So begins Secret #2...
We each have a creative capacity of limitless proporations. We each have the tools given by God to be creative. The challenge is that we have forgotten how to access our creativity and unlock it's potential.
Everyone is creative. I won't have you tell me otherwise.
I am struck by the fact that the women in this book all have a profound sense of self that is cultivated by being receptive to the world around them. In short, they see that inspiration is everywhere. And since that is the subtitle to my own blog, I feel right at home with all of them, and all the other seekers I have encountered along the way.
Creativity is an energy, a force. It permeates our very beings. We are at our best when we allow that energy to bring us into harmony with our true selves. And when we are creative it is no wonder that it energizes us, drives us to create more. But finding that balance is a struggle for me and other women-who-do-too-much like me. (You know who you are.)
"Time is absolutely vital to the creative process. We have to figure out how to take it and give it to ourselves. Only when we realize the kind of attention we need to be creative, do we realize the value of our time." ~ Alice Aspen March
The Challenge in this chapter is about carving out time for yourself to tap those creative energies. Great idea in theory. Often unattainable in practice. I find that I don't have nearly enough time to just sit and be with me. With a full time job (in complete overdrive due to pressing deadlines right now), two kids (with a variety of activities that find me chauffeuring almost every day of the week), a husband (who passes like a ship in the night only to "collide" on the occasional Friday night), the pull of meaningful volunteer opportunities and my 9p to midnight passion to fuel...how do I carve that time for me out?
This is a particular struggle for me.
Do I work best at my art when it is late at night because I am a night owl and that is when my creativity is sparked? Or is it becasue that is the only time that I can explore when the world is hushed and my family are snug in bed? All this late night creating is endlessly tiring and doesn't do a thing for the bags under my eyes. Still, at this time that is what I can commit. Perhaps that might change in time.
"The doors of opportunity are opening around us every day. We have to have the courage to walk through them and the vision to see where they may lead us in order to take that step toward greatness." ~ Erin Prais-Hintz
That is a quote of my own that I am fond of reciting to others. It is something that I truly believe. I know that I wouldn't be where I am today, standing on the threshold of something great, if I didn't live that sentiment. Yet there is something holding me back. I am holding me back.
One of the first steps for me is to find a way to pull out of my day job. And while I have had a lot of encouragement to that end, and I am usually known to jump right into a decision without thinking the consequences through completely, this challenge is different. I have been considering this for several years. With the economy the way it is, is it really the right time to walk away from a well paying, stable position to face such uncertainty and risk? So I reason that I have to work a little harder and a little longer to make my dreams come true.
What do I need to let go of? What is keeping me on the threshold looking in?
I am afraid of what this would mean to my family. Lost income is but one of the worries. But I also consider what it would mean to me to have DAYLIGHT hours to create, to pursue other opportunities that are eluding me. There are things I cannot, will not do in the wee hours simply because they could be dangerous. Things like soldering, or working with hot tools. Not the thing one should be working with at midnight. There are publications I would like to pursue, but I don't have the time to fully investigate. There are classes and workshops and shows that I would attend and perhaps even exhibit at if I but had the time to prepare. It is sometimes hard to honor my inspirations when I am so weary. But with hope alive in my heart I know it will be the right time one day, and I know that I will be ready to step across that threshold and walk confidently into my destiny.
I talk confidently with my keyboard, but translating my words into actions terrifies me. Yet, I don't really think that anyone who knows me would be all that surprised if I did follow where this path is most certainly leading me. I feel that I may have wasted too much time already in my 40 years. I don't have time to waste another 40. My time is now.
"Creativity can be described as letting go of certainties."
~ Gail Sheehy
Honoring my inspirations, my creative visions, my artful passions all brings my "seedlings" to life. It is not work. It is not a chore. It is exploration and discovery and, yes, play. I make it up as I go. And there are no rules. Now if I can just believe what my true self is saying to me....
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Enjoy the day!