Elizabeth Gilbert's new book Big Magic has been keeping me awake at night. It is an anthem for creative women to keep doing the work. Keep showing up, day after day, no matter whether the muse meets you or not.
Create because it gives you joy, not because you expect anything in return.
This is a truly excellent book, and well worth all the social media attention it is getting. I have so many favorite passages, but this is one of them:
"Your creative work is not your baby; if anything, you are its baby. Everything I have ever written has brought me into being. Every project has matured me in a different way. I am who I am today precisely because of what I have made and what it has made me into. Creativity has hand-raised me and forged me into an adult…”
Isn't this a relief? What if every project we undertake is raising us? Every launch, every time we hit "publish", every notebook scribbled with ideas. Creativity is messy and brave, and the best spiritual teacher I know. Nothing will lead us to our shadows faster than trying to birth something into the world. But letting the work birth us? Somehow the edge comes off...the fear dissipates...and the breath returns.
I like this approach much better.
She doesn't stop there. One of the most poignant sections of the book involves a discussion on fear.
She writes, “We have to be careful of how we handle our fear–because I’ve noticed that when people try to kill off their fear, they often end up inadvertently murdering their creativity in the process.”
So, so true.
Everytime I've done something truly creative, truly freeing, I've been a healthy bit scared. Paralyzed, no. Otherwise it wouldn't get done. But a little nervous? Totally.
The next three days, I’ll be sending you some wisdom for handling and embracing fear. A journaling exercise, a meditation, and a list of earth magic practices. Many of us are still experiencing the energy hangover of Sunday’s full moon eclipse. Hopefully, in these energies of transformation, we can transmute some of the negative effects fear has on our systems.
Sending you a lot of love and big magic. And for now, check out Elizabeth Gilbert's great
TED talk or her interview with Marie Forleo.
I hope you enjoy. And I'll see you tomorrow <3