Remember when you were a kid and what fascinating beauty you could make out of simple pieces of paper?
I am happy to say that I am now into week three of Walking in This World. I am so excited! I have so far managed to write every morning, sometimes half asleep, but I always feel more energetic and inspired by the time I am done, even if my flow-of-consciousness morning download is just “the cat is trying to get the pen out of my hand”.
One of the exercises in the first week was to make a list of 20 small creative actions you could do, to get you unstuck from the idea that all creativity must be symphonies and masterpieces or not worth doing. These small actions could be anything from re-potting a plant to making a pot of soup.
After looking at the list I had made, I thought it would be a waste to write all of that down and not do anything. One of the first things I listed was “make paper snowflakes”. I couldn’t remember how to do it correctly – (Are you supposed to use a square piece of paper? I just had rectangular) – but it made me smile and as proud of myself as a kindergartner. I decided to put my symmetrical, but not very elegant snowflakes up in my music room to remind me that little seemingly random cuts turn into patterns and beauty. Also, to celebrate the arctic cold we are having. Actually that last part is a lie..
My creative experiment felt a bit “silly” but helped me reflect on how each little twist and turn, is part of the distinctive image, just like the little patterns in the chaos of our lives make us unique people. It also reminded me of how excited I was as a kid, when mom let us decorate the big picture window in the living room for all the different holidays. We had a few store bought pumpkins, Santas, Easter bunnies, etc., but there were just as many decorations that we proudly brought home from school to display our burgeoning talent as multimedia artists. I will gladly take smiles with my philosophizing!
So far, I’ve done seven things on the “small creative action” list. However, that was only week one and each week has different tasks – the one that I need to do for this week is write down 50 things that make you angry (even petty complaints) and then see if ideas for resolving those issues come to mind and write those down. This one is going to take awhile, but I don’t think it will be as challenging as the task to “Do nothing for 15 minutes and do it thoroughly”. Hmmm, not so good at the not doing anything…
So right now it looks like this 12 week course is going to take longer if I really try to do all of the tasks, but I feel I have a really good start. I am feeling much more positive and awake than I have in months! Not to mention, but these exercises are really helping me amuse myself better than TV ever does!