The next stage of the creative process that generates anxiety is Choosing, which brings up Confused Mind. The appropriate way to feed Confused Mind Anxiety is through Finding Clarity. In his book Fearless Creating, Eric Maisel describes several ways to achieve this.
- One of the ways to get to Clarity is by Working Underneath. If you have read my last blog, you will know that if we Hush and Hold, we gain access to the Deep Creative within us—the Unconscious—the underground storehouse of wisdom and images that are just waiting to surface if we allow space for that to happen. As Maisel says, “This ‘working underneath’ produces ideas right as you awaken, it produces them in the middle of the night and jolts you out of bed, it produces them as you ride the train into the city, it produces them as you paint or write something else. It produces them around the clock, tossing them up one after another into conscious awareness.” (Fearless Creating, p. 43).
- Another way to feed Confused Mind appropriately is by practicing a technique called Knowing Already. That’s where we get to acknowledge that we possess ideas we’ve wanted to work on for a looooong time, but for some reason we keep putting them off. Maybe these ideas are not fully formed yet, or we can’t conceive of how to actually do them, or maybe they aren’t commercially viable, or someone else has probably done this one better. But they keep coming back, tapping us on the shoulder, “Saying, ‘Ahem, I’m waiting! Make me!’” Guess what we are supposed to do? Bring them back, dust them off, accept that Confused Mind anxiety is normal and begin to explore this idea that has been issuing you an invitation for a long time.
- A third way to find clarity is by Honoring Snapshots. Snapshots are those moments we have captured and held in our lives—the sweet song of a bird, the taste of a spring strawberry, the roughness of a rock wall, the look on a child’s face, the chime of bells at twilight. Maisel describes these snapshots as moments when “you have been shocked awake, fascinated, alerted in a visionary way.” (p. 45) They live within us for a reason, like questions waiting to be answered, to be brought into physical form.
*Cyncie is delighted to announce that she has just been certified as a Kaizen Muse Creativity Coach by the incredible Jill Badonsky whose training leadership in creativity supports countless artists.