Living a Rich Life

Jumble of winter aspens

I have come to a place in my life where I understand that living a rich life is much more rewarding than recognition or even money.

But what is a “rich” life? This will vary for different people. For me, I find it to be having a great, supportive spouse, family, good friends to share things with, enough money to do many of the things I want without worrying, and time and opportunity to pursue my creative interests. It rests on a foundation of peace that comes from a secure relationship with God.

There are 2 words that summarize a lot of this for me: Contentment and Gratitude. Contentment is not the same as happiness. Happiness is a momentary state caused by circumstances. Riding a roller coaster may give you happiness (and fear). A few minutes later you may be sad when the ice cream falls off your ice cream cone. Contentment is a decision to accept and get the most out of whatever comes. I can be content when things are going great and also content when trouble comes. It is a state of mind, a decision, something I have determined beforehand to do. I’m l lucky, too, that I can be content being alone with myself. A lot of my time is spent alone. I’m OK with that. When I’m driving I seldom even turn on any audio. I would rather spend the quiet time just thinking or letting my mind wander. That ability is a blessing.

Gratitude comes from the knowledge that I am very fortunate. Hard work and determination do not always lead to success. I know I am very blessed in my circumstances. I don’t think anyone inherently deserves anything, and the fact that I have above and beyond what I need is something I am grateful for every day. This is not just a result of my hard work. Those blessings do not necessarily mean riches in a monetary sense. But I consider myself one of the most fortunate people I know. I have good health, I can eat or drink what I want, we can plan a trip with good friends and have a great time enjoying each other’s company, we can get together with family and like their company. Basically, gratitude means I do not believe everything I have comes from my own talent and effort. I am blessed.

But this blog is nominally about art. How does that apply? I now approach my art from a place of joy. I have a vision and it is unique. Life has put me in circumstances that let me spend time pursuing my art and vision and that gives me contentment. Since I see interesting things all around me, my art focuses mostly on out of the way things I find that I hope to have you see in a new way. I am grateful to see these things and be able to show them to you through my vision. I hope to bring convey my sense of wonder to you.