Life happens. It’s a phrase that denotes the unpredictability of the human experience. For many artists and creatives, the response to those uncertainties can determine their ability to progress in their craft—in their willingness to adapt to change or their efforts to preserve their control over the narrative of their future.
Jazz master, pianist and artist mentor, Herbie Hancock, outlined this principle in the following excerpt from his autobiography, Possibilities:
“We all have a natural human tendency to take the safe route—to do the thing we know will work—rather than taking a chance. But that’s the antithesis of jazz, which is all about being in the present. Jazz is about being in the moment, at every moment. It’s about trusting yourself to respond on the fly.”
Despite this truth, and their best intentions to move forward, some artists experiencing plateaus of extreme success or disappointment can sometimes choose to take preventive measures to gate themselves in from change and subsequent disruption, resulting in waned creativity. Amidst the certainty of the present and past, how can creatives strengthen their alignment to the creative perpetuity that fuels their talent and ability and allows for continued evolution and growth?
An artist’s perspective of change, through the lens of the Creator’s purpose and intent for their gifts, can ultimately serve to ensure the continuity of their creative growth and evolution.
When artists are able to embrace the disruption of change with an expectation for good towards their personal and creative development, that outlook of expectation can position them to receive the innate possibilities for good that exist within each plateau shift into the unknown—and in turn, allow for the sharpening of their character and craft to achieve their highest artistic potential.
An artist’s ability, amidst the certainty of the present, to fully invest their creativity and remain open to the possibilities that lie ahead enacts a level of reciprocity that yields an increased continuity of creativity, courage, insight and innovation over the arc of their career. This dynamic is paralleled in the following admonition from the Creator to the people of Israel, as voiced by the Prophet Malachi, in his call for adherence to his covenant and their worship in the form of tithes to the Temple, towards their benefit:
“Put me to the test and you will see that I will open the windows of heaven and pour out on you in abundance all kinds of good things.”
Conversely, when artists position themselves outside of a perspective that welcomes the possibilities within the disruption of change, they can inadvertently disconnect themselves from the creative perpetuity that informs their talent and gifts—gating themselves within the perceived perpetuity of their success or disappointment, in an effort to preserve a sense of control over their careers.
A similar level of defense is mirrored in the emancipation arc of the Israelites from Egyptian rule. When the Prophet Moses initially prophesied their freedom from Egypt and the promise of abundance that awaited them, the Israelites were unable to accept the possibilities of change, as presented, as they had become calcified by their pain and heartache over the course of their four hundred year enslavement, as seen in the excerpt below:
“Moses told this to the Israelites, but they would not listen to him, because their spirit had been broken by their cruel slavery.”
As artists are able to center and realign themselves under the outpour of the Creator’s intent for their creativity, as presented through the disruption of change, it can result in a dilation of perspective that further aligns an artist with his purpose and hope towards their gifts—and a strengthening of faith and optimism that become retardant against fear and disappointment over time.
These benefits are paralleled in the following declaration made by Christ to his disciple, Peter, highlighting the inherent power that would be expressed through Peter’s faith and availability to the purpose and intent of the Creator:
“And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
When artists are able to embrace change as a necessary and expected factor to their growth, they allow room for the possibilities for good and abundance within their creative expression to take root and flourish amidst the uncertainty.