Click the image to go to the O Website where you can make an electronic vision board

Another late Artist’s Way check-in due to the blackout yesterday, but it was for a good cause.  Now here it is.

I enjoyed this chapter, and I wish I’d had more time to work on some of the journaling exercises.  I’m going to bleed some of them into week eight.

  • Week 7 Theme: “Recovering a Sense of Connection.”  This chapter is about connecting to your dreams and working on receiving as well as doing.  There is a focus on excavating areas of creative interest, dropping perfectionism and taking risks.
  • Morning Pages: Yup – every day.  They felt boring to me this week.  Mostly I ended up writing to-do lists in the pages, but I suppose that freed my mind for more creative pursuits later in the day.
  • Artist Date: One of this week’s tasks was to get a stack of  magazines and cut out images that appeal to you or reflect your life or interests.  They could be related to the past, present, or future.  Since I’ve been wanting to create a “vision” board, I used my artist date to sit down with my magazines and focus on images related to what I want my future to look like.

Any “Aha” Moments? 

  • It was WAY more difficult to cut out those images than I thought it would be.  In the end, I was left with very few and my foam board is still bare.  First of all, I am a verbal, rather than a visual person, so using pictures of any kind feels strange to me when doing “blue sky” work like this.  Perhaps I should have gotten a smaller board so it wouldn’t be so daunting – LOL.  I thought it would be fun, but I found it kind of stressful instead.  Do I really want to do that, go there, meet him/her?  Or I’d think, “Oh I couldn’t possibly cut that out. I’ll never do that, go there, meet him/her.  But, I’m not going to give up on it!  It’s just going to be a work in progress, and I’ll keep you posted.
  • I had a LOT of ideas this week.  My skin is practically tingling with creative energy.  It’s all very exciting, but now I have to find the time and the discipline to actually make something of these ideas.
  • I was offered (and accepted) a fantastic and exciting opportunity (details coming soon).  I can’t help but wonder if these ideas and opportunities are coming as a result of whatever “opening” is happening within myself from doing The Artist’s Way.  *Cue mysterious music*

A few favorite quotes from the Week 7 chapter:

“Expect the universe to support your dream.  It will.”

“Perfectionism is not a quest for the best.  It is a pursuit of the worst in ourselves, the part that tells us that nothing we do will ever be good enough...”

“We’ve all heard that the unexamined life is not worth living, but consider too that the unlived life is not worth examining.  The success of a creative recovery hinges on our ability to move out of the head and into action.  This brings us squarely to risk.”

“There is something enlivening about expanding our self-definition, and a risk does exactly that.  Selecting a challenge and meeting it creates a sense of self-empowerment that becomes the ground for further successful challenges.  Viewed this way, running a marathon increases your chances of writing a full-length play.  Writing a full-length play gives you a leg up on a marathon.”

What creative risks have you taken lately?

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, The Artist's Way, Writing · Tags: , , , , ,



  1. Sounds like the Artist’s Way is going really well – good for you! And now I’m dying to hear about your new opportunity! Don’t keep us in suspense too long 🙂

  2. Julie, I am an extremely visual writer…can’t you tell from the pictures in my blog? Lol…

    That being said, if you are more of a verbal writer, then why not make your “vision” board one filled with interesting words or phrases that will spark new ideas for you? Just a suggestion. I have a motivation board in my bedroom for weight loss and it is filled with wonderful pictures as well as words and phrases to keep me motivated and focussed on my goals.

    Good luck,


    • That’s a great idea Donna! I also came to the conclusion that it was okay for me to seek out images related to things I KNOW I want to happen rather than waiting for them to appear in some random magazine.

  3. Oh my goodness! That fourth quote exemplifies why I am taking up the challenge of pursuing my dream of writing and getting published. I have always wanted to write, but never had the confidence to go for it. Then I took on the challenge of getting healthy. I lost 145 1/2 lbs and went from being “morbidly obese” to having a healthy BMI and feeling quite petite. Being able to succeed at that, knowing how daunting a challenge it had seemed at the beginning, has opened me up to believing in myself and my ability to succeed at my dreams. So now I write.

