Thursday, February 16, 2012

Herding Inspiration

I drove Orion to school this morning and the views of snow frosted mountains and clouds was spectacular. I felt inspiration stirring. I have a list of things to do today, as every day. This morning puts me in mind of a topic I've spoken often about at conventions: Write High, Edit Sober. It's a catchy title and yes, I do talk a little about drugs, including caffeine. But the heart of the matter is that most of us struggle to find a balance between inspired work and time to act on it.
It's good advice to write, paint or dance when the muse shows up. The work we do when inspired is, well, inspired. Sometimes, failing to act on inspiration can be a loss. Sometimes the correspondence and organizing can wait, even if we think it can't.
But sometimes the have-to's can't wait. Life is messy and most of us have many jobs.

On the other hand, it's possible to bring inspiration to the time we do have. To a degree, we can invite the muse. It might be a matter of paying attention to what works. If it's the feel of wind on your face, go outside. It could be a particular music or a scent or a passage in a book.
Or sometimes it's just a matter of getting started. If you don't feel inspired, prepare the canvas, lay in the background colors. Or start writing about the moment you're in. Sometimes my best work happens this way. It focuses us, calms us, opens the door for creativity.

Jump into inspiration when it comes. If you can't, allow yourself to feel it, pay attention to what brought it to you and invite it back when you're ready. It's not perfect, but I can tell you from experience, it works often enough to be well worth the effort.

1 comment:

Melissa P said...

Starting can seem more insurmountable than the actual creating. I, too, find habits, and lists, helpful when that elusive Spirit just isn't moving.

I hope your week ends well and that your weekend has just the right balance of productivity and relaxation.