Archive for The Element
From where I’m standing, sometimes it’s fun to peek out at the world and wonder what we’re all doing and why. It’s an interesting world, what happens in it doesn’t make sense sometimes…but we keep going along all the same…I can hear a lot of birds singing at the moment outside my inner city dwelling. That’s pretty cool, singing birds are uplifting.
I drew this picture whilst talking to Shaune Clarke on the phone about writing books. I was trying to figure out the process of writing as it relates to our mind and consciousness. In my experience, this is what happens;) Writing focuses and concentrates diffused consciousness, or light, and sparks a fire in the soul.
Cue music now…There’s a fire burning in my soul…
There’s nothing quite like the feeling of being the captain of your own ship. It’s the feeling you get from expressing your unique form of creativity and deciding to set your own course for your life. No-one else can decide this for you, because the way you express your creativity is as unique as your finger print. It won’t always be plain sailing, but it’s worth it if you want to know the feeling of freedom that comes with being self directed.
Sometimes in our lives, we get these amazing A-Ha moments. I like to think of them as epiphany’s. For me, it’s when something happens, and I can sense life has just warped. and we feel something shift inside of ourselves. We know that life has just taken one of it’s quirky little turns and we’ll never be quite the same again. In fact, we’re off on a new tangent that leads to some grand adventure!
The joy of self expression is undeniable. We can feel it bubbling up from within and it bursts forth in a happy little babble of creativity.
It’s very easy to see children enjoying themselves as they express their creativity. They’re far more open and uninhibited than we are as adults in this way. This inherent joy in creativity and self expression is quite infectious, so if you need reminding of this, spend some time with children:)
Michael Leunig has had a great influence in my life and my creative expression. Anyone who knows his work can most likely see the influence in my work. There’s a cartoon he made called, “How To Get There.” It may be one of the most overlooked master pieces of all time.
In the cartoon, he tells us to go to the garden gate, open it and walk out towards the horizon. He says to sit down and have a rest now and again. But then get up and just keep going. That’s how to get there.
Any of my accomplishments in life can be largely attributed to just following this simple but magnificent piece of guidance. Thank you Michael:)
I drew this picture for Kimberley after she made the comment, “”We’re a tiny boat amongst many large ships” in relation to expressing her creativity in her business.
Sometimes, when we’re just starting out on our journey of discovering and sharing our unique form or creativity with the world, it can seem very daunting as we look around at all the big stuff that other people have created before us. But that’s ok, they were once little boats too, and we’re only ever going to start small.
The perfection of this is that big ships can’t chop and change as quickly and easily as small boats, so we’re a lot more capable of making the necessary adjustments to our creative course as we learn more and grow it into something bigger.
Hi there, welcome to an investigation on what creativity is and how it works and going into the regions of our sub-conscious and super conscious mind, as well as looking at the laws of attraction in the creative process. A lot of this information seemed a little too esoteric and out there to go into anywhere but my own blog, so here we go!
We’ll start with the main points and cover each one as the article progresses.
1. Creativity is an infinite resource. There is no beginning and no end to the ways in which we can access and express our creativity. (And we’re all creative, it comes with being human…it’s a bit like breathing, if you’re alive, conscious and breathing, you’re creative.)
2. Being creative means being touch with or connected to the Infinite - or whatever you want to call it. That part of yourself that represents unlimited potential and endless possibilities, it has no beginning or end. I also refer to this as our unconscious or superconscious mind.
3. Creativity is “part of a deep preverbal communication that binds people together. It is literally a communion. Creativity is important because it can put us in sync with those around us, to tap into common emotions and thoughts and share them with others.” (Dr. Stuart Brown)
4. Your ability to tap into the extraordinary creative resource within is related to your ability to connect with the Infinite potential within you, and this is directly affected by how congruent you are within yourself. When people talk about the Law Of Attraction, they’re referring to our ability to attract things into our lives through our thoughts or intentions (and of course action – but it begins with thought). This is the creative element everyone is using all the time, and you have incredible power to do this when you are congruent and consistent in your thoughts, words and actions. The saying, “Know Thyself” relates to the element of congruency and consistency and it’s power in the creative process.
I will not be going deeply into these last two points in this article because it’s going to be far too long, but will continue to discuss them over the next few weeks.
Infinite Potential and Endless Possibilities.
Let’s have a look at the first point, creativity is infinite. Anyone who consciously accesses and expresses creativity regularly is aware of this. (A lot of people are being creative in this way but are not aware of it.) We’re dropping in to someplace beyond our normal sensory perception and gathering insights or information and always seem to come back with something, so over time, we learn that this resource is always there and we can rely on it for new ideas or insights.