    • Wow Rebecca! Losing 145 + pounds is incredible, truly! You should be so proud of yourself, taking charge of your health like that. Now you know you can do anything! Thank you for sharing that with me.

  4. I worked with the Artists’s Way a few years ago and though those morning pages seem tedious at times, they became the way I begin each day. Even if it’s just scribbling notes about things I still need to do for an article, or a list of “must do without fail” stuff or some doodles…. just to get the brain kicked into gear.

  5. Skin tingling?! That’s awesome–happy writing Julie!! 🙂

    • It is awesome! The only downside is that I just want to work, work, work, but I need to remember my kids need me too. It’s hard to slow down when you feel like you’re “in flow.”

  6. Awesome post, Julie. I think the planned vision board can be a good exercise, but I have found more sucess doing it my way. I don’t make a plan, I just go through magazines and cut out pictures that I like for any reason. Sometimes I see something and think, “oh, sparkly.” and that’s all it takes for me to cut it out. Then I just put them up on a board in a way that is visually pleasing to me. Then I put it by my desk and look at it everyday, just for fun. I recently came to a big decision and then realized that the vision board I made a year and a half ago totally shows me that decision. It was like, wow, my subconcious new it all along! Hey, I think you just gave me an idea for a bog post. Thanks! Anyway, maybe just trying putting together pictures that make you happy and thinking less about it. It might turn out to have an answer you don’t even know you’re looking for.

    • I like your way Emma! I never thought about just trusting your subconscious and putting any old thing that struck your fancy on the page. I knew before that I was overthinking it, but now you’ve given me a different way to approach it. Thanks!

  7. Finding few images for your foam board – I so identified with that. For me it was an issue of “not having the right magazines” If that’s possible. But when I did this chapter there weren’t a lot of good resources in South African Magazines. For me it really made it clear I’m not in the standard box – I’m actually a few kilometers away from standard. That was really difficult to deal with.

    Regarding the experience of “Oh – I can’t cut that out” – Julie – please go back through and CUT THEM OUT. It’s part of ask and you shall receive. If you don’t think you are worthy of it – you won’t get it.

    Can’t wait to hear your news on the offer. Happy skin tingling happiness to you!

    • Melissa – I laughed at the “not having the right magazines” statement because that’s EXACTLY the way I felt. Thank you for your heartfelt encouragement. I will go back and be braver next time! 🙂

  8. The electronic vision board is pretty neat! 🙂 I may have to play with that later today.

    How great to hear you are tingling with creativity! That’s always a great feeling . . . keep in the moment with it and have fun. 🙂

    • From what I know about you, you would have no trouble making a handmade vision board. I’m sure there are better e-versions than the one on O. It had surprisingly few images available and not many that resonated with me.

  9. Great job! I think I would love to make a dream board. When I tried to do Artist Way years ago, I never made it past week 6. And see, look what great week was coming up! I’m going to have to go back and do it again. 🙂

    • Ginger, it’s funny you say that because weeks 4-6 were pretty intense emotionally (for me at least). Then lo comes week 7 which was just a joy. So yes, I would encourage you to try again. 🙂

  10. I’ve also been meaning to create a vision board – but struggle as a verbal person too! But I can’t wait to hear your news….!!!!

  11. Wow, you’ve been busy! I’m in your shoes right now when you said that you have been having a LOT of ideas, but have to figure out the time and discipline to make something out of them. Same here. I have a running list of ideas of all sorts that I am very excited about and want to work on, but then when I sit down and attempt to WORK…. suddenly all the creative energy runs away. Hmm…. I think the next week will be devoted to harnessing it. =)

  12. Exciting! Always inspiring to read this journey of yours. Can’t wait to hear about the new opportunity!

  13. Hearing about Week 7 makes me think it would be worth working through the not-so-easy weeks to get to this one!

    My vision/dream board this year includes words and phrases as well as pictures — I’ve done that before, because words speak to me so. This year, I put my own words and phrases up, because magazines and online just weren’t producing what I wanted to vision.

