I awoke at 1:08AM this morning.
I have my first newsletter, my first newsletter in a really long time scheduled to enter people's email boxes at 7AM. It's 3:30AM as I write this. I edited the email campaign a dozen times. I want to say no, it's not good enough- wait to send it out, but that would be giving into the fear and the paralysis.
Expression is not always easy for me. As a kid I had a terrible speech impediment. No one could understand me because I would get so excited and have so much to share I would talk incredibly fast. I would get frustrated when I wasn't understood so I would go off and work with the energy that was flowing through me on my own and figure out some way to release it.
A book that helped me move towards more authentic expression and unleashing my creativity was "The War of Art" by Steven Pressfield. It made me realize that the anxiety I felt around creating something new whether it's putting out a newsletter, writing an article, or even gifting myself the time to journal is not uncommon, and more so...it may even be a great thing.
The key to winning the creative battle is simply to keep practicing. Pressfield discusses his process of invoking the muse before beginning each day. This is a ritual I have adopted as I often pray before writing and ask that my message ring true for whomever needs it. I also pray to show myself compassion and not be such a relentless critic or doubter.
I believe we are all conduits of energy. Creative ideas flow through us. I am careful not to attach myself to them; knowing they are all fleeting, and nothing- no idea, no thing, no ability is ME for I AM the I AM I pray to. The creative force of the universe resides in me- within all of us and everything.
I have always considered myself to be a writer. I began writing at an early age mainly because I love to learn and writing helps me bring my thoughts together. It's like playing with ideas on paper. I would simply write about what I love and what was fascinating to me.
I started sharing my wellness writings in college. When I was torn between continuing being pre-med at Johns Hopkins University and following my heart in health promotion (I wanted to prevent people from getting sick rather than trying to help them once it happened) my advisor encouraged me to start a health and fitness column in the school paper.
My peers would approach me on campus and tell me that because of my writing they were now drinking less on weekends and making better choices in the dining hall. My heart grew so full of joy to know that what I loved learning and sharing was actually of benefit to others.
I continued to write for newspapers after graduating. Geez, I was so bold! I would call up or walk into the office and pitch my fitness column without any hesitation. It was so in the flow. I would have my parents take the exercise photos of me for the articles. I didn't care about things being so perfect. I didn't fear competition. I only knew and trusted the creative impulse that was flowing through me.
I guess I lost some of that when I went on my own and moved to Los Angeles. I didn't have the support of my family and community and I have never been one to take rejection well. I have faced a lot of rejection out here. Rejection burns. Those burns can keep you from moving forward. But, we must keep moving. There is an infinite amount of support available to you at all times. You just step into the field. The universe really does have your back. But, you have to believe in the power and want to work with the power as much as the power wants to work with you.
On a recent quest (my long solo road trips seeking guidance from the universe) I listened to BIG MAGIC by Elizabeth Gilbert on Audible. This really stuck out to me.
I have decided to call my new email newsletter The Heart of Practice as I am practicing living from my heart and sharing it with others. I am learning that creativity and I do not have to go to war. I don't have to light projects on fire in the construction phase and run away to escape the smoke. We can work together. Free flow of energy- I'm open to you.