Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love shared a trick to connecting with creativity in her book Big Magic. The trick?
Here are three of her reasons for dropping the complaining habit:
- It’s annoying. Every artist complains, so it is a dead and boring topic.
- Of course it is difficult to create things. If it was easy, everyone would do it, and it wouldn’t be special or interesting.
- You are scaring away inspiration.
What you focus on expands within your daily experience. When you focus on complaining you see lack, and are weighed down by negativity. When you focus on joy and acceptance, you see amplified goodness in your life.
Elizabeth Gilbert experienced first-hand how self-pity slams the door on inspiration. Her solution? She started telling herself that she enjoyed her work. “I proclaimed that I enjoyed every single aspect of my creative endeavors – the agony and the ecstasy, the success and the failure, the joy and the embarrassment, the dry spells and the grind and the stumble and the confusion and the stupidity of it all.”
It was her way of saying, “I enjoy my creativity.” In doing so, she was fully accepting what it means to be creative. When we do not accept all aspects of what it means to be creative, our judgments can keep us from answering when inspiration comes knocking. Hello disconnect.
Please know that loving and accepting what-is, is not about living in airy-fairy denial. Exactly the opposite. Acceptance is choosing to stop fighting reality and stop expecting things to be different than they are. You can’t delegate acceptance either. It is no one else’s responsibility to understand or accept you. It is your job to understand and accept yourself. Along the way, you are invited to not understand and accept yourself; it is all a part of the process of life. But when you are open to self acceptance you clear out exhaustion, resentment, and disappointment; and allow your creativity to flourish.
Living is creating, and creating is living. All is creation.
When you invite change, your experience of life changes too. Life becomes more intense. This new experience of yourself can be uncomfortable, as it is experiencing the unknown. In an effort to get away from the intensity, you may revert to old habits to hide behind, or amuse yourself to avoid the intensity you are becoming. You may eat too much or too little, exercise too much or too little, call a person you have an unhealthy relationship with to dull your experience of the new vibration of life. Be aware. And bring that awareness to the choices you make, even if you choose to lower the vibration of your experience of life.
Know what is coming up is there to heal. Every struggle is an invitation to surrender and open to the flow of what life is offering.