15 Nov

Before the Creative Process

Why the ‘Why’ Matters

The ‘why’ matters.
You know, the ‘why’ behind what we are doing or wishing to do.
The ‘why’ IS the purpose, cause, or belief that inspires us.

When you know your ‘why’, then your ‘what’ has more impact because you’re working towards your purpose.
~ Michael Jr.

I know this is true for me, and I’m betting we both can recall times in our life when we’ve seen this in action.
Those instances where we were so on fire and inspired we were unstoppable.
We had laser focus.
We knew what to do–when to do it–how to do it.
We were super clear on our ‘why.’

With a clear ‘why’, our direction feels natural and the answers obvious.

But then there have been those times when everything felt like too much.
We had too many unclear choices, too many ways it might fail.
We were listening to so many outside voices and opinions.
Confusion, fatigue, and the temptation to quit began showing up—all due to the absence of a clear ‘why’.

Comparing the times we’ve been clear and the times we haven’t can help us to understand the role ‘why’ plays.
I encourage you to pause here and think about both sides of the coin in your own experience.
Times you’ve been crystal clear on your ‘why’.
How did you feel?
Were the decisions easier to make?
What were the results of having a clear ‘why’?
What about the times you were knee-deep in ‘how’, ‘where’, and ‘what’—and realized you didn’t really know the ‘why’ of it all?
How did you feel then? How did the choices feel?
What were your results? Were you able to complete it?

He who has a why can endure any how.
~ Nietzche

Here’s the thing.

Energy, joy, and inspiration arise when we are acutely aware of our ‘why’.
Apathy, confusion, and exhaustion thrive in the absence of a clearly defined ‘why’.

We need to think of our ‘why’ like gasoline to our engines, the flame to our candle, the mojo to our creative undertakings.
Our ‘why’ taps us into an energy source of epic proportions (no kidding!).
It helps us push through barriers (both perceived and real!).

Our ‘why’ IS the purpose, cause, or belief that inspires us.
It’s why our ‘why’ truly matters!

Coming next — I’ll be sharing thoughts on ways to uncover and get clear on our ‘why’. Stay tuned!

P.S. The ‘why’ behind my giveaways this month?

Appreciation for life, for love, for getting the opportunity to give love and receive love.
I appreciate the connection we share here.
I appreciate you taking the time to read and absorb what I share.
I appreciate the kind words over the things I paint.
I appreciate you being part of my courses so we can go deeper together.
I appreciate all the beautiful art you are making.
I appreciate all the wonderful words you share.
I appreciate your love for life and love for those around you.
I so appreciate you, dear friend.

I’m giving away 3 book sets that contain 3 of my favorite books for us creative types 😉
The Art Spirit, Keep Going and Big Magic!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Dreama Tolle Perry Log
Leave a reply

    Leave a Comment

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Read more conversations
  1. Debbie Morgan

    I took art in college and majored in Graphic Design. Avoided painting. Not sure why? Scared I guess!?! 40 years later, I’m taking lessons to overcome my fear!!! #FacingMyFears

  2. It would be lovely to read what these guys wrote about their “why”. Well done to them x

  3. Reveille

    I had a brush with joy when my neighbor and her boys shoveled my driveway yesterday and then stopped long enough to sit and sp coffee with me. She is younger, like a daughter, and is animated, filled with laughter and makes me cackle.

  4. Shelia

    I’ve loved painting all of my life. Like so many, “life” got in the way. I’m giving myself permission to enjoy my love of painting. I have so many emotions connected to painting which I love. This is my why.

  5. When I think about the possibilities of deeply connecting with my “why”, I think of a brighter future for my children. I think of how young they are and how everything I do creatively in my business is for them, to show them that art has purpose, meaning and is good for the soul. I think of how I can teach them so much and maybe someday they’ll be artists like me too. The thought of enjoying the journey arises when I think of my why and that if I reminded myself every day why I make art, maybe I’ll be calmer in my heart and more confident in my mind.

