“Let life guide you to something that you couldn’t have planned.” – Jacqueline Claire
Life will lead you in weird, unexpected journeys. Are you up for the challenge? In this episode, Art interviews Jacquline Claire about why you shouldn’t ignore the signs that point you to your purpose. Jacqueline guides us on how to explore our purpose, get to know what we really want, and live a life tailored with our passion and intentions. Listen to this week’s enlightening podcast!
Listen to the podcast here:
02:07 Family Of Artists
09:10 From Being An Actress To Visual Arts
16:20 Acting VS Visual Art
20:24 Explore What You Want
29:13 Every Life Has A Purpose
33:23 Children’s Illustration
39:31 Combining Acting, Live Exhibits & Spiritual Storytelling
44:46 Know What You Want
53:47 3 Core Expectations
Have you figured out what you really want in life yet? Tune in as @myexpectation and @jclaireart talk about ways to completely live your purpose. #expectationtherapy #epiphanies #podcast #purpose #passion #wants Click To Tweet
30:10 “If you feel called for something, there is a reason. It will be challenging, but it will be worth it.” – Jacqueline Claire
37:21 “Once you learn how to expect, it is life changing.” – Art Costello
41:52 “Let life guide you to something that you couldn’t have planned.” – Jacqueline Claire
48:48 “Unfortunate situations can create the most amazing human beings” – Jacqueline Claire
52:16 “The more you deny that voice, the more betrayal you build up against your own self…It’s not a good direction.” – Jacqueline Claire
Jacqueline Claire was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas and spent ten precious years in Austin. From adolescence until quite recently, acting was her primary creative focus. Jacqueline’s family is very creative. Her mom is a painter – her inspiration and mentor. She is blessed to have grown up around her work and to know first hand the challenges of art as a profession. She is equally – if not more influenced by spiritual practice and the process of personal growth. Jacqeline is a member of the Baha’i Faith, which teaches the nobility of all humankind and that our purpose on this earth is to grow closer to our Creator through devotion and service.
Art Costello: Welcome Shower Epiphanies Podcast, today, I am thrilled, honored and really, really excited to have Jacqueline Claire with us. Jacqueline is an artist, a warm soul, I’d say hot soul, but probably wouldn’t be the best description. She’s warm hearted, wonderful. I’ve looked through a lot of her work, and I’m just really struck by her. I was just telling her that there’s something about her that just moved me in her bio, and I was going to read some of it to you. I may read the whole thing, but this is how it goes. This is what struck me, “Exploring how art can be all the elevating, transcending, culture-evolving things we want it to be, while also being inclusive, welcoming and participatory moves me as an artist. I know too well that shrinking experience of feeling out of the loop – that fear of not understanding something that others around seem to. Therefore, I hope to make art – and share it in such a way – that is as open and friendly as possible. On one hand, I do believe in such things as true art and good taste – I also believe in your heart, soul, and intelligence – that you know what touches you, what pleases your spirit.” That’s what moves me. That line right there, Jacqueline, just really says a lot about you and your compassion for mankind. Can you go ahead and tell us your story, how this all became your passion?
Jacqueline Claire: Absolutely. And I’m super happy to be here with you, Art. It’s such a cool opportunity to both share and reflect about life, where we are and stuff. Yeah, so I had a pretty unique upbringing. I grew up in San Antonio, and it’s interesting that San Antonio is a very subdued family oriented kind of place. I have very strong spiritual influences in my upbringing. My mom and grandparents were members of Baháʼí Faith, and that was always a big part of my life. But then we were also very unusual and very creative. Almost everyone in my family is some form of artist and some of them have been pretty successful in it. My biological grandfather was a Silver Age Science Fiction Writer. And it just through like either marriage or direct lineage, there’s like connections to The Who, and David Bowie, and The Sex Pistols, just like crazy background that I was aware that I came from. And my mom was a single mom, an artist and it was just a really diverse dynamic upbringing of all these different things that were both really beautiful and great, and really challenging. And even my faith, which has become so much a part of my life growing up, it just kind of felt like yet another thing that maybe weird to be this like faith and to know [inaudible]. And Oh, if only I could have lived in a two story house and had braces, like I just wanted to be normal so bad.
Art Costello: That’s really interesting. Let me say this, you have met somebody who is very familiar with Baháʼí Faith? I worked with a young lady in San Diego at Mercy Mental Hospital almost 50 years ago now. We had dorms, they call them dorms, anyway, it doesn’t matter what they call them but she was the secretary and she was such a warm, loving person that she and I would sit in, talk quite a bit at lunchtime and in the evenings when we had breaks and stuff. I learned a lot about Baháʼí Faith and it is a warm, loving, receptive, inclusive religion that doesn’t make judgments on people. I was very impressed with it so I am familiar with it, but let me ask you this question because you had such a, and I knew about your mom being an artist. I didn’t know about how far it went back in your lineage, but do you think because they encouraged you to think differently that that was your thought process and becoming an artist? Have you ever tried to do anything else and weren’t happy?
