Our Skin is Our Freedom

Illustration

dealing with procrastinationThe shower tells me to slow down. It’s the end of the night. It’s time to calm my soul, dress it for sleeping. But I can feel my body still longs in desire for anything that tells me, “you’ve done enough today.” Earlier today I didn’t finish editing that image. The animation is still in the same state it was last week, as are those two emails that are sitting in the drafts folder. I didn’t start on any of the three illustrations I have due soon. I took a nap midday, before I even had lunch. And forgot about half the other things that are on my list of to-dos and to-dreams.

anxiety and self-care
My hands are scratching at the walls that contain me, my skin. It’s so limited to its own time and space. Joined with the warm droplets that are supposed to soothe, but only excite irritation.

My hands don’t stop. I circle in the shower, feeling everything, everything tearing apart, doom imminent, knocking at the door.

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My eyes dart around thinking about everything that I didn’t do that day. In every corner of the stall, associating with each crevice my eyes can find, a different disappointment for the day. All the dreams I wanted to start on, the assignments, tasks, and small self-imposed habits that today were proven that they are indeed not anywhere close to habits.

My hands don’t stop, my eyes don’t stop and my breathing joins in. Anxious, it is breathinbreathingbreathing. Beating to the rhythm of hopes, dreams, pressures, expectations, and fears. Shame and guilt arise in a chest that already feels like it’s drowning. And drowning is not where you wanna be at right before sleeping. And you want to sleep because tomorrow will be an early start. And you can’t stop it. Stop your hands, your eyes, your breathing.

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You stop. For a second your breath stops, holding itself saying: “I’m done. I’m exhausted, tired, done.” And then it lets the breath seep out, with it your whole body slips into that air. You leave with exasperation in the flow of air through your lips, and you come back in with relief.

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You didn’t accomplish everything you wanted today. But you breathed, and you walked and lived. It’s all in that breath, that gives up, it lets go, and everything opens up.

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Your eyes relax, and the eyebrows that were before lifted, finally rest on the knowledge of safety. Your hands stops scratching and decides instead to lay by the side of your thighs. Your breathing is breath, and it is stroke, and it is freedom, and acceptance.

your skin is your freedom - mindfulness
It is there. You’re there. Your skin is your freedom, and your body your temple.

I, Multitasker

Sem categoria

I’m a multitasker. And as science points out, I’m horrible at it. Yet, I can’t help it.

By multitasking I mean two different things simultaneously which I won’t distinguish between when using the term. But those two things are different: working on more than one project within a long time frame. Like working on a video that I’m editing and on a poster illustration during the course of a month.

Then there’s the multitasking that is when I quickly switch between tasks within a short time frame. Like when I read emails. Then open up photoshop and start drawing, then go back to answer emails, then look at social media, then go back to painting, then I look up prices for a new headphone, then I finish off writing the email, then I open up word and start writing a blog post. Phew. That was hard.

But both of these have the same benefits and disadvantages.

Benefit: more than one thing that needs to get done is getting done. Like honestly all the things I’m doing are necessary. I do need to write that email. I do have to work on the art. I do have to relax. I do need to write a blog post.

In the same way I can’t just be working on one project at one time. Otherwise I won’t be making enough money. I need to work on the video, and I need to work on the poster. And since I rely on feedback, there are times when I can’t work on one or the other. Sometimes the project is my own art too, and within my own art I’ll work on 2 to 3 pieces at the same time, to keep it going. While one is resting, sinking into me, I can work on the other one.

Disadvantage: I’m going crazy and not delivering the best I can. And right now, it feels like the disadvantage is a little bit too much.

So. Stop it. I tell you, because I know you also do it. And I’ll tell myself that too as well. But, ok. Maybe we can’t fully stop. But I do think we can stop for 10 minutes everyday and not multi-task. Focus on one thing – your body, your breath.

How are you feeling? How does your legs feel?

Your hands? Shoulders?

The muscles on your face? On your feet?

Feel your body.

Breathe.


 

I actually wrote this at the end of summer, and just edited now. But this week it felt very valid and I decided to share. Enjoy. Also, I have an episode from Orange Unicorn that relates to this.

Check Orange Unicorn’s last update.

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