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Getting Unstuck: Moving Through the Creative Process

This is a guest post generously contributed by artist & Akashic Records Reader Kathryn Wyatt.

All creative pursuits begin in the same way. An idea forms in your mind or you receive a full download of the finished thing—be it a song, novel, painting, drawing, jewelry, clothing, dance, play, or whatever else.

You can see it, or you can begin to feel it.

This will have three possible outcomes:

  1. You don’t even begin
  2. You start and never finish
  3. You see it through to the end

What makes the first two so different from the third, and what can be done about them?

Never beginning: “I’m not good enough/I can’t do this” syndrome

When this little monster rears its ugly head, we feel deflated.

We had all this beautiful momentum, all of the magic coming through us, but our human ego derails us before the train even begins moving. Our luggage was packed, our ticket in hand, the excitement and anticipation building but then… nothing.

The ego, who is the train conductor in this case, comes marching through the passenger cars speaking these words:

“What were you thinking??”

“Did you really expect to be able to do this?”

“You’re not talented enough for this!”

“You need to take (yet another) class before you could ever attempt this”

“There are so many other people out there who are already better at this than you, so why try?”

“Maybe this isn’t what you are meant to be doing.”

The conductor makes a very convincing argument as you sit alone in your closed-off sleeping compartment on the train. Every word echoes inside you and you believe it all.

If this was a friend, or even stranger, would we put up with this kind of mental abuse? Of course not! So why do we allow our egos to derail the train? This is your train. You may be a passenger, but you can also be the driver, the coal shoveler, and the ticket taker.

It’s time for you to stand up and kick your ego off the train. But this doesn’t mean you have to go at it alone. If you pull up the train curtains and look out, you’ll see that you have many allies on this journey.

You have the ability to allow on board whoever you choose. What sort of passengers do you want on your train? Supportive, uplifting, energetic, loving, understanding… these are the kinds of passengers you must surround yourself with. If they don’t have a ticket, they need to kindly step off the train—not at the next station, but now.

If you’re iffy about a specific passenger, don’t invite them on to your train. If you’ve been burned in the past, don’t slow down to let them on. This is a very important form of self-preservation during the creative process.

Creative people can be derailed in the blink of an eye. A backhanded, negative, or misunderstood comment can be blown out of proportion by your ego. The ego loves this because it means it has full control over the situation and your Divine magic, your powerful creativity. The ego’s job is to keep you small—and it’s damn good at that job.

So, the first step is to defy the ego and begin.

The second step is to surround yourself with supportive people. Who cares if it sucks the first time? Who cares if it takes 10 tries to get something worthwhile? Who cares if it’s terrible or if it’s ugly? This is creation itself being spilled out from your hands or voice or body (or all of the above). You’re creating something new out of nothing…. and that matters!

You’re a perfect mix of human and Divine. In your humanness, however, you might sometimes forget your Divinity. Your body can help you remember. You owe it to yourself and to Creation to begin.

 

Starting and not finishing: “Fear of completion” syndrome

Most creatives have unfinished projects sitting around. This is our nature. It could be that we’ve learned what we needed and have moved on to something else. It could be that time got in the way and we needed to give that time to something else.

But what happens when we get in a rut and all we ever produce is halves or three-quarters of something? What are we holding on to and why can’t we let go?

This is an interesting place for artists. The momentum has revved up, the energy was there, we were all-consumed… and then we find we can’t move. We don’t know where to go next. We want to jump into a new project without completing the first. Why?

As in any long-term relationship, true beauty comes after the halfway mark when we’ve settled in and are really beginning to understand, converse with, and know what we are creating. The high is waning and it’s feeling a bit mundane.

We think we already know the outcome… but do we? What makes us think we know what’s going to happen? What makes us think that the second half isn’t as good or better than the first half? This is where beauty sneaks in under our noses and arises in subtle, quiet, glorious ways. Yes, we do know this piece/process, but we don’t know it all. Settling in to knowing allows us to open ourselves even more to the acceptance of mysterious, intriguing outcomes.

As in a long-term relationship, we start to feel safer. This means we can let our guard down and allow to come through us what we never dreamed was possible. Opening up to possibilities allows space for messing up, for making bold decisions, for our work to become something we hadn’t expected. This is growth. This is creative knowledge. No creative pursuit is ever in vain, even the so-called terrible ones.

Every human being is a creator. This is our Divine nature showing its light, showing its truth.

How we choose to have a relationship with that Divinity is reflected in what we do and how we do it. Divinity is already in you, it is you. It’s fundamental to recognize and respect your hands/voice/body for the Divine expression it is. This can be done through joy and reverence as opposed to pain and suffering.

Rejoice in the glorious vessel and gifts you have been given. Give gratitude to them by doing your work, the work of your soul, and always remember that you’re the one conducting your train.


portrait of artist Kathryn Wyatt

Author Bio: Kathryn Wyatt is a photographer, artist, gardener, and certified Akashic Records reader living in the foothills of Vermont. She, along with her artist husband, raise their two children in their busy home occupied by three dogs and one cat. To explore Kathryn’s work or connect with her directly, please visit www.blueonyxarts.com

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