The Artist's Way Book Group - Week 10

"This week we explore the perils that can ambush us on our creative path. Because creativity is a spiritual issue, many of the perils are spiritual perils. In the essays, tasks, and exercises of this week, we search out the toxic patterns we cling to that block our creative flow". Julia Cameron.

The Artist's Way creative cluster I am facilitating is up to Week 10 this week. We have each completed ten weeks of morning pages, artist dates, and walks. In addition, we have done a lot of the exercises and tasks in the book. In the process we realised, that it is quite a challenge to complete each of the weeks information in just one week.

Julia mentions this in her book, and suggests that people take what they can do and then come back later on to parts that they may have missed. It's only as we have worked through the book that we have realised the truth of this statement! This week the book focusses on Dangers of the Trail, Workaholism, Drought, Fame and Competition.

Dangers of the Trail

Each of us has a have a way to dull our feelings, when we find things are getting too much. However, when we dull our feelings, we also do something else, we create a creative block. There are a myriad of ways to do this; alcohol, food, caffeine, being busy, sex, work, family, friends, drugs, sugar, exercise. These things in themselves aren't necessarily bad, what we are looking at here, is the abuse or misuse of these things. Julia Cameron in The Artist's Way this week, suggests that there are usually one or two ways that we favour.

"As we become aware of our blocking devices - food, busyness, alcohol, sex, other drugs - we can feel our U-turns as we make them. The blocks will no longer work effectively. Over time, we will try - perhaps slowly and erratically - to ride out the anxiety and see where we emerge. Anxiety is fuel. We can use it to write with, paint with, work with.

Feel: anxious!
Try: using the anxiety!
Feel: I just did it! I didn't block! I used the anxiety and moved ahead!
Oh my God! I am excited"
Julia Cameron Week 10 Dangers of the Trail.

Do you find yourself doing work after work hours... taking work with you on outings? Answering the phone after a certain time?

Is work fun or something to be endured? Do you have fun at work? What sort of attitude do you bring to your work?

"Play can make a workaholic very nervous. Fun is scary." Julia Cameron.

Your mission this week, should you choose to take it on... take out a piece of paper, and write down

  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________
  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________
  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________
  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________
  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________
  • Wouldn't it be fun to ____________________

    Now put one of those items on your list into action. Wouldn't it be fun to buy a packet of marbles the next time I'm at the store? Wouldn't it be fun to buy a dance DVD and dance? Wouldn't it be fun to invite my friends around for a slumber party? Wouldn't it be fun to buy a spirograph and doodle? Wouldn't it be fun to go bushwalking and sit under a waterfall?

    I hope you have some fun playing with this mission... should you choose to. :) Kareen