Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Courage to Create

Create. It’s what we do. At our very core, our very essence, we are natural creators. You are the one who creates your reality based on what you think, know, and believe. You are the one who forges your destiny by the choices that you make, nanosecond by nanosecond, hour by hour, year by year, lifetime by lifetime. So, being creative is something we do naturally without realizing it, without knowing it, and oftentimes, with no forethought at all. That gives it a double edged sense of a couple of dynamics… on one hand, it’s exciting and at the same time, it can be a little scary… in other words, it takes courage to deliberately create something.

The word “courage” in the title indicates that in order to talk about courage, one must first be familiar with fear. So that’s where we’ll start… We’ll get the scary stuff out of the way and then have our creative desserts…

A famous author was dealing with “writer’s block,” he was looking to find inspiration; so he decided to take a walk in the mountains. He was enjoying the scenery when he stepped too close to the edge of a cliff and started to fall. In desperation he reached out and grabbed a limb of a gnarly old tree hanging onto the side of the cliff.

Full of fear, he assesses his situation. He was about 1000 feet from the floor of the canyon below. If he should slip again he'd plummet to his death. He cries out, "Help me!" But there was no answer. Again and again he cried out but to no avail.

Finally he yelled, "Is anybody up there?"
A deep yet serene voice replied, "Yes, I'm up here."
"Who is it?"
"It's God."
"Can you help me?"
"Yes, I can help."
"Please help me then!"
"Let yourself go."
Looking around the man became full of panic. "What?!?!"
"Let yourself go. I will catch you."
"Uh... Is there anybody else up there?"

None of us are immune to fear at one level or another… being enlightened doesn’t make you impervious to fear… it simply makes you willing to turn it into a teacher.

Fear manifests in very subtle energies in a myriad of ways. It’s not the “thing” itself, right? It’s only our perception of it that makes it scary. The job of your ego is to protect you and it does it through subversion. Your ego says, “I know what’s best for you so I’ll take care of you… all you have to do is listen to me.” And what do we say before we have our epiphanies? “Okay.”

However, ego knows it’s got to be tricky. If you just out and out knew that that was what was happening, you’d be able to fend it off… So, it’s very subtle and conniving. The ego sets itself up as your internal guidance system and, if and when you allow it, runs your life.

As we become “awakened,” we start to understand that the reason that we’re fearful of something is because we don’t know what the outcome will be, which means we’re not in control and not being in control means that anything could happen… and that brings us to the first blockage that keeps us from becoming deliberately creative…

Learn to release control. Detach from the outcome. You don’t have to know how it will turn out. Learn to embrace the mystery. Become comfortable in the uncomfortableness.

It starts with a spark, a divine glimmer of an idea that something needs to shift. Something needs to change. Tony Robbins says, “When the pain of staying in the situation becomes greater than the fear to change it, that’s when the change can & will occur.” But what about when there’s no pain… it’s just sedentary energy. We just become lethargic and unwilling to move forward… 

All you have to do is show up. Become present. Be here now.

Here’s the one that we turn into the greatest challenge: Be willing. Be willing to. Be willing to become fully present and simply do the next right thing. What’s the next right thing? Not letting fear or externalizations control you anymore. Move through the subversion and the coercion and put the first piece of the puzzle into place. Connect with your TRUE internal guidance system by allowing that spark of divine communion and communication to move in you and through you. You have all you need within you. All you have to do is approach yourself with reverence and love. That’s the epiphany. Where people get caught up is in self defeat. This is a tremendous epidemic in the world; we’re unwittingly taught and developed as children to become victims and that there’s always “someone better, someone smarter, better looking, more athletic, more successful, more abundant” than we are… even in this world of new thought and spirituality, we look at luminaries, sages, gurus and bodhisattvas as liberators. That’s what makes them so popular… the information they present is not new, in fact it’s ancient as time itself… All you have to do is be willing to show up for yourself with kindness, reverence, great self care and love. And know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are a Divine expression of Source, of pure Love itself. Know that you are worthy.  

