Why is it so hard to get creative work done? (Or really any work that requires sustained effort over a period of time.)
It seems crazy because we KNOW we’re glorious beings of the universe. Bold, beautiful, bustling balls of sexy, wise creative vibrancy – aiming to express ourselves, bring our dreams to life, meet our responsibilities, or even, when we’re not reaching as high, just to exercise regularly. We have everything we need. All the gifts we can imagine. And a heap truck of passion.
So why is it so fucking hard to get anything done?
I’ll tell you why: it’s because of who you’re listening to.
THE VOICE OF INSPIRATION & THE VOICE OF LIMITATION
Inside each of us is a voice of inspiration and a voice of limitation. You could call this the muse and the critic, love and fear, or your wise self and ego. They’re all words pointing at the same thing. That there are two very different voices within you, each seeking to guide you, but one is FOR you while the other is definitely not.
When you take a particular area of your life and look at it through the eyes of the critic, you hear a voice that’s critical, puts you down, focuses on all that you’re doing wrong, and wants you to feel doubtful, scared, heavy, and limited. It uses, among other things, the lure of distraction, addictions, and compulsive habits to drain and scatter your energy so you won’t get anything substantial or life-giving done. How many times have you checked your phone, email, and social media today? ‘Nuf said.
When you take the same area of your life and look at it through the eyes of the muse, you hear a voice that’s accepting, open, grounding, guiding but encouraging, can give feedback while making you feel good about yourself, and, as one woman said, “feels like a glittering spider web that shimmers as it sees you with hope and encouragement.” This voice whispers in your ear, prods you to take the higher road (it’s nice outside, you should shut off the computer for awhile and go for a bike ride), and, when you really listen to her, she’ll give you an endless supply of empowering inspiration that will take you places you could never have come up with before.
If it’s so obviously polarized,
why isn’t it easier to shut the critic off and tune into the muse?
THE TIPPING POINT
Addictions are amazing teachers. But our primary addictions are not to sex, alcohol, drugs, food, caffeine, sugar, over spending, accruing debt, accruing stuff, our iphones, social media, or the gazillion of distractions we engage in daily.
Our primary addiction is to ego, aka. the critic and the voice of limitation. This fear-based voice in our head tells us 24/7/365 what to think, feel, say, want, believe, and do. And unless we’re very clear and strong, through engaging in hard core spiritual and self-inquiry practices to wise up to its game, we largely follow its lead.
Until we don’t.
There’s a point – a gloriously humbling, paradigm shifting point – when we look back on our lives, see the squandered moments, the endless attempts to hide, the fearful approaches, the millions of times we’ve quit or didn’t even have the courage to start and we say: ENOUGH.
It’s the point when we genuinely, in a deep, deep way, decide that we want our lives to WORK. We want our creativity to flow, flourish, and develop into the substantial and elevating offering we know it’s meant to become. Our bodies to feel healthy, lithe, and light. Our minds to feel focused, clear, and sharp. Our relationships to be honest, loving, mutually beneficial, and empowering. And our dominant sense of self to manifest into the glittering beings we know we truly are.
When we reach this tipping point a fire lights inside of us that says:
I want to stop avoiding my life by frittering my time and energy away. I want to engage! I want to create the awesome offerings, life, and love I came here to live. I want to live a life of magic. I want to know who I truly am.
This is the moment you truly begin to take back your power… and it’s a beautiful thing.
Have you reached this moment?
If you have, then you know – this epiphany is a signal that a seed of a new self has awakened in you. For its fire to grow into your dominant way of being takes practice, dedication, and replacing your familiar yet self-defeating habits with habits that serve you and foster your connection to your muse. It also takes a heap ton of courageous tenacity because every day, even after you’ve become dedicated to showing up, listening to your muse, and following through with what comes to you, the critic’s nagging voice of fear and limitation will still be there taunting you to feel like crap, quit whatever you’ve been working on, and get back in your cage.
If you have a foot in each of these worlds, it’s OK. I think most of us do. But if you want to get more than half of yourself and your life operating under the voice of inspiration, I highly encourage you to take something you truly want, maybe something you’ve not let yourself do because it’s so precious to you that you don’t know if you can handle failing at it, or maybe something you need to do on a regular basis to practice truly showing up, and do it. Make it your practice… and your key to opening the door to your muse’s voice of inspiration much, much wider.