Whenever I have the privilege of leading transformational workshops, I am always in awe of what an honor it is to be invited into people’s lives and have them share so openly about their past as well as the honest and raw feelings they have about themselves and their lives. I expect to feel the same sense of awe and privilege at my upcoming workshop ‘The Body Shadow: From Self-Loathing to Self-Loving’ hosted by Omega in June 2019. Of course, we are also seeing so much of this in today’s culture – people, especially women, coming forward and sharing about the assaults, attacks, abuse, and secrets that they have not wanted, been able, or felt ready to share.
Although I am always very mindful of never assuming I know or can even comprehend what someone else feels, since I never want to diminish someone else’s pain by comparing or making sweeping assumptions or generalizations, I think it is fair to say that most of us have endured situations that felt off, wrong, or were just downright soul-crushing. And, in order to deal with or manage the pain or to just do what we need to do to get by and function, we learned to manage it, push it down, remain silent, numb ourselves, or stay busy and try to forget about it.
Although all of our stories are personal and unique, whether it comes from what we are seeing in the news, the #MeToo movement, how we feel about our bodies, or the stories I hear from the people I have the privilege of working with, I am always so present to the insidiousness of the shame we all carry.
I recently attended a creativity workshop taught by famed artist and animator, Dave Zoboski (link to www.TheAlchemyofCreativity.com ). He spent decades working as a Senior Animator at Disney, Sony and Warner Brothers.
We all were given colored pencils and a sketchpad while Dave’s model posed for us. Most of us didn’t have any real artistic ability in this field, but we were encouraged to have fun and go for it.
After several minutes of sketching, he told us to stop and to put our pad on our chair and to move three seats to our left and then pick up the pad on that chair and begin sketching on someone else drawing. The assignment was to see how we could improve upon what they had already begun.
Dave explained that in the animation field, the culture is such that you never criticize another artists’ work, but rather you become a “plusser” for them …someone who adds to and improves the work they have done so far.