September! Do you love it or hate it? For me, I’ve spent this month pulled oh-so-strongly in different directions.
Firstly, after the long school holidays – when I spend as much time as I can with my son – I’m thrilled to have more time back. I’m back to my wonderful coaching clients, more headspace to write, more freedom to think.
But I’m also resisting it. Because being outside is SO GLORIOUS. And part of me just wants to go for long walks – I don’t care if it’s through hills or city streets, though secretly I want to be striding along a blackberryed and windswept coastal footpath. (Should I set up a walking business, I wonder?)
The result is that things start to come off the tracks. I find myself easily distracted, then frustrated because that to-do list just isn’t shifting. And then the questions start (what about that walking business?)
You too? (honestly?)
The joy being innately creative is that there are SO many things we want to do. So many things we want to be.
This time of year has all the buzz of a new start: all the possibilities! All the ideas!
But meanwhile, we’re also trying to soak up every bit of the last wonderful days of summer.
And after summer comes… well, I’ve already had enough of emails telling me it’s ONLY 100 (or something) DAYS LEFT till some hugely important marker (Nope).
Let’s get this straight.
You can be pulled in different directions.
They might even turn out to be not different directions at all, but strands in the same weaving, that cross and intertwine and add to a pattern that is uniquely yours.
But they might also be just pulling you back and forwards, in circles, in twists, on a dizzying kids’ roundabout.
So let’s STOP for just a moment
FACT: It’s wonderful to have new ideas and energy calling us.
FACT: Sometimes we need to be reminded of how quickly time passes and how we need to take action now.
But before you try to do everything and everything, just pause for one moment. Breathe.
Notice the sunflowers, or the late jasmine. Look upwards for the swallows. Watch the colour of the sky, right now. Is it blue, or grey, or white? Right now, I can see blue, clear blue… and I realise I’m looking literally into infinite space.
The seasons are changing. We too are changing, evolving, growing.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, breathe gently and deeply.
If you’re feeling energetic, commit to taking control of that force so that it has the impact you truly want it to.
If you’re feeling disappointed in yourself or others, notice your heart beating, and know that you are *enough*.
If you’re feeling calm and whole, take a moment to let that sense take even deeper root. Practicing it now, consciously, will make it easier to return to on days that aren’t as straightforward.
You have a brain that is extraordinary. A brain that can see opportunities and ideas. A brain that can go forwards in time, and back, and embrace whole continents. A flowing, flexible, infinitely rich brain.
But sometimes it just needs a little more space. A little more nurture. A little less pressure.
Creative brains are different
Do creative people have differently wired brains? We do, we really do. We do experience things differently: we take in more, we feel more, we see more.
We stand between worlds, seeing into the distance, and seeing all the possibilities of past and future.
But that means we can get overwhelmed by trying to living up to all our dreams and our obligations. We don’t like to say no to the things we don’t want to do, never mind the things we do.
So let’s forget all of those things for two minutes.
Take a moment, with me right now, to be truly in the moment.
Breathe, gently but deeply.
Not in the past, and not in the future, but where you are at this moment.
Smile at a stranger. Pay it forward. Hug someone (but someone you know, or that’s just weird). Read a few pages of a book. Put your phone down. Sit in the sun. Watch the sky.
Use it to recentre yourself, to recharge. Then maybe ask yourself, gently and with love: what do I need to do right now, calmly and with full commitment?
Listen for the answer. Because it’s there, but so easily drowned out.
The world needs you, and your creative energy. So why waste it on anything that’s not truly worthy?