Tag Archives: music

Punk Rock Medicine

My life, my business, my greatest joys, and some of my deepest hurts have been shaped by my love for punk rock and music in general.  Don’t get me wrong, I can’t PLAY an instrument to save my life.  But the majority of my middle school, high school, and college years were spent either at shows or with my headphones in, music turned WAY up and being carried away by anyone from Johnny Cash, Bad Religion, Against Me!, and The Clash to local OC bands that no one’s ever heard of (and probably never will).   I wasn’t trying to escape.  It was actually the opposite.  I finally heard something that sounded familiar, that sounded like everything I thought and felt but didn’t have the words to express.  It was my medicine.

This was the first song that I fell HARD for.  I listened to it over and over and over…I grew up in Orange County, CA, the same place Social Distortion is from, and so I definitely felt some geographic solidarity.  But more than that, I loved the rawness of Mike Ness’s words…and voice…and guitar.  And while I realize not everyone appreciates good old fashioned punk rock, the sentiment conveyed by this song in particular rings true for all of us rebel sensitive souls.

It’s the “don’t tell me what to do” combined with the “sometimes it’s all a little (or a lot) too much” attitude.  To me the underlying message of the song is this…Everyone’s got some shit in their past they’d rather had never happened.  We carry the stories of our ancestors with us.  Our families pass on beliefs that we may reject.  AND we all have the ability to see it for what it is, say “thanks but I’m done with that”, and go on to do something great with the incredible souls and powerful (albeit sometimes painful) lessons we’ve learned.

For those of us trying to set ourselves apart, to do something different that the world desperately needs, this song is for you…

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My War of Art

colorsWhen I was young, aside from wanting to be an herbalist and “good witch”, I also wanted to be an artist.  My 4th grade class took a field trip one day to an artist’s studio and from that day forward I decided that when I grew up I needed to have my own creative “workshop” where I could make art AND potions.

As I got older, my ego voice showed up in my head to tell me there was no way I could make a living as an artist.  There were only a select few who could support themselves making art of any kind and I’d probably have to go to art school if I wanted to be any good.  Who was I to think I could spend time and money on something like that??  I should just go to college and major in something useful (BTW, I majored in medieval history).

Fast forward to present day…

In a moment of clarity a couple weeks ago, I had a vision of what I want my life to look like and it dawned on me that I need to be making art.  I feel most grounded, at peace, and in my flow when I’m in my right brain, watching as colors and lines take shape on paper, writing poetry, or even fumbling through chords on a guitar.  My ego wants me to be good at everything before even trying it.  That voice doesn’t give me the space to play, experiment, try and fail and try again.  It doesn’t allow me to be a beginner, to mess up.

So I’ve created a new practice for myself.  Every other day I schedule time in my calendar for creating.  I give myself permission to play.  It can be music, painting, poetry, drawing, writing, making vision boards, etc., fully acknowledging that it may not look or sound good at first and that’s part of my process.  I’m allowing myself the space to fail.  During this time I can set aside my ego and give myself over to my inner guide, listening to what my HEART wants to be doing right now in this moment.

It’s just been a few days but here’s what I’ve noticed so far:

  • I feel more grounded in the moment AND in my body
  • My self-critical ego voice has quieted down
  • In other aspects of my life I’m gentler with myself
  • I approach other tasks with more creativity and mindfulness
  • I actually get more done!!

SO – here is my call to action for you…

Schedule creativity time for yourself.  Write it in your calendar and commit to this practice.  Start with just an hour a week and then gradually give yourself more time.  Give yourself space to mess up.  Notice what starts to shift in other areas of your life.  I hear so many people say they’re not creative, but it’s because we don’t generally give ourselves the time and space to tap into our inner creativity, our own intuitive, artistic brain.  Stop thinking and start doing.  Give your heart a chance to speak to you and really listen to what he or she needs from you today.  Let this be an experiment to just play with your time and let yourself have fun doing it!  I’d love to hear your feedback, ideas, and experiences with this, so please leave comments below or visit my FB page!

So much love to you all!
~ Katie