It is no accident that I am writing about the challenge of carving out a creative life when it’s been about six months since I’ve written anything here.
Why is it so challenging to carve out a creative life that stays consistent?
Allow me to state the obvious: Creative projects are often solo pursuits in which we have to give ourselves permission, accountability, boundaries around out time and the will to keep going when it is just so easy to let it go among everything else competing for our time and attention.
And in addition to a creative life requiring time to create, it also requires time to just be. Writers and other creatives need alone time like they need air and water. So if we need quiet time to prime the pump and quiet time to create, and we live in a time that practically insists – or at least expects – us to be hyper focused on the outside world, much more so than on our inner selves, then of course it takes more than a little effort to protect a creative life.
Essentially though, I know I am capable of doing better, of doing more. Life is full of choices and I think I am running out of excuses.
Recently, I saw the movie Where’d You Go, Bernadette, based on the bestselling novel. Bernadette, so far removed from her former artistic career, has become anxious, destructive and unhappy.
It’s not so difficult to imagine a bout of writer’s block that goes on far too long resulting in my own demise. Perhaps that’s a bit dramatic, but the longer I leave a written book gathering dust, an essay unwritten, or new ideas to die on the vine, the more intimidating it feels to crack open the door to the work. It’s as though I cannot bear to face what I have neglected.
Good things, life affirming things, happen during a creative spell that are hard to replicate. When engaged in a creative pursuit, we are in the flow of a higher consciousness. In the act of creation we feel energized, joyful, at peace, and expanded.
“We don’t think and feel in the same way. Those neural networks our survival thinking had wired are turned off, and the personality that was addicted to continually signaling the body to produce stress hormones is gone. …we see new possibilities. We are now quantum observers of a new destiny. And that release heals the body and frees the mind”.
- Dr. Joe Dispenza, Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself.
In short, we are better when we are creating! We are happier, calmer and freer. Who doesn’t want that, for themselves and every creative person they love?
I could write about how to fight the good fight and maintain consistency in creativity, but clearly after a six month dry spell, I am not the one to give such advice. Besides, it’s been spelled out already in some fabulous books such as The War of Art and Big Magic.
But speaking of magic, I occasionally get some good insights in my dreams and recently I awoke with these words in my head: just do a little bit each day.
So there you have it. This was my little bit for today.