Yesterday I was at the first showing of the movie “Eat Pray Love”.  Anticipating this movie’s release for weeks – I got nervous that I was too excited and would be disappointed.  I am happy to say that I was not.

After posting my love for the movie on Facebook, a guy friend teased, “Isn’t that a chick flick?”  I have heard this remark from many men I’ve spoken with as well.  I retorted that I was indeed, a chick, and that I can relate more to this movie than 15 minute high-speed car chases (I’ve never been in or seen one in real life – thank goodness!) or slow motion shoot-outs (again, thankful to have never seen or been in one.)

Even though the movie is about a woman, I believe men who can open themselves enough to consider the meaning of life and love, will also relate to this story of finding oneself.  As I watched, I felt she had stolen the thoughts right out of my brain.  Having been through a divorce and breakups, it was comforting to see that my feelings weren’t actually unusual and that as in most things – this too shall pass.

But as is my way, I have also been trying to decide what business lessons might be gleaned from this movie…

(Perhaps it’s my way of trying to trick some men into going to see it … I think there were 3 men in a theater of about 75 people when I saw it yesterday.)

The premise is, Liz has fully participated in creating her life and realizes one day, it no longer fits. She feels she has lost herself, her balance, her zest for life.  Exchange the word “work” for “life” and I bet 95% of the population will say, “Yes, I’ve felt that way before too.”  She heads to Italy to feel passion again – that’s EAT, India to meditate and recenter herself – PRAY – and Bali to learn from a healing man – and she inadvertently finds LOVE.

Most of us won’t have the means or lack of ties to be able to go on a year-long adventure of self-discovery.  And perhaps we haven’t reached the same brink that she did, maybe it is more of an itch to know if we are on the right path…

Here is my solution, for the artist in search of balance and meaning in their business.

It’s a work in progress so feel free to offer ideas in the comments section as well.

EXPLORE – If you are feeling less than excited about what you are doing creatively or feel your business has become mundane, explore new ways of doing things.  Try new techniques, analyze your business and decide if there is something that can be changed to make things more interesting and exciting for you.  I believe it is hard for artists to create to their best abilities long-term without maintaining a passion for what they are doing.

CENTER – Be true to yourself.  Meditate, pray, listen to music, exercise – whatever helps you focus and center your being.  Being true to yourself of course assumes you know yourself – maybe it’s time for a little check-up:  are you taking enough care of you and not giving everything to others?  Balance is the key!

CREATE – Decide what is right for you and what will resonate with your market.  Set aside time each day or week to create.  Turn off email, the phone, yes – even Twitter – and let your creativity flow.  Love what you are doing and know that it is the best you can do.

The point, in the end, is to enjoy your life and be grateful for the adventure.  Sometimes we get so focused on where we want to go or on what others think we should be doing that we lose sight of ourselves or forget to take comfort in all the good things happening now.   So clear your mind so the universe can rush in – apparently everything else will take care of itself. 🙂

Here’s to your happy, centered and creative success!

– Tara Reed

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