Anyone who knows me well, is aware that I am currently working on crafting a selection of retellings of fairy tales. Adult tales with an erotic flavour. At some point (though I am so blessedly aware of how long it takes me to do anything, my uber slow wondrous pace! ;-)), I hope to publish them as a book. I’ll keep you posted upon said progress. (Though head over here if you’d like to read one of my tales my love :-))
‘Beauty and the Beast’ has been sitting with me lately, both sides whispering in my ears, pulling my arms this way and that. Asking me to choose between them. As if i ever could.
For is not this time of the year the liminal time, not quite deep winter’s cave, and yet not entirely the fire lit action lands that we have enjoyed over the summer? The bridge between light and dark, creation and destruction, life and death. In response to my last foray into the realm of intimate romantic love are not all relationships, including the ones with our own selves, an ever flowing dance with these pairings? And is not the perennial and seasonal cycles of our creativity and sexuality a continuous merry go round of perpetual change and movement up and down, round and round, and forever in ebb and flow?
Do we dare to offer our ‘ugly’ to the world, our shame and unworthiness? Can we have the courage to drop the censorship and bow to the fullness of every part of what we say, in whatever language we desire to sculpt it in? Are we able to dig deeper, deeper than a pleasing aesthetic, in search of bones and grit, blood and guts, heartache and fear, and offer all of these as a prayer to the divine?
Can we say yes to both ‘Beauty and the Beast’? To hold both in the palms of our hands, allowing them to beat with wings of blood and magic, neither one ‘better than’ the other? Both a part of the fullness of everything we may hold dear.
Neither one nor the other. Not summer nor winter. In the land of enchantment, and the liminal.
Liminal spaces. Such a delicious word. It means threshold my darling :-)
Transition times. One foot in one place and the other in another. Not quite having stepped over. Holding the space for all to be, to be, to be. No rush. No rush. No rush.
The balance between worlds. The ‘upper worlds’, all day to day, routine and ‘Father Time’, work and schedules, the to-do list and all of the myriad moments of a full life; and the ‘lower worlds’, the pull and draw inwards and downwards, dreaming time, rest, shadowlands and Persephone’s seduction, essentially the call to the sovereignty of the soul.
How do we keep them both fed and nourished? How can we find the possibility of holding both in our hearts? How do we acknowledge and respect and honour both for their need for nourishment, attention, care and tending?
I know in myself I can have a tendency to separate aspects of my life. To compartmentalise if you like. To put into boxes. This can work, up to a point, but unless we have very little of these boxes, with very minimal content, then my guessing is at some point, everything starts to spill out and become chaotic and, well, untameable!
The untameable. The wild. The chaos.
Aaaah! Here we are, back in the realm of creativity! ;-) Of life. Of Love. Of everything.
If we ignore one aspect, one ‘box’, turning away in frustration, in judgement, in a restlessness, we take away its energy, so that it begins to dry out, atrophy, and become a muted grey slab in our vivid technicolour life! We become ‘wonky’ and unbalanced, either living in high fantasy, unreal and ungrounded, avoiding alone and its gifts, and all doing doing doing and full of sugary coated, if unconscious, denial; or we walk through our days in the thunder, deep intensity, a devilish realm with an absence of joy and other. For soul work is solitary my love. It always will be. As we are both human and divine, we need both.
Why do we have this propensity to turn towards what we perceive as the ‘Beauty’ in our life, and dismiss with disdain the ‘Beast’? For surely, life is about coming to realise that there is a darkness to this beauty that we so long to hold on to, and conversely, there is sweet exquisite heart and wonder if we dare to stay a while with the beast. In life, in love, in art, and in our own dear dear self. We are all of this, and more.
Now, we are, in our essential pure nature, vaster, larger and infinite, in our capacity. Read that again my love. You, dear one, have the ability to stretch far and wide, to bear all of what life demands and beckons off you. It’s just the way of our true nature. The key, I believe, is not in necessarily wondering, organising, nor controlling, all of these parts of ourselves. I mean, hell that bloody well doesn’t work out terribly well does it my fellow recovering control freaks?! But in shifting one’s attention instead, on to the thread that binds all of these parts of one’s life together.