  6. Cathe deets

    My why is why am I painting all these radiators when I need to do my love, painting with Dreama. Thank you for telling us so many things I need to hear!❤️🥰❤️

  7. To express my emotions through color and texture that reflect my deepest feelings that I am inadequate to express through words. It’s very freeing to reveal my inner thoughts and feelings with brush strokes and expressive color.

  8. RutH Butters

    I have something that calls me to be creative and feel the need to put it down on anything that doesn’t move.
    Beauty is to be shared!

  9. Heidi Maranto

    Exploring Why is how I find purpose and direction. Whats under all the reasons I want and need to be creative in artistically driven ways. Understanding Why defines Drive. After which the future unfolds with clarity and meaningful direction.

  10. Maria Valehrach

    The why? Because I feel unbridled joy when I’m painting. Because that is one of the rare times when I can truly let the me inside come out for a breath of fresh air.

  11. My “why” always comes back to God who gives great gifts. He has given me the desire and tools to create art. They are gifts from God. While I often struggle with personal criticism, the “why” is to honor Him in all things. When I think this way, it then becomes a peaceful journey.

  12. Judith Foster

    My why-is to learn-to see where the next mark of my pen or brush will take me-to see around the next corner-to expand my universe.

  13. Why is important to me because I pour out enotionally, spiritually. psychologically and physically in my biblical counselling and teaching ministry. Doing art, especilly painting gives me a much needed rest in all those areas and restores my soul.
    Also God is creative and loves beauty and the creative process and longs to paint beauty thru and with me. The “why” of passion for painting.

  14. Christy

    My body knows the deep “why” more than my mind can articulate it. As I pay attention t the flow of energy, Spirit, I act from a deep “why” of knowing beyond knowing.

  15. Judy Parton

    Thank you for sharing and caring for your fellow Dreamers! You motivate, inspire and fuel my fire to create! Thank you!!!

  16. Maybe this is a key part of my struggles. Not sure of my why. It seems selfish to me in some way to fill my time with the pleasure of my art.

  17. Jan c

    Discovering my “why” gives me permission to let go of all the daily disruptions and distractions and pursue my calling.

  18. Kitty

    I so admire your style of painting. What would you call it? All I know is, that I would like to paint like that also. Kitty

  19. Knowing your WHY sharpens your focus so you don’t waste time and energy fluttering from one project to another, or worse, drifting along in paralysis, unable to accomplish anything. Your WHY simplifies the decision-making process.

  20. When I’m deeply connected with my why, I’m in a place where the question no longer arises, the answer is in every cell of my being, my breath slows, the work flows and I reach a state of bliss that gives me the answer. . .because I must.

  21. gail

    Why art has to be in my life. First and foremost is color. That is WHY I paint, quilt, make stained glass and cook colorful vegetables. Also why I take walks at sunset and garden in sunlight. Color, lights and darks makes the world a vibrant wonder to look at. What a beautiful creation God has given us to live in and no matter where you travel his people and encounters with them are the best gift He has given.

  22. It makes me think of 3 year olds who are always asking “why” as a way of navigating the wide, wonderful world. Knowing “why” can give us courage and not knowing “why” can give us wonder.

  23. Elizabeth

    So interesting! I had just created my first vision board last night because I want to more deeply connect with my why! I am looking forward to setting some foundational routines in the most important areas of my life and expressing myself through various medias is definitely one of them. I so enjoy your thoughts and talent! Thanks for the chance to win <3

  24. Gayle

    My why is to feed my soul at the easel, and then to share with others. When I see someone’s reaction or hear a comment about my art, it validates why I paint. I think my paintings are happy sprinkles in this crazy world. If I am tired or overwhelmed, it is so hard to find my Why.

  25. My why for painting is : It makes me happy! (and I don’t like it that so many things come in my way and I don’t paint as much as I want, because I just want to be happy.)

  26. Debbie

    Well I seem to be in a ‘why’ funk so looking for something to help pull me from the pool of apathy back to joyfulness and realising in my heart that yes there is a why and that yes there is something important for me to do however little or big it is. Just got to take a step or two and find it. So to answer your question Dreama, there are endless possibilities but just a curtain of fog stopping the illumination. I have just retired so should be full of excitement but instead just feel a bit empty and displaced. Thanks for your lovely emails of encouragement.