Jacqueline Claire: There’s so much that one question. Yes, my family encouraged me so much, both literally. My mom, when I was a toddler, she let me draw on the walls. It was like, Oh, she’s a baby, let her express herself. Like, you know, what parents do. And then also I grew up knowing it was possible. I knew my grandfather had retired from the Air Force and lived the rest of his life on his income as an author, I knew it was possible so that’s huge. Have I personally ever tried to do anything normal? I did work in an office for like six weeks as a temp once and it just about killed me, so much sitting.
Art Costello: I could imagine. I can imagine that it would be hard for somebody who is so free spirited and so creative to be stuck at a desk. I mean, writing now in front of a computer sometimes drives me nuts because I’ve gotta be out and experiencing things which leads me to, did I read that you believe that experiencing things is the best teacher?
Jacqueline Claire: I don’t know if you read that, but I certainly believe that. Absolutely.
Art Costello: Yeah, I do too. Because when you said possibilities, one of my favorite things that I write about is that I have a quote that I say on my show quite a bit, it’s about, I believe in the possibilities of everything. So when you believe in the possibilities of everything, everything becomes possible.
Jacqueline Claire: Wow.
Art Costello: It’s so hard for people who are not in the same wavelength or thought processes that we are with our creativity. But I think that experiences really are the best teacher that we have in life, even the bad experiences because they are our greatest teachers. I mean, those are the lessons that we learn not to repeat, hopefully. Some people don’t, but some people keep repeating them. But most of us learn from those processes and those challenges, and the greatest ones are the greatest teachers. Do you think that that’s true?
Jacqueline Claire: I do think it’s true. And I think it also needs to be coupled with resilience because sometimes people have the experience of putting their neck out just far enough that they get really, Oh, I don’t ever want to risk anything again. I heard recently that for people who are like trying to quit an addiction like cigarettes or something that actually committing to the process and just doing it again for like the eighth time, I’m going on the wagon again, who actually it’s somewhat counterintuitive, but you actually build stamina and resolve the more you keep saying, okay, I’m going to go back in the arena, I’m going to go back in. I’m going to go back in and then, you know, by the 11th time, maybe it’ll work.
Art Costello: Yeah. I think that there’s something to be said for resilience and the no quit attitude that I’m going to make it. Make it, tell it, take it till you make it or something. But with addictions, I guess I’m not maybe on board with that as much, because there’s so much chemically that goes on in the brain with addictions that it becomes difficult sometimes even for something as simple as cigarettes. The addiction is so great, but I certainly agree with you. You’ve got to keep trying, you never give up ever. So I mean, that’s the important thing that we do. So your mom was free spirited. She was a single mom and she let you draw on the walls. How did you progress to paper?
Jacqueline Claire: Gosh, I don’t remember that exact transition, but I went through a lot of paper. I truly did so much. And my dad was always very supportive too. He was in the picture, I didn’t live with him. But yeah, I drew a lot as a kid. I mean, it was my joy. It was my expression. It was my hobby. Interestingly though, as I grew up, as I continued to draw and my friends would ask me to draw things for them and stuff. I never saw myself doing it as a profession, and people would say: “Oh, are you going to be an artist?” And I was like: “No, I’m going to be an actress.” And so that was my path. Again, my parents were very much encouraged, I started acting professionally at age 11, and it is kind of unusual. I actually was pretty mature and old for my age. I was actually booking things for slightly older age roles when I was 11. I was very backwards to how the industry typically works. Usually it’s like a 20 year old playing 6, you know, 14 year old sometimes. So in Texas, I started pursuing acting and I was still drawing for my own expression, but it was just, I had this idea in my mind of what an artist was. I think because in some ways I’m so pragmatic and earthy in a way that I just didn’t see myself in whatever stereotypical kind of airy fairy, whatever that an artist is supposed to be, both the good and the bad. So even as an actor, I was strangely adamant that like, no, no, no, I’m not an artist, I’m an actor.
