When Meryl Streep took the stage at the Golden Globes last night, we all knew she'd say something great (I mean, come on, it's Meryl).
From her role in the musically charged “Mamma Mia!” (2008) to every editor's guilty pleasure, “The Devil Wears Prada” (2006), Streep is the epitome of a cinematic idol.
But last night was one of her most memorable performances to date.
The Hollywood Foreign Press granted Streep the Cecil B. DeMille Award, and in her acceptance speech, she shed light on the fact that artists are diverse (and beautifully at that).
She reminded us that it is our duty — artist or not — to protect what is good in this world and, most importantly, what is true.
Streep took a jab (or a sucker punch, really) at Trump, calling him out for the disrespect and crudeness he so publicly portrays. Because when the “person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country” uses slander openly, “it filters down into everybody's life.”
But what was perhaps the most striking part of her speech came at the very end.
Before exiting, Streep quoted the late Carrie Fisher, saying “take your broken heart, make it into art.”
If your jaw wasn't already by your ankles, this probably did the trick.
With help from the beloved Princess Leia, Streep so elegantly summed up what actors, writers, creators of all kinds, base their life's work on: We use our words, our bodies, our minds to make something — well — good.
We don't tame our emotions, we embrace them and all their pain because if we don't benefit from what we create, maybe someone out there will.
So when you feel like your suffering might break you, here are four scenarios where you can use your own broken heart to create art:
As corny as it may sound, diving into your imagination after a break up will actually help you heal. Lose yourself in your work. Hell — even create characters based on your SO. Plan some crazy plot twist where their lives are ruined. (I mean, whatever works, right?)
Channel your anger or sadness into a painting, a song, or spoken word.
Create until your fingers grow stiff, your eyes wired, your heart a little less heavy.
Sometimes the best way to move on is to delve deep into your sadness and just let your art take over.
Dealing with the death of a loved one can destroy us. It's not easy to come to terms with that kind of loss.
But putting your grief into words, expressing your heartbreak, will only help you heal that much faster. It'll help you build up the armor to face the world without that lost loved one in it.
Because you'll know that even if you feel indescribable pain, you're still capable of making something out of that pain. And that in itself is moving forward.
Denied from your top grad school pick? Go write it out. Told you're not qualified for your dream job? Channel that frustration and disappointment into a new project.
Sometimes when life doesn't work out like we thought it would, creating something when we feel the most lost will actually put us back on track (whether it be the same path we were on before, or a different one all together).
4. Wide-Scale Destruction
The news is filled with reports of world-wide despair every day — sadly, there's no escaping it. When one part of the state, country, world is damaged, we feel it too.
We grieve and suffer with the victims of mass shooting, war, natural disasters.
If you're feeling helpless, turn to your writing, your music, your art. Create something that will give others hope. Create so that those victims and their families know people are listening. That we're here.
Meryl Streep's honest words left their mark on our hearts last night. It was intentional and it was fierce — and we love her for it.
To the artists in the world, it's on us.
Afraid no one will listen when you've channeled your energy into creating something great? There really is always someone who can benefit from a little inspiration.
And if all else fails, it'll help you cope with your own despair. It'll do you good.
So when your life seems like it's falling apart, art — whatever form it may take — will help your heart find its rhythm again.