Creative people are always having their ideas copied, because of the unique and unusual element in their work, which is an attractive quality in a world where newness and novelty are prized. This should not be cause for concern however, as we can always drop back into our infinite creative resource and come up with new, cool, interesting, useful or beautiful things. Another thing to note on this is the way the Internet has changed how rapidly we share ideas, information and insights. It’s quite impossible to try to maintain sole ownership of your creative expression, and to try to do so means stunting the evolution of your own and others creativity. More on this later.
Creativity Beyond the Conscious Mind
Let’s move on to creativity and our connection to the Infinite/accessing the unconscious or superconscious mind. All creative insights come from the mind. But not all creative insights come from our conscious mind, which is the part of our mind that processes things that are perceptible in our sensory world of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. If something is easily discernible in our conscious mind, then it has most likely already been created, because we can already perceive it with our senses. Creativity can draw on all levels of our perception, both that of the senses and beyond sensory perception, the latter is what I refer to as accessing our unconscious or superconscious.
A lot of amazing creations are re-vamped versions of what’s already apparent in our world, and there’s nothing wrong with this. Everyone draws on the insight and inspiration of other creatives in their field all the time, this is how individuals, communities and creativity evolves.
We can still have a powerful influence with our creativity if it’s a re-vamped version of someone else’s work, because we can be taking both elements of creativity and making use of them. That is, we take the things that are already available to our senses, drop into the unknown, or the unconscious/superconscious mind and access new insights, ideas or ways to build upon what is already there. If we are just copying someone else’s creativity, it’s very easy to pick up on, because a blatant copy lacks the power to influence others in a significant way.
The reason our creative expression has a significant impact on the world is because people can sense that there is something new, something fresh, something insightful or useful in it – it has added value. We can sense that someone’s creativity has that imprint of their own unique creative expression, we know they have added some value to the work, whether it’s purely from their own inner resources or a combination of their inner resources and other people’s creativity.
A Beautiful Mind
A great example of a form of creative expression that came from someplace beyond our current sensory perception was shown in the film “A Beautiful Mind”. Mathematician and Nobel Laureate, John Nash, was adamant he had to find “a new idea” or something truly original. Of course, in his life, John Nash has had an incredible struggle with his mental delusions and ill health, and this is not something we would want to have to go through just to get a new idea. But it isn’t his troubled mental health that caused him to access the unique insights that resulted in him winning a Nobel Prize for Economics. John Nash was adamant that he wanted to come up with something new, and his continued effort, focus and drive to find it gave him the ability to access those insights.
I would have to study Nash’s life to understand how he enters a play state that allows him to access his superconscious mind, we all have our own unique ways of doing this. But if we want to have a massive influence and significant impact with our creativity, bringing something new into the world that has previously been beyond our sensory perception is the most efficient way to accomplish this. A big part of accessing that kind of creativity is the unrelenting search for our unique creative expression. Like John Nash, we need to continue to concentrate our efforts on finding our own unique gifts or original ideas if we ever want to have them.
Why It Can Be Difficult To Access Our Infinite Creative Resources
If we all have access to this unlimited creative potential, and we’re all capable of having extraordinary and unique ideas, then why them aren’t we all Nobel Laureates? We’re going to look at why so many of us find it difficult to access the part of our minds beyond our normal sensory perception. There are many things to investigate here, not the least that we don’t all aspire to be Nobel Laureates, we’ll go through some of the most important.
A big issue lies in having to enter a space of the unknown or uncertainty, often referred to as the void. From day one in our education system, and even before then, we’re taught to find answers by looking for information from external sources only. We’re tested and rewarded for “knowing” things and regurgitating prescribed knowledge. Basically, we don’t like the feeling of not knowing, so most of us will not hang around in a place of uncertainty or the “unknown” for very long. Certainty is one of those things that we need in order to feel safe in the world. Too much uncertainty causes us serious psychological discomfort and stress, and we’re wired to move away from pain and towards pleasure, so we’ll try to avoid feeling uncertainty.
Who Manages Uncertainty Brilliantly?
I read that one of the common traits shared by some of the most successful entrepreneurs and business people is their ability to manage their uncertainty. In other words, they’ve learned to remain calm and centered when faced with uncertainty, and find ways to solve the problems they’re presented with. It’s no wonder entrepreneurs are some of the most creative people on the planet! Anyone who makes a habit of being ok with uncertainty, and allows themselves to drop into the unknown will find their inner resources for solving problems.
