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  • Writer's pictureMike and Glenn

The art of healing

Updated: Oct 21, 2023

When we were young, and Hallmark was beyond our budget, we would craft art in a card and proudly present the imperfect product to our graceful parent. Those keepsakes were treasured for all the years that followed. Somewhere along our journey, we came to feel that our ability to create properly was substandard and hence stopped the practice of self-producing.

This pattern of creative abstinence is inherent in many. We stuff our expressions down deep as we care more about the finished product and its worldly acceptance and less about the release and benefit to ourselves and society.

These writings and the correlated podcasts we produce represent the creative we wish to use for inner fulfillment and societal betterment. This is our outlet, and this post begs the reader to find theirs.

As we make peace with the past, we uncover a part of us that whispers to be heard. We remember a want to sing, to paint, to act out, to build, to capture on film, to express, to create. We yearn to leave a piece of ourselves in art to the living, for those of today and in the future. We desire to define our inner through the work of our outer. Our longing is to gain fulfillment while we advance the message of the recovery option.

Like most new things, the process may look unnatural, even clunky. We remind ourselves that it is in the vulnerability that the healing happens. Once we allow for fluidity (not overcomplicating or second-guessing ourselves), we discover the freeing response that awaits the artist.

Perfection in art and life should never be the planned objective. Now, we say that but practice quite the opposite. It is natural for us to want the finished product to be polished and free of imperfections. When we begin to understand that the flaws, defects, and mistakes make art uniquely valuable, we learn to grasp creativity as a healthy outlet. It was the artist and not the art that the child's parent came to appreciate.

Accurate communication comes alive when we move from head to heart in articulating. When we put our life experiences into an art form, we leave the world an inimitable gem.

Clarity through sobriety takes creativity to a new level, for the raw effort and unique perspective manufacture a pure representation of an expression exclusive to the artiste.

It is with intent that we create. Not an afterthought but an “all-in” approach is our prescription and determination each time our brush touches the canvas. It is with full emotion and engagement when our hands slide on the strings. It is with complete care that we craft the clay. It is with a concentrated commitment that we rehearse the lines. It is with utter patience that we frame the optimum snap. We respect the process and receive the reward from persistence.

At a certain point, we stopped talking around it and began to talk to it. We chose the sober community as a recipient while fully understanding that it was we who had received the benefit of the effort. We handed the gift away to the universe but forever kept possession of the experiential feeling. We gave. We got.

We encourage our community to create. Create for others. Create for oneself. Create to inspire. Create to educate. Create to earn or create to learn. Make experience a thing. Take what has been thrown at you and turn it into art. Keep producing until you run out of content.- which will never happen. Create in the moment. Manufacture a memory. Leave a legacy. Just create.

A quick Google search of “forms of art expression” provides a good jumping point for consideration. Conceptual art, performance art, sculpturing, drawing, architecture, drama, modern art, expressionism, painting, visual arts, theater, movies, Cubism, installation art, pop art, dance, music, photography, printmaking, mixed media, impressionism, and creative writing led the list of areas to explore.

Explore today. Create today!


Thoughts and ideas for this blog post were taken and built upon from a bonus podcast “A spirited conversation with Eileen Tul… the episode dropped on 10/13/2023 Click here to hear the podcast.

We wish to thank Eileen Tull for her willingness to share inspiration on a recent podcast.

Eileen is a theatermaker, poet, educator, and one-woman show person. In Chicago, she has worked with Stage Left, Chicago Dramatist, Theo, Broken Nose Theater, The Factory, The Plagiarists, and Violent Surprise, among others. She has performed solo shows throughout the country, including at the San Francisco Fringe Festival, Dallas Solo Festival, United Solo, Cincinnati's Contemporary Art Center, and Cincy Fringe.

Eileen published her first poetry collection, 33 poems about peanut butter, in 2022. She is a creative arts instructor with the Chicago Park District, teaching classes for kids, adults, and seniors. Eileen is a proud graduate of Loyola University of Chicago. She is a grateful friend of Bill W.

Photo by laura adai on Unsplash


Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be considered a substitute for healthcare professionals' advice. The author’s advice and viewpoints are their own.


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