The thread? Being in devotion to, in service to, in prayer to, the sacred.
You see, the sacred threads through everything. Nothing in our lives cannot be held by and in the sacred. If it’s a part of our living and our experience, then it’s a part of everything. And nothing that’s in everything, can be separate from us. You may want to read that line again.
When we resist, panic, and try to control, then we are essentially reacting from a place of fear. We all do this. It’s part of our human nature. We want to feel like we have a grip on whatever the lunatic hell is going on!! My advice? Loosen the grip, fall into the madness, surrender into the chaos. But, not blindly dear one, not without sight. But instead, by using our night goggles of seeing through the eyes of the Holy. The whole. Holiness and wholeness. And then even our fear is holy, and part of our wholeness.
Endings and beginnings. Is there ever such a thing truly? Sure, on the surface level, in the ‘upper’ world thinking. And this can cause us pain and heartbreak (I’ve been there recently). But in the ‘lower’ world thinking, we can ripen the soul, season it, weather and wizen it with whatever wisdom we can bear to taste and swallow. And then there’s the sacred thread that binds both upper and lower worlds, bigger than all, simply holding, with love, clear, solid and still.
Hold all those unanswered questions, that your year may have offered to you as gifts, and that the mind might be feeling like it’s running out of time and gotta sort and figure it out by Dec 31st!! Hold these loose and unfinished questions as prayers, as soul poetics. Offer them now to Hades, to Soul, to the shadowlands, to the soil and worms and dead things.
Hold all of life’s uncertainties, tipping points and transition times, as a way to grow towards and into the unknown, the winter, because it’s coming and ready or not it will ask its own demands of us. It takes strength. And resilience. And a steady stance to weather the storms and to let the leaves of us fall, and to sway and blow this way and that way, and yet still feel rooted in trust as our skeleton is revealed, as we dare to risk becoming exposed. Because we have no choice. Not if we are artists of our lives. Not if we are open to life. Not if we desire to live in full and fierce truth and grace. Not if we know that we know nothing and that to control is ultimately futile (though we give it a damn good go! ;-)). Not if we are willing to take life as our lover. For it will strip us down over and over again. It will rip open our hearts over and over again. It will pour medicine thick and thorough, over and thro us over and over again. And it will blast us open to beauty and truth and wonder and miracles and magic over and over again. If we are willing, life lived in this way will always take us straight back to God. But it’s a warriors’ path. And a bloody one. And we will be scared.
And I like how the word ‘scared’ is an anagram for ‘sacred’! ;-)
Are you scared yet? Good!
Rattle your bones beauties. Shake rattle and roll. Soul roll that is. As you may know I’m bowing to and daring to commit deeper and deeper to this way of living. Some days I forget. Some days I fall down. Some days I am driven by the scared and not the sacred. So this my loves, this is also a reminder for me too :-) xx
As Shirley Valentine says ‘Are we living such a little and calling it a life?’
Liminal lingerings and lushest longing love to you all xx
Thank you for reading xx
D is for disappointment.
I woke up today and disappointment was my guest. A sadness, an ache, an ouch at my heart. So I invited it to stay for a while, made us both some strong black coffee, and leaned in. I am learning how to lean in more, how to stay with what arises, to become more intimate with those places within me that are a part of the tender layers, like the finest filo pastry, of the realm of vulnerability.
Full disclosure folks. My ‘guest’ arose as a reaction to having to cancel my workshop today. Yep. There weren’t enough bookings to run the day, and in the name of truth and transparency, there was actually only one dear woman who had claimed a place. This happens sometimes. And the thing is, no one really talks about it. The times when ‘it’ doesn’t work.
