This week my clients found interesting ways to tend to their work with a lighter touch so that they could access more ease and joy in their creative process. Below is what one of my artist clients shared about how she made an adjustment that worked for her.
Notes from the field of creativity coaching with Naomi
Since grade school, Jen* considered herself a writer. She studied literature at an Ivy League and wrote her own songs throughout college – identifying as a musician and with a community of creatives. Now in her 50’s, a psychotherapist and a recent empty nester with two children in college, Jen is recommitting to her writing with the intention to regularly publish short pieces, as well as work on her first novel.
To support this commitment, she is participating in two writing groups and has hired me as her coach to help her navigate the limiting thoughts that a) hold her back from declaring herself as a “real” writer, b) obscure her potential for success, and c) take the fun out of her creative process!
Recently she noticed that when she sat down to work on the first chapter of her novel she would get an excruciating headache. As soon as she walked away from the novel, the pain disappeared.
As a strategy, Jen decided to put down the novel and turn her attention to shorter pieces, only "dipping lightly” into the novel when she felt that she could bring that perspective to the work.
It worked! When she returned to the novel with this new perspective,"dipping lightly," she fell in love with the novel again. Once she could free herself from the burden of her more pressure-full thoughts and beliefs about writing a novel, she could access her creativity with more ease and more play.
Takeaway: Try on new perspectives when the one you are working from isn't working for you. Maybe “dipping lightly” is one such perspective? Dip lightly into work that needs space to breath, so that you can breathe life into your work without being overwhelmed by the pressure your thoughts around your work ignite.