Be What You Want

You must be the change that you want to see in the world, Mahatma Ghandi famously said. No logic in saying you want world peace, for example, if you’re engagedin violent protest.

Ghandi was an activist. Activists see more vividly than most what’s wrong with the world, what they want to put right.

For conscious creatives, it’s a little different.  We too need to be what we want to see and sometimes, yes, that means change. But sometimes not.

Sometimes conscious creation is more about being, owning, expressing or celebrating what already is.

Inhabiting more fully who we already are.

Be What You Want

Change or no change, the principle still stands. Be what you want to see.

Overcoming Self-Sabotage

creative self

The biggest challenge – just see it!

When you set out to create something, the conventional, conditioned part of you sets off fear alarms, in the form of resistance and self-sabotage.

Stephen Pressfield’s book Turning Pro, talks a lot about this tendency, which he calls resistance, in terms of the “shadow self” of Jewish Kabbalism.

“The [conventional] self doesn’t care about you. It doesn’t love you. It has its own agenda and it will kill you,” says Pressfield, quoting rabbi Mordecai Finley. ”It will kill you like cancer…to achieve its agenda, which is to prevent you from actualizing your [creative] self.”

Overcoming this resistance is tricky. Try to suppress it and it will bounce back, twice as strong.

As Audre Lorde once wrote: “The master’s tools will not dismantle the master’s house“.

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The London Book Fair – Kira’s Story Part 13

Kira Kenley will share her creative dilemmas and decisions every Friday over the coming months. You can read her earlier posts here


Orna is the lady in the sharp boots!

Kira Kenley is going to the London Book Fair! The invitation comes from the wonderful Orna Ross; novelist, poet, entrepreneur, creator, wife, mother and friend. Orna has been like an angel in my life, first appearing last August just as I was leaving my job to pursue a ‘creative’ life. Talk about synchronicity!

The meeting happened in the Queensbury Deli, a wonderful little haunt of mine where many a story has been born and many a friendship found. Orna was to become one such friend. I took a chance, diving head first into the creative abyss and the creative gods rewarded me by sending in Orna Ross.

Back then, Orna mentioned the ‘How To Go Creative’ blog and asked if I would consider writing a piece about my experience given I was attempting to do just that very thing. I said yes and like that I had my first writing assignment outside of school. The ‘piece’ became my whole life story and I sent it to Orna apologising for my runaway pen.

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Fill Up To Flow – The Key to Creative Success

Fill Up To Flow – The Key To Creative Success

The key to creative success is excess, suggests Anais Nin, because creation comes from overflow.

Excess breeds creativity

“You must not fear, hold back, count or be a miser with your thoughts and feelings.

“… Creation comes from an overflow, so you have to learn to intake, to imbibe, to nourish yourself and not be afraid of fullness.

“The fullness is like a tidal wave which then carries you, sweeps you into experience and into writing. Permit yourself to flow and overflow, allow for the rise in temperature, all the expansions and intensifications.

“Something is always born of excess: great art was born of great terrors, great loneliness, great inhibitions, instabilities, and it always balances them. If it seems to you that I move in a world of certitudes, you, par contre, must benefit from the great privilege of youth, which is that you move in a world of mysteries.

“But both must be ruled by faith.”

The Multitasking Myth

Attention Blink - Cognitive Limit - Choice Delay

Attention Blink – Cognitive Limit – Choice Delay

The discovery in 2007 of a “bottleneck in the brain” showed that multitasking is not productive.

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The Seven Stages of The Creative Process

The same process that creates one thing creates everything. And that process goes through seven stages, says Orna Ross. In the second part of this series, Orna talks about Stage one, Creative Intention.

The Challenge: To set a clear creative intention.

creative process stage 2

Creative intentions are not reducible to the ‘goals’ beloved of business management and success gurus. It is certainly possible to make things happen using this sort of motivation but for many, the goal approach leads to frustration, procrastination, overwhelm, giving up or block.

Goals are too managerial, too rational, too conscious, too directed. What’s missing is a tap into the vast reservoir of the imagination.

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The Seven Stages of The Creative Process

The same process that creates one thing creates everything. And that process goes through seven stages, says Orna Ross, in the first of a new series.

P1020101 That process goes through seven stages that connect and loop around each other in aninteractive waltz. If what we’re creating comes easy to us – family dinner, F-R-E-E-writing, a dollar – we don’t tend to notice the stages.

But if what we’re making is more challenging – conference catering for 300, a published novel, a million dollars – becoming more aware of the process is essential.

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Creative Freethinking by Orna Ross

Creative freethinkingI love the term “Freethinker”.  It’s the name that most closely approximates my own approach to matters of meaning but I’m leery of the associations it has gathered in around itself.

Freethinking originally arose in the nineteenth century as a reaction against organised religion and today, it still defines itself in that reactive way, the term often being used as a synonym for atheism or agnosticism.

The Freethinker Magazine ( ”The Voice of Atheism since 1881″ ) is illustrative.  Its founder wrote: “The Freethinker is an anti‑Christian organ, and must therefore be chiefly aggressive. It will wage relentless war against superstition in general, and against Christian superstition in particular. It will do its best to employ the resources of Science, Scholarship, Philosophy and Ethics against the claims of the Bible as a Divine Revelation; and it will not scruple to employ for the same purpose any weapons of ridicule or sarcasm that may be borrowed from the armoury of Common Sense.”

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