If you’ve been following my library-based creativity course recap, you’ll be glad to hear that Week #3 was a breakthrough! We’re halfway through, and things really came together for people, although I also think we realized a lot of frustrations about our lives and work.
Week Three is all about “Recovering a Sense of Power”, and nothing could have been more appropriate for the group than this idea. I think at this point, everyone has settled into the routine, doing morning pages, taking Artist Dates, and working through Julia Cameron’s exercises in THE ARTIST’S WAY to discover what is blocking our creativity. We’re all making progress there, and that’s a great thing since many were reluctant in the first place. However, out of all of this discovery, people are frustrated with a capital “F”!
Our morning pages seem to be revealing a lot of anger. A LOT of anger—anger with ourselves, with spouses, and children, and the general angry thoughts aimed at the Universe for “burdening” us with lives that are either too routine, too regimented, or too based on the lives of others. For some, it is all three. And that’s not helping us be creative people. It’s hard to be creative when we’re thinking about what to make for dinner—again.
We discussed this quite a bit as a group, and many of the members opened up, which was really brave of them. I don’t know that we made any progress as far as dealing with how to change these things, but I felt like people needed to voice these things, and make them real to themselves. Maybe we’ll hear of some breakthroughs this week as a result of knowing there are many other people feeling exactly the same way.
And we got so caught up in the revelations that we didn’t get through most of the ideas in the handouts this week. That’s okay–I’d much rather let people vent than do an exercise where we draw things in triangles. (Because, yes, that’s what I had planned for the Creativity Activity this time.)
In the end, I felt we laughed a lot more, talked a great deal more, and got to know each other better. Will it make a difference next time? I hope so.
So, what was up with those red envelopes?
This week, I had to postpone the session because I was off to Toronto for a couple of days. (It was an exciting trip—more to come on that.) But I didn’t want to leave my group on hold for a week, so I made up these envelopes for them to open on the regular session day. Each one had their names and an intricate colouring page on the outside, because who doesn’t love adult colouring, right? Inside, the homework for this week was based on a post by Elizabeth Gilbert called, “Stop Going to the Hardware Store for Milk”, which I thought was a BRILLIANT way to get people thinking. We do this so often, in many parts of our lives….go to the wrong places for the things we need, and then keep banging our heads against the wall wondering why things aren’t working. I hope it hit home with a lot of the group. We’ll find out this week.
So, stay tuned for week four. I feel like we’ve turned a corner and are about to discover something amazing!