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Creative Growth

The Turkey Who Stole My Heart

animal-tryptic

A Thanksgiving Story originally published on my blog, Art Of Collecting Yourself.

When I was a kid, I had a pet turkey named Tom (creative, I know). Tom was little when he came to live with us.  He was the odd ball out.  The one turkey in a yard filled with lots of chickens; the only male in the hen-house.  If you have never lived with a turkey, day in and day out, you might not know what large egos they have.  This was the case with Tom for sure.  He could strut across the yard better than John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever. It was almost impossible not to be enamored with him.

I had just gotten my driver’s license when I discovered that someone had broken into my truck one night and stolen the Alpine Radio I got for Christmas.  I was so upset, so mad. I’d never had anything stolen before.  I hopped in the truck and sped down our long driveway in reverse. At the end of the driveway, I hit a bump. It was Tom, and although he was badly hurt, he was alive. I was crushed.  And honestly….so was he.  The sting of the missing radio was gone, quickly replaced with my concern for Tom.  I would never have hurt him.

Tom had a hole in his little red beard, and he sat a bit crooked, but we hoped he would recover.  We cared for him for several weeks, and eventually he was strutting like nothing had ever happened.  Well almost….

Tom had a reason to live, revenge. It seems turkeys hold grudges just like anyone else who gets blind-sided.  Everyday he waited for me to walk to my truck, the same truck which I had driven when I hit him.  He tried to run up and spur me every day. The spurs are hard and sharp.  I had plenty of reason to be afraid.  He was stealthy and quick. It was an everyday ritual.  I would peek out the window, trying to find him.  When I thought the coast might be clear, I would make a run for it.   I had to carry a broom with me, swooshing him gently away as I came and went.

And when I drove out of the driveway, I learned to be patient.  He would, with his crooked little bird body, attack the tires which had attacked him. I almost ran over him again several times, even though I tried my darndest to stay clear. He just wouldn’t give up.  He was Don Quixote charging at windmills.

tom

But as much as I was afraid of him, I understood his obsession.  If I had not have cared for him and found him so irresistible, I might have given up on him.  But I just couldn’t.  The family tried to come up with a solution.

We even got him a little female turkey thinking that he would set revenge aside for love.  But Tom was smart enough to keep vigil over the truck by day and romance her by night, a regular TOM Juan.  Eventually, we found new homes for the two, a place where they could roam free from vehicles.  It was, of course, the right thing to do.  They grew old together there.  Happily.tom-juanTom was never meant for the table, and thankfully, he never made it there. I think of him every year as others are looking for the perfect bird for their Thanksgiving table. I wouldn’t hold a grudge at all if in the end, his new life helped him forget me all together.  I know I will never forget him.  He was the turkey who stole my heart.
loving-memory-of-tom

How Creativity is Like a Good Massage

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Many, many moons ago, while working at an art museum as an Arts Educator, I decided to study massage therapy.  When I told the museum director, he looked at me baffled.  He told me he thought the idea of a creative professional also doing massage felt like two disconnected ideas.  It seemed to me to make perfect sense, so I took a moment to explain to him how creativity is like a good massage.

Massage

I have been thinking of this recently as I find my creativity cramping up, as it often does for Creatives.  When a massage therapist works on a muscle, she loosens it up, then often will apply a bit of pressure to the sweet spot (also known as a pressure point).  The pressure point is much like a magical button that will release the whole of the muscle after just a little work.

She looks for it with her hands, and when she finds it, she applies pressure.  She will notice the muscle squirming, quivering, and resisting. She can back off a bit or even apply a bit more pressure.  If she pushes too hard, the muscle won’t relax.  If she doesn’t give enough, she may miss getting all she can release. But if she finds a balance, she will notice the muscle melting like chocolate under the warmth of her hand.

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Creativity that is all kinked up can be released in this same way.  It requires a bit of pressure to get it to give in and get moving again.  Not enough pressure, and we can stay stuck for some time.

What does getting unstuck creatively look like?