  27. Kathy Kappeler

    Why am I painting all the walls in my house? My why is because I am looking forward to something fresh and new. In this old house, my father built, the antiques I have inherited will take on a new personality with light walls surrounding them. Why is a forward thought that makes you pause, think, and search for an answer, whether it is a paint color on a wall or on a canvas.

  28. Graceann

    Connecting with my “why” would bring my soul contentment. I’ve always wondered what it was God wanted me to do? Whom could I bless? What did I truly enjoy? What was my purpose? On and on it goes. My passions for art, music, travel, were put on hold throughout different seasons of my life- for which I am grateful to have experienced. But, now in my 50s, I still wonder.

  29. Elizabeth Patterson

    When I connect with my why I connect with my heart’s reasons for painting and I feel more happy. Learning to just love painting for painting and fun instead of making art is connecting with my why!


    Somedays it feels like my why got up and went! It’s those days that I plod through and usually bin my work. Having the why behind me propels me on.

  31. Cathy H.

    My why? I’m learning that painting…creating is my soul’s meditation. I need it. It brings me joy and contentment.

  32. Many times in my life connecting to the “Why” was the obvious thing to do but the very last thing one thinks of actively doing when you’re in the fog of indecision or worry. Having to think and write about my why in my morning pages seems to be a productive way to go about deciding the why for myself, when I’m doubting me. Having worked the Artist’s Way 12 week book this past summer has helped me lean on the morning pages to working things out and I suggest this book heartily!

  33. Sue Taylor

    I appreciate everything I have learned and continue to learn from you Dreama! I am convinced that I found your website several years ago because it was on the path I should take in my painting!

  34. I have focused on the “how” more than the “why” in life. As a result, I am stumped when it comes to expressing my muse, my focus, my reason for being an artist.

  35. My why… My reason… To live a life worth living, to never retire, to show the world what God can do through little ole me as I cooperate and we work together.

  36. Thank you for the inspiration this morning. It’s exactly what I need at this point in my life.
    I’m old enough to know “what”, and “where”, and “how”, but for some reason, I’ve forgotten my “WHY”!!!
    I know my big deep “whys” I just don’t seem to have a good “excuse” for what I’m doing with my art right now. Not sure if this even makes much sense!
    I put on a large art show a few months ago and after it was over, I thought to myself, “Now why did I do this again?”
    Is this normal?

  37. Debbe kavka

    Thank you for urging me along and to try smaller projects. That has made a difference. I used to feel I needed a whole afternoon to “art”. Working faster with no worry of needing to show my work to anyone is so freeing! Thank you!!

  38. Thoughts that arise when contemplating the possibilities of connecting with my why are … the beauty, color, expanse, emotion freedom and joy my Creator brings to my own life expressed through my paint brush of all of his creations as seen through MY eyes. Sorry I couldn’t seem to answer this question for your giveaway in the correct menu piece Dreama (smile)! I have been in a slump for a little while and need to get back to updating my artblog, website and painting, I think these books may help! Love your art and positively beautiful colorful bright and cheery art! Love and hugs!😘

  39. Diane Lenamon

    Would love these books.

  40. Kris

    I’m thinking of David Kessler’s new book “Finding Meaning, The Sixth Stage of Grief” after the loss of my husband in August. For me, finding meaning now is pretty much the same as deeply connecting with my ‘why’ – I’m working on it.

  41. Ingrid Huebner

    I remember a conversation at the end of workshop I took a few years back; the presenter noted that our “why” was not a vocation or a job goal, but rather something that we can continue to do even when we are lying on our deathbeds. She noted it was not a matter of defining it via goal statement, but rather, as a short and pithy phrase. One person in the class debated with her that she loved creating beauty, but that THAT was not an acceptable “why”….and I thought immediately that it WAS! If we are about art, then “creating beauty” can be SO true a “why”…..and can be done right up until we leave this earth. What a beautiful thought that has changed and informed the way I see so many things now…including my “why.”

