You have to show up in your body every single day. With its aches and pains and shifts and ossifications and imperfections. You have to commune with that body every single day and meet it where it is. You must work with it to accomplish what it and you need to do in the world.
Work is like that as well. Especially artistic work. Soul work. Very often at the budding stages of creativity we think about projects as one-off. We think about the one time of making it to that big stage or having that hit song or popular book. But we don’t often think about the body of work. The multiple books. The shows and touring and recording day in and day out.
Your creative life — as your spiritual life — or anything that concerns your inner landscape, must be tended to on a daily basis just like that body. It’s a garden that needs love and care. So the shift to when we own our identity comes when we see this work as our body of work. A daily toil or a daily joy or daily conversation that needs to be had that becomes a yearly conversation, then a conversation every decade and finally, conversation for a life time.
That is how we own the identity of who we truly are: understanding that adulation appreciation may not come. Criticism may not come either. It may be just be quiet. But the body is still there, beckoning you to own your own identity and engage your work in the same way that you engage your corporeal self, as a living breathing entity that’s just as a part of you as your own beating heart and waking mind.
What is your body telling you?