Andrew Lang - The Wednesday 1-2-3

What are you putting on canvas? The Wednesday 1-2-3

Published 5 months ago • 2 min read

Happy Wednesday Reader!

As we close out 2023, I want to thank all of you so, so much for your support, replies, questions, stories, and presence. This is our 52nd edition of The Wednesday 1-2-3 in as many weeks and being able to put it together every Friday, edit it Monday, and schedule it for Wednesday has brought me an immense amount of joy this year.

If you have any favorite teachings or insights it helped spark in you this year, please hit "reply" and let me know – I would love to hear what and how it has connected!

With that – here's 1 teaching, 2 questions, and 3 resources to explore this week:

1. Teaching

In 1963, a young 20-year old Bob Ross was transferred from an Air Force base in Florida to Eielson Air Force Base just outside Fairbanks, Alaska.

(For those who didn’t know – yes, Bob Ross was in the military.)

It was here he discovered his love for painting, staring at the mountains and beautiful Alaskan scenery. Changing into his painter’s hat each day when he got off shift, Ross would practice at home and sell his landscapes (painted onto gold-panning tins) to tourists at one of the local pubs.

And it was here he felt the contradiction that would shape much of the rest of his life.

Known as “Bust ‘em up Bobby” by others in the military, Ross hated the persona he had crafted for himself. He was never comfortable with the mean, aggressive, angry person he felt he needed to be (and was celebrated for with career promotions.)

He found that painting offered him a way to escape:

I’d come home after all day of playing soldier and I’d paint a picture, and I could paint the kind of world that I wanted. It was clean, it was sparkling, shiny, beautiful, no pollution, nobody upset — everybody was happy in this world. (from “The Joy of Painting”)

Howard Thurman refers to each of us having the “sound of the genuine” within us and I think this is what Bob Ross experienced in his painting. He found a practice that gave his inner voice a way to sing and make tangible his desires and dreams for the world.

Later, long after he had retired from the military, he would share his foundational approach to painting on one of his many episodes:

You start with a vision in your heart and you put it on canvas.

The New Year holiday is one of the few cultural rituals we have marking change, renewal, and hope. With that in mind, I offer the questions below for your reflection and dreaming in the coming days.

Happy New Year everybody 🎉

2. Questions

  1. What is the “vision in your heart” you have not yet named out loud or put “on canvas?”
  2. How can you remove a bit of busyness in the new year so that you might listen for your inner voice and discern what dream or beauty it has to offer?

3. Resources

⏪ If you missed last week's email:

I shared alternatives to my least favorite question.

Sending you good vibes,


Have you enjoyed receiving The Wednesday 1-2-3 this year?

If you have someone in your life who might also benefit from these teachings, please consider sending them this free resource I've made.

In it, I’ve compiled the first 25 weeks of teachings from 2023 so it can be a useful resource for people engaging in their inner work (or helping others engage in theirs!)

Andrew Lang - The Wednesday 1-2-3

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