We can get stuck in our creativity in a number of ways.  We get in a rut, doing the same thing and hoping for different results.  We always paint with the same colors.  We always sit at our favorite desk.  We look to the same things for inspiration.  Or, we expect the same results out of a process we are bored with.  We have been drawing trees for years.  They are beautiful.  Maybe people even know us for our trees, so the fact that we are thinking about dance or poetry feels like a risk so big we are shut down.The sun shines between the shade of dark branches...like gratitude in our lives

What do I mean by pressure?

Applying pressure can look like a few different things.  I think sitting and looking at the block is a great place to start.  Who wants to sit with that?  We want to get beyond the creative block, not look at it.  But getting quiet and saying… What is this block about? … can give a voice to the block that will give us insight or inspiration.

Applying pressure can also be about throwing another element into the arena.  (In massage, it is the finger or hand.)  But for creativity it may be exploring the same subject but with different color or adding collage to your painting process.  It may be changing the beat in music or starting your cooking session with prayer.  Adding a new element forces the same old thing to take a new shape…..gives us a new perspective.

Life-is-Good-Banner

My favorite way to add a bit of pressure is to invite someone else into the picture.  Yes…we can always massage ourselves.  But…when we have someone else, it is way better!

When we are creating, we can add a person by co-working.  I love painting with others or collaborating.  Sometimes we can work on the same project or even just working side by side is energizing in a way that we don’t get alone.  (Note: always make sure the person you create with is emotionally safe for you.  Take care of your Inner Creative.)

Scheduling a show can be great pressure because it adds an audience.  You can decide to take place in a group art show, an open mic, or even just a show-and-tell at your home.  It creates a sense of urgency that nearly always gets creativity dancing under your finger until it melts into sweet chocolatey flow!

Partnering with a Life Coach who understands the creative process can also be a great way to add a person into the process.  As a Life Coach and Sacred Creativity Guide, I am able to honor where you are while helping you move out of that space and into the next phase of your journey.

I would love to hear some of your tricks and tips for getting your creativity flowing by using gentle pressure.  And if that has been counter productive, I would love to hear that too.  It is great to learn from each other.  The Creativity Tribe is listening!

Rachel Payne with Creativity Tribe. Life Coach, Expressive Arts Facilitator, artist, spirituality, creativity

 

Seeking Sanctuary with Personal Retreat

Seeking Sanctuary

I am going on retreat.  Funny, one of the last times I wrote, I was headed off to a retreat.  This time, instead of facilitating, I am opening myself to the opportunity offered by another.  I am headed to a retreat hosted by Red Tent Experience Retreat.

Red Tent Sisters, Rachel Payne and  Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost, PhD.My first Red Tent was at the opening of 
Things We Don’t Talk About: Woman’s Stories from the Red Tent
with filmmaker Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost, PhD.

Do you know about Red Tents?  
I went to my first about 2 years ago and was so thrilled by the sisterhood I found there that I began investing in that community by offering workshops and “happenings”.  It has become a place of deep meaning and magic for me…..the kind of magic that comes for loving life.

studio for Red Tent

This is my office transformed for a Red Tent event.  See?!  Magic!

Why Retreat?
Retreats invite us to go into a space of exploration.  Depending on the retreat, you may explore a specific topic like an art technique, or you may explore personal growth.  My favorite retreats do both those things, using a theme to take you into a journey of the self.

Water Angel PS2
Preparing for Retreat

I like to do a bit of personal work before a retreat, whether I am offering the retreat or attending.

  • I ask myself what my intention is.
  • I journal and begin exploring the theme or intention.
  • I am encouraging myself to take a break from social media and technology as much as possible in preparation.
  • I gently clean up my diet so that I enter the retreat with a stronger connection to my body.
  • I gather any special item/s I might like to add meaning to may sleeping/teaching space.  I might bring a crystal, picture, decorative cloths, journal and essential oils.

meditation

Creating Mini-Retreats

I want to invite you to retreat a bit this weekend. Take the next couple of days to envision what that might look like. Make it simple. Make it easy. But do it. If even for 30 minutes or an hour, allow yourself to retreat into your creative spirit, your beloved sacredness, into the wild within.

Flower Bender E

Commitment to Self, Witnessed by Others

Take a moment to claim your commitment in the comments below.  Become accountable for your personal self growth. Let us know you want to claim that for yourself. And I will send you some good vibes on my adventure. You deserve it!!!

