How are you doing?
(I'm never quite sure how to answer that question, are you? Do you want to know about my professional or personal life? And do you really want to know? How long have you got?)
It's easy to measure the quantities in your art business. You count the pieces of art you produce, allocate time to have shows, record income and expenses, add people to your mailing list, and so on. If you set goals, you can decide if you are ahead of or behind your expectations based on the numbers.
It's hard to measure the qualities of your creative life. You can't measure enjoyment, flow, satisfaction, disappointment or frustration. If you have a mental picture of your ideal artist lifestyle, you may have a felt sense of how far away or close you are to your aspirations.
So how you are doing depends on how the quantity and quality compare with your standards and the context in which you live.
Your attitudes, beliefs and values are the base for your standards and tend to be fairly stable.
But your physical, emotional, spiritual condition can change in a heartbeat. Up or down.
Up is rarely a problem.
Sometimes what seems to be a down can be the catalyst for a future beyond what you might have thought possible.
"It's not well appreciated, but over half of the world's population suffers from some form of cognitive, emotional, sensory or motor condition, and because of poor technology, too often, conditions result in disability and a poorer quality of life. Basic levels of physiological function should be a part of our human rights. Every person should have the right to live life without disability if they so choose -- the right to live life without severe depression; the right to see a loved one in the case of seeing impaired; or the right to walk or to dance, in the case of limb paralysis or limb amputation." Hugh Herr
Hugh Herr is building the next generation of bionic limbs, robotic prosthetics inspired by nature's own designs. Herr lost both legs in a climbing accident 30 years ago; now, as the head of the MIT Media Lab's Biomechatronics group, he shows his incredible technology in a talk that's both technical and deeply personal - with the help of ballroom dancer Adrianne Haslet-Davis, who lost her left leg in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, and performs again for the first time on the TED stage. (Her story begins at about minute 12:00)
Read more like this:
All Those Deals ... But Art Heals
Artist Joshua Coffy combats depression and creates community
Painter Thom Reaves: From Bipolar Disorder to Poster Style Paintings of Joy
Celebrate the Healing Power of Art (and win prizes)
Highs, Lows, Twists and Turns for Artist With Health Challenges