“Ruth Stone, an award-winning poet who published most of her work after the age of 70, died on November 19 of natural causes at her home in Ripton, Vermont, according to the Huffington Post. She was 96.” – The Writer’s Chronicle
I’m currently reading The War of Art, Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles, by Steven Pressfield. In it, Steven defines our enemy, Resistance.
“Resistance will tell you anything to keep you from doing your work.”
Do you find this to be true in your own life? Regardless of your calling—teaching the Word, writing music, singing, serving, writing prose or poetry, etc.—resistance sets its stealthy snares in hopes of squelching any creativity you and I have to offer.
“Resistance cannot be seen, touched, heard, or smelled. But it can be felt. Its aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.”
I find this to be especially true when I work on poetry. Recently, while trying to finish a piece for an upcoming conference, Resistance whispered a host of reasons why I had no business writing, with my whopping age of 49 winning top billing that day.
Everything changed, however, when I read about an award-winning poet named Ruth Stone, who published most of her work after the age of 70.
With that knowledge in my pocket, I thanked God.
Grinned like a kid.
Put down the magazine.
Picked up a pen.
When attempting to bang the first key, excuses invade my brain like blood rushes to an open wound.
Perhaps your blank page appears more like uncharted territory—a new job or opportunity, a redesigned eating or exercise plan, or dealing with circumstances not of your choosing—all requiring a “bang of the first key” to move forward.
If, like me, you find yourself making excuses to begin whatever process lies before you, I encourage you to read Jeff’s post, to pray for strength (after all, no amount of willpower trumps the Spirit’s) and then bang the first key.
clut·ter: A confused or disordered state or collection; a jumble
One episode of Hoarders leaves me feeling like Martha Stewart on a bad hair day — while you won’t find feline skeletal remains buried beneath half-drained paper cups in my house, I doubt Martha would stack her books to the point of toppling as I sometimes do.
Let’s face it. House clutter kills more than cats, including:
spontaneity (sure, drop by any time! not.)
energy (does anything sap it quicker than disorder?)
beauty (even one who beholds would have to agree with me on this one)
peace (there’s always something to move, clean, or peep over)
Did you know it can also kill your creativity?
If you could use a boost of decluttering confidence despite your own toppling towers (am I alone here?), tune into an episode of Hoarders. You’ll be tweeting your own organizational tips in no time!
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