success. Thanks for reading, love you all.