How Expressing Creativity Makes your Whole Life Better!

It amazes me how when I take time for myself and exercise my creative side that I see the ripple effects across my life. If I take time to paint or write, I release some of the stress and anxiety that easily builds up in my body and mind. Even making bread (which I am doing this afternoon) or knitting a dish cloth in my spare time gives me a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction that I take with me into my work.

I was thinking about a book of exercises that I first completed about 2 years ago – well – started for certain – I guess I don’t recall if I completely finished. It was “The Artist’s Way” book by Julia Cameron and I recently bought another one of hers designed more for people in retirement. It’s called “It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again”. The structure is the same although the topics of week vary between the 2 books. Both are designed to help people overcome blocks and find new ways to be creative – rather like coaching. Elizabeth Gilbert notes that without the Artist’s Way, there would not have been an “Eat, Pray, Love”. That’s a pretty strong statement. I am not affiliated with Ms Cameron and I make no money from this exercise. 

The Artist’s Way

There are basically 3 practices that we are encouraged to undertake during the course of this program. The first, and I think most important, is what she calls “the morning pages”. She invites us to write 3 full pages of whatever we like first thing in the morning. It’s a great time to do a brain dump and prepare for the day. I have, in the past, practiced these religiously for periods of time and I can attest to the fact that I ALWAYS get something from them.

The second practice is to take a couple of 20 minutes walks each week – solo. No cell phone, no radio, no dog, no buddies. It’s meant to help us disconnect and get comfortable alone. I highly recommend this practice as well – it’s not easy to go off grid in our world and you may be surprised at how good it feels.

The third idea is to take yourself on an Artist’s Date each week. Again, this is to be completed alone so that you can have space to think and decide. It can be as simple as setting aside time to watch an arty movie or going to the dollar store with 5 bucks and an intention to create something from whatever you purchase.

Kick off 

So, I’ve almost completed the 12-week program and, as I progressed, I built a repeatable experience. My goal was to work through the exercises and offer a chronicle to my listeners & readers about what I am uncovering about myself over the 3 months. And for fun, I’m inviting you to work alongside me through a series of emails and videos. Use these as an opportunity for accountability for yourself. Life gets busy and it’s not always possible to complete everything that we wanted in a given week. Some weeks will be tough – you may complete one day of morning pages this week and then wheels come off! Keep at it anyway! See what gets better in your own life!

If this is of interest, I encourage you to buy her book so that you have all of the exercises and explanations. I promise to do the following: 1) Send an email with a summary of her prompts for the week and 2) speak about my own progress. Get it touch and I’ll get you started!

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