Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lucky Charms, Rituals, and Zany Work Habits

 When people live alone, often the first thing they do when they come home is to turn on the sound:  T.V., music, radio. They check text messages, voice mail, email, anything to break the silence, the emptiness.

When people live with a spouse, partner or roommate, they relish their space. Private moments give them time and aloneness. After a busy day at work, the rush of silence and quiet that greets them as they open the front door offers a sense of relief and peace. Even the bathroom may provide much needed solitude if others are nearby.

Where we are in our lives dictates our choices and preferences. I once knew a woman who had two young children. As an aspiring writer, she sat under a hair dryer to compose so the noise of her children playing and jabbering would not distract her.

With a bustling family, my time alone was a hot soak in the bath. I could read, jot down ideas for articles, or simply enjoy that brief time alone when the family was asleep or away
Now rejuvenation comes via creating. I can lose myself completely with brush in hand at a canvas or with keyboard beneath my fingertips. Solitude is precious, if I can find it. Most of us have to settle for the peripheral noises in the next room or over our heads as we seek to express our dreams or expose our inner demons.

Even sleeping is a ritual that engages preferences unique to each of us. My son-in-law and his family require overhead fans or plug-in fans to provide “white noise” that muffles whatever sounds might be happening around them. The whir of the blades creates virtual lullabies that whisper them to sleep.

Some artistic people have rituals they perform before starting a new project:
·         Wearing of a favorite shirt to help them think
·         Drinking a cup of coffee or tea to get their blood fired up
·         Special background music in some cases, silence in others
·         Writing at dawn in their pajamas while their brain is fresh
·         Chewing gum or smoking a cigarette while they think
·         Saying a simple pray or chant to open the mind up

Sometimes these rituals help us get in touch with the muse, and sometimes they do not. But if we believe that they help, they probably will.

Even baseball pros have a number of tools they employ for good luck. Rubbing a special coin or a good luck piece builds confidence. Wearing a favorite pair of socks worn in a winning game may help performance. We all use whatever little gimmicks or tricks we can come up with. If we believe that they will help, they usually do. For people of faith, prayer seems to hold the key to inspiration and success.

Do you have any winning habits or rituals that help you work? Do you have a good luck piece that calls the muse? Please share your great ideas and thoughts in the comments.

Featured Artist
Lisa.C from Poissy, France; her humorous and endearing style is a mixture of collage and art nouveau. As a professional artist and illustrator, Lisa is able to capture a long ago time and place while seeming to be cutting edge. Check out Lisa’s web site!