Chicago's Bean

Now and then, in doing our work, we experience brief, almost metaphysical flashes of positive feelings. These are glimmers, magical feedback moments telling us we’re doing good work and on the right path. Maybe our art or writing is affecting someone, or the hard work is paying off and you “get it,” and you notched up on your skills.

Such moments are better than opinions or adulations from others, unless those others are masters in your field. Embrace these glimmer gems when they happen, since they are nods from the universe and we should feed on them as encouragement nutrition.

Glimmers can happen for physical, spiritual, or intellectual efforts, and when your art or work is good and true. They take many forms, from an innate sense that what you did is your best and can’t improve on it, or when things align right and something falls in place for you.

All of us engaged in creative pursuits trod along daily doing the work (and “creative” doesn’t mean only mean art, writing, weaving, etc.; any effort involving learning and improving a skill requires creativity). While we intellectually know it’s about the journey more than the destination, our human egos still want the occasional recognition and reward for making the effort.

If you’ve ever traveled in places like the desert regions of the western U.S., you may recall that feeling of relief when you finally came upon a needed gas station or rest area. Such are the feelings when glimmers appear on our endless roads of doing the work. These moments are the small encouragements that keep us going, let us know we’re on the right path, and that we’re going to be okay.

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