I am an artist at living, my work of art is my life. This quote by D. T. Suzuki is about how we should live our lives to the fullest extent that we can. We work very hard during the day while we are working on making a living, but it’s important for all of us to work equally as hard on living.
Life is a work of art that we work on every day to make it better than the day before. If we work at what we love, then work can be play; work can be effortless; work can be no work at all; work becomes whatever you want it to be. The artist works hard on his painting and makes certain that his work of art is something that he can be proud of. In the same way, we work hard on our lives and make certain that our work of art is something that we can be proud of.
Many people work at their jobs; they work to make enough money to feed their families and continue living in a house with a roof over their heads. We work at our jobs because we need money to survive and work is what we know how to do best.
Working on ourselves is equally as important, work on how you interact with others; work on your love life; work on your fitness; work on whatever makes you happy. If you work at the things that make you happy, then work becomes play and effortless.
If work is just making ends meet, then living is a chore. Work needs to find balance with fun, relaxation, and recreation.
Struggle or adventure?
Some people will tell you that life is a struggle. That’s not true: it’s an adventure and I’m sure that you’re ready for it!
Why do I say it’s an adventure? I can’t see the future. I can make plans based on what I know now. I can make plans on my experience of life up to this point. I don’t know with absolute certainty, what tomorrow will bring. There may be difficulties. That’s ok. Making a beautiful life; making a life a beautiful work of art takes effort. There will be mistakes. So what? There’s no point in dwelling on the “what ifs”, “maybes” and “could be”.
There is beauty in learning from my mistakes. The evolution of our abilities is a beautiful thing to behold. For all I know, writing this blog is a mistake. So what? If it is, I’ll learn from it and move forwards.
Sometimes, I have to work hard at living the life I love. I have to do things that I don’t want to do. I’ll say this; a lot of things I don’t want to do are because I have a fear of failure. I think that my website won’t get visitors. I think nobody will listen to my podcast. I have to put those thoughts to one side and accept that I am new to this. I’m not a broadcaster. I’m not a journalist. I’m a man with a laptop and some thoughts pouring out of his head and onto a keyboard.
Ten ways to make life more enjoyable.
As an artist of life, inspired by so many others around me, I have made a list of ten ways to make life more enjoyable.
1. Schedule playtime – Make a schedule filled with “fun” things you can do throughout the week. Plan all of your free time and make sure to include things that you enjoy. You’ll have more fun when you’re not stuck in the office or the factory mindset.
2. Try something new – Take a work out class, or go on a hike you’ve never been before. You don’t have to be an athlete to take up a sport. Even if you’re out of shape, there are lots of ways for you to get in on the action!
3. Be kind to yourself – Show up for work even if you don’t feel like working. It’s important to remember that your mood can fluctuate. Sometimes you might not feel like doing work, but it’s important to show up anyway.
4. Spend time alone – Get some work done in the silence of your own company. If you want to get things done, find some time for yourself. It’s much easier to focus on tasks when you’re free from distractions and your mind is clear.
5. Watch something funny – Watch funny movies or funny youtube videos. They’ll make you laugh while giving you a great workout at the same time. Laughter burns calories and exercises the core muscles. It’s true! Do you remember a time when your sides were aching with laughter? How long has it been since your ribs were burning from your body rocking and quaking with the power of a long laugh?
6. Ask for help – Reach out to a friend when you need their help with something. If you’re having a hard time with something, ask your friends. They’ll be happy to help and they might even have some great advice!
7. Volunteer – Find somewhere local that you can volunteer your time at, often it’s work helping others that helps yourself. Volunteering is a great way to give back to the community. I recommend finding an organization that you’re passionate about and working with them! This is even more fulfilling if it’s an organisation that has helped you or a member of your family in the past.
8. Breathe! – Take 5 minutes a day to work on breathing. You should practice breathing exercises daily. It will make you feel better and improve your health.
9. Enjoy your work! – Find work you enjoy doing, and spend time with the ones you love. It’s important to have a job you enjoy doing because that way it won’t feel like work. On the other hand, if you don’t like your job, try finding something different!
10. Give yourself a break – Leave work at work, let your brain relax. If you’re working too hard and don’t take a break, you’ll end up being exhausted. That’s why I always tell myself “Leave work at work.”
I hope that you find the way to turn your life into a work of art. The paint might be the wrong colour at times, and the tools needed to sculpt your life may be a little bit blunt and that’s ok. A few rough edges keep it real. A few chips and cracks add authenticity to who we are.
Thanks once again for reading this blog. Remember to follow this happy human on twitter and leave comments. I’d love to know what you think!
All the best,
Matt The Happy Human