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“Enough” Time

The hot, dry westerly winds are blowing through New Mexico. Along the highways, hundred-foot-high dust devils spin the hazy air. The heat creates an illusion: Time itself seems to be cooking in the hot summer air.

Time is a primary concern in dealing with creative blocks. Most of us think, "If only I had more time, then I would work." We have a fantasy that there is such a thing as a "good" creative time, an idyll of endless, seamless time unfolding invitingly for us to frolic in creatively. No such bolts of limitless time exist for most of us. Our days are chopped into segments, and if we are to be creative, we must learn to use the limited time we have.

When ego is siphoned off creativity, when creativity becomes one more thing we do, like the laundry, then it takes far less time to do it. Much of our desire for creative time has to do with our trying to coax ourselves into being in the right mood to create. We want to "feel like it," and when we don't, or don't quickly, we think the solution is more time. Actually, the solution is less attention to the vagaries of mood. In short, creativity needs to become daily, doable, and nonnegotiable, something as quotidian as breathing.

7 Comments on "“Enough” Time"

  1. I absolutely agree. I have plenty of time to write, but unlike my job which I do whether I feel like it or not, I think I need inspiration. Inspiration never comes and I have to be willing write badly whenever I can. Last line has typos, Julia.

  2. Hi Julia for sharing your beautiful words.

    I have been doing the “morning pages” regularly (daily) for the past 2 years, and i cannot go a day without it. It feels as if I missed something if I didn’t do my morning pages. I also confess that I have been putting off writing short stories for one of my clients. She has asked me twice if I have story and I have been putting it off. I must say my perfectionism is killing me from inside, and I have decided to let go and allow myself to create whatever i can in a limited time.

    That is why I come here to learn some words of wisdom from you so that break that habit of perfectionism and procrastination…

    Thanks for being there for us ….

    I will be coming back always đŸ™‚

    Thank you
    Abishek Rana

  3. Some of my most beautiful pieces of writing have appeared when I didn’t realise I had inspiration! I sit down daily, whether I feel like it or not and sometimes I feel wrung out and grumpy and as if I have nothing to give and sometimes, even in that resistance, something unexpected and delightful will appear on the page. We have to make the space, use the tiny bits of time and invite creativity in.

  4. Melanie Knapp says:

    Julia, Thanks for further encouragement. I have had a break through recently. I’m trying to teach myself to have break throughs not break downs…… I found words to describe secret longings, feelings and romance. It is beautiful. I am so proud of myself. Sometimes i just look at my work and smile. Thanks for being such a positive teacher. Love makes the world go round. Stay real. xoxo MELANIE, Canada

  5. When we start to think of our creative endeavours as our real “work” it puts a different complexion on their importance. In the same way you have to do the laundry or make a meal or go to a job, your creative life is a have to.

    The more you work like this, the easier it is to be “inspired” to do the work. In fact, you don’t even need inspiration. You can just sit down and write, paint, design, compose, whatever, because that’s just what you do.

  6. Stephanie C. says:

    Thank you for this, Julia. I have been re-working The Artist’s Way and this makes a lot of sense to me.

  7. Writing is life, and the most amazing gifts show up when we are least expectant.

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