Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Staying Centered

I sat outside, in the glorious sun of a brisk spring day, to do, what I call my morning pages. I got this concept from the Artist's Way years ago and I like to say that it is a daily practice. It has served me well to use it as a mental dump - a place where I can throw all my worries, problems, issues, tasks at hand, and even wishes and dreams. I write freeform, without stopping, and let whatever comes to my head drop onto the page. It is so cathartic and therapeutic that it typically puts me in a state of true centeredness. It also creates more room in my mind and my spirit to allow new creations, dreams and ideas to fill it back up.

I write 3 pages straight and if I happen to be on a roll I will continue until the flow begins to slow down. Some days I could write freeform for hours but I try to limit it to 3 pages because I do have work to do and I would rather use my writing time to write for a specific project. The morning pages has its particular purpose and 3 pages is enough to entice the creative gatekeepers to let me in. Once I have finished writing, I feel light - many weights of unanswered questions have been lifted off of my spirit and I can easily flow into my creative work day.

The problem with today, even though I was enjoying the sun that I haven't seen for... what seems like months, was that when I opened up my tablet I noticed the date of my last written morning pages - almost 3 months ago. As I said, I would LIKE to say that it is a daily practice. There are only a few things that can get me in a state where I feel centered in the morning and where the feeling will last throughout my day. Those few things include: writing morning pages, exercise (especially yoga), meditation and listening to music. Each one of these activities inspires the other too and the more I do them the more I want to do more.

For some reason, being "busy" seems to counteract my need for being centered. It is a great thing that I have been busy for that last few months but not in the sense of being able to take care of my mental, spiritual and physical needs. This not only happens with my writing but it also happens with exercise. I have tremendous will power when I have a goal to work towards. For instance, at the beginning of the year I did a 3 week cleanse where I could only eat fruits and vegetables and a little bit of protein half way through the cleanse. I could not have alcohol or caffeine which was the most difficult. I did it though and I didn't break down. Right after the cleanse I got inundated with projects and work and my practice of eating healthy flew right out the window.

Now that I have a breather between projects, I realize that I am back to where I was at the beginning of the year. When I quit eating well and exercising daily and then try to start up again, it is very difficult to stay motivated - it's like starting all over. Since I am in my mid 40's, getting back in shape is not easy anymore. I quickly lose endurance and muscle mass and the fat seems to accumulate even quicker. Not only is it difficult physically but I think the mental struggle is even harder to start over. I have to battle psychologically, in order to push through the waves and waves of negative thoughts, to continue. I will push through once again this time but hopefully I have finally learned my lesson.

So here is my wake up call again - a cycle that continues even throughout my forties. How can I combine my crazy family and work life to incorporate the useful methods that keep me centered? I need to understand that being busy is when I need to be grounded and centered the most. It creates the flow, I am more efficient and I feed myself with new energies and purge myself of unneeded and unwanted things.

A daily practice is essential for centered creativity and health.

Posted via email from Phil's posterous


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home