A part of social media’s shiny sing song is that it can be a beacon of fabulousness, of exotic and tempting events and ripe and flourishing activities to choose from. This is true. We really are living in extraordinary times of so much choice. I applaud this and partake in such platters on a regular basis. I am also aware of how extremely blessed we are, lucky, graced in fact, to even have the freedom to play out at all and dare to feed deeper parts of ourselves.
We, us solo creative geniuses, living on a wing and a prayer, and a deep, deep, internal compass of truth, freedom and beauty, take a risk each and every time we put something that we have created out into the world. It doesn’t matter what that may be: a poem, a song, a pot, a painting, a story, a workshop etc. It was given to us as a seedling of spirit’s spittle, and we turned it and churned it, into art, into an offering to others. This takes courage. This takes guts and sweat and often, quite often, a lil shake and the odd roll of a tear!
It’s terrifying putting ourselves out there, but, and for those of you who understand where I’m coming from, there is no choice. We have no choice. Something bigger than us, something that has a greater force, a stronger urgency, moves us into inspiration and action, and all that we can do is to bow to this and do its bidding. The holy moly dance between human and divine!
Yes, life is a dance, a constant shuffle this way and that, the occasional stumble, the surprising moments of winged feet, and the important moments when we stand still silent for the next gust of fancy footwork to move through us.
Sometimes I feel that life is a two steps forwards, one step back kinda foxtrot, a little like the tide when I think about it, rolling in to crash with might upon the shore here I am here I am, and then the same force dragging the waters with fierceness back, back, back, under, down, away, until the whole wave begins again. Which it does, because it has to. It’s its nature.
It’s our nature too.
Now I’m not saying I feel like I’m being dragged backwards with lungs full of water gasping and in frenzied chaos. Not today anyways thank god!! ;-) What I’m saying is that as artists, as creators, as those who dare to live at the edge called ‘make it up and improvise!’ each time we dare to offer we do so with the knowing that not all will reach the shore. Some will be pulled by spirit’s invisible current long before the force gains momentum. And this can leave us, if we care, if we have put our love into said offering, open to the wondrous and tender place of vulnerability. Open, not knowing, here, engaged, and alive. It’s this tenderness that gets touched upon occasion when we are disappointed. When something hasn’t lived up to what we wanted it to be, what we had dreams of it becoming, what we had expected to happen.
Now there’s nothing wrong with expectation. We hang so many of our finest, furry and fancy dreamings on to the hooks of expectation don’t we? It’s human. We hope and dream and want and desire and place this on to something outside of ourselves. A lover. A project. A promotion. A holiday. The weather. A day off. To be honest we bloody well sprinkle this shit on to everything!! Bless us!
Because at some level, at some place, we still have a small nudge of thinking that we are the ones in control! Isn’t that the fuckin’ truth??!! I’m smiling as I write this my loves. We all want to have control. We all want to place the pieces like a giant game of dominoes, oh so artfully and carefully, and watch with pride and relief as the pieces fall in exactly the way we had set them up to.
Spoiler alert. Life don’t be ahappening quite like that!!
You see, we can place our pieces wherever we want to. We can spend time and energy and focus on preparing and learning and creating and crafting, forming the moulds for life to move within and around us. This is important. We are the co-creators and God needs us to roll up our sleeves and do the work too. And hopefully this ‘work’ is fun, is what we are passionate about, believe in, trust, love, are turned on by, is our gift to the world, and is part of our living in service, in love.
But then. But then we have to let it go. We have to let go of the outcome. We do our best and show up, and then we have to give it up to spirit, to the mystery, and as prayer. At that point we empty our hands, we empty our hearts of expectation (tis tricky! ;-)), and we continue on, responding and living and loving life and each other.
As my teacher says, ‘It’s nothing to do with us. What happens is none of our business’. And you know what? There is so much freedom and space and breath and life in that knowing.