It’s like so weird in my 20’s, I moved to the LA area and got beat up a little bit there. Not that it’s cruel in any way, but like I realized, that’s where everyone goes. You make it to the top of your little local heap and then you go there and you’re like, Oh, my gosh, the standards are so different here. It was a really great experience. But interestingly it wasn’t until I started, I found a teacher that really helped me see acting as a true art. I was an artist and the more imaginative, and personal, and strange you can be in your choices in this art, the more enigmatic it is for the audience. It wasn’t until I started to see that and make that transition that I started to come back to visual art. It’s like it opened up a part of my soul that I hadn’t fully seen or embraced. And as much as I started to fall in love with the true art of acting, I also had the courage to recognize that the day to day experience of pursuing that profession, the reality of that as a profession was not feeling right. And that’s not easy because it takes so much pugnaciousness to be like, I don’t care what all these people say, I’m going to be the one to make it right. I’m going to do it and to be on a path for 19 years and then to be like, actually, you know what? This is no longer feeling right. But I think if I had never gone full tilt, boogie going for it, I wouldn’t have made those transitions I would never know. It led me to visual art and sort of that Alchemist Hero’s Journey way of coming back to where you started, but with a completely different framework and understanding. So it was actually acting that led me back to visual art.
Art Costello: Yeah. I worked in the music industry out in LA for José Feliciano for about seven years and I scouted all of the new talent for his management company. And I know how beat up you can get, but you know, it really is an experience that gives you a lot of insight and growth. I think it can really help you grow because you really see the world in a whole different perspective because it is really their perspective in Hollywood. And that actor, singer, songwriter community is so different from what we are. And you’re right, some people get stuck in it and they stay there their entire life pursuing their dream of being the next Elton John, or being the next Brad Pitt, or any actor or actress. They get stuck in it, and you see? I met people who were in their 70’s and 80’s who were still trying to pursue that same dream and they didn’t see that there was something in store for them, they just were so committed to it. They just wouldn’t look at any other other way or any other thing so I guess there’s good things and bad things about it, but how do you think it helped your creativity in your art? How do you think your perspective changed?
Jacqueline Claire: From acting or from transitioning?
Art Costello: From transitioning into acting into being an artist. Because I love your artwork, I’m really intrigued by it.
Jacqueline Claire: Thank you. Well, there’s a lot to this. I had something and it just split it away.
Art Costello: That’s to me.
Jacqueline Claire: Yeah. I was like, Oh, it’s so great.
Art Costello: We were talking about transitioning from what I call the organic or natural arts of acting and all that to the creative arts of painting and drawing.
Jacqueline Claire: Well, immediately when I returned to visual art, which started again just as a hobby doing little doodles for friends and then sort of building momentum, but every little bit felt so joyful that I kept doing it. I personally found it as a much more direct way to communicate my soul, my sense of beauty to communicate what I wanted to inspire in other people. And a great actor does all of those things in their art as well, but it’s cloaked behind whatever scripts they’re given, whatever story they’re telling and all this stuff, and it’s sort of this art of figuring out how to bring your souls through that process. And I have great respect for it. But the visual art, it was just much more direct. It was here, it is. And it also didn’t have the moral ambiguities that I felt often with acting like, Oh, do I want to tell this story? Do I want to play this character? Or do I want to act in this scene? For me, it was a sense of freedom in the visual art and a sense of directness that there’s no filter. There’s no one else’s script, it’s just here you go. And this is like my personality. In acting, there was always this element of me seeking approval or validation. Do you like this? Is this good enough? And not every actor has that, that was just my hindrance. And in visual art, I found that I felt so much more empowered. It was like, here is me, here is my work and that’s what it is. I hope you like it, but take it or leave it. Like, this is me.
Art Costello: As little as I know about you, that makes perfect sense to me. Because when you’re an actor, you’re controlled by the director, by the script, by the parameters of a lot of different things. But when you’re an artist, you’re not, you can draw anything you want. And because I think you’ve been raised and developed as a free soul, that’s where your happy spot is. That’s where you really shine and perform your happiest point. I think that that’s critical for everyone out there. You have to find what makes you happy, where your happy spot is, and then you have to pursue it. Even for people who say, well, my happy spot is riding horses. Well, if you’re happy spot is riding horses, why are you sitting in an office from eight to five going home unhappy because you’re dreaming about horses instead of going out and doing it. You’ll love this, my granddaughter, Tori, I have four granddaughters, but my granddaughter Tori, I am actually –. Actually now that I think about this, all four of my granddaughters are very artistic, but my granddaughter Tori is on my mind right now because when you said that at 11 got attacked, and she’s 11, and she’s actually does artwork for her school, and then she acts also, and I love both the parts of her that she does that. I’m encouraging her with that. What encouragement would you give to any little girl or boy that’s out there, this 11 years old that’s really, I don’t want to say struggling with school because my granddaughters do great in school, but they’re struggling with the idea of, I can’t make a living as an artist. I can’t make a living as an actress. What advice would you give to pursue your dream and your happiness?
Jacqueline Claire: That’s awfully young to be worried about making a living, but I don’t doubt that that pressure is already seated and on them. Yeah.
