Give yourself a fresh start.
Folks come into therapy wondering how long it’ll take to change. That all depends– mostly on YOU. Granted, some things can’t be rushed. They can’t be forced. Progress takes time and it tends to favor baby steps. On the other hand, the velocity of your personal growth is largely up to you. One tiny action in the right direction creates momentum that may take on a life of it’s own. So do the small step. Flow will take you from there. If you want excellerated change, O.K. Fasten your seatbelt and let’s go!
Intention has a crazy power all its own. Yes, you have to do your part, but it may be easier than you think. Once you put it out there that you want to change, the Universe rallies to support you. Before you know it, presto! You’re new and improved. Grant yourself another chance to change. You’re in charge. We don’t need to hit rock bottom before we bounce back. We can just say, “Hey, I’m ready to be my best self.” If you’re ready to change, start NOW. Tomorrow is seductively promising. It’s lovely to ponder what we might become one day. But this moment is the one that counts. No excuses. No self-sabatage. No delay.
I recently heard Wayne Dyer say, “You don’t attract what you want. You attract what you are.” Brilliant. So for example, is it more powerful for me to say, “I want to get organized” for the thousandth time? Or “I am organized?” Shazam. And so it is. If I own, “I’m organized,” amazingly, I behave that way. The same is true for anything. Take, “I want to be a non-smoker.” OK. How about, “I’m a non-smoker.” It’s a short cut. The funny thing is, as soon as you believe it, so does everyone else.
Claim it. Mean it. Be it. Done. Congrats!
Yesterday I missed an oppportunity to make contact with my yoga instructor. I sensed we needed to connect after class, and yet I shot out of there like my feet were on fire. Sure, I was under time constraints. And yet, I know I need to make time to connect meaningfully with people rather than obey my self-imposed pressure to get on with the next thing. This is something I’m changing today. I will take a few extra minutes to interact when it matters. I’m also fond of my old story that I can’t cook. And yet, it dawned on me recently that that’s not really true. I wonder how much more excited about cooking I’d be if I decided I’m good at it. I know the potential is there. It’s just latent. But I need not fear shallots. I need not be intimidated by the term “reduction.” I can cook. That’s the truth.
Shed your old stories– those that don’t serve you.
In my family of four, it’s not uncommon for someone to shout out, “Remember: Today is the first day of the rest of your life!” on the way out the door in the morning. That morsel of inspiration is always delivered with a profound oration to rival Abe Lincoln, with a hint of silly sarcasm. And even though we laugh or smile at the thought, it’s a great way to start the day. Today I am kind. Today I am patient. Today I am healthy. Today I am grateful. Today I am helpful. Today I am productive. Today I am wise. Today I am forgiving. Today I am friendly. Today I am organized. Today I’m a mean cook. Today I am new.
As divine order would have it, those I am most qualified to serve in therapy and spiritual guidance seem to find me. A common theme is blocked creativity. I know about this first hand and it is a passion of mine to help others break through resistance and get into the flow. This entry is for those who have a burning desire to write, sketch, sing, dance, sculpt, paint, act, cook, design, invent or dare to express creatively in any way, and are stuck idling on the launch pad.
Over a year ago, I blogged about the need for a book that affirms and inspires spiritual mavericks who bring the same creativity, authenticity and dynamism to spirituality that they bring to other aspects of their lives. Despite my long list of “why nots,” it is now written. It had to be. Perhaps Jesus summed it up best: “If we don’t bring forth that which is within us, that which is within us will destroy us.” Can you relate? Resistance to creative expression is a form of self-destruction. Sometimes, we have no choice but to give birth. I see this book, IS: A Street Smart Guide to Inspire Your Spiritual Side, as a co-creation with Infinite Source ( “IS,” for short–my name for God). I don’t know about you, but when I’m called, I answer. By the way, those creative inklings you feel…? Ring, ring.
If you, like so many of my brilliant, gifted clients, have a deep yearning to answer your artist’s pleas but are squelching that voice to pursue more “sensible” endeavors, I recommend reading Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. Creative recovery is catapulted with this book. I have seen the results on stage, on the canvas, in print and in the sparkling eyes of my fulfilled clients. Reading it and journaling as described are baby steps which lead to giant strides towards transformation and liberation. Your artist is worth it. Your art must be born.
Here are some common excuses we make to stay stuck and some wisdom to remedy that.
You: It’s too overwhelming. I don’t know where to begin.
Agatha Christie: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”
You: It’s been done.
Eugene Delacroix: “What moves men of genius, or rather what inspires their work, is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough.”
You: It’s too late now.
George Eliot (aka Mary Anne Evans): “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”
You: Artists are crazy.
Charles Bukowski: “Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead.”
You: I can’t take the time for this.
Henry Ford: “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right.”
You: It’s too painful.
Anais Nin, “And then the day came, when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk to bloom.”
You: I need a clearer vision before I start.
Nietzsche: “One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.”
You: There are too many obstacles.
Albert Einstein: “In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
You: “I’m afraid to try.”
Abraham Hicks: “There is no need to try. Just do it.”
You: I can’t expose myself like that.
Muriel Rukeyser: “What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open.”
George Carlin: “Those who dance are considered crazy by those who can’t hear the music.”
You: I’m not good enough.
Carl Jung: “I’d rather be whole than good.”
Now, friends, in the words of Paramahansa Yogananda, “Do something that nobody else has done, something that will dazzle the world!”