An epiphany is simply a remembrance. The reason that “seeing the light” seems so natural and is a part of everyone’s journey is because you’ve “seen” it before. It’s a feeling of familiarity. Then we say, “Why didn’t I remember this?” It’s simply because we’d forgotten. The “Ah Ha” moment is simply a connection that helps you remember, it helps you form a relationship between two or more ideas or concepts. It’s kind of like putting together a jig saw puzzle but you think you already know what the picture is. You’ve seen it many times, perhaps hundreds or thousands of times and then you allow yourself to insert the last piece before you finally say, “Look, there it is… It’s me!” Only then you realize that it’s not complete yet, there’s more to the puzzle. In fact, your puzzle reconstruction is just beginning! The puzzle is infinitely large; puzzles locked within puzzles, waiting to be reassembled. Your job is merely to start with one piece, wherever you are.

Once we have a deeper understanding that fear is only our ego creating a perception… Fear is “I don’t know what the outcome will be…” How do you fix it? You don’t. There is no elimination or destruction fear… we just learn to see through it like seeing through a veil. We let go of the outcome. We even learn to become friends with it. Fear happens only because we don’t have enough information… It’s like an onion… peel a layer, find another layer… and another, and another… it’s simply a matter of getting to know your onion.

That brings me to point number two: You can be afraid of success as much or more than you can be afraid of failure… I never understood this concept until recently. Zig Ziglar said this many years ago… “People are afraid of success as much as they are of failure.” How could that be so, I wondered. How could anyone be afraid of getting everything they want? And then it hit me… if you create it, you have to nurture it and care for it… in other words; you have to be responsible for it. Who needs that kind of pressure? No, much easier to not do anything. “If you need me, I’ll be over here on the couch with a bag of Doritos watching Scoobie Doo…”

So why even think of being creative?

Because being creative allows your Soul to express itself and that gives you happiness, purpose and fulfillment. It must be joyful; otherwise you won’t stick with it very long. If creation becomes a chore or a job, it won’t be long before you’ll give it up. That only reinforces in your mind that creation is not fun and you’ll talk yourself out of it every time. Plus, perhaps most importantly, your Soul wants and needs to be creative and expressive… if you don’t allow yourself to do that, you’re telling yourself that you’re not good enough… that what you’d create is not worthy or worthwhile… that you are not worthy of creating something… and that’s self defeating, self damaging and more importantly, Self damaging… (Big S)

So what can you do? 

Make a Routine for 4o Days. Here’s the regimen: Awaken in the morning, express gratitude in whatever way serves you and your Higher Power. Pray, meditate, reflect on your dreams, etc…And then, it’s coffee and morning pages, not always in that order… Doing “Morning Pages” are from Julia Cameron and her work, “The Artist’s Way.” Write 2-3 pages of longhand writing about whatever… it could be what you’re feeling, something you’re working through, somewhere you feel blocked, your gratitude, your beliefs, your prayers, insights, your expression of your Soul… if you’re blank and can’t think of what to write, simply write the words “Even though I don’t have anything to write about I’m going to fill this space with gibberish and empty words until they form themselves into a cohesive statement or feeling.” Writing it in longhand on a piece of paper makes neural connections between your brain and your hand and allows your thoughts to express as authentically as possible instead of being translated into or through a computer program… so don’t type them on a device.

Next, make a list of everything that you can think of to do that you enjoy. Gardening, listening to music, going to the park, riding a Ferris wheel, canoeing, working out, going to a show, being in a show, helping your neighbors, doing civic organizations, volunteering at the hospital or a shelter, attending this church… etc… it’s unlimited.

Do Vision Work:  Envision yourself doing it… make a vision board… put emotion into it… imagine what it would feel like to do it. The emotion is the catalyst… the wave of energy that transforms it from thought to manifestation. Have you ever seen an Olympic bobsled driver before a race? They stand at the top of the run, close their eyes, crouch down into the position of driving the sled and then they envision the course in as much detail as possible; every turn, every angle and straightaway... they see themselves going through the whole thing start to finish. 

Sign a Contract: Sign a contract with yourself to do these things and stick with it for 40 days!

Imagine What it Will Feel Like! The emotion and passion that you put into this will be the catalyst or wave that brings it into manifestation. Imagine what it feels like to live without fear, to be able to experience joy and release the outcome of whatever you're moving through. It doesn't mean you don't care, in fact, it means you care enough to remain centered, fully present and grounded; available for whatever shows up and whatever you need to do to help facilitate it. 

Namaste' friends...

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