It takes practice though. My disappointment today is a gift. I’m disappointed for several reasons. I have let someone down. I was taking a chance to offer something new, something I believe passionately in, a new direction I intend to, and would love to travel with, more deeply (that of storytelling and performance and fairy tales! :-)). And again, in absolute full truth, I was hoping, wanting, to make some money towards heading to Spain again to go on retreat. I’m just being honest. I had, I realised, a few balls of expectation that I had been juggling with behind the wizard’s curtain! Does that make my disappointment Toto?!!
And all of this is ok. My guest has moved on now, and I have swallowed down some of its tender medicine, grateful, as always, to do so. I took a risk, like so many of us do that put out our events and then are not able to run them. No one talks of this. I wanted to speak of this today.
Sometimes we fail and sometimes we fall. Sometimes we stumble and we dance seemingly backwards. Sometimes there’s a spanner thrown in to the works of our unintended, unconscious control box. And sometimes we forget, we forget, that spirit knows best. Spirit knows best.
I trust in spirit and in the beautiful dance of my life and its glorious and, these days for sure, more unknown unravelling. I trust in the timing of all things. I trust in the medicine of disappointment’s gift. I trust in the fact that if I’m completely honest I was feeling rather full from a fabulous week and maybe, just maybe, my foot wasn’t fully on the ‘Yes, Go!’ pedal for today. I trust in the beauty of other’s understanding. I trust in the ridiculousness of our human endeavouring, and in all the absolute incredulous and moving beauty that we offer and pour out enriching everything. And I trust in the continuous urge, force, impulse, god given sap, that always, always, shows up, again and again, whispering excitedly in our ears, at our heart, with the words, ‘Ooooh, I’ve got a great idea!' ;-) :-).
Keep on keeping on folks. And thank you for reading thus far. Forever towards truth and freedom. Aho xxx
Hey lovely creative genius, let me know if you resonate with any part of this musing :-) And if you would like a lil assistance with shaking up your creative juju, then head over here to receive your FREE pdf book “10 ways to awaken your creative genius”. In gratitude, grace and freedom, HH
Hello loves xxx
Tis the season of the witch.
The quiet calls us. The pull inwards, to listen.
Intimacy. Dropping. Staying with.
Starting to shed, the leaves that though glorious in their plumage, now give way, effortlessly, to reveal the bones beneath. The branches. Undressing slowly. Do they become shy as they slip off their coat? To begin to bare their nakedness? No rush. Steady. Slow. All in the right time. All in sync with the cycles of the seasons. But first they burn, they show us their fire.
Maybe Samhain (Halloween), the Celtic end of the year, is akin to the ego beginning to shed, dropping what has acted like a mask. The mask, our sun, shining out into the world. Perhaps Samhain is the initiation, the doorway to the underworld, to soul, where we are invited to enter unclothed, disrobed, of all that hides our skin and bones.
To be intimate with soul we must be willing. We must be willing to stand without identity that plays out, in all its roles and frolics, in the worlds above. There’s nothing wrong with this, for indeed the world is a giant playground of experiences. But the soul realm is different. It requires a different part of us. It requires our vulnerability, to become intimate with the depths and the oceans, with the bones and the space, and with the silent vastness of the void itself.
As we journey through autumn we are preparing the way for this journey. It will last through winter’s long, dark and deep months. It will ask of us to give up the sight we rely on day to day and to close our literal eyes so that our inner vision can adjust to the dimming, adjust to the shapes and forms that appear on and in the darkness. There is an intimacy in darkness. It’s close to us. We can feel it, almost as if it’s breath can touch the skin on our arms and bellies, and it’s fabric graze the skin on our faces and neck so that the hairs on our body prick up and tingle in response. It’s primal and nature. It’s unknown and thus scary. It holds all things and so it asks of us to be awake and to stay with it even though we cannot know what it is doing to us. There is a surrender asked of us here. To be worked on, done to, moulded, shaped and given the downloads that will become the knowing wisdom we will carry in our nets as we float back up and swim to the shallows and surface with Imbolc and spring’s new light.
We are asked to dive in. To become intimate with the waters that once we knew as the womb, where even our very breath was not in separation.
