Dancing on Ice

This month, we’ve been talking about resilience. It’s a kind of weird idea in some ways. Simply stated, it’s the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.

There’s been a lot of talk in the midst of the last two years about sitting with our feelings, not moving through them too quickly. I am a big proponent of allowing ourselves to feel everything; to let the feelings find a place to rest. But as an enneagram 4, I can quickly let a feeling take over and define a moment, a day and even an entire season.

I love the idea of letting feelings come, but they also need a way to go.

This is where resilience becomes an action and not just an idea.

Want to know another weird thing about the word “resilience”? It can be defined as both “toughness” AND “elasticity.” Does anyone else find these words to be in complete opposition? I mean, when I think of toughness, I think of something hard, like ice. When I think of elasticity, it’s more like silly putty or stringy gum.

But maybe the beauty of these seemingly opposing definitions is that they really are more similar than a first read reveals. There are times in our journey towards resilience when we need to be tough, when we need to freeze a bit and hold our boundaries, much like the surface of a frozen lake. But there are other times when the ability to move through and recover looks like being flexible and not quite so stiff. A bit like that frozen lake with a few days of sun and some nice deep melt.

So how does this connect with creativity? I am so glad you asked!

Creativity is the ability to name those feelings and move through them. It’s the harnessing of all that power towards something beautiful.

Like the unseen cosmic forces of radiant energy and the unpredictable beauty of changing weather systems, creativity can strike at any time. The sun that melts that lake is a creative force. The freezing atmosphere that allows the lake to find it’s harder edges is a creative force.

And you?

You are the ice skater dancing on frozen water.

To find resilience, we need to find ways to name our emotions, feel them all and then … MOVE ON! Those moments of deep fear, sadness, joy, elation, grief? They will come and they will come when you least expect them.

So dance with them. Allow them to move you and then allow them to move through you.

But how, you ask?

This is one of my favorite questions because I LOVE helping women harness their resilience to move through those beautiful, God-given emotions.

Here are some of my favorite ways to harness my creativity and move towards resilience:

  • Daily morning pages as described in Julia Cameron’s book “The Artist’s Way”
  • Centering prayer and/or a meditation practice
  • Creative community in the form of a class or group of other artists
  • Daily wonder walks to clear your mind and remember the natural creative beauty and power of nature.
  • Evening routines of calming music/journaling/deep breathing.
  • Trying new forms of creativity and art, even if (and especially if) they feel uncomfortable.

How do you cultivate rhythms of creative resilience?

If you are looking for a community to dive into your creative recovery and bring that beautiful balance of both toughness and elasticity, come join one of my upcoming Artist’s Way groups or my upcoming Thrive Hive Creative Community for homeschooling moms.

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