Both Picture and Artist.
Are we a product of our environment? Or is our environment a product of our perceptions? Sure when we are born into this world we are at the mercy of the environment and people in our lives. Naturally we began by depending on others for shelter, nourishment and love. However, we are not a blank slate. We enter this world with words of good intention written on our soul that will be instrumental in shaping our personally. As our world becomes bigger and we become influenced by other social groups like school and friends we begin to realize how we could influence the outcome of our world, sometimes by trial and error.
We can take the skills we have learned from our family to navigate through our world, which can be good or bad. All events that have helped in shaping our world have had a positive outcome. No matter how horrible the event there is always something positive to hold on to that helps get us through. Sometimes the positive is hard to find but if you look, you will find it. As adults we have to remember we are in control and can make change happen.
Focusing on doubt, loss, or failure only creates more of the same. You are in control of how you live your life, of how you perceive your world, and how you tell your story. Live your life with your in born good intentions, not with the doubts you gathered along the way. Retell your edited story. Forgive or understand yourself for hurting others, and others who hurt you. Learn to let go of holding the pain of others; it is not yours to carry.
The world we experience is the world we have created for ourselves. By knowing this we can make changes. First, you have to retell your story more positively and with understanding. Focus on the language you use daily. Secondly, you have to believe it to be true. Believe that you can find a partner that does not end in divorce or believe you can have a successful career. The more you can focus on your good intentions and desires in this world and not your worries and doubts you will discover more success and happiness.
Art therapy can be instrumental in training the brain, our emotions and our beliefs about our personal perceptions of the world to more favorable outcomes. There are lessons to be learned in the darkness. Finding a balance with our light and dark aspects of our personalities will help find everyday balance.
To quote Alfred Adler, “The individual is thus both the picture and the artist. He is the artist of his own personality, but as an artist he is neither an infallible worker nor a person with a complete understanding of mind and body; he is rather a weak, extremely fallible, and imperfect human being.” (The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler, 1956. Ansbacher & Ansbacher)