Dan Thurmon

Dan Thurmon is the author of two books, a renowned speaker, and a recognized expert in delivering peak performances - on stage and in the workplace. As president of Motivation Works, Inc., he has...

Artful Living

Are you approaching your job and your life as an artistic contribution? This week, Dan will help you enhance your expression and impact in order to gain powerful external and internal rewards.

I'm at Mason Mills Park, a place here in Georgia that celebrates and elevates street art. I thought this might be the perfect place to talk about "Artful Living."

My mom, Diana Thurmon, is a visual artist, so I grew up watching her paint, create inspired new pieces, build an art business, and experience the joys and frustrations of creative accomplishment. Mom always told me, "It doesn't matter what you do in life. What matters is how you do it." In other words, any job or undertaking can be approached as an artistic offering.

I've applied this lesson to my own life. And I've observed men and women, across a wide variety of vocations and pursuits. I've studied excellence all my life and found that those who bring something personal in the way of artistic contribution generally experience greater success and recognition because they offer something distinctive with a greater degree of passion and confidence. But even more important, I think, is that those who take this approach enjoy more intrinsic rewards. They are purposeful, and experience more joy and fulfillment in what they do. And that is SO important. When you consider how much of your life is spent engaged in work, just imagine if you could elevate your own efforts in a way you enjoy and find rewarding!

Art has energy, character, and passion. It has meaning to its creator that is conveyed to those who will later experience it in their own unique way. Art can be organized and structured or wild and free. In your life, you may not be splashing paint on walls or canvas, and may have to operate within the parameters and requirements of your job, you can probably be more expressive than you currently are and offer something truly remarkable. How do you bring more art to your job and life?

1. Express yourself. Choose precise words and unique responses to your circumstances.
2. Seek to elevate others and bring value that only you can deliver.
3. Own your ideas, and convey them with confidence. Artists don't depend upon others' validation. They are satisfied by discovering and conveying their personal truth.
4. Experiment with a new approach, rather than simply following the same old routines.
5. Don't rush the process. Stay with the intention to pursue and achieve something remarkable.
6. Call your endings. Artistic works have a beginning, and an end. They don't drag on indefinitely. At some point, you must consider your work complete, and move on to the next challenge.

Don't leave this world without leaving YOUR unique contributions and your personal signature on the lives of those who know you. As my Mom says, Earth without "ART" is just "Eh." So live Artfully. And stay OBOP.

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