Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Big Magic

Oh hey, it's me again, your favorite book hoarder.
Do any of you guys remember that book that turned into a movie, Eat Pray Love?
I'll be honest- everything about this book sounded  like something I would love, but when I got into it, I just couldn't get into it. I even went and saw the movie, but I fell asleep for about 30% of it. In the theater. Sitting up straight. I'm pretty sure it was even a daytime showing.

I'm telling you all of that to tell you this: Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat Pray Love, wrote another book called Big Magic and it's really fantastic.

<<I'm feeling pretty confident that I need to give Eat Pray Love another shot after reading Big Magic. Sometimes if you read a book in the wrong mindset you hate it and then you go back later and you love it.>>

Anyways, Big Magic is wonderful. This book is about creative living more as a lifestyle and less as an occupation. Naturally, any creative person wants to make their creative passion into a "living", but that's not necessary to live a life of creativity. In fact, Gilbert encourages you "keep your day job" in order to keep stresses low. Often times when depending on your creative passions financially, it can cause unnecessary stress that can stifle your creativity. When you don't "depend" on your creative passions for financial purposes you can tend to me more free flowing. That being said, if your creativity gets you to a point to where you can depend on it financially instead of a day job, by all means, go for it.

Gilbert has a fun and exciting way of writing that really opens your eyes to how the creative process can work.

Do you ever watch Shark Tank and think, "That girl totally stole my idea. I came up with that?!"
I do--Often times throwing empty water bottles at the TV and trying to think back on when I came up with that idea and how wonderful it is, but yet this girl is on national TV selling it to entrepreneurial superstars. For example, in my senior college business communication class we had to come up with a small business idea and create a full portfolio explaining the ins and outs of that business. My business was called "The Quick Pick." "The Quick Pick" was an online grocery service where you could select, order and pay for your groceries online or through an app and then you pull up to the store and they are delivered to your car. Essentially exactly what Wal-Mart just started doing. What happened? I could have been a millionaire! Okay, maybe not, but seriously. I was so excited and sad when I heard Wal-Mart was doing this. Why? Because I thought of this six years ago. I obviously never acted on it. So, the idea found someone else to manifest it. And that, is how the creative process works, according to Gilbert.

Ideas and projects are out in the universe, just wanting and beckoning someone, anyone, to turn off their TV for a minute and act on it. And if we don't, someone else does. It will find someone else. This is BIG MAGIC.

Staying fresh and open to new opportunities and ideas is what keeps the magic alive.
Sometimes our ideas are put into action and appear to be stupid. And that's ok. Not every painting is going to be a Picasso. Not every article is going to be published. Not every design idea is going to make it into a magazine. But if you never act on those ideas, then they will never come to fruition and definitely never "make it". Plus, continually saying no to every weird creative idea we have will make us dried up old prunes with no creative living.

So, here is to embracing creative living however you can. Take that weird dance class. Paint that your ceiling in your bathroom some off the wall color. (David, just say yes.) Embrace the creative in any way you can. It gets your juices flowing and keeps them flowing-- because, who knows what idea might come along later and be a home run.

Regardless, pick up a copy of this book and read it. It was so much fun!

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