Art Costello: Well, I think they hear it at school. I think they hear other kids say, Oh, you can’t make it as an artist. That’s really hard because they’ve heard their parents say it, you know? And if the expectations others dictate what you do, then you will never be happy. You have to live to what your core expectations are in your heart and soul. And that’s what I do with people, I get them to learn what their core expectations are. Their wants, needs, and desires are, and then go for it because you’ll never be happy unless you do that.
Jacqueline Claire: Yes.
Art Costello: I was trying to fish out of here.
Jacqueline Claire: Yes. I think what you said, absolutely. And I think I would like if it was my child or I was working with this child, I would really break it down and figure out what it is about this path that they’re attracted to and that brings them joy. Because that also opens up more possibilities and more understanding of their why to do it, which is what will sustain them, and also seeing if there are additional ways that they can affect the world in the way they’re moved to or find that joy. Just because if your only picture is, I want to be Natalie Portman, and I want to win an Oscar that’s what I’m going to do. Absolutely, the next generation is going to need a Natalie Portman and people to win Oscars. This is attainable. This absolutely can happen. But what is it about that? Why do you want to do that? Is it because you want to finally feel better than your big sister? Or is it because you want somebody to watch your movies and feel like they’re not alone in this world and then it’s like, wow, that’s really interesting, let’s go deeper into that. What are all the ways you can help people in the world to feel connected and not alone? Just because I think that it’s really good to focus on what you want once you have a lot of clarity, but sometimes we jump to what that one thing is because it’s all we’ve ever been exposed to, you know, someone on TV. So I’d like to break it down a little bit. It’s the same conversation I would have with my 11 year old was like dead set on marrying a certain pop star. I’d be like: “Okay, that’s possible. But let’s talk about it, what is it about this person?” And then we might expand our possibilities like, Oh, so you want someone humorous, and creative, and passionate about what they do in life. We’re not just talking about Justin Bieber, we’re talking about many people in the world just to give them tools to be able to discern the world around them and not have blinders on before it’s time to have blinders on.
Art Costello: What my thoughts are on it is that once you explore your heart and know what it is you want, and it’s hard when you’re 11 years old because you really don’t know what you want. You haven’t had enough experiences, but as you grow and you get older, once you learn to be able to communicate with your inner self and you learn that that is your truth and that is who you are, you start to develop that and look at the possibilities that it brings. But so many people get waylaid because they start living to other people’s expectations and not to their own. And I think that one of the things about us creatives is that we, I think there’s something about us that is in touch with our hearts. Let me tell you how I came to this conclusion. My brother was a gifted artist. He loved drawing animals, particularly horses because he had a passion for horses. He wanted to be a farmer. He wanted to be a farmer and he pursued farming. He’s 10 years older than I am, he passed away last year or two years ago. But anyway, he pursued farming instead of pursuing his artwork. And I always said to him, you have always been a gifted talent. People who saw his drawings and sketches, my dad was very much artistic so I guess he got it from my dad. But he was very, very gifted and a great artist, but he didn’t pursue it. He got so disillusioned as a farmer. He got involved in drugs, and he ended up selling off his farm from a thousand acres down to 10 acres, all blown up his nose. To the day he died, we feel that he wasn’t living to his passion, to his expectation of being a great artist. And that in his adult years, it really affected him when he could have turned around and said: “Okay, I’m going to be a farmer that does art.”
Jacqueline Claire: Have been so fascinating, people would’ve loved that. Did he ever give you an answer why he wasn’t pursuing the art?
Art Costello: No, he couldn’t ever give me any good answer. He had excuses, he was too busy for this, too busy for that, he was girl crazy. From the time he was a teenager, he was girl crazy and he always chased girls, but he was so talented. I can remember some of the artwork he has, I hope his sons have kept it because some of them were the pictures of horses that he drew that were just incredible. My dad was a pen and ink guy and he was a printer by trade. But what he did is he went back after he retired and started painting all of the places that he had ever lived, been and everything. And we’ll get together someday. I’ll show you some of his pen and art. I was in Laguna Beach one time and showed it to an art gallery there, and they said: “That detail is incredible. Can we display?” Because he gave me a stack. He gave each one of the kids a stack of his pen and inks before he died, and just incredible. I mean, it’s just really talented. I took the other route writing. I actually took the route of people. I love people. I always felt bad for my brother that he didn’t live his passion.
Jacqueline Claire: Yeah. That is sad. It happens a lot.
Art Costello: I think it does. I really do, because people get sidetracked. And other people when I was talking about my granddaughter at school, even when they go to school and teachers say: “Well, you really need to get another. Have something better than that because you can’t make it as an artist, only Van Gogh, and all these artists, Andy Warhol, and all those in recent times have made it. There are so few that are made.” But there are a lot of artists that do make a living.
