After we get that first spark of inspiration, the next major block rears it’s terrible fangs. Those malicious protests cascade in, “It’s already been done before,” “I’ll never do it as well as that person did,” and my personal favorite, “Everybody wants to write a book.”
If your inner voice ever tells you, “Everybody wants to write a book,” you know it’s your critic because obviously we can find a use for more than one book in this world.
Perhaps someone has written a book on your topic or genre, in fact, I’m sure they have, but your true vision and contribution are in the detail. You will really start to distinguish yourself when you go deeper and sketch things out. This is an exciting step!
Ernest Becker said, “The artist takes in the world but instead of being oppressed by it, he reworks it in his own personality and re-creates it as work.”
When I first heard that quote I didn’t get it. What did he mean by oppressed?
But upon further reflection, of course that’s true. If we go through life and never express the imprint it makes on us then we’re not just repressed, we’re oppressed. We’re letting the world shove us around without saying anything.
On the other hand, if we choose to make art out of our experience we have the capacity to make the ugliest moments beautiful. By giving voice to the internal experience created by an external situation we make it human. That’s what stories are for: they give life events their proper value. We mix it up with our imagination and show the world what it really means!
Plus ,mixing life up in your imagination is just good clean fun.
So this week you’re going to move your story down from the crown chakra to the third eye. This is where we get to explore our vision of the story. By the way, if you’re just jumping in on this chakra challenge, feel free to get an explanation by following this link.
One thing I find fascinating about these upper chakras is their biological connection. They are associated with the pineal gland, which is awesome. In fact, the pineal gland has been playfully nick-named “the third eye” in western medicine. Rene Descartes called it, “the seat of the soul.”
The function of this gland is to regulate your circadian rhythm, i.e. the excretion of Melatonin (which puts you to sleep and fills your head with dreams) and Serotonin (which wakes you up and fills you with hope and enthusiasm for the day). Basically, this is the gland that unleashes the sugar plums to dance in your head.
So, that’s exactly what we’re going to do here. This is an exercise I call “Umbrella Why” because in the first part you’ll freely flood your vision onto the page, with every detail that comes into your imagination. Then you’ll take that vison and collapse it into a sentence that you can use as an affirmation, and finally a single word.
Here we go:
1. What do you envision for this book? What characters and ideas are speaking to you already? Also, why do you want to do this? How will it make you feel? What will it do for your career? Your level of joy? Your relationships? Dream everything out of your system. Imagine what you want your life to be.
2. Now, I challenge you to state that sprawling mission in a single sentence. Let it be powerful. What affirmation evokes that dream? Paste the sentence into a notebook. Place it where you’ll see it again and again.
3. Finally, try and capture that idea in one word. This will become the simplest prompt to motivate you into action every day.
Once you feel that strong pull of your big vision, nothing can stop you. Believe me, that idea will keep nagging you until you see it through. There’s no turning back, so next week we’ll move on to the throat chakra. This is where you find your voice!