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You will learn a lot from yourself if you
stretch in the direction of goodness, of bigness,
of kindness, of forgiveness, of emotional bravery. 
Be a warrior for love.

This is my favorite quote from Cheryl Strayed’s Brave Enough. If you don’t have it, this book is a coffee table (or nightstand, or even purse) mustIt is full of quotes that are in fact “mini instruction manuals for the soul.” I bought this book last fall, but I promise it shows the wear of many, many years. 
Leave it to Cheryl Strayed to make me re-evaluate my entire life with her opening quote. I can always find something to relate to in this book, no matter what emotion I am feeling or situation I am in. The rawness of Brave Enough is something that continues to amaze me every single time I pick it up. Strayed’s candor, energy and endless amount of tough love has empowered me, even on my worst days and in my darkest hours, to somehow put one foot in front of the other and be brave enough. 

February 2, 2017 0 comment
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Q: What is creative living?
A: Any life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than by fear.

If you know me at all, even in the slightest, you know that I genuinely adore Elizabeth Gilbert. Whenever I am gushing about her being one of my favorite authors – I launch into this long-winded, breathy sanction of compliments about how she unquestionably feeds my soul through her integrity, vivid imagery and beautifully pieced together words. 

She undoubtably did not disappoint when her latest work hit the shelves. Big Magic calls to all creative professionals and truly anyone and everyone – Gilbert writes, “If you are alive – you’re a creative person. You and I and everyone you know are descended from tens of thousands of years of makers. Decorators, tinkerers, storytellers, dancers, explorers, fiddlers…” Whoa, that’s some pretty intriguing stuff and it definitely made me clutch my book a little tighter.

I could rant and rave ( or ramble, rather 🙂 ) about this book all day long – instead I am going to give you a taste of how she helped me in harnessing and utilizing my creative potential, in tried and true Big Magic fashion.

“Creativity is a path for the brave – not a path for the fearless.”
The distinction between those two words is imperative in order to grasp our own creative abilities. Gilbert writes, “Bravery means doing something scary, whereas fearless means not even understanding what the word scary means.” As humans, we need fear in order to survive and be a contributing member of society – but fear should not be what makes us whole. If we center our lives around fear, all that does is rob us of our creativity.
We should never let fear drive us – but we must make room for it in our lives. Without our fears completely, we would never push onto something greater. We would never go anywhere interesting or do anything amusing. It is very important to note, fear should never interfere with creativity’s leadership in our lives.

“Most things have already been done – but they have not been done by you.”
Curiosity is the ultimate goal for pursuing a creative living beyond fear. Curiosity is different from passion in the sense that passion can seem pretty aggressive and inaccessible at times – whereas curiosity is much more inviting and mild. Curiosity doesn’t ask much except, “What are you interested in?” And it truly does not matter how many people around you are intrigued by the same thing. Genuineness and authenticity are much more important in creative work than originality.
Creativity is not some unimaginable idea that some of us just ‘happen’ to be blessed with and others are not. Living a creative life is about living a life that is steadily driven by curiosity instead of fear.

“I want to live the most vividly decorated temporary life that I can. I don’t just mean physically; I mean emotionally, spiritually, intellectually. I don’t want to be afraid of bright colors, or new sounds, or big love, or risky decisions, or strange experiences, or weird endeavors, or sudden changes, or even failure.”
When I read that, I wanted to post it on all the walls of my apartment and shout it from the rooftops at the top of my lungs! That definitely is a life worth living and it is obtainable – if you are willing to put in the work.
A very special thank you to Elizabeth Gilbert for lighting a fire inside my heart for creative living and undeniably knocking it out of the park, yet again.

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January 6, 2017 1 comment
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