The Gift of Creativity

wired to create cover

The book above is the most empowering nonfiction book I’ve ever read so far.

Quite simply if you are an artist you must create your chosen art.

To encourage you to go out and buy it I’ll quote from the Apple computer 1997 advertisement featured in the book:

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently.”

Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind (2015) by Scott Barry Kaufman and Carolyn Gregoire is the most uplifting and inspiring ode to doing your own thing.

10 things highly creative people do differently involve:

Imaginative Play

Passion

Daydreaming

Solitude

Intuition

Openness to Experience

Mindfulness

Sensitivity

Turning Adversity into Advantage

Thinking Differently

Wired to Create is on par with Dark Horse: Achieving Success through the Pursuit of Fulfillment.

For any reader engaged in battle between self-doubt and confidence about their Art or your Self as the individual qualified to make this Art I say: Read this Book.

Being wired to create is a gift. What makes you different gives you an advantage.

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My Vision for 2019

There’s a lot of negativity in the world.

We don’t have to dwell on the negative in our minds and in our beliefs.

I’ve been thinking long and hard about this topic in the early days of the New Year.

The Artist’s Statement I live by is this:

To act as a Chief Joy Officer to create things of beauty to share with others to make them feel good.

I urge you if you are an artist or a creator of any kind or simply a human being to focus on the positive.

I’m 53 years old. I firmly believe that dwelling on the negative is only a good way to age yourself faster.

And how do you feel interacting with a person who is bitter or judgmental about you or other people?

Spending only fifteen minutes listening to their negative beliefs has the power to drain your energy and put you in an ill mood.

My goal is to empower, educate, and entertain readers, followers, and audience members.

The lesson I offer you in all of this is:

Consider focusing on the positive.

A blogger might get thousands of followers by advancing negative rhetoric.

I’ve decided I cannot and will not water down what I write or compromise what I write to make it acceptable to millions of followers.

I will not change my cheerful voice in here.

My vision for 2019 is to write blog entries that continue to be in the vanguard.

What is the point of dwelling on the negative?

My story is not the exception to the rule.

There are others out there who have recovered and have full and robust lives doing what they love.

All my life I will advance my vision of Recovery for Everyone, from whatever it is you’re in recovery from.

In here and elsewhere I will continue to offer hope for healing the illness in society.

And I will continue to write about my latest finds at Sephora : )

 

 

 

A Merry and Bright Season to You

gmorning gnight

It can be hard when our loved ones are gone to be in the mood to celebrate.

You can read GMorning GNight to give yourself a pep talk for the year ahead.

Mark my words 2019 will be better.

The graphic above is a photo of the cover of a new poetry book.

It’s well worth buying this book to read over and over.

Lin-Manuel Miranda is the Pulitzer-Prize winning playwright of Hamilton fame.

GMorning GNight: Little Pep Talks for Me & You is a collection of his tweets he’s fired off over the years.

One GMorning and GNight serenade empowered me like nothing else I’ve ever read.

Owing to copyright I can’t rewrite what he published. Only I can tell you this: the idea that each of us is one single self is a myth. Modern psychologists have shifted their thinking. It’s thought that your personality can change over the years.

I’m so envious of Lin-Manuel Miranda that I can’t bring myself to browse his website. After reading the GMorning GNight duet I was afraid to be treated to more of this author’s greatness. Would that I could write something as insightful and empowering as Miranda’s ode to a person’s multiple selves.

Who’s hanging out inside me today? What thoughts are spinning around in there? Where have I been and where am I going?

These are the questions I ask after having read this empowering book.

My goal is to have my own version of a literary career. What Miranda does on the stage I want to do on the page.

I hope in the spring to have good news about the second nonfiction book I’ve written.

Right now I’m going to promote the work of other authors I admire.

Even though Lin-Manuel Miranda is famous he seems like a nice guy.

Do yourself a favor and read GMorning GNight.

It brought me such cheer to read it that I want to pass this on.

Cheap and Cheerful

lipstick rise up rose

For $9 a tube of lipstick is cheap and cheerful in this holiday season.

I was in a drugstore and decided to browse the Revlon display in search of one of the few lipsticks I’ve liked from this brand.

Instead of getting the Rose Velvet I snatched up this tube in a shade called Rise Up Rose. It is a matte lipstick in the new line of Revlon Matte offerings.

To my surprise the color is fabulous. I took a risk buying it because nearly all the time I chanced to take home an impulse buy from the drugstore the lipstick looked awful on me.

Hint: if you share my coloring Warm Me Up by Maybelline just won’t do. Nor will any beige, brown, orange, or coral shades.

The secret to success in the makeup aisle is to know your undertone and search for shades that match it.

I’ve been tested out as a Winter – and what the Visual Therapy founders call a Star:

I have ivory skin with a cool undertone and dark brown eyes and black hair.

