Beading with anxiety-or not beading because of it. Kind of crazy to think about, but it’s happened to me and I’ve seen it in others.

I’ve touched on this topic in a podcast episode about the other benefits you get from entering beading contests, and again when I broke away from my own fear in my post, Design Like A 12 Year Old.

This is what made me want to write about it again:

  • our bead society had a challenge and only 3 people entered- why give up an opportunity to grow, have fun, and be creative?
  • a beader on FB commented that she was glad she didn’t even try to submit something- what if yours was one of the few accepted?
  • seen many times: after seeing that, I don’t want to share mine- every artist has their first day, you will grow from sharing

Cynthia of Jewelry Tales wrote a fantastic post on why she enters beading contests, and its not about winning. She says they bring out her daredevil: “It’s about flying. Flying without a net. Beading on the edge. Giving myself permission to not remember what I did; giving myself permission to play. It’s me time.”

Wow! I love her approach and enthusiasm! So why do some feel held back? I think it starts with the attitude and approach of the individual beader.

Bead Courageously, then let go of the significance

That sums up the method to my madness. The photo above is a piece I’m working on for Bead Dreams. I think its ambitious and cool, and it will light up, hehe. I did not start it as a piece I would submit. I chose to enter because I don’t have that many larger pieces in my body of work, and I needed a deadline! I know I have to finish and get it photographed by March 26, 2013.

After I finish the piece, I will let it go, to be loved or hated, and judged as all things are. It’s not for me to worry if its accepted, it’s up to me to do the work, to follow my inspiration from beginning to end. This process helps me grow as an artist. If its accepted, I do the happy dance! If it’s not accepted still, I do the happy dance because I know I’m one step closer to my Ninth Symphony. After all, even Beethoven had to write symphonies 1 and 2 etc, before his famous ninth. You can’t “skip” the things that don’t work out.

If you read nothing else, read this- There will always be some kind of fear. Courage isn’t about not being scared. It’s about feeling the fear, and doing it anyway. That is how we grow. The stuff that freaks us out today will be tomorrow’s laugh.

Dealing with Rejection

Sarah of Saturday Sequins, wrote a fabulous post, Don’t Give Up! It’s all about how she deals with rejection and the things she tells herself, and I encourage everyone to give it a read. Sarah says that its not personal and has mercy on the jurors. Bead Dreams can only accept so many pieces, and if they had room to take them all, they probably would. Everything is so good, and I’m so glad I don’t have their job. To separate the field, I imagine they have to find nit picky little details, or start finding things they can relate to. Maybe a certain piece triggers a certain memory, or uses their favorite color palette? It could be anything, so its much easier not to take it personally when you come at it from their perspective.

Get out those beads and make some art.

This is my sign off to the podcast because my hope is that you are inspired- but it doesn’t stop there. I want you (and myself) to take action and follow through on whatever ideas may come. I’ll leave you with a fabulous TED talk and two of my favorite Emmerson quotes:

Elizabeth Gilbert: Your elusive creative genius

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Good thoughts are no better than good dreams, unless they be executed.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson

What do you think? Does any of this resonate with you? Do you have any insights to share? Please share with us in the comments below. I read and appreciate each one!