Wednesday, May 6

Creativity Oasis

Jill Allison Bryan came to the ranch last week for a weekend of creativity. What does a creative coach do? She has mnemonics and supportive perspectives on getting into the creativity groove. Things like, instead of "I have to work on my story," say, "I'm going to play with my characters."
That's just one example that I can think of off the top of my head. It was much more than that. Jill has a very nurturing and gentle spirit that invoked our imaginations to play and dream and write these experiences in songs or poems or express them visually. Jill provided a space where we could tap into that KID-thing-- of having fun and not judging the work, of remembering that we are here to have fun with this painting, gluing, sculpting, writing; our goal is not to enter it into the next Whitney Biennial. We all went into our own corners and created and played in whatever way we chose in the moment with no plans for progress or achievement.

The breathing meditation earlier that morning happened during savasana of our yoga practice. We gathered on the upstairs porch of the yoga studio overlooking the courtyard. The three birds that live in the nearby tree chirpped loudly in what seemed like a neighborhood quarrel over tree space. During the breathing we connected to the birds and the strength of their voices, especially one very loud bird (probably a Blue Jay), which could have been percieved as annoying considering this was the relaxing period of our session. I felt the energy intensify when the group accepted and even took on the power of the birds. When the session ended it left the group energized and more connected to the peaceful and non-judging part of us that enjoys creativity with the eyes of a child. We spent the rest of the day coming together for moments and then drifting off alone - the ebb and flow of a very generous weekend of love, laughter and play.

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