The Importance of Achievable Goals

A few weeks ago I made a proclamation that I would create one painting a day, and post it to this blog. I'm not sure what I was thinking, but seeing as it's about 2 weeks later and I haven't created something, I'll admit that my goal was a bit too big!

In the past I would have just abandoned whatever the original goal was, feel a little like a failure, and not make any changes. It was definitely a case of all or nothing thinking. These days, even if I do fall short of what I intended to do, I don't have any shame in it. I recognize that I'm doing the best that I can, and that the best progress I can make is to always be kind to myself, no matter what I'm trying to achieve.

Achieving a goal gives our minds a hit of dopamine, which is connected to pleasure, motivation and learning. By setting small, achievable goals we can use that dopamine to motivate us towards the next thing, and gradually tackle bigger and bigger projects.

I look forward to creating new and wonderful artwork, and sharing the experience here as often as I am able to.

Until then, here's another one of my pastel paintings from the beginners class I took at the Northville Art House. This piece was a lot of trial and error, but the nice things about pastels is, if you don't like something, you can just go right over it, again and again until the paper can't take anymore pigment. This one probably has about 50 layers.. or at least it seemed like it when I was working on it. There are still things to be done, but for now I'm leaving it alone before my perfectionism drives me nuts!