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Sometimes I find myself waiting for inspiration. I don’t know what to write, what to say about what I’m preparing to write.  It’s almost as if my mind goes blank!  Where has my muse gone?

Now, I don’t believe in the term Writer’s Block.  For one thing, it’s not something that happens exclusively to writers. (Though writers may be more sensitive to it than some, we also carry effective tools for dealing with it.)  Secondly, I don’t like imagining it as something as solid as a block.  I’ve found it a lot more malleable.

The opposite of waiting is flow.  So the best way to get things flowing again is to stop waiting and move in a different direction.

Sitting and suffering when things are stuck isn’t going to get the crops to grow again.  You don’t have to wait for everyone else to act, for all conditions to be perfect.  In some very difficult cases, taking action toward therapy may be what’s needed.  There are stories of those who sought to take action through drugs or drink, with less than adequate results.  But most of us can just get off our duffs and do something about it.  There are plenty of simpler, more healthy things that will do the trick.  The means are open to anyone, too, whether writer or not.

The key is to find something else to occupy your mind for awhile. Very often a walk, preferably outside, can open the channels again.  Just changing rooms could spark a few things. Anything which changes your perspective, can free your mind from the illusion of the block.  Taking action primes the pump for creative ideas to flow.   I like using music, especially live music.  Moving to music always inspires me!  Some may prefer a bath or shower.  Julia Cameron says that creativity is a spiritual issue.  It’s not about ego.  Anything you can do to ease your mind, find a place of peace in the situation, will support your creativity for whatever is needed.

As writers, we can bust through by putting pen to paper or fingers to keys and writing.  Anything at all.  It matters not what.  The physical act of writing can open lots of pathways. You don’t even have to be a writer to do it.  It’s perfectly acceptable to write that you can’t think of anything to write (or what to do about something), that you have no clue where to even start. In a few sentences you may be saying something like, “Well, I could do this …” and before you know it, you’re writing!  (Or painting, or composing, or looking into going back to school.)  I always support writing it out.

The lesson is that waiting does nothing to help the situation and there are a whole slew of actions you can take which do help.   Kristen Moeller wrote in her intriguing book “Waiting for Jack” asking, What are you waiting for?  It’s a study of why it just doesn’t pay to wait.  How many wonderful things you miss!  How not waiting can put you somewhere you’d never imagined.

In many ways we’ve become ingrained in waiting. Waiting in line, waiting for others to show up or do something, waiting for our favorite show to come back with a new season.

It seems to me that waiting tightens.  It interferes with free movement.  One could say, quite dispassionately, that they are waiting for a bus.  But more often than not our waiting is accompanied by feelings of anxiety.  Will the bus be on time?  Will I get a seat . . . ?  And therein lies the culprit.

The bad feelings we get around waiting do Nothing to open the way for the line to move faster, your friend to show up sooner, or writing to come. In fact, I would say, energetically, the more angst you produce, the more constricted the flow, and the longer you have to wait.

The quickest way to get over waiting is to just do it, if you can. When you’re able to move again, the anxiety slips away.  If you can’t do it, see if there’s some place to release the negative feelings.

Acceptance of where you are and what’s going on can eliminate plenty. Very often the simple act of acknowledgment that words (money, solutions) are not coming jogs things loose.  If we can just stop waiting and take some kind of Action  ~ even mentally releasing the present moment to be what it is ~ we are surprised by how things get going again.

What do you do when you’re humming along, moving in the flow and then thwack!  You stub you toe?  You might stub it on an obstacle  left in your foot path,  a hiccup in your plans, an unexpected bill or illness.

If you’re like me, your reaction is to get mad at yourself for not paying attention, not seeing the hazard ahead.  It’s quite easy for me to skip off into other times I haven’t watched where I was going or how things like this ALWAYS happen to me!

It’s difficult when you’re smacked in the face by an unforseen obstacle, such as a car or computer breakdown, expectations unfulfilled and other such left field stray balls.

This wayward ball  can often throw you off course and leave you feeling defeated, angry, victimized or otherwise closed to the abundant flow.

I find it hard at that point, to bring myself back.  This week, I was flowing along, paying good attention and allowing all the little things to fall away.  I’m not going to get hung up on this and allow my thoughts to go negative, I say.  I’m staying present and happy with life.  No, that’s not going to get me either . . .  What happens?  I find myself in a massive traffic jam.  I get a little crazy when no one is moving at all. “Usual” traffic progresses, albeit slowly.  But when there’s an accident or lane blockage, there is, what feels like, no progress.  Minutes go by and the car only moves a few inches.  It’s at this point I begin to panic and wonder what I’m doing there!  I calculate the time wasted, stress over the wear and tear on the car and end up cussing at my life, along with the other drivers.

Very negative. Very closed.  Very unhappy.

It irks me to know I have such limits.  Why can’t I accept all that happens?  Why are there some things I can’t float through?  I know my fussing does nothing to move me any closer to my destination. There seem to be tributaries of my negative thinking.  Say I accept what’s happening now.  But, I ask myself, how many other times have I been in this situation? Why haven’t I been able to get myself out of this?  What flaw has kept me stuck in this predicament, susceptible to such frustrations?  If I sit long enough, I might even find someone else to blame for it.