Jacqueline Claire: And I think it kinda comes down to what is the purpose of being alive? Because pursuing a path as an artist, it might be very challenging, absolutely. But is it worth it? Probably. If that’s what you’re called to do, absolutely. So I think the conversation goes a lot deeper into like, well, what’s the point of even being alive and you said it earlier about, if you can serve one person and hopefully a lot more, of course. But I mean, if you can genuinely inspire or help someone, and if you feel called to write or make art, I’m certain that that calling is in you for a reason. Nurses, and school teachers, and stuff that help people, which they absolutely do, like all due respect. But if you feel called for something, there is a reason and it will be challenging, but it will be worth it.“If you feel called for something, there is a reason. It will be challenging, but it will be worth it.” - Jacqueline Claire Click To Tweet
Art Costello: I’m of the belief that, I had this conversation the other day, even the guy that goes by and picks up the trash on our block has the capability of helping somebody or serving others. Maybe not so much out of his truck, but the way he performs his job on his route. Because I can tell you, when the trash guys come down our street, I can tell you which one cares about their jobs and no. Because the ones that don’t, they’re flipping the cans all over, there’s trash up and down our street, I’ve got to go pick it all up, put it back in the trash can and they’ll get it next week. We have another guy that comes by, he’s very, very careful about every single trash can he picks up. And I was thinking that that man cares about his job, he cares about his community. Where actually the other guys, it’s just a job, I can’t wait to get off, he can’t wait to get off of his route and he just goes through it. So it comes back to when we have a passion for something, we tend to do it to the best of our ability and we become engaged in it instead of just doing it. And when you care about your artwork and you care about people, you become engaged in it and you become involved. And then there are four other people who see that and become involved. It’s how we teach by example. That’s the example that we live when we go out every single day and we’re living life with passion, other people see it. When you’re out around town, do people ever say you’re always so happy and you’ve always got a smile on your face and all that?
Jacqueline Claire: Yeah, they do. And people watch me online and stuff, comment on my joy and stuff. Yeah.
Art Costello: See? When you care and when you’re passionate about what you’re doing, it really, really inspires not only yourself, but others. Other people become inspired and then hopefully they’ll start doing what they’re meant to do in life. Got another question for you. I saw that you have done children’s illustrations. Do you enjoy it?
Jacqueline Claire: I do, I love it. It’s a different process. When I paint, I don’t usually have any vision or conception of where I’m going exactly. It’s not at all woo-woo, it’s very practical and lumbering, but it’s more like an unfolding dream literally. I let the layers of the painting and the images that start to emerge and the ideas sort of guide me down this path. And so the painting process for me is probably a lot the way it is for the viewer. Even when I go on this journey with the illustration, I usually have a much clearer idea. It’s more like propaganda, but I don’t mean that in a bad way, but rather that I’m clear about the message I am sending. And I usually get a very pristine, clear image of what I want to draw and do it. And I find in particular when I am in any period of emotional turmoil, when I have a heart wound with any kind of whatever, I find that the children’s illustration is so nurturing to my own spirit. It’s really interesting if I need a mood boost, that’s where I go. I think it’s some combination of being nurturing to myself, and also it’s very childlike and playful, and it’s also very like motherly and nurturing to create these children’s illustrations. And I find that children, they’re so connected to their joy, to their talent, to their gods spark, you know? And they’re so like, hello world. As we socialize and mature, that part of us can get a little camera shy and it kind of goes into hiding. And as adults, a lot of us, we have to redefine that. And my intention with the illustration is if I can help little children recognize that spark that they already [inaudible] and really carry that with them through adolescents so they don’t have to like refined it in therapy as adults. What if they could grow up with that awareness and let it grow as they mature..
Art Costello: Did you watch Mr. Rogers when you were young?
Jacqueline Claire: Of course.
Art Costello: I just did a podcast with Jonathan Masiulionis who is from Buffalo, New York. And he owns a company called Empowered Publicity. What they do is he mentors and does publicity for children’s authors. So I do a lot of work with some of his clients, but he is such a Mr. Rogers fan. And Mr. Rogers, his message, when I was young, back in the 50’s, we didn’t have television, we couldn’t get reception so I never watched television until I went in the Marine Corps in 1965. Even then, I didn’t have much time to watch TV, but I’d be in the squad bay and we’d see it, I’d walk through and see it, but I’ve never been, I’ve always been a reader. So I’ve always read more, but I’ve had this dream about writing a book for children about expectations because I believe that once you learn how to expect, if it’s life changing, and I don’t know how much you know about my life story, but you can go back and look at it. But for me, when I was young, I was kind of abandoned in a different kind of way. I had to raise myself and my sister, and I learned because of the situation I was in to not to rely on the expectations of others or not to rely on them over helping me. I had to do everything myself so expectations became really big to me. But through the grace of God, I learned how to manage my expectations and created a really pretty incredible life that I’ve lived because I’ve always done everything I’ve wanted. I’ve never not done anything that I didn’t want to do. And it’s part of believing in the possibility of everything. I mean, from playing semi-pro baseball to working in the entertainment industry, working with some of the biggest artists in the world in Las Vegas. Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Don Rickles, people like that, that just really had a pronounced effect on me. But I’ve always done everything I wanted because I’ve expected everything to always turn out okay, everything’s going to be okay. Not saying that there aren’t trials and tribulations, there are. But in the end, everything works out the way that God has planned for us. And I want to teach that to children. So when I write it, I’ll have you illustrate it.“Once you learn how to expect, it is life changing.” - Art Costello Click To Tweet
Jacqueline Claire: That sounds great. Sounds great.
