It’s the little things

sunny table viewThe weather turned warm, so we decided to go to one of our favorite places for Fish Taco Tuesday. It is a popular place, with outdoor seating, and when we got there, it was packed, and we had to wait. We were next in line, and I wanted a sunny table right by the water, and said so, to no one in particular. Next thing I know, a couple got up from the very table I coveted, and we were escorted to it.

Say what you want! You just might get it!

Freedom from fear

Recovering a Sense of Identity – Part Two

Everything has a purpose. Even if you have spent part of your life dealing with a Crazymaker. Take it from me!

Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose. — Elisabeth Kubler Ross

This post is a continuation of commentary springing from my reading of the second chapter of The Artist’s Way. If any of this is resonating with you, I highly recommend that you get this book. Even though it is supposed to be a 12 week course, life happens and if it takes 12 years that is ok.

In addition to really emphasizing the need to get away from toxic people, the author reminds us that there is a higher guidance available to us in moving through our fear and accessing our creativity. We tend to think that it is arrogant to speak of ourselves as creative artists, but the truth is that it is arrogance to refuse to acknowledge it. Whew!

To know what you prefer instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive. — Robert Louis Stevenson

***********************************************************************

Every time you don’t follow your inner guidance, you feel a loss of energy, loss of power, a sense of spiritual deadness. –Shakti Gawain

It is one thing to point the finger at others as the barrier to our recovery, but an even greater enemy comes from within, Ms Cameron goes on to say, and that enemy is skepticism!  It doesn’t matter what our belief system is — we have this tendency to doubt the idea of creator and creativity. But, I am learning,  the thing to do is just keep letting it flow in spite of doubt. The author recommends morning pages – freely writing about 3 pages, longhand, every morning. I have been doing this fairly consistently, and I think it is making a difference, somehow, even in the midst of a very busy life.. The “artist’s date” has been a little more elusive – it is doing something by myself, with “my artist.” So far, I’ve taken myself shopping a couple of times and spent a little time painting, but haven’t really dedicated myself to doing anything, although I think I’m getting better at just being with myself, getting in touch with the silence within, primarily through meditation. But I digress.

We need to look for unexpected opportunities, or coincidences, or as Deepak Chopra says, synchronicity. We need to set aside our skepticism, take risks, and nudge open that door through which we can see dazzling light. In that light are lots of ideas that seem impossible, so we stick with the comfortableness of the dark room we are in. It takes recognizing that wall of fear and continuing to push the door open and walk into the light of creativity.

Develop interest in life as you see it; in people, things, literature, music –the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures,beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself. — Henry Miller

Long ago, before the internet and email and social media, people stayed in touch by writing letters about their lives and sending them to each other. Often those letters were about small details of their day, or observations about what flowers were blooming or the change in the weather. This paying attention to detail about the now is a way to connect to the universe and expand happiness and creativity. The reward for attention is always healing. I have journaled on and off through the years, and much of what I have written about is pain. The author of Artists Way also notes that she has written about pain, and that is what it took to get her to pay attention to the present moment. Think about it. The past may be too painful to want to remember, and the future could be too terrifying to contemplate, so focusing on the right now is the safe place to be. Right now, I’m breathing, and in the exact now, I am always all right.

What is blocking you? and what are you going to do about it?

Crazy feelings!

Recovering a Sense of Identity – Part One

All sanity depends on this: that it should be a delight to feel heat strike the skin, a delight to stand upright, knowing the bones are moving easily under the flesh. — Doris Lessing

I started this blog after reading chapter one of The Artist’s Way. After almost 2 months, I opened the book again. I have borrowed the title of Week 2 here. I got pretty excited as I read that we must  “Go Sane” to recover and begin to trust our creativity again, and we might look crazy and erratic in the process. What  a relief! This endeavor has certainly been erratic!  The first post was truly inspired, and I wanted to keep writing, but inspiration is not always there when I want it! But I decided that the most important thing to do is write, for myself first, and if others can gain something, whether it be a laugh, encouragement, or a sense of community, that’s great, and if no one reads it, its ok, I have still expressed myself.

Children are so naturally creative and expressive. What happens to us that often we lose that, or squash it to the point that any creative endeavors are met with self-doubt?. I was creative all my life, others saw it and acknowledged it, but I didn’t believe it. Now – I wish I had more time to write, to paint, to just color with pretty colored pencils, even to do needlepoint again. But for now, I will do what I can, and reading this book and writing is part of my journey to unknown delights.

***********************************************************************

Snipers are people who undermine your efforts to break unhealthy relationship patterns. – Jody Hayes

A major part of this chapter is devoted to “poisonous playmates”, otherwise known as people who are toxic, who will capsize the artist’s growth. Another name for some of these types is “crazymakers.”What a great word for people who create so much drama around themselves that they bring everyone else to a point of craziness.

These are the people who are charismatic, charming, often highly creative themselves, but they become destructive to those around them because they have to be the center of attention and basically suck the energy out of anyone near them. Here are some things she said Crazymakers do, and I can say this is absolutely true, based on being married to one for way too long:

  • break deals and destroy schedules ( yours)
  • expect special treatment
  • discount your reality
  • spend your time and money
  • triangulate those they deal with
  • are expert blamers
  • create dramas – but seldom where they belong
  • hate schedules – except their own
  • hate order – chaos serves their purposes
  • deny that they are crazymakers

But then – if crazymakers are that destructive, what are we doing involved with them?  The answer, as surprising as it seems, is that we are that crazy ourselves and that self – destructive.

Since I have been away from that situation in my personal life, I can see that this is true. Hard to admit, but true. Somehow, dealing with those circumstances is less frightening than the challenge of a creative life of our own. Fear of ourselves can be a strong enemy.

So – the first step is to admit the truth of your situation – that this crazy person is actually a block you chose yourself, to deter you from the path of creativity and true happiness. A book that helped me make the changes that  led to personal freedom and eventually a pursuit of creativity is Discovering Choices. Another good one is Opening our Hearts, Transforming our Losses. Those two books, as well as attending Al-anon meetings for a while, are what got me to see that I could make a change and have a better life.