Creating from Your Core

ripples

The wisps of an idea settle in because I’ve let myself turn inwards and hear the sounds around me. The air inflates my belly and pushes my ribs outwards past their natural stance. I’m no longer looking frantically at anyone else’s work or words. I’m peering down a hall dimly lit towards my own self.

Here is where I find my own golden pools. The ideas that ripple gently outwards because authenticity colors the waters.

I see the already painted landscapes of what I’ve been longing to create. I take note of all the colors and try to hastily script some notes. But as soon as I start to struggle my vision begins to fade. I begin to scramble even more, but then remember to pause, and let everything flow. Only then do I see the colors dabbed and brushed back into place.

I forget so easily that this is where I need to return. A place, which can seem miles away, but is truly only a few breaths and stretches from my outstretched hands. Instead I sit with tense shoulders turned inwards, and thoughts racing as my chest becomes tighter and tighter. The truth I’m after floats in a haze past my mind’s eye and won’t bring itself to life in this ruckus. It knows I would squeeze the life out of it here. But I know the idea is there because I saw it dancing past, and so I struggle harder and harder until something snaps me from my pursuit, and brings me softly back to myself.

••

Some of you may know I’ve been working on some behind the scenes kind of projects lately. A book. Relaunching this space so it looks and feels like the community we are creating. Designing new features for the coming site. Planning a wedding. Grad school. Work. And you know, life.

I love every single one of these projects. (And don’t you worry, I will be tellin’ you alllll about them soon enough!) But here are some fun facts about Caity: I’m an INJF and 1w2 (MB & enneagram). In other words, I’m an introverted, creative, hardcore perfectionist with the shorter end of the patience stick. Yes folks, I am a real treat. The point though is I know how hard it is to stay in the creative feel good zone (rainbows and unicorns OH MY) and out of the holy shit this is never going to come together and if it does it’ll never be good enough zone. Delicate balance and all that.

Why is this important?

Because none of us create good content out of an overwhelmed frantic state of mind.

I’ve done it. Pushed through the racing thoughts and shallow breathing to simply get it done. But I’m never happy with the end product because it didn’t feel right and it didn’t come from my core.

And honestly, this doesn’t just apply to us awesome creatives in our dingy little writing hovels. Just kidding, my room is totally cozy. And littered with coffee cups. But I digress. This goes for people in the 9-5 (or however late you torture yourself) world as well. People aren’t doing their jobs, and you’re behind on a million things, and holy shit have you seen my inbox count? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

And so now you’re like gee, thanks Caity for pointing how overwhelming all of our lives are! You are WELCOME! But here’s the cool part, it’s so easy to bring ourselves back into focus. You know how your mom used to tell you to count to ten, and you were like mom go away I don’t want to count to ten! Well this isn’t like that. Much less annoying.

So you’re sitting at your desk, and you’re going to place your feet about hip/shoulder width apart. Firmly root them on the ground. Let your shoulders drop and stop trying to shove them into your ears. (maybe that’s just me, whatever guys) Now breathe in through your nose, and fill your belly (extra points if you can fill up through your lungs and push the lungs out horizontally). Now hold it people. Okay, now let the air flow back out through your nose. Rinse and repeat.

Okay okay. I know this isn’t groundbreaking, but that’s kind of the point. This is yoga 101 for a reason. It seriously will immediately lower your heart rate and calm your body though. You can even learn to turn inwards (mentally) as you do it, and hot damn you’ll be doing great.

This my go to trick – what’s yours?

Caitlynhummel.com
 

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7 thoughts on “Creating from Your Core

  1. I love the social worker in you shouting out your Myers Briggs and enneagram lol. I’m also an INFJ. Even though that’s supposed to be a rare one, I feel like I always come across people who are writers or therapists that fall under the same category. Interestingly enough, both you and I have both of those things in common, which is awesome. Whenever I get overwhelmed and feel like life is just sitting right on top of my chest, which typically happens like 99% of my days, it’s comforting that it’s universal and that there are people out there that are so similar to myself with these same goals and dreams and that they’re trying to make it work. I have my writing dreams and I have my therapist dreams and I desperately want both to unravel eventually. But you’re right, nothing good comes from a frantic mind, so it’s so important to take that time off and give yourself at least a tiny break. Preach about that self-care!!!

    xo Jackie

    • ha! I am obsessed with Myers Briggs, enneagram, and the rest of those things! It’s the psych nerd in my social workerness haha! I feel like I find a lot of INFJs in writing as well, which isn’t super surprising, but still funny since like you said we’re supposed to be rare. Have you ever done enneagram? I feel like enneagram is a bit harsher in revealing your flaws. Isn’t it odd having such separate dreams though? Sometimes I really struggle with pursuing both at the same time… They can feel so unrelated even though I know there is a connection between them. My week has been cray, but I’m looking forward to reading your new post! It’s sittin waitin for me 🙂

      • I love them too! And I love how on-point they always seem to be. I’ve the Myer’s Briggs a few times, but had to write a huge paper on it for my career counseling class early on in grad school and relate that to our career choices and how we ended up in our program. I’m totally into stuff like that, but no, I haven’t done an enneagram. I’ll definitely have to look it up! I struggle with it too and more so now that I am graduating in two months. I used to push the whole writing thing on the back burner and said I would have more time when I graduated, but I realized not too long ago that if I keep pushing it on the back burner, that’s where it’ll stay. I agree that it seems unrelated, but there is definitely a connection between them. We just have to find it.

        Hope your week gets a little less cray 😀

  2. I love your voice Caitlyn! Looking forward to reading more of your work.

    You hit the nail on the head with “Because none of us create good content out of an overwhelmed frantic state of mind.” This is so true. It’s only in the past year I’ve really started to learn this.

    When I feel overwhelmed and unable to focus I usually take a warm bath and read a chapter of my book coming out refreshed and ready to work. Or have a cup of tea.

    Keep up the good work here! Cheers!

    • Thanks Sarah! I felt like I got to use both of my voices in this post, which was fun for me. 🙂 I’m definitely learning this as well and it has notttt been easy haha. I usually take a few minutes to meditate, but a bath sounds all kinds of excellent! Can’t wait to read more of your work 🙂

  3. I always love reading your posts, Caity! You’re a spitfire in all the right ways. My mind is so many different places right now. I definitely need to just stop and breathe sometimes. It’s amazing how just doing that can center you and ground you so you can step out of the fog and push forward.

    • “A spitfire in all the right ways.” hahha! That just made my dayyyy! I can believe your mind is hoppin with all you have going on right now. I need an update on yooo life :))

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