The Art of Being Stubborn

Mary Liz Ingram —  January 8, 2013 — 2 Comments

“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.” -Picasso

Over the years, I have become adept at spinning plates. I can hold several sticks at once, get the plates spinning and keep them all going at the same time without crashing. Okay, maybe only metaphorically…but that would be a cool party trick…

I do however, keep a lot of things in motion as I live each day: 3 kids, 5-day a week job, and an art career are the main events, amongst all the other important and enjoyable parts of my life. People often ask, “How (and possibly why) do you do it all?”

Short answer: Because I’m stubborn as a mule.

I want to be a good mom. I want to be a successful artist. I want to do well at my day job. I want to keep things in order. I want to be involved in the art community. I want to enjoy life.

So I take Picasso’s advice and “vigorously act” to reach my goals.

Here’s an example of how that plays out in real life:

Painting with a baby

Painting with a baby

Yep. I put the baby next to me and go with it…I may have to paint or draw while singing silly songs and making ridiculous faces to keep her happy, but it works.

I draw during baby’s nap time, or on weekends while the family’s chilling. I have been known to draw with a little boy on my back at my art desk, because I was determined to finish up a piece.

I take a deep breath, try to reduce the inevitable stress of drawing with a kid on my back and tattle-talers in my ear, and remember why I do what I do: because I believe that it matters.

Because art is important to me, I find a way to make it happen along with motherhood, work, marriage and life.

I aim to never let the busy-ness of life overtake what is important to my life.

What is important to your life? What dreams are waiting for action?

The first step may be the hardest, and if your life is anything like mine, the subsequent steps to stay the course require effort and passion as well. In my opinion, each step is worth it.

“I want first of all… to be at peace with myself. I want a singleness of eye, a purity of intention, a central core to my life that will enable me to carry out these obligations and activities as well as I can.” –Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea

Mary Liz Ingram


2 responses to The Art of Being Stubborn

  1. Mary Liz, I just read this and was like, this is ME!!! I totally relate to this and I am discovering that I am stubbornly committed to making art – because like you, it is my passion and desire!! I think it is WONDERFUL that with three kids and a job you find time to do what you love. Way to go, sista!

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