Body-Mind-Spirit - Inspiration for Writers, Dreamers, and Seekers of Health & Happiness
Creativity, Anxiety & Choices
I recently came upon this quote by American existential psychologist, Rollo May: “Real creativity is not possible without anxiety. In many ways, it’s the price of admission to the artist’s life.”
For years this kind of thinking not only legitimized my suffering, it inspired me to cling to it. I had chosen a creative life. Anxiety was to be expected, right? Wrong!
I’m anxious when I’m identifying with my ego instead of my Spirit. I’m anxious when I’m fearful and when I doubt myself. I’m anxious when I think I’m all there is. When I disregard my connection to every living thing and to source energy. I’m anxious when I think I need to be someone I’m not, or when I’m under the delusion that who I am or what I do is not enough. I’m anxious when I think I’ll never get what I want. When I spiral into negative, unconscious thinking. When I forget I have the ability to choose my thoughts, which create my emotions as well as my life experience. I’m anxious when I disconnect from my inner wisdom and intuition. I’m anxious when I shut myself down, when I think I’m alone at my desk and ignore my many guides (both physical and spiritual). I’m anxious when I’m unaware, when I let my thoughts race unchecked over horrific landscapes, when I could, with a bit of consciousness, choose to dwell on my opportunities and gifts.
Sure, writers—all artists—are sensitive, but we have a choice about where and how to focus our attention. We can choose what to believe about others and ourselves. And as we make these choices, we create our lives.
Writers are not the only people who tell themselves stories. Everyone does this. What story are you telling yourself?
I’m done thinking anxiety is the price I pay for being a writer. That story had me believing if I followed my bliss, if I wrote what needed to come forward, my husband would leave me, my parents would disinherit me, and I’d end up homeless on the streets—or worse, institutionalized in a mental hospital.
I believe what’s written in the gnostic gospels:
If you bring forth what is within you,
what you bring forth will save you.
If you do not bring forth what is within you,
what you do not bring forth will destroy you.
This has been my experience. Speaking my truth, saying what needs to be said, bearing witness to my life experience is liberating, and has set me free. It’s when I don’t write, when I’m afraid to face and bring forth what’s pressing to be explored that I suffer.
We’ve come a long way in consciousness since May published his first book in 1969, and as we continue to evolve I hope not only writers, but every person alive on our planet will understand that anxiety need NOT be the price of admission to a vibrant, active creative life! All it takes to turn this paradigm around is a new story and a bit of faith. So have at your creativity—and enjoy it!
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