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  • Writer's pictureJosie Coco

Survival mode dulls your creativity

Day 321/366 days Towards Self-Mastery.

If you've ever wondered if you missed out on the creativity genes don't despair. There was a time when I could no sooner imagine a creative decorating theme for my home than fly to the moon.

In the previous blog, making creative seasonal changes was considered. It's difficult, if not impossible, if you don't feel your creativity.

For decades I thought of myself, and declared it quite opening, that I didn't have a creative bone in my body. My close friends thought otherwise but I couldn't connect with it no matter how hard I tired.

When I began to hear that we are all creators, that we are all capable fo creating and that creativity is our birthright, I wondered what happened to me.

That was probably the most important question I asked. What happened to me?

Throughout the different modalities and philosophies that I've studied and practiced, the same message. We have a creative centre. In chakra therapy it is considered that this creative centre becomes active around the teen years.

What happened to me?

In developmental theory and also with experience in my clinic with clients, I learned that we don't all develop the same way along a linear timeframe. Our creativity can develop at any stage when our nervous system has the capacity.

What happened to me was difficult to pin down but it did leave my body and mind, via my nervous system, in a state of perpetual survival. That, I also declared quite openly. I'm a survivor.

Being a survivor is not living. Being a survivor is not about being whole. It's about reaching the minimum capacity for life.

You want to achieve more than the minimum capacity for life. You want to live. And you won't feel alive until you are able to exercise your creativity.

Therapy. Trauma informed therapy rescued me from survival mode. It's a work in progress, I'm a work in progress. My creativity is beginning to surface. It's teasing me and letting me know it's not far away. I'm getting there.

Small attempts, one simple project at a time. One change to see how it feels. Using the resources that I have available to me and noticing what I would like to be different.

A plant with light coloured leaves instead of dark green on my bookshelf.

A white pot instead of a black one.

A change of colour of my dining table to lighten the dining area.

A colour scheme that appeals to me for my website, created one section at a time and published only when I am very happy with it.

Each small success is an accomplishment.

My experience informs me that we all have the ability to exercise our creative muscle, and that possibility emerges when we are no longer preoccupied with survival.

From a physiological perspective, when your mind is continually active and hyper-vigilant as it is in survivor mode, you can't access your right brain creativity. You're not producing the right mix of nervous system relaxation, hormones and other chemicals needed to daydream, to be in the zone, to imagine and allow inspiration to surface.

If you are on your journey towards self-mastery, getting out of survival mode is a priority.


Simple Abundance

366 days Towards Self-Mastery

When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)

I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.

As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.

My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?

I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.

Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.

This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.


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