Thus cool colors look better on me than warm colors.

You can take the Color Type quiz in the Life in Color book to find out whether you have a warm or cool color type.

Forget sending and receiving greeting cards with generic Peace on Earth and Joy to the World messages.

The real joy is to be had in doing good for others and for yourself.

Do yourself a favor: buy a new tube of lipstick to brighten your spirits.

Send out Christmas cards if that would make you happy.

At this time of year when loved ones who are gone are missing from the table:

I approve of doing anything healthy that sparks joy.

 

Christmas Rapping

Venus Williams was right in advocating that you ask yourself: “Do I feel good?”

I made myself miserable trying to work in corporate office jobs and have a so-called normal life.

The title of my memoir Left of the Dial was intended to sum up my manifesto for having a healthy lifestyle doing what you love and acting true to yourself.

If you don’t feel good, it’s hard to be happy and your mental health suffers. Trying to be someone you’re not will backfire every time.

Venus Williams alludes to allowing yourself to fail, rise up, and try again. Doing this you can gain equal footing with men who think they’re hot shit simply because they exist.

My goal is that by reading Left of the Dial you’re empowered to dare dream of having a life defined on your own terms.

First of all, I wanted to tell a good story people would enjoy reading. Then I wanted to create a character readers could root for.

Left of the Dial chronicles all the failures I experienced along the way.

Speaking your truth can be scary because there’s a lot at stake. Only I had no fear because I believed in my vision of Recovery for Everyone.

This might be an impossible goal yet it’s the one I shoot for.

The secret to having a successful recovery is choosing to be happy even when the circumstances of your life are less than ideal.

Success lies in liking yourself even when it seems no one else does.

These elements flow in the Left of the Dial narrative.

With time and (for most of us) a consistent daily medication routine, it’s possible to have a better life and to achieve goals.

I”m committed to telling my story to help the very people who need to hear my message of hope, healing, and recovery.

If you want to feel good and if you want to transmute your pain, there is no better tonic than service to others.

You will get the things you want that you’re supposed to have when they’re supposed to arrive. Not a minute sooner or later.

It’s the journey that counts not the destination.

So I tell you at whatever age you are now (20? 32? 45? Older?) to ask yourself if you feel good. What can you do to give yourself joy and to give others joy?

That is the secret to feeling good.

That is the ultimate definition of success: feeling good about yourself and having empathy for others.

 

Living for Today

I’ve figured out that becoming happier is possible when you commit to living for today.

What you want to achieve could be far off on the horizon.

Having gratitude for where you are in your life in the present moment is the antidote to the holiday blues.

Again it can be as simple as going to a clothing store and trying on items that fit and flatter. This can put you in a good mood.

It’s possible to be happy right here right now.

Regardless of what your bank account balance is. Regardless of whether you’re single or part of a couple. Regardless of whatever pain you’re in.

You can still be happy even when your life hasn’t gone the way you planned.

I’ve figured out that living life on life’s terms not my terms is the way to feel happy.

Doing this it won’t matter that life isn’t fair.

Life can be good living in recovery. You can have a better life post-breakdown than you had before the illness.

In the coming blog entry I want to spread more cheer.

Enjoying being yourself is the secret to having a good life.

I’ll talk more about how to become happier.

Sometimes you just have to slow down and pace yourself.

Today is the greatest day. It’s the only one we have.

Obtaining Confidence

venus williams

Last week Venus WIlliams wrote an article in the New York Times about the 3 factors in obtaining confidence.

When you don’t feel good about yourself and your prospects it can be hard to have confidence.

At 53 I haven’t yet gotten what I wanted. My love and literary prospects haven’t panned out yet. Operative word in the last sentence: yet.

Venus Williams is on to something when she eschewed setting goals in favor of asking yourself: “Do I feel good?” This makes perfect sense to me.

The question “Do I feel good?” is relevant to whether you succeed.

The Dark Horse authors whose book I wrote about in the Flourish blog think achieving success doesn’t lead to happiness–it’s the pursuit of fulfillment that makes you happy.

Again, it’s the process not the outcome that counts.

Which ultimately reinforces my perpetual claim that fashion isn’t frivolous. If you feel good, you’re empowered to take on the world.

In terms of the fashion freedom I hinted at in a recent blog entry I don’t think you can feel good in ill-fitting clothes that aren’t becoming on you.

To know your style and flaunt it guarantees you will be a success in whatever you do.

If you don’t feel good–about what you’re wearing; about the people you’re working with; about an aspect of yourself or your life–you have the power to change this.

This is the truth: you can be happy even when you haven’t achieved the goals you set for yourself. Venus Williams is right and she’s a champion: the goals are irrelevant.

In the coming blog entry I’ll talk about living for today, which is the ultimate method for feeling good.