Resuscitate your creative heartbeat with a CPR!

Ukulelewahine_3
It's easy to fall into the routine of daily life.  Making time for your creative expression, whether it's an avocation or a career, can be difficult for some people.  Here is a piece of writing that can help strengthen your vision and resolve by reminding you why you're doing what you're doing.  It's called a CPR, which stands for Context, Purpose, Results. 

Topic:  Pick an area that's meaningful to you, and make that the title of your CPR.

Playing the Ukulele

Results:  Make a list of 10-20 things you want to result from playing the ukulele.  They can range from concrete and specific to abstract and ethereal, but make sure you write them in the present or past tense, as if they have already happened.

  • I learned twelve chords.
  • I can play all my favorite Tiny Tim songs.
  • I really enjoy practicing every day.
  • I don't even mind now that the uke looks so tiny in my hands.
  • People love to sing with me when I pull out the uke, and I feel like a party animal now.
  • The uke really feels like an extension of my body because I play it so much.
  • People call me all the time, asking if I'll bring my uke to their parties, and I make so many new and interesting friends because of it.
  • I really feel self-expressed.

Purpose:  Write why you want to play the ukulele.  Then, think about what you've just written.  And say what that makes possible.  And then, say what makes that possible.  Continue to "ripple out" the effects of your uke-playing to see the largest possible effect it has on the world.

I want to play ukulele because the special plinky sound of the strings makes me feel happy whenever I'm feeling blue.  If I'm truly happy and self-expressed, I will brighten the lives of those around me.  If those around me are brighter, they will touch and enliven their friends, family, and co-workers.  If this many people even spread one small, bright note of authentic cheer to everyone they know, I will be contributing to world peace.  So, my playing ukulele contributes to world peace.

Context:  Write a few words that sum up the kind of person you'd have to be to make each of these things true, i. e. if what way do you need to move around your world to achieve these goals?

playful, disciplined, expressive, open

Take what you've written, and put it on the wall where you can see it (with the Context at the top, then the Purpose, then the Results at the bottom) every day, and let it remind you of what you really, really want.

__

     "Hide not your talents.  They for use were made.  What's a sundial in the shade?"

     -Ben Franklin

Free Your Creativity with Free-Writing

Inspiration
Natalie Goldberg, author of Writing Down the Bones and many other books on writing has dedicated her life's work to teaching people how to increase their flow of creativity.  A big component of her workshops is free-writing.  Free-writing is the practice of picking a topic, setting a timer, putting your pen to the page, and writing until the timer dings.  When you do it in a group, you can set the timer for five, ten, or twenty minutes at a time, and then take turns reading what you've just written. 

I have found this group practice to be really liberating; I find support to sit with whatever I am feeling, I find camaraderie and connection with whom I'm sharing my writing, freedom in not having any aim for my writing to reach.  The real aim is to quiet the inner censor and critic that stops me from creating.  Later, I can always edit and evaluate.  Often, after I've done a couple of hours of free-writing with people, I notice that I'm less judgmental about whatever art that comes out, I'm a lot more productive and I'm happier with the work after all the gunk has been "blown out the tubes." 

Try this:  Sit down with a pad and paper (best to avoid typing for this exercise, as it's easier to connect emotionally to the physical sensation of writing) and set a timer for five minutes on each of the following topics.  Try to use as much detail as possible.

  • right now…
  • flowers
  • third grade
  • I hate…
  • baseball
  • magic

__

      

  "You must not for one instant give up the effort to build new lives for yourselves.  Creativity means to push open the heavy, groaning doorway to life.  This is not an easy struggle.  Indeed, it may be the most difficult task in the world, for opening."

        -Daisaku Ikeda, Japanese peace activist and Buddhist Leader

Creative Heart Coaching

Coach_logo_small You have a unique gift to offer the world.  What if you have an idea of what that gift is, but don't know how to use it or trust it?  In a unique process tailored to your goals, visions, and ideals, I can help you bridge the gap between possessing your gifts and talents and expressing them.

As a creativity coach, I can support you to crystalize your vision, unfurl your natural rainbow of imagination, and cultivate tools and habits to effectively inhabit the life you truly want to lead.  You can find deep satisfaction, joy, and connection in the artistic process as you create a pathway to actualize your dreams.

Creative Coaching is for performers, artists, writers (even if you've never performed, painted, or written) who want to jump-start a career or enliven an avocation.  The Creative Coaching style is rooted in the work I've done to transform my own creative blocks; I offer compassionate, authentic reflection for the places you want to shift. 

As a professional performer and writer maintaining daily creative practices, I can model ways of working creativity.  As a natural entrepreneur I can also help you work externally, addressing organization, time-management, self-promotion, marketing, branding, and business planning.

I am called in this life to share what I have learned and applied to my own creative work.  Fostering growth in others is a great honor and privilege.  I believe each of us is imbued with gifts to share with humanity, and unlocking them brings us a powerful sense of appreciation, value, and connection.

Your Partner in Possibility,

Alicia Dattner

        "Don't ask what the world needs.  Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it.  Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."

                   -Howard Thurman (1900-1981)  educator, minister, civil rights leader