1. Realize when you’re anxious.
This may seem counter-intuitive, but actually when you are anxious, there is often a great deal of energy spent in trying to deny it. This drain of energy can keep you from creating. So when you are anxious about that deadline or those revisions or your upcoming review, admit it to yourself. Notice how this frees you.
2. Know that feelings come and go.
This is similar to the first principle. You may have flashes of anger or sadness or worry, but physiologically these only last for 90 seconds in your body. When they last longer, it is because you are making the decision to re-start the emotional loop. Let the emotion wash through you and let it go. Feel how easy this is to do.
3. Love yourself for who you are.
No one else has your gifts and talents. No one else writes or teaches or creates quite like you. Enjoy your uniqueness. Work from the special perspective that only you can bring.
4. Know writing is your friend and stay kind to it.
Sometimes we make writing our enemy. It’s not. When you stop resisting it and allow it to flow through you, it brings such joy and purpose that you know deep down that this is a companion and a gift on your journey. Treat it as such.
5. Balance the right and left brains.
If you’ve been dealing with numbers, do some painting. If you’ve just written a poem, put together a book shelf. Avoid the rut of what you usually do and ignite your creativity by trying something different on a regular basis.
6. Do what makes yourself proud.
Don’t write what you think others want you to write. You actually have incredible freedom in your creative life. Let your next project be something that lights you up. Let yourself do what you really want to do – and take pride in it.
7. Be accountable to your gifts.
When you tell a friend you’ll meet her for lunch, you show up. When you have a class to teach, you prepare your lesson. Do the same for your creative gifts. Make an appointment and show up. Be prepared. Be present. And see what presents the creative gift will give to you.
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a writing coach with 20 years of experience teaching at the graduate and undergraduate levels in universities, as well as in diverse community settings. She specializes in working with women in academe.