"God must become an activity in our consciousness."
JOEL S. GOLDSMITH
Many people are born leaders but never receive the opportunity or recognition for work done. Many are not even allowed the freedom to be authentic. And to be honest, you still lack that WOW aspect that will propel you to higher heights. Especially into your craft of choice. The reason you stumbled on my website or joined my community on Facebook.
There are many careers that allow you the freedom of creativity. Yet you feel stuck and not appreciated. Whatever the case, maybe you are here, searching for that WOW aspect. For many, it is hard to define for others the most obvious thing. But for you it is lingering in the background and you are unsure how to tap into it without some guidance or even for confirmation of your feelings.
We are all created in the image of God, therefore we can create. Our interests and passions make this clear when the topic comes up, you light up. In return, you will receive the peace you crave.
Maybe you have done nothing before according to what you understand is creativity and have this intense desire to create, but never find the outlet or time to do so. It remains on your dream board/to-do-list/new year's resolution. If that is you, then you are in the right place.
Even when I was a homemaker for nineteen years and did many things in that period, I was unsatisfied. To pass the time I baked, cooked, canned, painted, studies the bible, did gardening, meditated, connected with people through church, was a taxi-mum, helped with schoolwork, paid the bills—in short: a jack-of-all-trades but still I felt I missed out. The closest I came to being satisfied with my life was when I home-schooled my children. My creativity was peaked, my curiosity stimulated and my yearning to do more than just housework satisfied. During that five-year period, I could be myself, relax and enjoy the path before me. With the freedom of imparting into them while I learned. I became self-disciplined in the tasks laid upon me. Took my role as mother and teacher seriously and fully committed to all three. Once my children moved on, I became stuck with the normal everyday life of being a homemaker, again. There were no challenges or opportunities for creativity.
The following year we began a business which pleased my adventurous spirit. I learned about computers, cell phones and the basic understanding of electronics. It had felt as if a new world had opened, as I added new skills to my curriculum vitae. I was proud of my accomplishments and it gave me a sense of freedom. Six years later it all collapsed, and I was back at square one.
The question always unanswered. Why do I constantly feel I am missing something?
After a time of searching, sometimes in the wrong places, I met up with a previous mentor and friend in early 2020, who encouraged me to connect with God once more. During that same time period, I discovered The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, and it finally fitted together as a gigantic puzzle. I was getting somewhere. Connecting with my spiritual side, which was dormant for many years, I understood that the two walk together. Through the morning pages, my inner child was re-introduced to me, which revealed my creative path.
During a Life Coaching course, I discovered some core beliefs that kept me blocked. Once it became unblocked, I became receptive to creativity. Once I faced theses blocks small synchronicities happened which opened me for bolder steps.
The reason it blocks you is that you believe in half-truths which cause you to put off till next year. Till we shift it to the back. We drown the creative voice and tell it to be still.
Once we submit to the Source, it reveals the power of creativity. I call it Source because I don't just want to reach Christian believers, but all people. We all believe in a Higher Power, what we call it doesn't matter. What does matter, is that the connection between you, your Source and your creativity is vital for your growth. Once that is sorted, you can create effortlessly: no matter the medium you choose.
Whether it is to create beautiful sculptures, icing on cake, barista, architect, writer, screenwriter, mother, father, entrepreneur, or the CEO of a big company, you can put your creativity to good use and experience the freedom of the river to flow with ease.
Creativity Implies The Possibility of Personal Accountability.
The reason you are here hoping for clarity.
“You mean if I have these gifts, I’m supposed to use them?” Yes.
“Creative power is mightier than its possessor.”
The heart of creativity is an experience of the mystical union; the heart of the mystical union is an experience of creativity. Those who speak in spiritual terms routinely refer to God as the creator but seldom see creator as the literal term for an artist. I am suggesting you take the term creator literally. You are seeking to forge a creative alliance, artist-to-artist with the Great Creator. Accepting this concept can expand your creative possibilities.
Creativity is an experience — a spiritual experience. It does not matter how you think of it: creativity leading to spirituality or spirituality leading to creativity. In fact, I do not distinguish between the two. Faced with such experience, it renders the whole question of belief obsolete.
As Carl Jung answered the question of belief late in his life, “I don’t believe; I know.”
It is this knowledge that we are after. When I know, I am. We learn this principle within the scriptures. When truth becomes yours, you don’t quote someone else, you speak now with conviction.
