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3 Life Lessons Learned at No Border: 21st Century Art Exhibition - Aurora 2023

Last year's No Border: 21st Century Art Exhibition Aurora 2023 at the National Art Centre Tokyo (Roppongi) was a whirlwind of emotions – from the initial thrill of being part of the exhibition for the second year running to the sweet surprise of winning the Excellence Award for my piece "Emotional Landscape."

But beyond the accolades, I'm proud of myself for not running away from my emotions like what I did in 2022 and this experience has taught me three valuable life lessons:

  1. Self-belief is a journey, not a destination.

Remember that imposter syndrome moment? It's a battle many artists face, myself included. But the award was a reminder to trust my creative journey and celebrate my progress.

  1. Embrace the rejections.

Not every piece of art I create meets my standards, and not every opportunity works out. But these setbacks, though frustrating at times, can be stepping stones to new opportunities and a deeper understanding of yourself.

  1. Kindness starts with you.

Being gentle with myself was a key takeaway. It's okay to slow down, honour your pace, and focus on creating from a place of joy. Importantly, remember to also look back at how far you've come instead of just focusing on the goals ahead. Celebrate every win, because you've made it this far with these little steps!

This is just the beginning of my artistic adventure, and I'm armed with these valuable lessons to guide me as I explore and create. Here's to the journey!

In the meantime, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the importance of self-acceptance in the creative process or life in general. I am very much still grappling with this and would love to hear your experiences in the comments below!

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