Tell the Truth

“It’s a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it.” ~ Somerset Maugham

In Julia Cameron’s groundbreaking book The Artist’s Way, she explores “the perils that can ambush us on our creative path” in her chapter, “Recovering a Sense of Self-Protection.”

As an exercise, she asks readers to answer the following questions:

Tell the truth. What habit do you have that gets in the way of your creativity?

Tell the truth. What do you think might be a problem?

What do you plan to do about the habit or problem?

What is your payoff in holding onto this block?

Tell the truth. Which friends make you doubt yourself? (The self-doubt is yours already, but they trigger it.)

Tell the truth. Which friends believe in you and your talent? (The talent is yours, but they make you feel it.)

I love how Cameron reminds us to “tell the truth.” I think we need this reminder. At least I know I do. Excuses (those butting-in “buts”) can easily lace our answers.  Try answering Cameron’s questions with your heart on your sleeve, your eyes wide open, and your butt sitting on your “buts.”

What do you notice about yourself and your creative life when you answer these questions? Is it easy or challenging to come up with some possible solutions to creative blocks or self-doubt sabotage?

I particularly like this blog post by Jeff Goins called “13 Weird Ways to Work Through Creative Blocks.”

Since I am quite weird and love unorthodox ways of breaking through blocks of any kind, I love his suggestion #13 because I do that regularly and then do #8 as a response. It’s a wonderful cycle of self-love and weirdness.

Enjoy telling the truth and busting through creative brick walls!  You can do it! Pow!

About Courtney Putnam

I first came to healing work through art and writing. Creating collage art and poetry in particular allowed me to deeply understand the benefit of self-expression in the healing process. But, I also began to see the benefit of bodywork (manual work in the form of massage and energywork in the form of Reiki) as keys to unlocking the emotional stresses we hold in our bodies. I became a Reiki practitioner in 2002, received an MFA in Creative Writing in 2003, received my massage license in the spring of 2006, and became a Reiki Master in 2010. In my practice I bring together these three areas -- the body, the mind, and the spirit (or energy body) -- so others may experience profound and positive change in their lives.
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