Tagself-actualization

The Magic Feather: Are You Waiting for Validation to Create Your Art?

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I was reading Berni Xiong’s book, The Year of the Brave Bear, when I came across this quote (which, oddly enough, was the same message I heard just yesterday from James Altucher, author of Choose Yourself — it’s a theme this week): We wait to be chosen. We wait for others to tell us we’re good enough. We seek validation from people before we proceed with our grand idea. — Berni...

The World Will Be a Better Place If You Create What You Want to Create

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“The world will be a better place if you create what you want to create.” —Dan Norris, Create Or Hate Sometimes I wonder why I’m so fixated on creating things (and on writing, especially); there are days when it feels painful and pointless. (Am I some kind of a masochist?) Making art hurts. I look around at all the creators who’ve gone before me, and while I sometimes hear...

Playing Small

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The suppression of who we really are in our relationships causes comparison and the side effects are shame and playing small. — Lori Harder, A Tribe Called Bliss Playing small. Reminds me of another quote: Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to...

Thorns in the Flesh: The Essence of Creativity (and Personal Growth)

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The essence of creativity lies in a sensitivity to defects. — E. Paul Torrance While reading Why Fly? A Philosophy of Creativity, I came across the idea of “thorns in the flesh,” which, in the author’s words, means “finding answers to questions, no matter how ridiculous or impossible those questions may at first seem.” He suggests never ridiculing or suppressing the...

The (Un)Glamorous Life of a Creative

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For most people, when they think about creativity, it conjures up images of exploration and fun and freedom. The day-to-day life of the creative, however, is far less exciting. Case in point, I was studying (it’s how I spend most of my days, not writing frenetically on my typewriter in my upstairs writer’s loft, even though I actually do have an upstairs writer’s loft —...

The Have-To of Creativity

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I’m reading the book Why Fly? A Philosophy of Creativity by E. Paul Torrance. One of the first quotes that stood out to me was this: “To be creative is to be unpredictable and the unpredictable always makes us uneasy. We like to be able to predict because we feel safer, more secure, more in control of things.” How this plays out in our lives: (From ourselves) I want to create...

Don’t Waste Creative Energy

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I was reading David Kadavy’s book, The Heart to Start, (yes, I’m stuck on it lately) and read the following quote about criticism and bullying: “Criticizing others wastes energy we could be using to grow. [He quoted someone who said], ‘I’ve never found a bully that was doing amazing things with their life. Successful, happy, well-emotionally-balanced people don’t have time...

What’s Holding You Back from Creating Your Art?

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I was reading David Kadavy’s book, The Heart To Start: Win the Inner War & Let Your Art Shine, when I came across this line: “If you’re looking for the heart to start making something, you need to understand what forces hold you back.” Why hadn’t I thought of that? (Seriously, that’s not sarcasm.) We can’t move on to the future or stand confidently in the present, if we’re holding on to our...

But Do You Think You Can Create It?

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When people find out I’m a writer, it often evokes a response like, “I would love to write” or “I have always wanted to write a book.” When I ask why they don’t, I’m met with a hint of embarrassment and, “Oh, I wouldn’t know where to start.” Usually, with a little encouragement and some hard numbers (“If you wrote just 250 words a day, which you could...

What’s the Point of Everything?

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You ever just stop and wonder what the point is to everything? It doesn’t even have to be with a sense of resignation or disappointment (although, for a lot of people, I think that’s the case). From a place of pure curiosity (and maybe in hopes of making the most of the time here), what is the point, really? Although I question most religious beliefs, I do believe there’s a...

Stories Make Up Whoever It Is I’ve Become

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I went to a used bookstore the other day. The owner started talking with me and said how nobody reads anymore. That’s sad, but I get it. Attention spans are shorter. Competition for them is higher. Maybe we’re busier. But, then again, I don’t get it. I was reading a book by Peter Orner (Am I Alone Here? Notes on Living to Read and Reading to Live — probably enough said right...

Guiding Quote

A house extends skyward.
Like a tiny but proud cathedral,
it wishes to generate the highest
and the best in its inhabitants.
— John Truby

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