There is an intimacy between sex and art, between our sexuality and creativity. Two years ago I recall writing in my journal the words: Creativity, Sexuality, Life force. I knew that I desired to embrace all three in my life and in my work. and indeed, over the last year, and in particular the last few months, the pieces of the puzzle, the ability to hold and juggle with all three, have landed. A new gateway is opening, and just the last few days a vital thread has been seen that binds them all. The thread? Intimacy :-) For you see, our sexuality, like our creativity, is in fact our life’s longing to live through us, through you, through me. Like sap. And it’s in everything. It’s the bridge between life and death. Running through everything it is the intimate connection to all of life.
This is a time when the sacred feels near. Maybe the sacred is just another word for intimacy? The sacred is a bridge between this world and the divine/spirit world. A bit like October. And Samhain. Ritual keeps the hinges, nails, of this bridge well oiled, like lathering and slathering coconut oil to our bodies as the air becomes dry. Like the tin man. All heart. But that’s no good if he all rusts up and dries out to fuck and cannot move. That is death. Ritual oils us, keeps the soul sap ripe and juicy. And ritual can take any form, no need for grandiose gestures darling. Maybe light a candle and say a prayer. Maybe as you wash your hands or take a shower you invoke what is needed to be washed away, or shed, to do so; or maybe, you remember to place your hand on your heart and bow your head in appreciation when you find a moment free from busy-ness. And of course, making art. The ritual of creative work and play feeds the soul with its endless possibilities.
Where is the sacred and ritual in a modern creators life? It is found in the space, the stillness, and the silence. The holy trinity. We have to make time for these, to slow deep, to stop, and to allow ourselves to become intimate with the soul, and thus, soil, in us.
Autumn is the prepping season. And it is the season of enchantment. Of magic. Of witches. Of mystery and the macabre dance between life and death. We have no choice but to raise our spirit filled glasses and toast to its time. But what a time!
Let’s invite and incite this potency. Whilst we can feel it in the air. A magical brush and moment akin to dawn and dusk. Where anything is possible and where the possible is everywhere.
A time for spells.
My favoured are the spells that words form on the empty page, invoked by intention and curiousity and the urge to go deep to the bone. I am offering two new workshops in November, dancing the arts of storytelling, fairy tales, ancestor boned wsidom, and erotica tales. Frida would approve! ;-) These will be uber juicy, potent and transformative.
Are we more afraid of life than death? Are we really so engaged with life? The paradoxes. We know one deeper when we are more willing to be intimate with its opposite. Day of the dead is coming. My favourite. Why does it transfix us so? Why so important? Can we look into the mirror and see our skeleton looking back? Stripped to the bone. Empty of all that we give our sense of identity to. What are you most afraid of? What lies in shadow spooking you with its ‘boo!’? What skeletons live in the closet of who you are?
These days I welcome the witch that I see more and more mirrored back as time rolls by. The witch in me belongs to my ageing, softening, body. The witch in me belongs in my firey morning breath, the sleep crusts of my eyes, the iron red blood between my legs. The witch in me belongs with the lil whisker on my chin, the creases of a life lived around my eyes, my missing teeth, and my graying and whitening hairs. All of this is her, and she is so fuckin’ beautiful! Strong and fierce. Fierce beauty. She is rich and tender and touched by the ouch and aches and haunts of life in its fullness. She is all of this and so so so much more! And at this time of the year, she squats down on her haunches and howls. Howls to that portal between life and death. Howls to wake up those who are sleepwalking through the living. She is my ghoul, and I love her :-).
Celebrate that which ghouls you :-). And honour your ancestors, your loved ones lost, the dreams that slipped away or dissolved, or left you for another. Yes this happens to our creative ideas too. They can leave us for another if left ignored for too long. Honour their loss, and as you do so, you create the space, the fertile fascinating void, for something new to stir you from the depths. But for now, no rush, take your time, and allow autumn to work its magic on you.
V is for Voice.
