This week I’ve been experimenting with some new ideas in the studio. I decided to do some practise runs on paper before I ordered some canvases, and I’m so glad I did! They really didn’t turn out as I hoped 😆! But since reflecting on them, I now have more ideas for moving forwards, and I’m actually even more excited to get the canvases ready 🤩😃…

The theme for this month (maybe this year) really feels like allowing ourselves to recognise the fundamental importance of play, experimentation, and exploration.

It’s been coming up for me a LOT, and I’ve so enjoyed learning into it.

The polarisation of play and experimentation is the dogma and rigidity of ‘fact’. Instead of leaning into what is true for us, in this moment, we are being forced to accept a top-down ruling of what must be true for all, at every time. Like any rigid structure, this poses many problems, especially when dealing with any naturally organic entity – be it an animal or an ecosystem. Flow, rhythm, flexibility, elastic-like resilience and the deepest understanding of interconnecting relationships are so crucial to our survival and our positive evolution.

My son is autistic and I regularly have to coach him gently through his factual expectations of the world. Disappointment for him is crushing: when his existing world view is not met in some (often small) way, he turns his frustration and anger in on himself.

And I can so relate. In a system which tells us the way things should be, very few of us will naturally flourish. We may feel safe to an extent, but at the same time we will habitually suppress anything which doesn’t fit the accepted mould of authority, and that in turn breeds resentment, judgement, hate, anger, criticism, frustration, shame, guilt and so much more.

This does not serve our humanity.

In my (naturally impatient) lifetime I have learned the alchemical place of play, experimentation and expectationless exploration. I am still disappointed at times, but now I am in a place to always find the learning opportunity, the joy right inside the exploration, and the elastic resilience of bouncing right back before I hurt myself or the world around me.

Can you recognise where you may be currently hurting yourself (or others) through rigid expectations?

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