    When I looked back at last year’s board, before turning it into this year’s (I use a piece of foam board, and attach my pictures and phrases with pushpins) I could see how so many of the dreams had come to fruition, in ways even more exciting than I’d dared to dream. So don’t censor yourself, don’t tell yourself you’re not worthy of a dream. You ARE! It might not come true exactly as you hoped, it might be far more than you could have dreamed, but do express it.

    • Beth – see my comment to Ginger above. It IS worth it. But it sounds like you’ve already had success with a vision board. Go you! And thanks for your encouraging words! 🙂

  14. I’ve enjoyed these updates. The memoir craft book I read recently mentioned lists in a fun way to generate essay ideas. So, who knows what thoses lists may hold in addition to giving you more free time later. I’m not very visual either. I want to try the site Pinterest, but fear it might be a rabbit hole. I’ve also seen some really cool ideas from the site. Perhaps, I need to open up to that idea. I look forward to hearing about your new opportunity.

    • It’s funny you mention Pinterest. I’ve seen it everywhere but I am literally terrified of getting sucked into another social media vortex. I feel I’m maxed out at the moment – LOL!

  15. Julie, reading your post is timely. I’ve just finished watching “The Secret”. I watched it several years ago and ran into the same thing with a vision board…I wanted to use words and couldn’t find the “right” pictures. Have you considered cutting the pictures into words?

    • Jules – I haven’t thought about cutting pictures into words, but I do know that I need some words in addition to the pictures. Words are what grounds me.

  16. When i lead workshops on vision boards, I tell people to use words as well. it’s important for us who are verbal rather than optic. Are there a few words you’d add? They say (I say) that whatever’s in the middle is representative of you right now. that looks to be an image with your feet on two different rocks, probably signifying a shift or change – from where you were to where you are going. Given all this work with the Artist’s way and Kristen’s course, that seems incredibly appropriate. I’ll stop now. great work.

  17. This is quite an intense program you are doing Julie. I have to hand it to you. And that you’ve stuck through it and are learning to enjoy it says quite a lot. I loved your quote on perfectionism. Boy don’t a lot of us suffer from that. Thank you Julie for making us aware of The Artist’s Way. 🙂

  18. I just spent a ridiculously long time making a dream board over at that Oprah site. But somehow, I felt like I should. Dang. That Oprah’s good. 😉

  19. I expect that your new “intentions” are manifesting new opportunities . . . or that you are more OPEN to opportunities as they are presented.

    Either way . . . yay!

  20. So, in all of this, seems there is a ray of hope that not only life, but, money too imitates art…or, is it the other way around? Anyway, did I forget to tell you I recognized your beautiful site for the “Reader Appreciation Award” ? You can pick up the little yellow flower badge if you like from my side bar anytime, and read about it on my latest post titled: “Flowers From A Friend”
    Bless You

  21. What a delicious post with comments galore also delicious. A creativity feast.

    I want to congratulate you on your discipline for the “Artists Way”. You sure are getting a lot out of it.

    I too am familiar with the “Secret” as mentioned above and it seems like another way to pray if you put Spirit into it. Or your own Higher Power. Nancy mentioned intentions and I can see all these having to do with your vision board. And with my flow in regard to all the other comments I think you deserve it all. Please don’t limit yourself with regard to a low self esteem. You OF COURSE deserve your dreams.

    Go Girl:

  22. Thanks for sharing your journey! I hate to admit that I’ve kind of slacked off on my Morning Pages since finishing FINDING WATER. I still crave it and feel better after doing it, but some days I completely forget about it! Cheering you on!

  23. As to connecting with dreams, this may be a bit off point, but I find dreaming to be a key source of creativity. I work hard to remember my dreams and sometimes put them on a dream blog. There’s nothing mystical. It’s just that in a dream your brain is free to create and solve problems in ways that you don’t see in the waking world. But when it finds an answer or a new way to look at something very old …wow!

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