Monday, January 12, 2009

Acknowledging Your Creative Self

That is the first secret in the book The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women: A Portable Mentor
that I'm reading as part of a virtual book club Next Chapter The book begins with the author's (Gail McMeekin) personal story of overcoming Chronic Fatigue Syndrome to completely refashion her life with the aid of her own creativity. I find this so familiar and still very inspiring, as it is basically what I am right in the middle of trying to accomplish for myself.

I especially liked this observation that she makes: "I had transcended the New Age distortion that I was to blame for my illness and stopped trying to regain my old life. Every time I pushed myself to do work that was overly stressful just to earn money, I relapsed immediately. I finally understood. It was time to redesign my life in line with my limitations and with total allegiance to my truth."

Oh my goodness does that ever ring true for me. I had the experience a couple years ago where it literally took me months after reading "The Secret" to call bullshit on that particular nugget. Of course I am not to blame for my illness. My illness may be present at this time in this life for me for a reason. It is definitely a teacher that I am learning from (like it or not), but there is no way that anyone can convince me that I chose this illness. That is how I define being able to assign blame, there has to be a choice involved. Nothing I did in the past gave me this illness, I was born this way. period.

After finally jettisoning that particular burden I felt freer to work on the next part: Stopping trying to regain my old life. Regret, shame and despair were the themes here as I replayed the litany of how I used to be, what I used to be able to do and what I thought my life possibilities and plans were, yadda, yadda, whatever. Not a fun part of the journey there. But once I was able to accept that the old life I lived is not where I'm headed, I was able to let that go. I'll be honest that I still re-visit this particular lesson over and over again, but it is getting easier each time to get through it and let go of the grasping on to "how it was supposed to be".

So with all this energy no longer focused on fighting the reality of my circumstances I was able to use it to start in with harnessing my creativity. A sweet plum to enjoy at the end of this period of trial and tribulation, but it was so worthwhile in reaching it let me tell you!

I'm looking forward to the rest of this book, mainly for advice on how to accomplish the next steps, now that I've acknowledged my creative self, so fully and completely, now what to do with that next? The picture accompanying this post represents my creative self, much bigger than me physically, undefined, amorphous, but still attached to me right at my own feet. That sentence makes me realize that I can then step this way or that and my creativity comes with me, no matter where I go. A good thing to really know isn't it?


jovaliquilts said...

Knowing what we can change and what we can't, therein lies wisdom. Good luck on discovering your creative self. Seems like you are well on the way -- there's so much creativity on your blog.

martha said...

Thanks for sharing this journey. I am right there with you it seems.

Kavindra said...

Oh how lovely to realize your creative self is always there like you're shadow. Empowering!

Barb said...

"The picture accompanying this post represents my creative self, much bigger than me physically, undefined, amorphous, but still attached to me right at my own feet."

I love that. Well said.

traveler one said...

The quote on transcendence caught my attention too and then I found this on Robert Fritz's website:

Transcendence: No matter what the past has been, no matter what the consequences you have set in motion, you CAN start again, as if LIFE is saying to you "Okay, take two. Let us try that thing again."

I found that idea so very helpful.


Genie Sea said...

I love the same quote Barb cited. Beautiful! :)

Belle said...

Letting go of self-judgment is so important - the concept of blame is irrelevant to creating the lives we want. The whole self-judgment thing was a huge aha for me, too. When I started accepting instead of resisting, it was like you said, the energy was freed up, no longer focused on fighting the circumstances.

Jamie Ridler said...

I just love how you describe what that picture represents and the undeniable, unbreakable relationship that means you have with your creativity.

I look forward to seeing what's next on the journey for you!