Art Costello: Because I think that, once kids learn that they don’t get everything that they always wanted, but you can’t stop working for it, you can’t stop going for it, that’s what we’ve talked about today. That’s what your life is about. It’s about a child learning all these different things from the people around you, finding again, after acting that it was your passion and now making a living, selling your artwork. It’s a fantastic story. It’s stories that dreams are made of.
Jacqueline Claire: Right. And now, I also combine my acting background with my live exhibits and spiritual storytelling. I’m a disruptor, I’m coordinating with some folks who put on shows in DC and New York and they’re like, well, we usually have musicians, we usually have concerts. It’s so interesting because my live events, I had this show, Awaken to Your Life as a Spiritual Journey, and it has elements of a spiritual workshop or something, but it’s a lot more like a visual artist version of a concert. Like I’m this front woman and I share my stories about these seven paintings, and we actually use the paintings to go deeper into these explorations about these spiritual ups and downs of life, and it’s very audience centered. I have different ways that the audiences are sparked and encouraged to participate and talk and share their thoughts. And it’s been really rewarding for me to be able to create these spaces, to take people on this journey and then hear their insights, and what they share, what they have to say. But it’s really unique. Like I said, it’s very sort of disrupting in a good way, being a visual artist that can also work an audience and tell a story and hold the stage, so to speak. And it’s a combination of my background and my experience in acting preparing me for this, but I love it co’z I’m just being me and sharing what matters to me instead of playing a character. And then the visual art helps us go deeper into these very expansive concepts. And if I hadn’t kept following those breadcrumbs or following that call in my heart to pursue acting, no, I want to leave LA and that life can be so much more interesting, and our offerings can be so much more tailored and unique, then we could just like map out on paper, like go for those goals and then let life guide you to something that you couldn’t have planned.“Let life guide you to something that you couldn't have planned.” - Jacqueline Claire Click To Tweet
Art Costello: I’m just loving this because we’re kindred spirits, because that’s what I believe. I believe that we’re presented and were gifted with all these situations, and how we learn them, and then how we share them makes such a difference in people’s lives. And that’s really, really cool that you’re able to do that. I love that term spiritual storytelling, that is so cool.
Jacqueline Claire: I have to tell you, so I used to just say storytelling and then people kind of imagine like children at the library, but then I was like, I didn’t want to say adult storytelling because that’s a totally different meaning, so like spiritual storytelling.
Art Costello: Adult storytelling, that could really, you probably have a huge ground.
Jacqueline Claire: Totally, they’d be very disappointed.
Art Costello: Teach them how to manage your expectations. What a beautiful soul you have. Very few people live like you and I do. Matter of fact, I’ve interviewed hundreds of people on the show. I’m proud to say you’re the only one who really, really has been so kindred to my spirit of how to live life.
Jacqueline Claire: Wow. Wow.
Art Costello: Yeah. I’m sitting here trying to figure out what it is in our background, because when I was growing up, I had to figure out everything on my own. It always has amazed me how I did it? How did I figure it out? Because I was subjected to some pretty abusive teachers at school who didn’t like my family, just a lot of different things. I think it affected my brother and sister differently. They were totally different from me. They let it affect them. I found a way to get around it with having this core strength and belief that what I felt mattered more than what anyone else said, where they felt, what other people said dictated how their course of life was going to go. I mean, we hear about teachers in school telling the class, Oh, you’re a bunch of dummies. That’s the worst thing you could ever tell anybody, it’s not the worst thing, but for a teacher to say that is, to call somebody out or to tell a class they’re dumb, it’s just ridiculous but it happens. Those teachers shouldn’t be teaching, but that’s a whole nother show we could go on. But I wonder what it is, do you have any thoughts on it? Because you grew up in a home where you were encouraged and you were nurtured to think differently to actually pursue what you wanted to. Writing on the walls, that’s great. Think about it, it’s just a wall, it can be painted over if you’re really worried about the wall, but a lot of people would become, a lot of parents would become so unglued, they would discipline the child instead of using it as a tool of encouragement. How much do you think that has affected the rest of your life?
