“There is a book inside of me.” You too? I’ve known it since I was a child. In fact, the desire to write has been the only avocation that has been a constant in my life. This yearning to make a living as a writer is what I call my soul purpose. It is also a source of great frustration when I consider that unfinished book that still roams around the pathways of my brain, looking for an unlocked door that will lead to completion, or even a whole-hearted beginning.
What stops me? Any number of things. Time. Fear that I’m not good enough to write anything. Subject matter. Work. Children. Writer’s block. The heat of a Mississippi summer. You name it, I’ve probably tried to blame it.
I’m not even committed to fiction or nonfiction. In fact, I think I have at least one of each floating around in there. And as much as I love coaching, I know that I will always reserve some time to write something, even if it’s just a blog.
“Just a blog.” See how easily that rolled off the tongue?
This book is like an apparition that forms more fully at various times and then drifts away, hiding for awhile so that I settle comfortably again into my life of limiting literary beliefs.
The truth is we tell ourselves a lot of crazy things when it comes to creating art in any form. Creatives are often conflicted by limiting beliefs that may have originally been formed by a 2nd grade art teacher who told us we better not hope for a career as an artist. Or the college professor that ripped our Comp 1 paper to shreds, noting sarcastically in the margin, “I’m not sure you showed up today.” Criticism is both the thing we crave and the thing we fear the most. It tears us up while validating our secret fears about ourselves.
Years ago, I was introduced to the book The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. I began reading and instantly felt a connection to the author, her struggle and her technique to help artists – creatives – go deep on a spiritual journey and come out on the other side, shiny and new. I did the exercises and felt small shifts begin. And I kept the practice of morning pages to this day. But, hurricanes and weddings and classes and work got in the way and I put the book and the rest of the exercises aside, hoping for a magical day when everything would come together and words would pour out of me onto approximately 250 pages or so.
It’s not going to happen unless I make it happen. And I know I’m not alone.
So I created this group – a year long journey through The Artist’s Way with some really neat people that I don’t really know who have the same fears and hopes and dreams for themselves and for their work. As a coach, I can facilitate the work, bring in resources, guide participants to go deep within and watch synergy happen as master minds come together. As a group, the participants can show up each month and enrich the learning for me and for each other, bringing their best to the call and finding soul sisters and brothers that will celebrate successes with them forever.
You don’t have to have a book inside of you to bring the element of creativity into your life. You don’t even have to have a desire to be anything. All that’s required is a curiosity about the work you want to do and a willingness to step out onto the path. I’ll hold your hand if you’d like.