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The Creative Process: Living and Being in the Flow

The Creative Process: Living and Being in the Flow

The Creative Process: Living and Being in the Flow

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I have never in my adult professional life applied for a job through an advertised opening of a position. I have always created my own work and for most of my life that has been an interesting, frustrating, amusing, challenging and largely fulfilling helluva ride!

In our society that defines people by what they do, I am often at a loss to describe this when asked and often say something nauseatingly New Agey and nebulous such as, ” I create spaces of healing where I reflect to people the boundless love they are created in, held in and surrounded by.” I have an elderly neighbor in the somewhat marginal neighborhood I live in view this statement with great suspicion (as she well should!) as a response to her question…” What do you do?” I can tell with utmost certainty that she believes I am a drug dealer and is greatly concerned with the comings and goings in and out of our house of ne’er do wells, which are actually the loveliest of people that visit the home studio here for Reiki, Sound Healing, Conscious Dance, Meditation and Yoga Classes.

In exploring and wanting to share the creative process and how I engage with this nebulous act of working with energy I also want to share the following: here on home office day Monday, I type this in day 3 of  wearing the same yoga pants and t shirt. I am so easily distracted by Facebook, the urge to have a solo, spontaneous Tupac dance party and playing with my adorable pets but not so much by dishes in the sink, cleaning or laundry that needs any sort of attention.

So, with that being said, the continual engagement with the creative process also goes through ebbs and flows and like anyone who creates for a living, the fear of the well running dry shows up but I am constantly learning the act of replenishing which is a whole other process that will be shared for a later time.

For me, creativity and healing are one and the same. There is no separation here. Giving birth to expression whether that be through music, words, growing plants, culinary adventures, authentic relationships and communication, visual arts, textiles and fibers, dance, yoga, Reiki and shamanic practices, prayer, meditation, worship. There is an inherent healing that takes place when we can ground, open ourselves in whatever expression is authentic to us and allow vulnerability without the looming fear of “what if”. What if no one likes what I do? We understand this as people not liking us. This is more than okay to give permission for people to not need to like what we do or even us. If we are doing it for their approval, this is something we need to address. Believe me. There are people I have had to let go of seeking this from them because this is not healthy for any of us.

For me, this is also with the understanding that everything comes from God, Source, Ground of Being, Universe, whatever your language. In the creative process, we enter into relationship with the flow and direction of creation itself. There is the energy of liberation which flows up from the earth up through the body and frees us of  false, limiting beliefs the I can’t ….I should because…….things you tell yourself and things perhaps well meaning but ignorant people have told you.  I became a vegetarian in my blue collar steel mill city in the 1970’s and I had a great aunt who believed I was also likely a Communist because of this choice and would proclaim loudly within earshot. “She won’t turn out right!” Still exploring this one.

There is then also the energy of manifestation. This flow comes from above the crown the head and flows downward in a cross cross pattern intersecting with the energy of liberation. This is about making ideas happen in the physical world. Everything was once an idea. The Internet. Measuring gravity. Microwaves.The series Baywatch starring David Hasselhoff in the 1990’s.  We may wake up and have a million ideas before breakfast but have none of them take any direction towards fruition and they will have left our brain by the time the head hits the pillow.

I love ideas. I am an idea person. Being self directed and  self employed  this is useful and helpful. What happens for me is that when an idea consumes me because that is what it does, I will devote an extraordinary amount of energy usually in thought, talking and writing. I tend to announce things publically and share these sparks as that gives me accountability for follow through. What happens habitually as I start to hold myself more and more accountable for the actual details and actions that surround the energy of this idea is that I witness self doubt and fear creeping in. The what ifs. What if I fail? What if this is stupid?  Aha! This is good! Witnessing this means I can work with this and hold the ever present ego in check who makes this idea everything about me instead of God and being in the flow of the energy of creation.

Fear of failure is the enemy of creation. Failure is a well known friend and teacher. Perfection is an even greater enemy of the creative process. This does not mean we are sloppy or shoddy. Perfection and certainty leave no space. For me, there has to be vulnerability, exposure and an invitation for inquiry. This is authentic and we can release the what ifs. The needs. This energy is multidirectional and this was a very simplified introduction to being in the flow with the energy of creation.

We can show up in whatever we are called to engage in this flow and make our own authentic expression from as Mary Oliver refers to it, our One Wild and Precious Life. What will you do with yours?

ABOUT AUTHOR

Rachel Allen

Rachel Allen, B.A. Political Science/Sociology, is a Certified Music Practitioner, Sound Healer, Reiki Master, and Registered Yoga Teacher with a trauma informed/social justice framework. She has 20 years experience of working with some of the most amazing people on the planet; hospice patients and their families, patients in a variety of health conditions, survivors of sexual abuse, adults with mental illness and most recently, incarcerated women. Rachel is also passionate about supporting and working with caregivers to reduce burnout and compassion fatigue. Locally, Rachel teaches Creative Movement at Saint Francis University in Loretto, PA. Regionally and nationally, she teaches and presents at conferences and retreats, weaving live music, yoga, and creative movement into themes of compassion, self acceptance, and transformation. Rachel is committed to engaging people from all walks of life in the healing arts to create healthy, diverse, and joyful communities.