"Don't be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth."
Rumi, The Essential Rumi
"The ideas flow in upon me, directly from God."
BASIC PRINCIPLES OF CREATIVITY
- Creativity is the natural order of life. Life is energy: pure creative energy.
- There is an underlying, in-dwelling creative force infusing all of life—including ourselves.
- When we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to the creator’s creativity within us and our lives.
- We are, ourselves, creations. It means that we should continue creativity by being creative ourselves.
- Creativity is God’s gift to us. Using our creativity is our gift back to God.
- The refusal to be creative is self-will and is counter to our true nature.
- When we open ourselves to exploring our creativity, we open ourselves to God: good orderly direction.
- As we open our creative channel to the creator, many gentle but powerful changes can be expected.
- It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
- Our creative dreams and yearnings come from a divine source. As we move toward our dreams, we move toward our divinity.
"The purpose of art is not a rarefied, intellectual distillate—it is life, intensified, brilliant life."
While there is no quick fix for pain-free creativity, creative recovery (or discovery) is a teachable, trackable spiritual process. Each of us is complex and highly individual, yet there are common recognizable denominators to the creative recovery process.
- Working with this process, I experienced a certain amount of defiance and giddiness in the first few weeks. This entry stage is followed closely by explosive anger in the course’s midsection.
- The anger is followed by grief, then alternating waves of resistance and hope.
- This peaks-and-valleys phase of growth becomes a series of expansions and contractions, a birthing process in which students experience intense elation and defensive scepticism.
- This choppy growth phase is followed by a strong urge to abandon the process and return to life as we know it. In other words, a bargaining period.
- Recommitment to the process triggers the free-fall of a major ego surrender.
- Following this, the last phase of the course is characterized by a new sense of self marked by increased autonomy, resilience, expectancy, and excitement—and by the capacity to make and execute concrete creative plans.
- If this sounds like a lot of emotional tumult, it is. When we engage in a creativity recovery, we enter a withdrawal from life as we know it.
It is useful to view creative withdrawal a little differently. We ourselves are the substance we withdraw to, not from, as we pull our overextended and misplaced creative energy back into our own core. We excavate our buried dreams. This is a tricky process.
Time wasted is being untruthful to myself.
To affect a creative recovery, we must undergo a time of mourning. In dealing with the death of the “nice” self we have been making do with, we find a certain amount of grief to be essential. Our tears prepare the ground for our future growth. Without this creative moistening, we may remain barren. We must allow the bolt of pain to strike us. Remember, this is useful pain, lightning illuminates. Don’t stop or hinder this process. Go through it.
How do you know if you are creatively blocked? Jealousy is an excellent clue. Are there authors whom you resent? Do you tell yourself, “I could do that, if only…” do you tell yourself that if only you took your creative potential seriously, you might:
- Stop telling yourself, “it’s too late.”
- Stop waiting until you make enough money to do something you’d really love. It is not about the money. If that were the case, I would have stopped an exceedingly long time ago.
- Stop telling yourself, “it’s just my ego” whenever you yearn for a more creative life.
- Stop telling yourself that dreams don’t matter, that they are only dreams and that you should be more sensible.
- Stop fearing that your family and friends would think you crazy. They will, so why stop?
- Stop telling yourself that creativity is a luxury and that you should be grateful for what you’ve got.
As you learn to recognize, nurture, and protect your inner artist, you will move beyond pain and creative constriction. You will recognize and resolve fear, remove emotional scar tissue, and strengthen your confidence. Damaging old ideas about creativity will be explored and discarded. Working with this course, you will experience an intensive, guided encounter with your own creativity—your private villains, champions, wishes, fears, dreams, hopes, and triumphs. The experience will make you excited, depressed, angry, afraid, joyous, hopeful, and, ultimately, freer.
Consistent use of both is vital for growth.
TWO PIVOTAL TOOLS
Morning pages. You must do this every day for the 12-week course.
What are Morning Pages?
The Morning Pages are three pages of longhand writing, strictly stream-of-consciousness: “Oh, god, another morning. I have NOTHING to say. I need to wash the curtains. Did I get my laundry yesterday? Blah, blah, blah.” They might also, more ingloriously, called brain drain, since that is one of their primary functions.
"Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist."