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Hmmm. Maybe. Though not necessarily so! (as my oldest niece, having her little sister copy everything that she does, is finding that it’s more irritation than anything else! ;-)). But it’s how we learn isn’t it? We copy the alphabet to learn how to write and spell. We go to art galleries and reproduce our version of the old masters paintings into our school art pads. We study each and every nuance of our favourite performers to try and capture something of their creative genius essence.
And yet we also have our own way, our unique way, of seeing and perceiving and observing the world around us, filtered through our eyes, experiences and beliefs.
As a small child we dance and draw and make up stories and games. All of our knowing is play based. And pure. And innocent.
This innocence gets corrupted and we become closed down in some way. More fearful, less trusting of our own innate vision and truth. And this impacts upon our voice the strongest. We lose our voice.
We have been told that what we have voiced is ‘wrong’. What this filters down to, at the most base insidious level, is that must mean that ‘we are wrong’, ‘I am wrong’. And that is a mighty twisted place to live our life from. It’s an off balance, crooked and unstable foundation, you know, the bit beneath what is seen, to build atop. We might create giant heights to dazzle and take ones breath away but, and it’s terrifying really, a little gust of critical wind, a tiny blow of another’s questioning breath, and down it all tumbles, a staggering dusted cobble and debris of all that has been created from the illusion, and goddamn it it is an illusion, a deluded delusion actually, of being wrong.
Now copying is not wrong. In a way it’s an extraordinary way of understanding another’s genius. We literally put ourselves in their shoes. We shapeshift and become them like putting on a costume. We attempt to mine the essence of who they are and what makes them tick and why they create the way that they do. This can teach us empathy and keep curiousity alive. But staying here too long and it borders on fetishism and plagiarism and probably other words that end in ‘ism’! ;-). And it negates, the already wobbly toothed state, of our true and authentic and uniquely ours, voice.
Having spent the last few months crafting this here website for my new business, I have immersed myself in the t’interneted world of the how to’s and the marketing do’s and don’ts. Everyone has an opinion, their opinion, their VOICE, on the most optimum way to navigate this terrain. Now I’m not about to blast all of these tremendously helpful and creatively entrepeneured folk. Well maybe just a smidge! But there is a kinda ‘one size fits all’ system going on. A system that’s appears to be, in my opinion, quite shouty and fuelled by a shady hint of fear. Like that’s the fuel. Fear. Because unless we do it this way or that way we might never be seen. We might never be heard. We might never find those folk whom we are extending our hearts and arts out to.
I get it. I really do. Obviously I want for my business to take off. Obviously I desire clients and likes and claps and for what I am offering to be successful. I also want to make a living, a damn good living, from what I’m tremendously good at. I own this. For the sake of clarity and integrity. I both desire to make a fabulous living from something I am devotedly passionate about; and, I am absolutely bloody great at what I do. Full stop. Amen! ;-)
But here’s the thing. After many weeks of ploughing through this advice and this checklist I started to feel like something wasn’t quite right for me. Something was off. And what I realised was it was I that was off, off kilter from my own truth, from my own authentic voice.
You see I’ve never been what one might call conventional. I wouldn’t really know how. I’m me. I’ve always been me. And these days blessedly I feel more me then I have ever felt so before. And that’s bloody marvellous.
And what that also means is that I have been listening to and following my own truth more and more. Stayed in my own integrity lane if you like. And on a bigger scale that means that anything that I put ‘out there’ or offer or express will be coated in pure ‘me’ ness. If that’s a thing. Yeah I can see how that might seem a little selfish (me, me, me!!! ;-)), but there comes a time when we gotta stand up and claim our voice, and the way it pours forth through us, whether in words, or paint, or music, or song, or image, or dance etc. We gotta take our shape and fuel it with our absolute ‘Yes!’. We gotta own that crown atop of our heads, work that sash, and wave that glinting, gold topped sceptre, unapologetically, for all to see. Well, at the very least we gotta allow ourselves to be (fellow introverts I hear you!). That’s it. No excuses. Nada. Zilch.
