The Voice Within
A blog by Mary McDowall
Today I Switched It Up (part of a free e-course available at The Purple Ink Cafe). Instead of going straight to my desk and my computer, I took my morning coffee out onto the covered wrap around veranda. I sat at my grandmother’s enamel table with a dollar store notebook and my purple fountain pen and I wrote.
I did my version of Julia Cameron’s morning pages as I steered myself away from complaints and to dos towards appreciation for my life and the options I have just by the virtue of when and where on this planet I was born.
Having choices is more than just opportunities. This morning I chose not to see the endless work and upkeep that living in an old house (circa 1889) includes. Nor the long to do list of personal and professional tasks needing my attention. Instead I took a little time to relax, to connect to my inner world and to my grandmother through the written word.
I don’t write often enough, although I’m beginning to write more with the support and structure of The Purple Ink Cafe’s Writers’ Circle. Meeting just once a week with others to spend intentional time writing is surprisingly powerful and I’m noticing its influence spread into the rest of my week.
The key is to relax. When our bodies and minds are in a relaxed state we can effortlessly tap into the wealth of our inner knowledge, vivid imagination, vibrant creativity and the rich wisdom of our subconscious mind. In this relaxed state, time can stop or slow down and space can open up and expand as we connect with our creativity. We enter into the state of flow. We all experience the state of flow differently, but what’s common is the ease, joy and effortless productivity that results.
Relax is the first R in a The Purple Ink Cafe 4Rs Circle, because who doesn’t want to work and get things done with ease, joy and effortless productivity? The 4Rs is a 5 week guided circle that let’s you relax into your creative flow and find time and space in your busy week to read, review and research. In a shared and supportive space you get to Read that mounting stack of books, blogs and best sellers. It’s an opportunity to spend some focused time to Review materials and resources from courses you’ve taken or are taking. Reviewing keeps information fresh and also allows time for assessment to release materials or books no longer relevant or useful. And if you need to do some Research for a book or a project this is a great time to take action and get started.
Details for The Purple Ink Cafe 4Rs Circle coming to a blog post near you soon.
I recently attended the kick-off event for a Writers’ Circle at The Purple Ink Cafe led by our own Kathy Kane. One of the very first things she said was “If you are here, you are a writer.”
I found this oddly comforting.
I am a writer.
This is not how I would have described myself before. But I do write. I write this blog. I write when I create new courses, website content and even new creativity tools.
I am a writer.
I don’t need to be a great writer, or even a good writer to write. It is the practice of writing that creates good writers. And the Writers’ Circle is an opportunity to hone this skill in a creative and supportive space with other writers.
I found that as I wrote, I could tap into my unconscious thoughts, and ideas began to magically appear. I was fascinated by how my brain effortlessly transformed my thoughts into hand actions that formed symbols on the page. Symbols that convey meaning to a reader and bring my ideas to life.
Before this experience, to call myself a writer felt like a stretch, perhaps even pretentious. But by calling myself a writer, I am not comparing myself to the great authors. I’m celebrating the courage and the patience of creating a habit and building a writing practice to bare my creative spirit. It is about trusting a process; a process so seemingly ordinary in our society that it is often taken for granted.
Writing is a truly wonderful outlet for creative expression. One that I long denied myself because I didn’t think of myself as a writer.
What a wonderful gift to be able to call oneself a writer. What a wonderful experience being part of a writing circle.
Are you a writer?
It’s not too late to sign up if you would like to join the Writers’ Circle at The Purple Ink Cafe. Click here for the details. I hope to see you there.
I share how I see the world through everyday topics that connect me to my creativity - my challenge with clutter, master minds, ideas, strategies and process - mostly though the lens of my kaizen training.