  42. Norma thompson

    I am 77, not sure why I feel a need to tell u my age, but the question of why was on target for me today. Despite physical limitations, I need to b creative, still grow in my art n have a purpose to get up in the morning. Your post this morning really spoke to me…. Thank you ❤️❤️

  43. Cathy

    A significant thought I have when contemplating the possibilities of connecting with my “why” is that I was discouraged as a child about my artistic ability by my mother and therefore did not pursue any art exploration for many years. Finally in my 60’s I read the book Fearless Creating and with the support of friends starting taking a few art courses in watercolor and pastel, pushing through my fear and resistance. I am now taking Once Upon a Time in Provence, loving it, and continuing to build my confidence. I find your posts so encouraging and sustaining. Thank you! Cathy

  44. Jan

    Am I being selfish?

  45. When I opened a studio/gallery with a friend the why was clear and energy was bountiful. When part way through she backed out I was confused and deflated. Energy and focus became a struggle. So now I am back to asking the Question “Why”
    and your post is most appropriate. Thank you

  46. Connecting with your why is magic; it makes you come alive. Discovering the how; that is the question… A generous offer, Dreama. Thank you:)

  47. Barbara

    When I was a custom home builder I was clear about my why. I grew up wanting to build like my father. I loved creating beautiful spaces for people to live in and enjoy. Now I want to find that same why and joy in painting. I am so happy to have the opportunity to learn from Dreama! Her paintings are full of joy. Thank you Dreama.

  48. Jackie

    I feel everything must be done around the house and work, before I can work on my “Why”. This leaves little time for painting, esp. this time of year.

  49. Pat Langley

    I don’t have much time to discover “why”, I have had brain surgery that I know is a miracle, but I’m going to find my “why” soon.

  50. Danah

    I believe the “why” in my life is the result of the drive placed in my spirit by my God given inner being. Fulfillment comes to me by following the nudge or push which originates from this drive within.

  51. Linda

    PS. To my previous post. Your joyful paintings are an inspiration to me.

  52. Linda

    Thank you dear Dreama. This message comes at exactly the right time for me. I am in a bit of a funk right now. Although things are going really good, I have allowed myself to want the approval of others. Need to let go of that. To re-visit the “why” is just what I need.

  53. Mary Ezzell

    Having the conversation with myself and asking “why”…it doesn’t matter what the project or thoughts going on in my heart… Gets me to the answers I seek. If I can’t really answer the question of “why?” I’m not really ready to begin. I’ve found that I will flounder, growing restless. In the final steps, I will quit too soon or let distractions and other voices cause me to lose my commitment.

  54. Barbara

    Love your gentle push! Yes. Find that why and keep painting. Thank you!💖🚀

  55. Linda Lilley

    My life right now is so busy with things to do. I know I should choose the most important but deciding which activities to forgo has me in a worried tissy. I need to ask myself WHY I am compelled to do each activity and realize each one should have a reason for this time.

  56. An avid reader, I would love to see your favorites. You are such an encourager! My thoughts of ‘why’ mostly revolve around how to fit creative time into my other obligations. I suppose it is an issue of prioritizing.

  57. My why and all of the answers are new to me as I find my way back after a (full) life of raising eleven children. This is my renaissance and an opportunity to fulfill my lifelong dream of painting the world around me! I am truly excited to experience the magic of color on canvas that have been held inside my heart so long!

  58. My why and all of the answers are new to me as I find my way back after a (full) life of raising eleven children. This is my renaissance and an opportunity to fulfill my lifelong dream of painting the world around me! I am truly excited to experience the magic of color on canvas that have been held inside my heart so long!

  59. Linda HumphRies

    I love to paint and just started to renew my love after 21 years of not painting anything! I don’t know my WHY, but it just hit me one day that I needed to do it again! I am 77 years old now and I’m loving it!

  60. Maeva King Cook

    My why is the joy I feel while creating. It is my happy place.

Follow along

Follow along on my social accounts for behind the scenes peeks, inspiration, tips, stories & more.