Adventure, Affirmations, creative block, Creativity, focus, goal setting, inspiration, meditation, mindfulness, passion, Personal Development, Personal growth, spirituality

Creativity Embodied

“Even if you don’t call yourself an artist, you have the potential to be a
dynamic creator who is always hatching new plans, coming up with fresh
ideas, and shifting your approach to everything you do as you adjust to
life’s ceaseless invitation to change.

It’s to this part of you — the restless, inventive spirit — that I address the
following: Unleash yourself! Don’t be satisfied with the world the way it is;
don’t sit back passively and blankly complain about the dead weight of
the mediocre status quo.

Instead, call on your curiosity and charisma and expressiveness and lust
for life as you tinker with and rebuild everything you see so that it’s in
greater harmony with the laws of love and more hospitable to your soul’s
code. ” ~ Rob Brezny
What do you envision when you think of creativity? An artist/writer/musician/performer of some kind? The act of making? Do you feel uncreative if you you don’t have output? Or if it isn’t “perfect”? If it doesn’t get recognition?

To me, scientists, mechanics, gardeners, teachers… anyone really, are just as creative as what is often thought of as such.

What if instead you shift your perspective to envision creativity as a state of being, rather than a state of doing? To being a continual process of making meaning in one’s life, rather than completion of a painting/novel/song/performance piece? To make for the joy of making, how it warps time and space and you get lost in it.

Being willing to seeing things differently.. to reordering routine.. having the courage to try something new… all of these can open up dimensions of reality and possibility that have remained hidden behind old perceptions.

For example, the next time you go for a walk, focus fully on the experience. The sounds around you, and of your feet, step by step. The textures, visual and felt. The smell of the air- the feel of it against your skin. How if the walk is strenuous enough, everything falls away other than the act of walking and your breath.

Do you feel other things arise? A solution? A song? A poem? A dance? Someone you’d like to visit?

All of this is creating and being creative.

We are, from birth to death, through all our experience, the embodiment of creativity.

Thank you for reading.

I love you.
photo I took while hiking. And wondering if coyotes would play fetch with a tangerine.

Affirmations, Creativity, focus, goal setting, inspiration, Personal Development, Personal growth

Self Care and the Power of No

We’re now entering the last two weeks of the year.. and decade, depending on your take on it!

Have any of you explored “what if”, written your I am passionate about life mantra, or taken a minimum viable action? How did it go? If you didn’t, and still thought about it.. how did *that* feel? I would love to hear in the comments below!

It can get pretty crazy this time of year, so it’s especially important to include self care in your days. This can be anything from remembering to check in with your breath when you start feeling stressed out, to setting your timer for 15 minutes to write, draw, play music, dance, to getting out in nature, to maybe treating yourself to an experience you might not otherwise. It doesn’t have to be grand or expensive.

And remember the power of No. We hear a lot about the power of Yes. It’s also good to keep in mind that saying no, especially if we are conditioned to say yes, can also open doors. Take a moment to think if something serves your highest self. You don’t have to catch every ball thrown your way! If it’s something big, spend more time and write a pros and cons list & see if things become more clear.

Until next time!

Creativity, focus, mindfulness, Personal Development, Personal growth

Mindfulness, ver. 1.0

This week’s topic is mindfulness. It’s showing up everywhere.. being taught in schools, as workshop and retreat topics. There’s even an organization called the Mindful Leadership Network. If you are in a leadership role of any capacity, I highly recommend it.

Beyond it being a buzzword and a catch phrase to fill workshop seats though, what does it mean to be mindful? It’s more than a form of meditation to me; it’s a way of being.

To me it means to be in a state of active attention to the present. Not scrolling through social media while listening to a podcast and eating. Not replaying over and over what you wish you had or hadn’t said earlier in the day. Not having FOMO about some event you are not attending. Not taking a picture every few steps of your hike. Being fully and completely engaged in the moment you are in, breath by breath. As Consciousness observing the experience that your corporeal body is having.

I have two suggested exercises for you this week.

For the first one, I’d like you turn off your devices, and pour yourself a glass of water. Observe the glass or cup you chose for the water. Really look at it. All its variations. Is it smooth? Rough? Hand or machine made? Notice and appreciate everything about this container, and how water takes the shape of whatever container it’s in.

Next observe the water. Is it flat or bubbly? Clear? A little cloudy? Are there reflections in it? Is it warm, cold, hot?

And finally, drink the water. Do you drink it all in one go? Bit by bit? How does it taste? How does it feel in your mouth, going down.. can you feel your body taking on the hydration? Did it make you more aware of your mouth- your tongue, your lips, your teeth?

An alternative would be to take something like a single raisin or an almond, observe all its textures and colours. Smell it. Squish it if you like (hehe), and then eat it, slowly, fully experiencing how it feels in your mouth. How it tastes. So often we grab a drink or something to eat and consume it without experiencing and savoring it.

For the second exercise, I’d like you to get outside! For the good old 15 minutes, at the very least. Again turn off your device. Fully experience being outside. What does it smell like out there? What do your footsteps, bike, or wheels sound like. Is there a breeze? How does it feel? or the sun? or the fog? Do you hear other people, birds, animals? I find getting outside for even just a couple of minutes can revitalize me and reset my brain.

This all can translate to any creative practice- to any interaction with living beings.

If you sit down to create music, how does the instrument feel? Are there worn spots where your hands have traveled for years? If you write, consider the feel of pen on paper, or how the words flow from your brain to your hands to your keyboard. How does it feel when you squeeze that tube of paint? Chop the garlic? Put the spade into the earth, present your ideas to a committee? And so on.

There’s much more to mindfulness and mindfulness practice than all this, certainly. Shifting one’s perspective to be more fully present as one experiences the day can be a most satisfying part of it.

I invite you to create your own version of a mindfulness practice this week, and let me know how it goes!

creative block, Creativity, focus, Personal Development, Personal growth

Make the Most of Constraints

I was waiting at the bus stop, looked up and saw this banner “Make the most of constraints”.

Many of us are familiar with the phrase “work with what you have”.. but how often have we seen constraints as a challenge to reach deep into our creativity, instead of limitations?

Perceived lack can often be an excuse to not create. Not enough time. Not enough money. I don’t have the right equipment/materials.

What can you do with what you have? What lying around might become a musical intstrument you hadn’t considered? How can you shift your mindset of limitations to be a creative challenge or inspiration instead of a block? What poem or drawing will flow from you in the 15 minutes you have if you allow it? What sculpture could you create from that stack of paper bags and ball of string?

I invite you to shift your vision. Make the most of your constraints, and see what wonders you can unleash into the world.

Feel free to share your discoveries, and how it felt in the comment section below.