Recently, the fashion world was rocked by the death of one of the most influential artists of our generation. The genius known as Alexander McQueen - his worked touched the lives of millions and made a lasting imprint in the fashion world. A few in his inner circle spoke about the reluctance he had to play the ‘Hollywood game’. He refused to suck up to celebrities/glitterati in order for his designs to get exposure. He didn’t play that way. He wanted his genius to speak for itself and he was known for his innovative style and experimentation. In order to do this and still connect with others, Alexander McQueen was able to tap into his dark side.
Although this dark side appeared destructive at the end of McQueen’s life, this side is where true creativity and authenticity can be found. I find myself grappling with this on a daily basis because of what I feel are ‘social obligations’. At times, my perceived ‘social obligations’ have caused me unnecessary distress, discomfort that has lead to dis-ease.
In my opinion, this is due to my honed ‘auto-ability’ to filter and screen everything I say or do to not offend or upset. The funny thing is, I am usually the one left offended and upset, and I still wind up offending others or receiving a perplexed look and what I like to call the ‘flabbergasted walk-away’. I have allowed this to put my creativity and drive into a chokehold; instead of me being true to my own artistic divinity I have become defined by the opinions others may have of me [because in all honesty, what others think of me is none of my business].
I feel my odd appearance makes me stand out enough already so what I try to do is fit in as much as possible. But guess what? This is not me. I try to fit in and look cool, and that dark side of me tweaks the situation every time to where I just appear like more of a phony anyway. Hell, I am odd, I am different; I do not look or act like any of the stereotypes or what Norman Rockwell would call ‘normal’, and I damn sure don’t fit in.
I realize today that it is imperative for me to embrace my dark side by allowing the light to shine on that part of who I am. Some see the dark side as destructive and detrimental. Yes, it can be if you give into it. I am talking about using it to fuel the light. Exploring those dark parts gets us more in touch with who we are so we can come out of denial & be willing to heal whatever it is that blocks progress. I am scarred, I am imperfect and I am working towards accepting these things and owning them, whether others like it or not.
When I looked at the artwork of McQueen, his originality, creativity and fearlessness hit me in the face. Then Spirit confronted me and asked, ‘Why are you so focused on the creativity of others when your creative life is passing you by?
My default program is ‘people-pleasing mode’. This has the tendency to suck the life out of me and repel those around me. Currently, I am in the process of healing my way out of it. Not easy, but totally necessary.
For more information about Alexander McQueen and his work:
To learn more about the positives of embracing your dark side & the work of Connie Zweig: http://www.conniezweig.com/books.html