If we aren’t aware of the value and necessity of allowing ourselves some degree of uncertainty during our creative process, then we’re likely to default to our safety position of just doing whatever we already know. And unfortunately, this means we won’t be able to slip past our conscious mind and get the goodies from the unconscious or superconscious, because we have to go beyond what we know and sit in a place of uncertainty to find anything new. The better we are at being ok with uncertainty, the better we are at accessing original and unique insights and information.
How Do We Get Past Our Conscious Mind and Access Our Creativity?
I’ve written extensively on how play helps us access our creativity in a previous article, so I won’t go into great detail here, but getting into an authentic play state is one of the best ways to shift out of our fear of uncertainty and drop into the holistic mindset needed for accessing our unconscious or superconscious minds. There are a couple of essential components needed for us to access our infinite creative resource. We need to occupy our conscious mind to get it out of the way, and engaging in play does this perfectly.
But wait, there’s more! The magnificent design of being in an authentic play state takes us into a holistic mindset by dramatically increasing the neural connections in our brains, opening us to improvisational potential, and we lose track of time and literally diminish our consciousness of self. Please re-read that last statement. Play helps us get beyond ourselves, beyond our consciousness of the “self” which is precisely what’s needed to blur the boundaries between our conscious, unconscious and superconscious realm. Ta-daaaah! How amazing and cool is that? Brilliant, perfect, magnificent – I LOVE it! The perfection of play is the greatest creative catalyst there is.
How Do I Get Past My Fear Of The Unknown?
Now, back to managing uncertainty and dropping into the unknown. In my own creative writing or art practice, the biggest hurdle I need to get past is staring at a blank canvas, computer screen, or piece of paper. All of those things look a lot like staring into a great big empty space to me, a space of total uncertainty and terrifying unknown. How do I get past this? I have to do something – anything that gets me started. Just start scribbling or typing words or pictures, splashing paint or moulding the clay. Whatever it is I’m working on, the biggest trick is to DO SOMETHING!
I can think about how much I don’t want to start something – like going for a jog – until the cows come home. Or I can just put on my shoes and start running. Once I get going, it’s not such a big deal. In fact, once I start whatever it is, I get into a state of presence and flow which feels great and I’m glad I had the discipline to follow through on my intentions.
Get started no matter what. Getting started is like walking into the water and going beyond your depth, you have to start swimming whether you like it or not. When I first took the creative plunge of writing my own book, I had these words playing in my head over and over, “Sink or swim, sink or swim, everybody – everybody, jump right in.” Yep, my head is a weird place to spend time, but some part of me was insistent that I get started on the project.
Taking action as a means to get past our self imposed blocks goes for absolutely ANY creative undertaking, whether it’s writing a book, building a business, making an artwork, finding a date, creating a vast fortune or designing your dream life. Getting past our fear of uncertainty and the unknown in our creative process can be overcome by taking some form of action to occupy our conscious mind and doing something that gets us in a play state will help us slip past our conscious mind and into the realm of the unconscious and superconscious…And there we have it – access to the infinite inner resources of our creative genius!
Thanks so much for reading, and those of you who visited when I was halfway through writing this, thank you for your patience whilst I completed it. Leave a comment if you have any questions or insights you’d like to share. Cheers, neroli.
PS. I’ve posted some videos on my site recently of artworks by Shaune Gladwell and Yayoi Kusama. I’ve also written some insights about the works and how they illustrate some of the things I’ve discussed in this article, like the void and the superconscious and accessing it through play. There are certain artists and artworks that seem to have an irresistible magnetism to them as far as I’m concerned, and it’s because these things somehow draw me into that space of no mind. These are two of them.
PPS. Just so you all know the power of our creativity, I really didn’t know how this article was going to take shape apart from the fact that I needed to write about creativity and the unconscious and superconscious mind. Once we get comfortable with dropping in there, the information and insights we can find are amazing
Yayoi Kusama’s “Soul Under The Moon” installation, (Infinity Room) with Alonefold’s tunes in the background.
This installation by Yayoi Kusama called “Soul Under The Moon” reminds me of what it’s like to drop into the void and float in a sea of infinite potential. The way the room disappears into a seemingly endless black void is exactly what it feels like when I hover in the place of uncertainty during the creative process. The beautiful, floating iridescent globes remind me of the little gems – or worlds, waiting to be discovered and brought back to our waking world. For me, stepping inside this artwork feels like stepping into a place that exists beyond the realm of our everyday lives. For me, there’s something so beautiful, peaceful and transcendent about this artwork, it helps me slip between the folds of my conscious mind and fall into someplace that is usually found in my dreaming.
People in a balloon room with Alonefold’s tunes