The Newsletter of the Creativity Coaching Association
Welcome to the February issue of Creativity Calling!
Winter is winding down here in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York. The calendar tells me Spring is less than a month away and I'm eager for its arrival. Soon I'll shed the heavy coat, scarf, gloves and boots and step outside into warmth and vibrant color. It's always magical to me - a feeling of freedom!
Freedom attracts us, doesn't it? Let's declare now as the time to go for change in our lives. What are your deepest heart's desires? If you're not certain, please take some time to think on this and then write out your goals and dreams. Don't put it off. Do it now. From there, one day at a time is a great credo to live by, and one step at a time will take each of us where we want to go. This is not just worn out rhetoric. It is absolute truth!
The intention of the Creativity Coaching Association is to empower you, to inspire and enhance the creative being that you are. This month our CCA coaches give us "food for thought" in their newsletter articles, providing helpful suggestions for applying valuable insights. In a word: Action. Putting feet on our dreams. For sometimes added preparation is akin to procrastination!
Shaqe gives helpful tips on how to take our creative ideas and help them grow roots from the very beginning stages. Lynn notices and shares with us how squirrels can teach us a thing or two in our own creative endeavors - you heard that right...squirrels! Dolly, CCA's newly certified creativity coach, gives us five great reasons for bringing mindfulness into our creative process, affirming the ways to do so. And lastly, I've sprinkled in a few favorite quotes for you. Happy reading!
As always, feel free to forward this newsletter to others and keep sending us your great ideas for future newsletter topics. We love your input and suggestions!
All the very best!
Beverly Down , President & CEO,
Creativity Coaching Association
"Re-framing"--To Let Ideas Take Root
By Shaqe Kalaj
There are five basic reasons why people might not let their ideas grow--acknowledging them can help our ideas take root.
- "I am just too busy"--Without a doubt this is the very first thing someone says before an idea even takes root. It's just the common thing everybody says that immediately blocks an idea.
- Money--Too often people will look at their idea and think, "Well this is going to take a lot of money to do this," money which they don't have at the time.
- Focus--If you don't spend enough time thinking about the idea and forming it in your head the idea can just disappear.
- Time--Many people have a full-time job and kids and they ask "How can I find the time to make a work of art or a product if there's not enough time?"
- Habits--Your habits are the source of really developing your ideas. Take a look at your current habits and whether they'll support the development of your idea.
When developing an idea it becomes important to nurture the idea. One way is to restate these negative statements into positive views. Also called re-framing, merely by shifting how you view your idea can be the beginning of changing your perspective on the idea. This usually is where the source of the nurturing process grows. So by taking the list above and seeing it in a different way it you can start to see that happen. Here are some ways that you can re-frame your idea:
You address the reasons why your idea does not grow by restating how you will let it begin to grow. By re-framing the way you say things you can actually grow your ideas and they can begin to take root within you. This affirmation process is one of the keys to nurturing your idea so that it takes form within you, and you then develop the second part to nurturing your idea--desire.
- I am not too busy to start my project today.
- The resources will appear when the time is right.
- I will spend some time focusing on my idea today and developing a plan.
- I will find time today to work on my project.
- I will develop the habits I need to start today to nurture my idea.
~ Shaqe Kalaj (pronounced shacha call-eye) is a certified creativity coach and creativity consultant, a working artist, and a teaching artist. She is based in the Hudson Valley in New York and can be reached at email@example.com
What Squirrels Can Teach Us
By Lynn Wyvill
When I was watching the squirrels the other day, it occurred to me these bushy-tailed acrobats can teach us quite a bit about the creative process.
First, squirrels take risks. Watch them as they perform their high wire act, scampering across a swaying power or phone line with no trepidation. Jumping from one flimsy tree branch to another? No problem making a dangerous leap.
How about us? Are we fearless in pursuing our creative work, setting aside doubts, fears and willing to take a leap, even if it feels risky?
Second, squirrels are daring explorers, venturing out with no map. Dashing around the yard, they stop often to dig, just to see what might be there.
Shouldn't the creative process be like that? Must we always have a plan thought out from beginning to end in order to begin? Sometimes, creative work requires jumping in, even if we don't know exactly where we're headed.
And that brings me to the third point, squirrels are optimists. No matter how many times they dig and come up with nothing, they keep going, believing they'll find something wonderful eventually.
How about it? If we don't come up with something we love right away, do we give up or keep poking around?
Fourth, squirrels are collectors. They gather bits and pieces from here and there and tuck them away for safe keeping.
Do you gather snippets of conversation, a color combination, a few notes of song or whatever caught your eye or ear? Do you keep a box, journal, or file that you go to for inspiration?
