Vulnerability and Creativity.

Recently, I watched a TED talk given by Brene Brown.  If you have 20 minutes, her research on vulnerability, living wholeheartedly and creativity is worth your time.

She also has a follow up talk here (another 20 mins):

The entire point of me writing here was to share the process of getting my creative brain working again. I have to admit the idea of having anyone reading about my process was scary.  I worried ‘What might you think?   Where is this going really?’  

By the way, I realized I have no idea. Subsequently, I thought  ‘Eek! They’ll find out that I don’t know what I’m doing!’

In doing this bit of writing and reflection, I’ve realized I’m allowing myself to feel the vulnerability that comes with the creative process.





I’ve been thinking a lot about what I need to do to help myself get out of this funk. It does feel like a funk, a glutinous mass I’m swimming through. It’s heavy and thick and it feels like it’s pushing the air out of my lungs. I keep sighing. It must be awful for others around me.

In an attempt to pull myself out of the glutinous mass, I’ve been revisiting things I used to love. I explored my old crushes – no, I didn’t stalk old boyfriends. I went back and thought about creative-y type things I used to do before I was married. I wrote, I drew, I wanted to be an actor. So, here I am writing a little bit, that seems to help. I’ve been brain mapping by writing down random thoughts/sketches as they come in to my head. I used to doodle things like the image above all the time. It feels like it’s been an age.

I used to love performing and acting. I spent some time on the internet yesterday looking for auditions to participate in. I’ve missed many recently and I’m thinking that it’s likely for the best. I can’t just start auditioning for things if I don’t have the time set aside. Nonetheless, it was enough to spark my mind. I felt a bit better.

All this mapping/sketching reminded me that many things are still possible.

Little Boxes.

I like this song.  Yea, it was the theme song for a few seasons of the TV show Weeds.  Not only does it reflect partial truisms about suburban lives, the song happens to be mournful yet catchy. A very difficult thing to do.

My partner Rustin studied Urban and Regional Planning at UWaterloo. In his undergrad, he mourned suburban sprawl. Places where the houses looked depressingly just the same. Fifteen years later, we own a home in suburban Ottawa. Sorry Honey.

It reminds me of the questions that I’m asking myself right now.  Who am I really?  Can I continue to live in these little boxes?

Treading. It’s dreadful.

My creative brain is bursting.  It shouts ‘Generate. Make something happen. Anything. PLEASE!’.

I have to admit it’s a peculiar feeling, this wanting to write or generate something without direction or topic.  It reflects the story of my life lately. I’m treading water in a quite a few areas lately.  Not really going anywhere but also not sinking.  Just staid sameness.  There’s nothing wrong with my life. Really. I’m in a good place.  I’m doing well.  My career is going well.  Husband and kid are happy for the moment. I worked pretty hard in a lot of different ways to get here. I should relax, do what I’m doing and enjoy it.  Right?

A friend of mine relayed to me that others work towards and revel in exactly this predictable kind of life.  What’s wrong with me?

I’m educated. I’m healthy.  I have options.  Instead of sticking with gratitude and reflecting on my unbelievable luck, I find myself wanting to create challenge.   I want to test my limits. I want to kick the hornet’s nest and run for my life. Breath tearing at my lungs.

I’m going to change the story of my life.