I've wanted to read more books for a long time now, both to expand my knowledge and vocabulary whilst generally getting away from the laptop in my spare time. Fiction I love, but 'self help' or more guided, kick-you-up-the-butt books have been hard for me to connect with, however when I read Liz Gilbert's 'Eat Pray Love' a back in 2011 after being enthralled by the film, I felt of sense of wanting to do something with my life and experience more. However being 17 and in school, going to Italy to eat pizza and Bali to find harmony wasn't something I could attain, yet the yearning for balance was something I was always aware of.
My life and mind has been somewhat a mundane circle of 'I want to do more with my life, but I'm unwilling to make changes to do so', I sit, I ponder, I wonder, I sigh, I get frustrated and wail when my life isn't like another's, full of opportunity and completion, experience and validation, and then I go back to sitting and thinking 'pull yourself together Lauren and do something'. Usually I end up on YouTube or listening to music to empower my daydreams of what I will achieve, but yet again little manifests.
Within blogging, we all face some comparison or fear of not matching up to those equal, above, upcoming and judging, and I particularly get it - is our creativity not good enough? Do I need to be more or less? Should I compromise? Why does everyone else get the good ideas? Enough. Days of being eaten up by 'I'm not good enough' have been soothed by the absolute genius and obviously rightness of Liz.
Big Magic is an essential for any creator, purely for the fact it understands the creative process from a creative's perspective. From accepting that fear can ride along with you but have no input, to inspiration being around us waiting to float into the right mindset and getting chills up your back in whatever field you embark on, Liz makes your soul settle and mind expand to just how much you have inside you to achieve without you realising.
There are too many good pointers to list, however a few of my favourites include asking 'what interests you?' instead of 'what your passion is' to stir something small into something big, that you don't need a degree to validate your creativity (because you're already practising and enjoying it yourself), and that sometimes (read, always) you need to relax your mind to allow what may be the next big idea for you to come manifest (and sometimes, it's okay to say no if it doesn't quite work for what you need right now).
But why exactly did Big Magic change my perspective? Well, simply put it helped and continues to help pull me out of a little spiral of wallowing; those days I think I should be here in my life, I should do that, I should be more successful now, I feel a sense of calm at Liz's words and understand how and why I am creating - I create because I enjoy it, it gives me a thrill and a sense of direction in what I want to do for myself. Somewhat gone are the days of worrying about strict schedules, time scales and more importantly comparison (that does take some work however), and it makes me feel at ease about following my own truth and desire at what I want to do because girl gotta be happy first before she can make happiness yanno? It's simple enough, but sometimes, we need a refresher.
Whether you're feeling lost, muddled, nearly throwing in the towel, or just want a big of YEAH MAN I'M AWESOME LOOK AT ALL THIS CREATIVE OPPORTUNITY I POSSESS, then you need to read Big Magic. Because cultivating something makes us grow and feel dedicated, burst and think too much, and makes you want to go out and do something with your creativity is something worth seeing through.
Have you read Big Magic? What is your creative process? Do you often feel creatively challenged?
Lots of Love,
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