An Inventory of Attitudes and Beliefs About Doing Art
Am I waiting for inspiration to strike before I’m willing to do my art?
Do I set aside a regular time and space for doing my art?
Do I scorn discipline as not being artistic?
Do I feel true artists don’t have to try – that their work flows effortlessly?
Do I enjoy and encourage distractions and interruptions which keep me from beginning or continuing on my work?
Do I believe I’m supposed to have the same level of artistic ability and enthusiasm each day? And the same output?
Have I developed any warm-up routines to help me get started?
Am I gentle with myself in evaluating my first efforts?
Do I enjoy escaping from doing my art only to feel guilty later?
Am I waiting for the perfect time and place and situation before I do my art?
Am I willing to accept the uncertainty of the creative process?
Am I willing to accept myself whether I am flowing with ideas or not?
Do I paralyze myself with self-criticism?
Have I developed ways to create and maintain my working momentum?
Do I work compulsively, exhausting myself and then use avoidance for relief?
Do I set daily goals? Are they realistic?
Am I willing to create work that I can respect – and accept responsibility for it?
Do I see each day as a new opportunity to work, regardless of how the work went yesterday?
Do I understand that avoidance is a serious problem that threatens my well-being?
Do I believe that I am worth the time, space, money, and energy my art requires?
Do I feel guilty about doing my art? Has feeling guilty become a comfortable habit?
Do I keep working despite self-doubt?
Have I integrated my creativity with my physical well-being, family life, spiritual life, and financial security?
Do I accept that pursuing my art requires discipline, practice, and consistent work?
Do I spend time thinking about the work but not doing it?
Do I believe that I must be prolific to be an artist?
Does my concern about how my work will be received keep me from doing it?
Am I willing to tolerate awkwardness, false starts, dry spells, and mistakes as part of the process?
Am I using the tools of the program such as meetings, the Twelve Steps, a daily commitment to do my art, and giving service?
Do I seek solutions and ask for help when I get stuck?
Do I know the difference between avoiding work and allowing an idea or project to incubate?
Do I expect easy success and quick reward for my work?
Do I make and keep commitments to myself, to my sponsor, and/or to my meeting?
Do I realize that my art is incomplete until it is communicated?
Am I afraid that success will harm my relationships?
Do I kid myself that I’m working when, in fact, I am delaying by excessive preparations, note-gathering, supply-collecting, expert-consulting, etc.?
Do I neglect myself so that I’m too ill, too tired, or too distracted to do my art?
Do I keep my life so overbooked that I haven’t any time or energy to create?
Do I talk my ideas away so that I’ve lost my enthusiasm when it’s time to work?
Do I kid myself that I’m creating because I earn my living in a field related to my art?
Do I half-try by showing up without proper materials or the concentration necessary to do the work?
Do I realize that creativity demands a very high level of physical, intellectual, and emotional commitment?
Do I forgive myself when I haven’t met my goals?
Do I acknowledge myself when I make an honest attempt to work?
Do I celebrate my victories, however small?
Do I allow my self-will to limit my creativity by insisting that it operate the way I want?
Do I use discouragement and disappointment to avoid doing my art?
Do I accept that talent without craft is insufficient and that practice is essential to developing craft?
Do I understand that doing the work always depends on me — not my family’s attitude, encouraging teachers, conducive circumstances, an appreciative audience, etc.?
Do I set aside the best possible time for doing my work? Do I allot enough uninterrupted time for doing something meaningful?
Am I willing to believe that the source of my ideas is infinite?
Am I grateful for the ideas I get, realizing that nourishing them encourages more and better ideas?
Have I organized my work space so that I can concentrate?
Do I make appropriate efforts to share my art?
Do I realize that inspiration is likely to come after I start work? That what I need will come to me when I need it if I make the effort?
Do I allow my fear of being alone to keep me from working?
Do I realize that feelings of being overwhelmed will diminish as I work?
Am I willing to distinguish my work from my self-worth, so that unproductive days don’t lessen my self-esteem?
Do I realize that feelings of self-doubt are common among artists?
Do I understand that any work of art could be endlessly improved? Do I obsessively revise or “fix” the same project or segment, never completing it?
Do I discount my accomplishments?
Do I avoid doing my work because I fear losing my sanity or becoming overwhelmed by the unknown?
Do I avoid doing my art for fear that I’ll do it compulsively, upsetting the balance in my life?
Do I avoid my art because I fear becoming so engrossed in the imaginary work I create that I’ll lose touch with reality?
Do I hate myself when I avoid doing my art?
Do I avoid doing what’s most challenging by doing peripheral tasks?
Am I afraid that my success with deprive someone else of theirs?
Am I afraid that I’ll get more ideas than I can handle?
Do I consider my talent a gift to be shared with others?
Am I willing to live with the uncertainty, discipline, solitude and concentration necessary to enjoy the creative process?
Do I help others by teaching or counseling at the expense of my own art?
Do I remember that the same Higher Power which sends me creative energy can give me the strength and guidance I need to use it?
Do I allow myself quiet time to renew my spiritual inflow?
Do I present, promote, and preserve my art with the respect it deserves?
Do I allow myself the tools and equipment I need to work with reasonable ease?
Do I scorn organization and record-keeping as inartistic?
Do I clean up and put things away when I am done so that I do not have to wade through a mess and hunt missing items to begin again?
Do I manage my money so that I can buy the supplies needed to pursue my art, whether or not I choose to earn money from my art?
Do I avail myself of community support: Art Councils, group shows, jam sessions, poetry readings, etc. which can benefit me?
(Downloaded from artsanonymous.org/literature. Emphasis is mine.)