Exercise as artistic and spiritual practice. Hiking Cinque Terre

Could it possibly be right that I have just one week left to go? I might finally make it all the way through this time! 🙂

  • Week 11 Theme: “Recovering a Sense of Autonomy.”  This chapter teaches us ways to nurture and accept ourselves as artists by exploring behaviors that strengthen that artist.
  • Morning Pages: I forgot to bring my journal to Breckenridge this weekend, so I missed two days.  I’m back in the saddle now though.
  • Artist Date: No.  My planned artist date (and Valentine to myself) was to go to yoga class on the 14th.  But my son came down with the croup overnight, so I couldn’t go.  I guess that’s what I get for saving it for the last minute.

Any “Aha” Moments? 

  • Learning to focus on and honor the process rather than the product is VERY difficult to do, especially if you hope to one day make money from your art.  This chapter made me realize that our best chance at both being the best artist we can be AND to make money is to do work that is authentic and true.  There is a LOT of process involved, and let’s face it, who ever feels like a piece of work is “done?”  Just keep moving, keep working.
  • Likewise, I totally agree with Cameron on the importance and benefits of exercise to the artist.  I often get my best “writing” done while I’m running.  I need to treat the time to exercise as just as vital to my writing as the writing is itself.  Because it is.

A few favorite quotes from the Week 11 chapter:

“As an artist, I must be very careful to surround myself with people who nurture my artist–not people who try to overly domesticate it for my own good.. I may be a good cook, a rotten housekeeper, and a strong artist (caveat: I have NO idea how Julia Cameron snuck into my house to figure that out :-)).”

“The stringent requirement of a sustained creative life is the humility to start again, to begin anew.

“We learn by going where we have to go. Exercise is often the going that moves us from stagnation to inspiration, from problem to solution, from self-pity to self-respect.”

In what way do you nurture your artist?

Week 10 Check-In

Weeks 8 & 9 Check-In

Week 7 Check-In

Week 6 Check-In

Week 5 Check-In

Week 4 Check-In

Week 3 Check-In

Week 2 Check-In

Week 1 Check-In

The Artist’s Way

Categories: Creativity, Health/Fitness, Spirituality, The Artist's Way, Works in Progress, Writing · Tags: , , , , , , ,



  1. Wow, it’s week 11 already? I so agree on the importance of exercise for sound body and spirit! Love the first quote. Nurture includes honesty and encouragement!

  2. Wow, you’re in the home stretch – good for you! That whole process vs. product thing is a tough-y! I hate croup – hope your son is feeling better!

  3. Julie, isn’t it ironic that when our focus switches to the money we hope our art will make, it’s easy to sabotage that goal? And exercise. I was just thinking that very thought as I sat down here. We’ve been sick here, too, and it seems when things aren’t going right, we stop doing all the things that would make us feel better.

    Write and be well…

  4. You have done so very well with The Artist’s Way — good for you!

    Your question at the end of the post made me wonder if I nurture my artist enough?

  5. It’s been great to read your posts on this journey, Julie. You remind me of the steps and it’s a good reboot for me, too. I have to agree on the process point. The writing life is a long and winding road and if you love the process, my experience is that you’ll keep at it even when it seems no one else cares. Or, to quote Winston Churchill, “Never, never, never give up!”

  6. Wahoo! One more week. I’ve enjoyed all your insights through this process. Thanks for sharing with us.

  7. Cheering you on! I’ll be curious to hear how you do post-reading. I’m almost 2 months past completing Finding Water and find myself losing my way. I took copious notes while reading, though, so I think I need to revisit them. Happy writing!

  8. And you were worried you wouldn’t finish! One week to go and you’re there! 🙂

  9. I must admit, I’ve never thought of “nurturing” my artist. Nor have I contemplated its reference in third person (LOL). I laugh, yet its this lack of contemplation that is missing. How do I nurture my artist? I don’t think I ever have, not in earnest anyway. Maybe a vapor of a thought here and there. How sad for my artist. HOWEVER, I’m inspired to nurture my artist through contemplation (if that makes sense, I hope so). Exercise wouldn’t huert neither! Another absolutely great post!

  10. You really have had remarkable journey with the Artist’ Way. I’ve enjoyed following and hearing things I need to remember. So, you’re taking us along with you — I did the program 20 years. I nurture the artist in me by attending the opera and symphony orchestra. I listen to a lot of classical music. Nice post and you’re in the home stretch! Good for you!

  11. “As an artist, I must be very careful to surround myself with people who nurture my artist–not people who try to overly domesticate it for my own good.. ”

    I love this, Julie, and it is something that can make or break an artist’s will to create.

    Congratulations on reaching Lesson 11!

  12. I’ve really enjoyed following along as you’ve worked through the Artist’s Way. Thank you for sharing.

  13. Thank you for sharing your Artists walk with us. You seem to walk the walk as well as talk the talk. 🙂

  14. Hope your son is better. I like this: Just keep moving, keep working. Thanks for taking us along the journey.

  15. Wow, Julie. One week to go. Have a great last week and feel really proud of your accomplishments along the way.

  16. Julie, I have been inspired by your posts on The Artist’s Way…I have started the book and process twice myself and did not keep it up. In fact, it has been gathering dust on my bedside table for a few years now…..So, I may just pull it out of the bottom of the pile and give it a try again. Thanks…Kim

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