I have found when I write longhand it helps me to clear all the cobwebs. It gives me time to connect with me and stay in the present. If you prefer to write on your laptop or electronic device, you might not have the same results. Invest in a few exam- or notepads it will be worth it.
It does not mean these daily morning scribblings should be artistic, elegant or sophisticated. Or even writing. I stress this point to reassure the nonwriters working with this book. Writing is simply one tool, a medium to structure your thoughts. Pages are the act of moving the hand across the page and writing whatever comes to mind. Nothing is too petty, too silly, too stupid, or too weird to be included.
You are the only person who would read this morning pages. You have no reason to hold back. Let it rip.
"Creativity takes courage."
Write three (3) pages each day. Don’t reread them or leaf through it. Just write for at least eight weeks every day. It comes down to 89 days x 3 pages = a few books. Be prepared. Take into account that you will get tasks, exercises, and check-ins to do. It is up to you.
The morning pages are the primary tool of creative recovery. It is well worth the time.
Make this a rule: always remember that your Censor’s negative opinions are not the truth. This takes practice. By spilling out of bed and straight onto the page every morning, you learn to evade the Gag order. Because there is no wrong way to write the morning pages, the Gag order’s opinion does not count.
I like the way Julia Cameron referred to it in The Artist’s Way:
“Let your Censor rattle on. (And it will.) Just keep your hand moving across the page. Write down the Censor’s thoughts if you want to. Note how it loves to aim for your creative jugular."
Make no mistake: The Censor is out to get you. It is a cunning foe. Every time you get smarter, so does it. So, you wrote one excellent book or poem?”
The Censor tells you that is all there is. So, you wrote your first story?
The Censor says, “It’s not the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”
Think of your Restraint as a cartoon character you dislike, like Sponge Bob, teasing you to keep you off guard. Maybe the shark from Jaws could put you on the spot. Post it where you write or on the inside cover of your notebook. Just turning the Restraint into a nasty, clever little character that pries loose some of its power over you and your creativity.
Stop taking the Censor as the voice of reason and learn to hear it for the blocking device it is. Morning Pages will help you do this.
Morning pages are non-negotiable. Never skip or skimp on morning pages. Your mood does not matter. The rotten thing your Gag says does not matter. We have this idea that we need to be in the mood to write. We do not.
WHAT IT TEACHES YOU
Longhand makes it real. It connects you.
Journaling will teach you that your mood does not really matter. Some of the best creative work gets done on the days when you feel that everything you are doing is plain junk. The journaling will teach you to stop judging and just let yourself write. So, what if you are tired, crabby, distracted, stressed? Your creativity is a child, and it needs nurturing. Journaling feeds your creativity. So, write your morning pages.
Three pages of whatever crosses your mind—that is all there is to it. If you cannot think of anything to write, then write, “I can’t think of anything to write.” Do this until you have filled three pages. Do anything until you have filled three pages. Even if you have to write out affirmations or a prayer. But write those three pages. I won’t see them but be honest with yourself and true to the process.
Journaling gets us to the other side: the other side of our fear, of our negativity, of our moods. Above all, they get us beyond our Gag. Beyond the reach of the Gag’s murmur, we find our own quiet centre, the place where we hear the still, small voice that is at once our creator’s and our own.
The logic brain is our brain of choice. It is the categorical brain. It thinks in a neat, linear fashion. The logic brain perceives the world according to known categories. A horse is a combination of animal parts that make up a horse. We view a fall forest as a series of colours that add up to “fall forest.” It looks at a fall forest and notes: red, orange, yellow, green, gold.
The logic brain was and is our survival brain. It works on known principles. We perceive anything unknown as wrong and possibly dangerous. The logic brain likes things to be neat little soldiers marching in a straight line. The logic brain is the brain we usually listen to, especially when we are telling ourselves to be sensible.
The logic brain is our Prohibition, our second (and third and fourth) thoughts. Faced with an original sentence, phrase, paint squiggle, it says, “What the hell is that? That’s not right!”
Artist's brain is our inventor, our child, our very own personal absent-minded professor. Artist's brain says, “Hey! That is so neat!” It puts odd things together (boat equals wave and walker). It enjoys calling a speeding GTO a wild animal: “The black howling wolf pulled into the drive-in.”
"I never made one of my discoveries through the process of rational thinking."
