Posting the songs and looking for feedback is still an ego orientation, so while I think I will upload a few more of my songs, I'm going to take a few steps back from it. Also, there are so many really talented people out there promoting themselves. On the one hand, I'm promoting myself, but on the other hand, I'm humbled by the sheer immensity of people making music and putting it on the web. Making music is a good thing; promoting myself is premature. I am not a musician, just a singer/songwriter and I have no business sense. What I should focus on is creating just one song at a time, instead of thinking that I have to make a whole album's worth before I can put the songs out there for feedback. I re-found a site I joined a couple of years ago for songwriters; it's called Muse's Muse. I have briefly reviewed some other people's songs, but I want to do more of that. That's the rule there, you have to review 2-4 songs by other people before you can get one of your own songs reviewed. I think that's fair.
What makes me feel better than promoting these old songs is sticking to a Buddhist practice of meditation and dharma study. I found a couple of Buddhist communities online, but this past week I haven't been posting. I've been being very upfront about the fact that I suffer from schizophrenia. Some people respond positively to that, some ignore it and others get uncomfortable. My aim is not to make people uncomfortable, but to fight the stigma attached to mental illnesses and to encourage others to be upfront about their struggles. Still, sometimes I think I overdo it and yet I feel more comfortable being open than hiding something that has affected my life so drastically.
I want to return to painting because I've been working only sporadically. Painting is meditation and therapy. I tend to feel more emotionally balanced when I'm working on a painting or drawing project. Someone who owns a design studio bought two of my abstract paintings on my Artid site. He said he wanted to hire me to do some more work and suggested we talk by phone. I told him that though I felt somewhat uncomfortable using the phone, that he was probably right and said I'd be available this past weekend, but he never called. So I'm feeling insecure. That shouldn't stop me from beginning a painting project of my own.
I also want to return to reaching out to people on the internet. I have made a SharePost on SchizophreniaConnection and responded to another's SharePost. I would like to get back to working on LiveJournal. There are a lot of groups about mental illness/health and maybe I can do some good. I've befriended a young woman who suffers from schizoaffective disorder and we've been emailing each other, which has been a pleasure. She's so bright and also an artist. In fact, I've come across quite a few people online who suffer from mental illness who are both bright and artistic.
I have been feeling bouts of anxiety and I've been trying to breath into the discomfort the way the Buddhist nun Pema Chodron has instructed in her books and audio recordings. The thing is not to act out or repress, but to sit with the feeling and get to know it. That's true for meditation in general and it is not easy to do. When I try to meditate often I get either restless or I get a back ache or I get sleepy. But I did get a beginner yoga DVD and I've been following that and that really helps to relax me, but it doesn't put me to sleep.
Well, that's all for now. I hope you have all been doing well and staying safe.