So, thank you, there have been tips aplenty that have certainly been worth the deep dive into marketing know how. And I’ll imitate them because I can rub off on your genius :-). But I’m gonna put the rest down. And I’m gonna find my way, my creative genius way, to share my creative offering out into the world. And trust in that. And trust that being clear in what I am, which is the seed of all that I also do, will steer the way to what I desire. Or maybe it won’t. But we’ll see.
And for now I’m not sure exactly what that looks like.
There’s a few sprinkling of idea seedlings (there always are), and my intuitive soul will be my guide. I know that I’ll get lost and mess up and most likely at times act from fear as opposed to love. Because I’m human and learning and this is all new. But I believe in who I am. And, this is where I find my voice, a channel directly plugged into my creative genius. I’m practicing what I preach! ;-)
And it is this blueprint, though I hobble and shake and vow to keep on showing up and voicing who I am as an artist, as a creative being, that is brought to each client that I work with, and to each session, and to each creative relationship that’s explored through creativity coaching. It cannot be any other way. I want for you to deeply clarify and then take action from your truth. I want for you to be able to really know your voice and then to use it to super charge everything you touch and create with its power.
Because it is a power, and maybe that’s partly why we have lost it or are afraid of it. It’s part of our creative genius. And it’s a dangerous force but it has no rules or laws. It’s pure. It’s innocent. It’s goddamn real. And each and every one of us, has it.
What’s your voice dear one? Let me hear you :-).
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If you enjoyed this article then you might also like, 'Showing up for our creative lives', and 'I burn with a voice' xxx
C is for comfort zone.
The edge of our known world. The edge of reason. The edge.
We all know our comfort zone. For most of us its the place we live in day in day out. It’s familiar, safe, furnished to our liking, and of course, mighty comfortable.
Or is it?!
Gabrielle Roth says ‘if we are not living on the edge then we’re taking up too much room.’ OK then love. OK.
The thing about our comfort zone is exactly that, it’s not so challenging or life giving or dynamic. Its daily turning can sometimes leave us slightly uneasy. As our heads touch the pillow at the end of another day we might find some voice within us imploring ‘is this it??’.
Now don’t get me wrong. If your comfort zone is working out all tickety boo for you then great. Don’t fuck about with the status quo. And as they say, if it ain’t broke…
But what if there is a gnawing within? What if there’s a part of you that drifts off into dreaming of a life that looks rather different? And what if you know full well that mamma be parked her car in the zone for far far too long it all gone goddamn rusted!!?? ;-) :-)
Within our creative life there will come a point where we will meet the edge of this zone. To be frank if you’re an artist then it’s likely that you’ve met it already, a thousand and one times before. Indeed you might be there now, feet planted firm on terra cognito, nose peering out into the void, heart beating, palms clammy, and your mind racing a million miles to find the how to step in.
Stop. Stop right now. No my dear, I wasn’t talking to you I was addressing your mind. You see the thing is about stepping outta ones comfort zone is that we do not, cannot, and will not, know what happens next. It’s impossible. It’s the very nature of it all. It’s the whole fuckin point!
Ironically, it’s not the stepping outta the comfort zone that’s the problem. We’ve just made it that way with our if’s and but’s. In fact to even think that we are stepping is a falsity as what we are really doing is expanding into, or responding to, this supposed edge. This unknown.
It’s not a new place with a different postal code and temperate climate. It’s still our life, only bigger, with more of it available, a broader and wider and deeper perspective one might say.
Let’s see if we can connect the dots a lil more shall we?
Take a moment to close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Put down any ideas on how or what and just quieten into just this moment now. Feet on the floor if possible or at least be aware of your bottom on your chair. Good. Now I’d like for you to picture yourself in the life you are peering all telescope at, the one ‘over the edge’. Really see yourself in it. Use all your senses. How is it once you’ve written your script, completed that series of paintings, taken a bow at the end of your performance’s first night? Really go into how it feels. Allow yourself to feel elated, satisfied, joyous, peaceful…Notice too what else is in there. Maybe a little resistance? Is there any fear? Anxiety? Numbness? Embarrassment? Doubt?
