Eleven years ago I made the crazy decision to go back to school to change careers. After seven years of working full-time and going to night school I realized my dream of becoming an art teacher and practicing artist. Four years later still, I couldn’t be happier.
It was an insanely long road full of obstacles, anxiety and financial struggle. My first year teaching I worked three jobs just to keep up with my mortgage and bills. But now I am surrounded by that which I love most every single day. I get to inspire young minds to appreciate the arts for art’s sake, not to mention all of the other benefits that come along with practicing and learning about art (but that’s a whole other story). I get ample time off to pursue my own artistic endeavors and most of all I get to rest. Wait, rest; is that a real thing?
This week as I was painting on my balcony I came to the realization that this is the first time I’ve felt rested as far back as I can remember. I’ve worked since I was fifteen and I don’t think I’ve ever stopped to just breathe...until now.
We’ve created this awful society where people work their lives away and then one day they wake up at the end to find that they’ve missed living. Our government and corporations only encourage and instill the mindset that the more hours we work the more successful we will become. They give us a ridiculously little amount of vacation time and then frown upon us when we actually want to use it.
What these silly big dogs don’t realize is that if people are given significant time to relax, enjoy life, and recharge they ultimately end up being more productive and efficient for their employers. Instead most people are forced to commit to an insane amount of hours, stuck in their little cubicles where they spend half their day surfing the Internet to pass time because their so unhappy and overworked.
What it comes down to is that we are better in every way when we allow time for ourselves to just breathe. When we are rested and happy we treat each other better, we make better choices and we work mindfully and purposefully. My advice is to take moments to enjoy life as often as you can and if you’re in a situation that doesn’t allow you to do so, work towards changing it. Don’t wait until your old or sick to realize that you’ve missed out on this beautiful thing we call life!
Visit www.saatchiart.com/danelaart for information and pricing of original artwork and prints.
Stories about how art inspires and changes us.