Jacqueline Claire: I think it was huge. I look back at some of my choices as a very young person. I graduated high school early, about a year and a half early, just because I was like, why do it in four years if I can do it in two and a half? And I chose not to go to university because I was very clear that I wanted to pursue acting and I knew I didn’t need a degree. It was very hard because I lived in a college town and everyone, you know, the first question is always, Oh, are you in school? Are you going to, you know, adults get very worried, but they — young people who’re not in school. I really had to stand up for my choices, big time. It was very much against the grain. Now there’s a little bit more openness and discussion about whether university is the right route for someone, but at that time it was without question. And I thought it was kinda weird because on the one hand, we were very much pressured to go to university to get a good job kind of thing. But then also people always talked about university as a party scene and you’ll put on 15 pounds and find yourself. I had this sort of grit at a very young age where I was like, no, no, no, I know what I want and I’m not looking to get a good job. I want to pursue this career or this passion, and I don’t need to go to college to find myself. I already know who I am. I was very tough at this deep level that I even look back now and I’m like, dang, who was that girl? Part of it might just be my genetic, my DNA, my makeup, but I do think I have to give credit to my upbringing that my parents encouraged, that kind of will and stamina, really.
Art Costello: I think that that’s good. I was thinking in my case, I had no one. My parents had no expectations, they had no direction, they didn’t give any direction. Didn’t tell you, you needed to go to college. Didn’t tell you, you need to go to work. Pretty much didn’t communicate on that level. It was a lot worse because my parents never taught about personal hygiene. I didn’t know what to be until I was 16 years old. And then I asked the girl at school, the cutest girl in school to go to the prom with me or to go to dance with me and she said: “I couldn’t go with you because you stink.” Because I didn’t know you had to wear deodorant or anything like that. So my best friend’s mom went and bought my first tube of deodorant. So when I say I literally had to figure it out myself, I literally had to figure out myself. But again, it created a strength in me to overcome anything. I know that I can do anything I put my mind to. And then with the Marine Corps, you learned physically that you can do anything in the Marine Corps. Mental, I can do anything. And then the physical, I can do anything. No one could ever stop me from doing what I wanted to do. I knew that I had all the tools to live the life that I wanted to live.
Jacqueline Claire: Wow, that’s such an amazing story. Your story of how challenges and unfortunate situations can just create the most amazing human beings who aren’t afraid of petty things, who are afraid of things like, Oh, well what will they say? The things that hold people back.“Unfortunate situations can create the most amazing human beings” - Jacqueline Claire Click To Tweet
Art Costello: It always amazes me that I was able to do that, but I see that in YouTube. I imagine for you being such a free spirit at a young age and I imagine teachers were challenged by you too, because you know? Free thinkers are not what the society wants.
Jacqueline Claire: Yeah. It’s not designed for it. Yeah.
Art Costello: What they want are people to fit into the mold that society has for them. Those of us who lived outside of it are really considered the norm. I think it’s getting better about it, but I always talk about the expectations of society, the expectations of church, of government, all of these things are all about control. It is about controlling the population, advertisers from buying cars, to buying food. The advertisers all want us to act in a certain way. And I write a lot about the expectations that all of that has upon us, and then we fit into this mold that they want, and then we don’t do what we were born to do.
Jacqueline Claire: Right. I’m thinking about your question and what it is we might have in common. Again, I think you’ve earned your stripes much more than I have. But maybe it has something to do, and I don’t know what it’s like for other people. We should invite other people who have maybe lived more mainstream lives to join in the conversation and see what it’s like for them. I think there’s some inner, you talked about being in touch with your heart, and what’s your joy, and what you’re called to do, this inner resonance of truth within your own heart. And for me, I haven’t always known what step to take, but I knew when something didn’t feel right or did feel right. I just can’t go against that feeling. And I’m sorry, not, sorry for who it might inconvenience or whatever, it can lead me down a scary path sometimes like, Oh, I didn’t realize I’d be walking along the edge of a cliff. Like hypothetically or symbolically, but like I have to follow that call of truth and I can’t do something that doesn’t feel right. So maybe that’s something we have in common.
Art Costello: That is one thing that I preach, ‘when your gut tells you that something isn’t right? Don’t do it.’ Too many people override their gut reaction. I think it’s part of being in tune with yourself, listening to your heart, your gut, your soul, your spirit, your cerebral brain, you’ve got to listen and be in touch with who you are, because if you don’t? You’re going to be susceptible to the expectations of everybody else.