The artistic brain is our creative, holistic brain. It thinks in patterns and shadings. It sees a fall forest and thinks: Wow! Leaf bouquet! Pretty! Gold-gilt-shimmery-earth skin-king’s-carpet! Artist's brain is associative and freewheeling. It makes new connections, yoking together images to invoke meaning: like the Norse myths calling a boat “wave-horse.” In Star Wars, the name Skywalker is a lovely artist-brain flash.
The morning pages will teach you to stop listening to that ridicule. They will allow you to detach from your negative Restraint.
THE ARTIST DATE
"Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change."
The other basic tool of your creativity may strike you as a non-tool, a diversion. You may see clearly how journaling could work yet find yourself highly dubious about calling it artist date. I assure you, artist dates work, too. Think of this combination of tools in terms of a radio receiver and transmitter. It is a two-step, two-directional process: out and then in. Doing your morning pages, you are sending—notifying yourself and the universe of your dreams, dissatisfactions, hopes. Doing your artist date, you are receiving—opening yourself to insight, inspiration, guidance.
You do not take anyone on this artist date but you and your inner artist, a.k.a. your creative child. That means no lovers, friends, spouses, children—no taggers-on of any stripe. It is frightening to spend quality time with a child or lover, and we can see our artist as both to us. A weekly artist date is remarkably threatening—and remarkably productive.
"People who do a job that claims to be creative have to be alone to recharge their batteries.
You can’t live 24 hours a day in the spotlight and remain creative. For people like me, solitude is a victory."
Your artist needs to be taken out, pampered, and listened to. Like a child, it requires time with a parent. It matters more than money spent. A visit to a great store, a solo trip to the beach, an old movie seen alone, a visit to an aquarium or an art gallery—these cost time, not money. Remember, it is the time commitment that is sacred.
"The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct
acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves."
Spending time in solitude is essential to self-nurturing.
Commit yourself to a weekly artist’s date, and then watch your killjoy side try to wriggle out of it.
Above all, learn to listen to what your artist child has to say on, and about, these joint expeditions. Listen to that! It is telling you your art needs more playful inflow. A little fun can make your work feel more like play. We forget that the imagination-at-play is at the heart of all work. And increasing our capacity for good creative work is what this book is about.
You are likely to avoid your artist dates. Recognize this resistance as a fear of intimacy—self-intimacy. Often in troubled relationships, we settle into an avoidance pattern with our significant others. We do not want to hear what they are thinking because it just might hurt. So, we avoid them, knowing that, once they get the chance, our significant others will probably blurt out something we do not want to hear. It is possible they will want an answer we do not have and cannot give them. It is equally possible we might do the same to them and that then the two of us will stare at each other in astonishment, saying, “But I never knew you felt like that!”
Journaling acquaints us with what we think and what we think we need. We identify problem areas and concerns. We complain, enumerate, identify, isolate, fret. This is step one, analogous to prayer. During the release engendered by our artist date, step two, we hear solutions. Perhaps equally important, we fund the creative reserves we will draw on in fulfilling our artistry.
Filling the Well, Stocking the Pond.
"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."
"I think it’s good for a person to spend time alone.
It gives them an opportunity to discover who
they are and to figure out why they are always alone."
CREATIVITY COMES IN ALL SHAPES AND FORMS
To find your creativity, allow yourself the freedom to get in touch with your inner Source. Only when this connection is established can you fill it.
Your soul is a well that requires filling. It is the active pursuit of elements or images to refresh our artistic reservoirs. Writing is born in attention. Its midwife is detail. Writing may seem to spring from pain, but perhaps that is because pain serves to focus our attention onto details (for instance, the excruciatingly beautiful curve of a lost lover’s neck).
Art may seem to involve broad strokes, grand schemes, and splendid plans. But it is the attention to detail that stays with us; the singular image haunts us and becomes art.
Even amid pain, this singular image brings delight. The artist who tells you differently is lying. To function in the language of art, we must learn to live in it comfortably. The language of art is an image, symbol. It is a wordless language, even when our very art is to chase it with words. The artist’s language is sensual, a language of emotional experience. When we work at our art, we dip into the well of our experience and scoop out images. Because we do this, we need to learn how to put images back. How do we fill the well?
