Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pattern Overwhelm

I often say I'm overwhelmed.  I wrote about overwhelm before.  Then I kind of forgot about it until a friend was saying I'm overwhelmed.......I once had an insight about that so I went to find my writing about it.....this has lead me into writing this new post about overwhelm.

In the last 2 months I've been doing this brain dance.  And by gosh it has helped me begin to see a pattern.   More dancing is required to fully unmake it and remake a new habit.  As a consequence of doing this wacky flailing of arms dance I see a little more clearly my overwhelm pattern.  It is so weird that this dance works. (more about that in future posts)

I say I'm overwhelmed, and it's usually on a day when I feel I need to answer emails, plan dinner, drive 50 miles to do the main grocery shopping, pay bills, and there are a million little care of the home tasks like scooping out the litter box and watering the basil.........

What I'm discovering is that it isn't all that, pardon my wording, *crap* that has me overwhelmed.   It is that on some level I've reached a point where I've been avoiding my one big thing.   Back when I wrote about overwhelm before - I did not put in any links in my post.  Nor did I put in the links to the blogs that originally gave me a clue to this insight.  So here is the link love to those bloggers....... Third Hands Works mentioned it and she was referring to Mona Grayson's post about it.  

But more about my Big Thing......
 I'm a creative dawdler.   Living a creative existence is what I feel is my Big Thing.  Creative dawdling isn't just the name of  my blog - it's what I call all my juicy soul nourishing creative activities......In my years of being a creative dawdler I have developed some habits that maybe are not so useful such as procrastination, drifting, exploring all things creative instead of focusing on just one or two.   These habits lead me to a pattern of overwhelm.

Sometimes when I am avoiding/drifiting from my creative life or when there is a lot of external responsibilities happening that I feel the time monsters shouting   -No Time!  No Time for creative! -  I start to go into a frenzy of chores and to dos and say I'm overwhelmed.   But really it's a clue that my overwhelm pattern loop is happening.  The way out is to go back to my creative dawdling.  Even a small step is enough to lessen overwhelm. 

Sometimes my creative dawdling has me overwhelmed because I love to do soooooooo many things........just a quick list includes, clay, SoulCollage®, journaling, photography, crochet, astrology, rituals, space arrangement, writing for personal pleasure, writing my blog, assemblage art, beading, reading about any of these topics........there's more....but my point is that when I say I'm overwhelmed in regards to my creative dawdling then it is usually because I'm thinking about all of these and more in a monkey mind jumping around in the studio tree's way.  I haven't actually taken a concrete tangible action on a one of them. 

The way to disrupt the pattern loop is to just pick something within my Big Thing Domain of Creative Dawdling and act on it.  Or finish something that is part way done.    In this instance, when I'm overwhelmed in my creative dawdling I have to make myself sit down and take an action.  Ignore the mind, tell the critic to go take a break(more about that in a future post) and do one creative thing.  I do not even have to worry about what that thing is as long as it is a tangible action and not more thinking about it.   I also don't have to worry about the quality of the creative act.....only doing - doing badly, ugly,or beautifully but DOING.

This is where Jen Louden's Conditions of Enoughness comes in handy.     This process helps you pick a simple action, do it in a measurable way, making sure it is dependent only on you to do, and when you are done you declare yourself satisfied - even if you do not feel satisfied.    

Here is a part of my overwhelm pattern I've noticed.....
When I'm in overwhelm I'm very bad a choosing a simple action.  As soon as I try to set a simple condition of enoughness (COE for short) I get more overwhelmed.   That is because choosing a COE while in that mind boogling moment of overwhelm doesn't work for me.  It is too much thinking and not yet an action.   So for me, I have to do a preview action before setting a COE.  I have to do something creative and not worry about what it is so I might draw -or scribble -or doodle -or list words.  I might crochet.  I like to use my hands.   That action calms me down.   Dance of Shiva (brain dance) also gets me out of thinking and breaks the pattern loop.   

Once I've calmed down then I can come up with some COE's that help me further along on my creative dawdling path.  They help me lessen overwhelm.    The COE's help me move forward with quantity.  The brain dance helps me notice the pattern. 

It isn't that overwhelm is never going to happen.....but it's nice to have a little clue as to what will shift the pattern and what will help move me out of drifting and procrastination.......

Are you overwhelmed?  Ever thought it's not the to do list pressing on you but your one big thing saying attend to me?  Whatever, your thing is, I wish you creative blessings.....
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Thursday, September 23, 2010

I am grateful for: 4

noticing the turning of the seasons......
Happy Equinox!

late summer blooms

seeds for the birds

I am grateful for: 3

A hubby who picked wildflowers for his late summer lady.  Oh, Beauty!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I am grateful for: 2

A sister who made, with her loving hands, an apple pecan cheesecake for me. YUM!

Monday, September 20, 2010

I am grateful for: 1

A good friend who helps me remember what it is all about.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Pizza Night

measure for the dough

don't forget

view from my window

the hubby who packs the cheese in freezer for me leaves me little messages on the bag

ready to bake

Place on stone in oven with blessings and thanks.

Yummmmm! Pizza night my favorite night of the week!