In this issue ~~
One of the recurring dilemmas we face in our creative process is when to act and when not to. We've all had times where we've set an action in motion -- we've planted the seeds, so to speak -- and we need to wait to allow them to grow. But we become impatient and feel like we want to tug at the seedlings to make them grow faster. We're eager to see our creations blossom (and perhaps feel an urgency to generate income from them), and waiting is the hardest thing to do.
Writer/speaker Louise Hay has illustrated this using the analogy of going to a restaurant. Once you place your order, you wait. You don't follow the waiter into the kitchen to make sure the food is prepared and served. You trust that it will arrive when it's ready. But in life, we become impatient or panicky when we don't see results immediately, and we feel we need to continually do something to make it happen.
We've been taught that the way to accomplish things is to take action, and when our actions seem ineffectual, we feel out of control. We need to remember that life has natural rhythms and cycles: The sun rises and sets. The tides ebb and flow. The seasons come and go. And no matter how much we resist those cycles, they will go on. If we fight them, it is we who will suffer.
There are also rhythms and cycles in our lives. There are times when the smallest action brings results and other times when all the effort in the world yields nothing. Sometimes our ideas manifest results quickly, and other times they seem to take forever to unfold. And there's no logical explanation for either.
So what can you do when there's nothing you can do?
In his book, Power vs. Force, Dr. David Hawkins says, "We think we live by forces we can control, but in fact we are governed by power from unrevealed sources, power over which we have no control." If we can learn to live in harmony with these forces instead of fighting them, riding the wave when it's going in our direction and surrendering when it's not, we can make the most of our efforts and reduce our level of frustration.
Ultimately, knowing when to act and when not to is a personal
judgment call. The best advice I can give you is to tune into
your own rhythms and develop strategies for dealing with the
slow times as well as the active ones. To everything there is
a season, and if we flow with that, our creations will unfold
more elegantly with less struggle.
When you begin a project, create an image of your vision in words or pictures. That way, if things get slow, you can renew your intention and your enthusiasm by revisiting your vision.
"There is a time to let things happen and a time to make things happen."
"Not every one of our desires can be immediately gratified. We've got to learn to wait patiently for our dreams to come true, especially on the path we've chosen. But while we wait, we need to prepare symbolically a place for our hopes and dreams.... The delay of our dreams does not mean that they have been denied."
"The creative person is willing to live with ambiguity. He doesn't need problems solved immediately and can afford to wait for the right idea."
"Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them and the point is to live everything. Live the questions now."
(click on the book graphic to see a description at Amazon.com)
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