Find these in your body. Are there any beliefs or thoughts that wanna sabotage or dampen or even destroy this possibility, this place?
Be totally honest with yourself here, as in all truth, because you are most decidedly and defiantly human, there will be both. The joy and the doubt. The peacefulness and the anxiety. The elation and the fear. All a hodgepodge of human feeling and emotion. Same with your thoughts darling. You may well have the ‘look what I created!’, with the ‘what the fuck did you do you stupid talentless idiot!’ running side by side.
OK. Good. Let it all be there, the good, the bad, and the ugly! ;-)
You see here’s the magic key. It’s in our ability not to run for the hills or bury our heads under the duvet. It’s in our superhero power of simply staying with. Staying with. In feeling and allowing all of what arises to be here. Yes it will fly up and slap us vehemently across the face, whip us into a fretful frenzy, and pull at the strands of our hair in all the directions of the compass. And yet. And yet.
And yet if you choose to stay, to feel, to allow, to even say ‘hey you fuckers bring your worst!!!’, something begins to happen. After a while they begin to calm down, to settle, to slow and become quieter. They may not go away all together, and they probably won’t. But they’ll calm and as they do you will notice that you’re still there, or ‘here’ really. You’ve not been blown away. And as the dust settles you realise that you are still at this edge but now, but now, you are not so at the mercy of all your mind made lunatic possibilities. And this my dear even includes the ‘good’ ones because, hells bells, we really don’t know how we’ll feel or what kind of impact our creative work will have, but we will have done it. We will have stepped outta our comfort zone and grown!
Choices. Make a choice. Do it anyways despite the gabbling lunatic voices? Do it anyways not knowing if it will all be crap? Do it anyways even though we may be laughed at? Do it anyways despite not having a fuckin clue what happens next? And do it anyways even if so aquiver with fear that you be shakin’ and vibratin’ like nobody’s business hon??! ;-)
Yes. And yes again. And one more time just in case you’re still dithering, yes!
Don’t wait til you got it all sorted out. Don’t wait until you’re perfect and coiffed and fixed. Don’t wait until you’ve got the new safety harness figured out. Because paradoxically the more you live like this the more you realise that our safe and familiar comfort zones are in actual fact, our prison. They’re not safe at all. They need a lot of controlling and tweaking and managing. They are in fact quite surprisingly exhausting. And what we also find, in this place of freedom, that the fear, doubt and anxiety that we had associated with ‘the edge’, were really practically what we we’re living on in maintaining our comfort zone! Go figure!!!
Meet your edge. Every day if necessary. Choose life and the unknown. Live in the not knowing. Grow up and in and out, all wings and roots. Create and go for it because it’s in the making remember, it’s in the making that we are affirmed and alive and in joy. It’s in the moment by moment action and breath and craft. It’s never really about over there is it!? But you never know, you may look up one day and realise that you are in that place you once dreamt of, the one over the edge, the edge that seems so insignificant and small now, that you laugh at the beautiful and amazingly human being that you are. And maybe, just maybe, you find yourself dreaming and itching and facing a brand new edge. Keep dissolving that edge of comfort darling one. It’s the only way.
P.S. Disclaimer. Sometimes, often, just chilling in our comfort zone is exactly where we choose and need to be. It’s duvet days and devouring Netflix and box sets. It’s faffing and procrastinating and going over n’ over n’ over the same old questions. It’s sad days and flat days and human days. It’s life and living and all of it, every damn moment.It’s all, oh so stupendously, ours.
Hey lovely creative genius, let me know if you resonate with any part of this musing :-) And if you would like a lil assistance with shifting that creative stuckness that be cloggin’ up your creative flow, then click here sign up to receive your FREE pdf book “10 ways to awaken your creative genius”. In gratitude, grace and freedom, HH
Heidi Hinda Chadwick
Creativity. Sexuality. Life. Art. Soul. Love.