We feed it images. The first image that struck me was that of a stream. It begins small, then grows. At first it bubbles forth as it searches for a pathway. During this time, it might look unbalanced and without sense, but as it carves a path, it forms a stream. Then it builds momentum. Rapids form and your artistic side excel. It bulldozes over rocks as it looks for the path of less resistance. Once it finds it, the currents dig into the earth to form roots. Through these roots, you become established. You become focused and here is the wonderful part–it touches those around you.
Art is an artist-brain pursuit. The artist's brain is our image brain, home, and haven to our best creative impulses. The artist's brain cannot be reached—or triggered—effectively by words alone. The artist's brain is the sensory brain: sight and sound, smell and taste, touch. These are the elements of magic, and magic is the elemental stuff of art.
In filling the well, think magic. Think delight. Think fun. Do not think work/duty. Do not do what you should do—spiritual sit-ups like reading a dull but recommended critical text. Do what intrigues you, explore what interests you; think mystery, not mastery.
"Nobody sees a flower—really—it is so small it takes time; we haven’t time, and to see takes time,
like to have a friend takes time."
Any regular, repetitive action primes the well.
"The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible."
Our focused attention is critical to filling the well. We need to encounter our life experiences, not ignore them. Many of us read compulsively to screen our awareness. On a crowded train, we direct our attention to a newspaper, losing the sights and sounds around us—all images for the well.
"Human creativity is nature manifest in us."
It may be useful for you to think of journaling as meditation.
Journaling is a valid form of meditation that gives us insight and helps us affect change in our lives. If you did not have a great relationship with God or the Higher Power, this will change. You will desire to learn more in order to tap into your spiritual side. The more time you spend on the spiritual side, the more you will grow in horizontal and vertical relationships.
Writers and creative experts approve of it as a conduit for higher creative insights.
Through meditation, we gain and eventually acknowledge our connection to an inner power source that can transform our outer world.
Insight is an intellectual comfort. Power is a blind force that can destroy as easily as build. It is only when we consciously learn to link power and light that we felt our rightful identities as creative beings. Journaling allows us to forge this link. They provide us with a spiritual frequency to contact the Creator Within. For this reason, the morning pages are a spiritual practice.
"Inspiration may be a form of super consciousness, or perhaps of subconsciousness—
I wouldn’t know. But I am sure it is the antithesis of self-consciousness."
The pages are a pathway to a clear sense of self. They are a trail we follow into our own interior, where we meet both our own creativity and our creator.
Journaling maps our own interior. Without them, our dreams may remain dormant.
Using them, it couples the light of insight with the power for expansive change. It is exceedingly difficult to complain about a situation morning after morning, month after month, without being moved to constructive action. The pages lead us out of despair and into undreamed solutions.
It will lead anyone who faithfully writes morning pages to a connection with a source of wisdom within. When stuck with a painful situation or problem that you don’t know how to handle, go to the pages, and ask for guidance. It can look like a dialogue.
Little me: What should I tell them about this inner wisdom? (Listen for the reply and write that down, too.)
ANSWER: Tell them everyone has a direct dial to God. No one needs to go through an operator. Tell them to try this technique with a problem of their own. They will.
Sometimes, as above, the answer may seem flippant or too simple.
"Painting is just another way of keeping a diary."
"Inside you there’s an artist you don’t know about. Say yes quickly, if you know, if you’ve known
it from before the beginning of the universe."
JALAI UD-DIN RUMI
Listen to the 9-minute video clip. It will give you a better understanding of creativity from a man that has walked the road, Ethan Hawke.
Invitation to Connect
Dear fellow creative traveller,
Once you have signed this contract with yourself and you are ready to begin, pop me an email and I will send week 1 to you. This will include questionnaires where honesty with yourself will be required.
You can download the 20 page PDF here to read. It includes the pricing structure and Kreativ Contract.
This is a 12-week course which comprises some reading, tasks, and accountability. It will take time from each day, and commitment on your part to complete it. Be honest, you owe it to yourself.
If you don’t want to continue, please let me know your thoughts. This will help me to glean from your feedback.
I am looking forward to hearing from you.
Creative Life Coach
- Creative vision and dedication
- Do you need a business plan to be an artist?
- Follow your bliss.
- Write your story.
- Confidence is a living organism.
- Rest helps me to function well.
- Renewal of mind leads to prosperity.
- Hear His whisper.
- Be true to yourself.
- Dream till you receive God's assurance.
- Could your asking be wrong?
- The stone story.
- The process of finding yourself.
- Our creativity is in direct relationship with our Source.