Jacqueline Claire: Yeah. And the more you deny that voice, the more betrayal you build up against your own self, it’s just not a good direction.“The more you deny that voice, the more betrayal you build up against your own self…It's not a good direction.” - Jacqueline Claire Click To Tweet
Art Costello: It draws you down because you start questioning yourself. You don’t validate yourself, you don’t honor yourself, you lose respect for yourself. When you give yourself away like that, you lose respect for who you are, for your humanity, you know? And you can’t do that, it’s detrimental to your happiness. It’s detrimental to your health because your happiness affects your health, it affects every part of your being.
Jacqueline Claire: Yes. And I wonder if, for example, those teachers, the unfortunate ones not the wonderful ones, the ones you mentioned calling a class dummies, how far perhaps are they from calling their path? Is that why they are in that state of mind where they would say something so damaging and cruel to a room full of children, like it has residual danger and damages when we’re not truthful. As you said, when we lose respect for ourselves, it doesn’t just affect us, it affects others and generations of others.
Art Costello: Absolutely. It’s just amazing what respect and honoring who you are and honoring your, what I call core expectations. I’m going to put you on the spot and I’ve never done this before. Can you tell me what your three core expectations are? I’ll give you a time to think about it.
Jacqueline Claire: Can you tell me what yours are? Your three core. You want to hear my first?
Art Costello: No, I don’t. I’ll tell you what mine are. Love is number one. Compassion is number two. Number three is integrity.
Jacqueline Claire: Nice. I would say that mine is truth, courage and joy.
Art Costello: Ah, beautiful. Says a lot about you. I don’t normally ask my guest that question, but I was just really interested because I wanted to see how you would answer it, and you answered it without having to really put a lot of thought. I know I’ve asked this question in group settings when I’m working with some groups and stuff and some people stammer on it so long that they cannot tell you what their core expectations are. You took about 30 seconds, really 35 seconds to tell me, which is really quick. So that’s a good thing because I think that you’re in tune to who you are. And I think that truth, courage and joy are really great qualities. Those are great things to have really a lot to think about it.
Jacqueline Claire: Yes. And that’s what I hope to spark, and inspire, increase in other people, through people who hear this conversations, through people who come to my shows, or my artwork, or look at my artwork, help ignite and increase their own connection to truth, courage and joy.
Art Costello: Wow. What a way to end the show.
Jacqueline Claire: There we go.
Art Costello: What a way. In the next few minutes, can you tell the audience where they can get a hold of you, what you’ve got coming up and where we can see your spiritual story telling.
Jacqueline Claire: Yes, absolutely. Okay. So I am Jacqueline Claire, everything’s spelled traditionally like Jacqueline Kennedy and like Claire’s Boutique. My website is Jacqueline Claire Art. My Facebook is Jacqueline Claire Art. My Instagram is Jacqueline Claire Art. My Patreon is Jacqueline Claire Art. So all of those platforms are ways that you can find me. I have an email project coming up in March, which was originally designed for people who are observing Baháʼí Fast, it’s a 19 day daylight fast, but it’s daily art and devotional emails. I found even people who aren’t Baháʼí get a lot out of it so maybe I can provide you with the link to sign up for that if people want to join. I do have a tour, I don’t have the date set, but I have tours of my interactive art and storytelling show for Arizona and California, late spring or summer, it’s coming. So if you follow on those social media platforms, you will know when it’s coming near you. New York and DC also in late spring, probably. But those social media places are the best way to follow when the dates are announced. And I have art exhibits coming up and stuff like that.
Art Costello: That’s great to know that if we follow your website, sign up for your email list that we’ll be in the loop. I’d already signed up for it.
Jacqueline Claire: Cool, cool. That’s it.
Art Costello: I signed up before we ever started this conversation. It’s been a real honor and a pleasure having you on the show, as I want to do this again. I think we have a lot in common that we could talk about, and I really do look forward to collaborating with you in some way. I want my audience to really, really get in touch with Jacqueline and explore her art and all that she has to offer. She’s a fantastic human being. And as I said before, I love her and it just would mean a lot if you all would just really support her as I am going to do.
Jacqueline Claire: Oh, thank you for that announcement. And also I do have a gift for your listeners. I do have a promo code on my website, which is expectations, plural, ten, one zero, expectations10 for 10% off on my website, expectations10, jacquelineclaireart.com.
Art Costello: Well, that’s cool. Have there always been expectations?
Jacqueline Claire: No, I made it for you guys.
Art Costello: Oh, okay. That’s great. So yeah, with that being said, I’m gonna sign off everybody and you know where you can get a hold of me, art@expectationtherapy, and my website expectationtherapy.com. I’m going to let Heather White take us out of here and we’ll call it another episode down and ready to go.
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