Creative Inspiration and Receptiveness
First Published on Medium. Nov 8 · 6 min read
Today, I was literally woken up by a flashing breakthrough on the works of creativity. It was stimulating. I’ve had the good fortune of been awakened by ideas or melodies buzzing in my head, but this morning something rather important happened as well. I saw how I react to an unexpected change of plans as the behavioral pattern that followed suit flashed in a blaze of neon lights in my mind.
We all have experienced what is to go to bed with our mind so full of thoughts that it is impossible to fall asleep or looking at a to-do list pointing its finger at you and scowling. So Annoying!
That was exactly my first reaction. I had plans for the morning. I have been working on installing a habit, which requires consistency and giving myself no excuses, and these ideas just dared to pop in!
Gracefully, insight trumped automatism.
How can I ask the Muse to bestow me with its bountiful genius if I am not willing to listen or I find her “interruption” untimely?
I wonder, how many times, have I expected my daemon to cajole me into noticing and accepting the gift? Not this time; this time I rejoiced and thanked her from the bottom of my heart.
The notion that ideas float in the “ether of potential” is an old one, so is the fact that if we are too busy or not-wanting-to-be-bothered-with to accept them, they shall go somewhere else.
It was clear to me this morning how easily I can dismiss a possibility! Treating creative intuition as “disturbance” is like slapping the Gods in the face for bringing you a gift without announcing themselves.
Inspiration shows up in those rare moments of our daily lives when we allowed ourselves to be relaxed and open. It might have been boiling for a long time, looking for a way out, and irrupt when the conscious mind doorkeeper is distracted.
Some ideas are well-rounded and persistent. They stay in your mind like a sticky jingle. Others, vanish after a little while, like with dreams, leaving just an after taste.. We might not have the time to elaborate on an “insight” in that instance, but we can profusely thank our angels and store the idea somewhere for later.
I have a pencil and sticky notes on my nightstand, as well as on my piano and work desk, just in case the muse decides to strike. When I have a sudden “nudge,” I take notes! I jolt a few words o record it on my phone. I also have one of those journalist recorders that are light and small enough to fit anywhere.
I learned that sometimes the whole creation comes in a blow, it flows in the first attempt, and if I don’t acknowledge it, it’s gone for good!
Why would we resist inspiration?
In my case? Fear.
Fear of not being able to take the idea further or recuperate from the “glitch” it made on my plans. Fear of not being good enough and getting stuck. This one disguises as anger or anxiety… Don’t you see I am busy here?
Is my need to control life outcomes constraining my genius to parameters I can handle?
Ouch! Without knowing it, I’ve been drowning a Higher Intelligence in the sea of assumptions and beliefs running me subconsciously. Not again!
When I look back, I find that some of my best creative attempts and most joyful experiences have not only “just happen,” I have allowed them to flood my time and agreed to walk side by side in a pure act of faith. Now, I rejoice when these “miracles” of connection and cooperation greet me good day or night.
I am not bereft of creative anguish or the “wanting,” I feel the pain in those nasty instants when this “intuitive certainty” seems to stop and I need to keep going on my own.
Our daemon, this creative presence, might decide to takes us by hand to the finishing line, or just nudge by giving a little push, like someone lost in its own world who suddenly remembered that it had a little thing that it wanted to run by you before it could forget. Listen!
Short-lived ideas drive me nuts. I want consistency!
Don’t we all?
Well, It’s on us.
I have come to believe that “flow” is our natural state; nevertheless, we sabotage it.
Me? I get comfortable and don’t stretch myself. I bow to perfection and pride because I am not willing to fail and have a pile of not-so-well-rounded or pretty bad ideas because they threaten my creative identity.
What about “creative” block? A little bastard asks in the back of my mind.
“Divine” inspiration comes and goes like a wave, but never leaves. It’s my responsibility to allow the peaks and workout the valleys. In my experience, the void is always filled when there’s openness to Life seeping in.
It’s a two-way spell. It might sound pretentious, but perhaps there are instances where the muse is inspired by our diligence (or stunned by our stupidity) and runs in our rescue. It might also happen to be that when our Daemon feels remembered, taken care of, it’s obliged to pay us a visit, like old friends serendipitously thinking of each other.
One thing is for sure, I am grateful that I decided to change my ways. I am gaining understanding about how my soul, my Daemon, Life itself, knocks to deliver a message. I feel expectation, lightness, openness; my body feels free and a sense of urgency and wholesome contentment fills me. There is excitement and an intuitive certainty that whatever is about to be borne is worth my time… Even if it doesn’t become a masterpiece.
It is fine to have a well of “loose” ideas, pieces of imagination, prompts, broken melodies and a bunch of words that might not make sense in a sticky note.
Every “bit” is in a state of suspended animation, one notch to Possibility!
I used to force myself to go with my idea and make it happen at whatever the cost — with a variety of results. When I learned to surrender to the idea’s idea, to take life’s advice, marvelous things began to happen. Rather than being angry and blame the “external” ideas for ruining” my work, I was stunned by the outcomes.
Little by little my trust in the creative process, grew.
Even when I cannot see where it’s going, I know it is taken me to a better place. One that I am not ready to imagine.
This trust permeates other endeavors of the “Every Kind,” and I feel more and more creative and confident, I feel unlimited, almost a genius!