Thursday, March 26, 2009

Resistance is futile...

Hi! It's been almost a week since I've posted, and my last post about wonderful Paytonology was something I reprinted from a Facebook post. So what's been going on this week?

Well, over the weekend I got a lot done for Glint Gear. I made some coin pouches, finished an awesome round bag that the hubster and I named together (Pinball Wizard... look for it soon. We haven't taken pics yet), starting making a messenger bag,and painted some canvas in purples and yellows for a special order pyramid bag. Not too bad for me, I suppose!

Side Note: Chip asked me in a comment if I'd be willing to share my process for painting the Glint Gear fabric - absolutely! I need to work on a post for that. On my Facebook I posted a note that talked about it a little with some pictures.

One major theme has popped up this week, and that is of creative resistance. I was even resisting writing a new blog post! I'm curious as to how many of you experience it as well. Is it something we all experience, and if so, how do you deal with it?

What I noticed for myself this past week, is that it's more than just "creative" resistance for me... it's "joy" resistance. I can think about different domains of my life - family, friends, work, art, marriage - and the resistance is pervasive. I can think about something I truly enjoy doing, and this feeling of "yuck" and "I don't wanna" and "why bother" comes over me. It happens every time I think of going on a social event with friends, planning and managing a really fun event at work, having a romantic date with Ocean, and sewing a groovy new Glint Gear piece. These are all things that give me joy and pleasure while I'm in the midst of it. But before I engage, it's almost like I'm about to have my toenails pulled out with pliers one-by-one.

Once I've chosen to proceed, there's a moment of what I can only describe as an odd "emotional pain" right before I commit to that first action. And then I take one small step, then another, and slowly begin. The "crossing over" from resistance to joy can sometimes be intense, depending on how much joy is waiting on the other side. Sometimes it's subtle. It used to take me weeks to work through the resistance to get started. Sometimes it does. Sometimes it only takes days. Sometimes hours. The past week I've noticed that if I focus on what a brilliant singer/songwriter friend of mine,
Terry Allan Smith, calls "beginning mind," then it only takes minutes to get through the cross-over. Beginning mind is emptying your thoughts of how it will go and all those fears of disappointment, being stuck or whatever, and just take action. I focus on each step of what I'm doing and just give in to it.

For example, when I'm working on a Glint Gear piece that I know will be time-consuming and have resisted sitting down to sew, I commit to just doing it, empty my mind of all those negative thoughts, put fabric under the presser foot and just start stitching. One stitch at a time... whirrr... whirr.... whirrrrrr. It's a meditation. I give up how I'll do this part or that, and take it one moment at a time. One stitch a time. Giving in to the process fully. And before I know it, I'm so into it that time stands still and my joy is bubbling over. And I always think, "Now why was i resisting this??? I LOVE this!!!"

So that's my theme as of late. Breaking through resistance to feel joy.

What are your thoughts on creative resistance?

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