It’s true that many walls that toes stub are much bigger and thicker than interminable traffic.  For instance, if I was in the car that caused this jam . . . Surely, sitting behind the wreckage, I have the time to control my thoughts, gain perspective, and put myself back on track.  Before I slam into that threatening wall.

I guess it’s hard when you’re facing the culprit, head on.  But, I feel, this is exactly the time to work on it.  The best tactic seems to be to talk with yourself.  Out loud, if you can.  Tell yourself it’s okay.  Heal the wounds first.  Make sure you show concern for yourself and the situation you are in.  You might slide into gratitude, if you’ve calmed yourself down enough: “I’m grateful it wasn’t my accident. I’m grateful for the cell phone so I won’t leave anyone hanging.  It’s a nice day and the music is humming.”

This is a the time to remind yourself there’s nothing you can do about it  at the moment.  If there are changes to be made, they don’t have to be enacted right no. Assure yourself that it will end and you will be able to clear your head and make a new choice.

This is really good practice. Not only will it make you better able to brush off smaller things, it will also prepare you for those bigger obstacles. Watch your progress and see how often and how quickly you can find that flow again.

Will is an interesting thing.  It will be your best friend and help you to move through life deliberately and gracefully.

However, will can also be hard and unyielding. Sometimes it won’t let you move forward.  It convinces you that you can’t change, you must remain the same.  Will can keep you stuck in a place you might not want to be.  Will is responsible for, like a stubborn child, making you believe you can’t let go.

Will is the difference between giving and taking, holding and releasing.  Will can bend you or keep you from going where you should not.

The truth is: life is change and nothing ever remains the same. Will allows life to flow.  When you’re willing to let go, life moves like a steady stream.  Will is the source of your First choice.  What is your will?  What do you want?

When you’re willing to let go, when you don’t let resistance get in the way, life is much easier.  You will feel calmer and things will seem to come to you.

If you are in the rock hard grasp of Will, you can sometimes loosen it by being willing to be willing.  Just that small gap might just remove the boulder out of your way and free your will and your life to fly!

Taking action in the world creates a conduit for life to flow.

Being Grateful allows Good Things to flow.  And it keeps you open for Guidance.

Using Guidance to fuel your actions helps you move past apparent barriers.

            (Do remember to take good care of yourself along the journey.)

If the flow should slow down, try giving more to others.

The actions you take on others’ behalf will open the conduit wider.

May Goodness flow freely into your life!

 This is a sample of my upcoming e-book, due out in the Fall.

I’ve had car trouble recently.  The alternator died and I was running on nothing but battery power.  The car made it to the mechanic. But there was not a rental car in site.  It would be easy to say I was experiencing some bad luck.

But I decided to let it all flow. To be present and allow, rather than resist what was happening.

In the end there was much to be grateful for.  The car could’ve conked out on the highway and I could’ve been stuck in the rain.  What would I have done then?  A car was eventually located, thanks to the help of some amazing mechanics, committed to customer service.  In 24 hours, my car was back, better than before.  While it was in the shop, they fixed the air conditioning!

I believe it played out so well because I was willing to go with the flow.  I admit, I got a little upset with the rental car place.  They were not focused on customer service.  It didn’t make me happy to be stuck with a very expensive and large SUV.  But I let my anger drain out.  You know, I had thought I might like having an SUV.  Now I know what it’s like and will stick to my 4wd Subaru.

It all depends on how you look at it.

It’s important to be able to adjust.  Life can move fast and it helps if you’re willing to go with it, instead of resist it.

I have never been on a surfboard myself, but I would guess you have to, in a way, give yourself to the wave. Allow it to take you.  If you try to resist you’re likely to find yourself in the water, praying the board doesn’t hit you.  It’s like that with so many things.  There’s even talk of this kind of adjustment/acceptance in weight loss.  Adjusting your weight means, first of all, accepting the size of your body.

The best way to move with life and steer your own course is to adjust and align yourself with what is going on, whatever it is.  From there you have a better chance of altering it, making it your choice. They say people who can adjust to changing situations are happier. Having the flexibility to bend in the wind instead of break allows you to bounce back.

My life has changed dramatically in the last 2 week.  I can’t say yet how it went as I haven’t exactly made it to shore.  But I can see that I am allowing this new routine to take over (even if, in many ways, I’d rather not). Once I’m in sync with it, I can make the necessary adjustments to create more comfort and ease.  In the meantime, I remain open to the flow.
These adjustments I’m talking about are the places where life is asking you to let go. Sometimes you need to tweak, tune up, realign how you do things.  Like a car needing tune-up adjustments.  We all need them from time to time.  You must begin with allowing and that means seeing it. Do we, though, stop long enough to notice?

I’m putting a lot more miles on my car now.  Should I alter its treatment schedule?  Does it need more oil?  I need to ask the same questions about my body. What does my body need to keep up?  Should I be increasing my water intake to balance the ramped up movement?  Am I eating as well as I could?   Maybe I need more protein and less sugar. Perhaps I need to make a tuck or two in my evening routine to get enough sleep.  My clothes may well need adjustments for a new schedule and changing weather.

Finding places to make adjustments can help life flow much better. Especially in changing times.

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