Fifth, squirrels are non-judgmental. Have you ever seen one get mad or frustrated when things aren't going their way? They don't appear to criticize themselves and say, "Oh, I'm not a good squirrel because I didn't find anything when I dug the last 20 times." And they don't quit!
Sixth, squirrels hang out with other squirrels. Running, jumping, chasing, leaping and chattering keeps them limber and ready for action. Keep it light and fun seems to be their approach to life.
How about it? Getting together with others to share ideas, support one another, and have fun, does our creative souls a world of good.
~ Lynn Wyvill, a Certified Creativity Coach, is a writer who is working on a book of essays about nature. Her blog is http://lynnwyvill.wordpress.com. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations to Dolly Muzer,
CCA's Newest Certified Creativity Coach!
By Dolly Muzer
How does mindfulness inform my creative practice and how can mindfulness be helpful to clients?
Through mindfulness I am able to become aware of my habitual patterns. When I shift my attention out of habit, I can make different choices and move forward with creative projects or creating the life I want to live. This can be so helpful when coaching clients.
The following are some ways that mindfulness has helped my creative process and life:
Mindfulness helps me slow down. I am able to really notice what is happening moment to moment when I slow down. I am able to see, hear, taste, smell, and feel better when I slow down. When I slow down I am able to go deeper into my process instead of skimming the surface.
Mindfulness helps me to be centered and fosters clarity. Clarity about what I am envisioning for a project or my life. There is less noise and clutter in my mind and my thoughts. I am clear about the where, when, how and why of creating. I am in tune with my intuition.
Mindfulness helps me focus my energy. I am not distracted by the world around me and I am able to engage fully with the task at hand. I can make choices on purpose and with intention rather than haphazardly creating. I space out less and I am able to notice when I do and come back to the present moment.
Mindfulness helps me to be present with myself in a different way and be with the experience. Sometimes the experience can be peaceful, frustrating or maddening. If something turns out completely different than I envisioned or if it is a complete failure I am able to accept either scenario as part of the creative journey.
Appreciation and Joy
Mindfulness helps cultivate appreciation and joy for me. Since I feel more engaged and awake moment to moment there is an appreciation of being alive and that brings me great joy.
There are many ways to bring mindfulness into our lives, finding out what that means for the client and how they can incorporate that into their lives can be life altering.
~ Dolly Muzer, MA, LPC is a licensed psychotherapist, certified creativity coach, and a visual artist who inspires people to live their best creative life. You can contact her through her website at www.thecreativepioneer.com.
Five Inspiring Quotes
"I always wanted to be somebody...but now I realize I should have been more specific."
~ Lily Tomlin
"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
"Too much of a good thing... is wonderful."
~ Mae West
"Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative place is where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You can't get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you are doing. What you will discover will be wonderful. What you will discover will be yourself."
~ Alan Alda
"The law of flotation was not discovered by contemplating the sinking of things."
~ Thomas Troward
CCA's 2013 Coaching Certification Courses
Tap into Our Database of Creativity Coaches
Life is not about finding yourself...
Life is about Creating yourself.
~ E.W. Wilcox
If you've been thinking about becoming a creativity coach, or adding creativity coaching to your existing life coaching, consulting, or therapy practice, we invite you to explore CCA's Certification Program. Our program includes a variety of basic and advanced coaching courses that can be done online or through telecourses in a reasonable period of time. The knowledge and skills you will develop in this program will serve your own work and open up opportunities for you to professionally coach others.
For details, please visit our Certification Program web page for a full explanation of the courses offered and requirements.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
- just starting out in exploring your creative desires?
- a working artist who is stuck on a creative project?
- looking for something new to juice up your creative work?
- going into midlife and feeling that now is finally the time to do the art you always wanted to do?
- already a known artist but interested in taking your success to the next level?
For any of these situations, why not hire a creativity coach? Check out our database of over 80 coaches who are ready to work with you and propel you forward. CCA-member coaches specialize in nearly 100 different specialties.
Find a coach here.
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Creative Solutions to get you Motivated!
If you have not yet purchased your own copy of Inspiring Creativity, why not take advantage of this special offer today? An anthology of 22 powerful essays by professional creativity coaches, the book will get your creative juices flowing and make you feel more confident, excited, and ready to tackle your creative work.
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Hope You Enjoyed Our Newsletter!
This is the end of the February 2013 issue. Send us an email and let us know your thoughts and suggestions.
Note: If you are a life coach, executive coach, literary agent, therapist or any other profession involved with creative people, and you are interested in joining the Creativity Coaching Association, please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org for information.