IMAG3598-1Rachel Payne life creativity coach

Gr8Full Cre8ives Project

creativity promptAs the holiday season draws near, you may feel your stress levels begin to rise.  Even if it is your favorite time of year, it is not uncommon for it to come with added responsibilities which can mean stretching your wallet and schedule a bit more than usual.  For me, that means it is time to give myself the gift of more peace by upping my game when it comes to self-care.

Holiday stress busters can take all kinds of shapes, but I think the simpler the better!  Gratitude is a great place to start.  It is just a shift in perspective.  I set a goal to recognize gratitude daily…or close to it.  When I do, I feel like life is better and I can give more to it!

That is one reason I am working with the Cre8ive Klatch to spread the value of gratitude, specifically for Creatives.  We would love for you to join us in documenting the gratitudes in your life.  It’s easy.  It’s fun.  And it can make life sparkle a bit more!

Gr8Cre8 Invite

 How it Works….

Simply snap a photo of something that speaks to what you are grateful for and share it on Instagram with the hashtags  #cre8iveklatch #gr8fullcre8ives #cre8gratitude.  We will explore different themes weekly that you can use to inspire your gratitude practice or share straight from the heart.

Looking forward to growing more grateful with you!

 Gr8Full Cre8ives Project:
@creativitytribe on Instagram

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  Gratitude: I have a #resilientspirit. What are you grateful for? #Gr8FullCre8ives #cre8gratitude #cre8tiveklatch #gratitude View on Instagram

 

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Life is good. #DoingWhatILove #CreativeLiving #EssentialOils  #studiotable #cre8gratitude #Gr8FullCre8ives #cre8iveklatch

View on Instagram

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

A Little Practical Magic: Revisiting Blog Favorites

life is fairytale

I believe in movie therapy.  Grab your favorite snack, turn the lights down low, watch alone or with a good friend (or two), and prepare to be transformed and transfixed.  In our house we have a few favorites we gravitate to and Practical Magic with Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman is at the very top.

Several years ago, I was invited to participate in a blog party that focused on the movie/book, the Practical Magic Blog Party.  I felt kind of new to blogging (I was still over at my very first blog, Art of Collecting Yourself) and wished very much to try my hand at making videos.  As it happened, the blog party was scheduled for the week after I was to visit Washington State.  I had no idea what my offering to the party would be.  But I decided to jump in.

I started with researching the movie and quickly discovered it was filmed in a quaint little village not far from where we would be visiting.  I threw together an outfit that resembled the witchy aunts, packed my new video camera, and crossed my fingers that our hosts would be game for a day trip.  As it happens, they were.

coupville-1-1-1Playing Witchy-Woman with Milena Worsham
from Running Buffalo Journeys

And from that, came several short videos about the little town of Coupeville, WA and, of course, Practical Magic.

This month, I want to feature those videos.  They are very short.  They are such a hoot, and yet, they also have something a little deeper and more meaningful to share.  I hope you enjoy them.

So grab your favorite snack, turn the lights down low….and let the show begin!

A Quick Welcome to Coupeville

Stories from the Villagers

Stay tuned next week for more blogging blasts from the past!

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

Big News: Cre8ive Klatch Revealed

Cre8ive Klatch RP

Behind the Scenes

I love all the big energy coming out of Creativity Tribe right now.  I have been connecting behind the scenes with other Creatives to make some super special projects come to light.

And….The Big News

One of the biggest projects finds its home at Cre8ive Klatch,  Connecting Lives through Cre8ivity.  I am sure if you have spent much time at Creativity Tribe, you will see that my mission here matches up beautifully with the mission being spun there.

Cre8ive Klatch is a brand spankin’ new site rich with potential!  It will feature a variety of enthusiastic instructors sharing quick tips for art projects, DIY adventures, and better living through creativity.

I hope you will hop over and check out the space.  It promises to offer an oasis for you to recharge during the day.

Connect with Cre8ive Klatch

Cre8ive Klatch Website
Cre8ive Klatch Facebook Group
Instagram @Cre8iveKlatch
Pinterest #Cre8iveKlatch

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

Simply Sacred Moments

Simply Sacred

Have you ever had one of those moments when your heart was deeply stirred by something simple?  Like the hummingbird gathering nectar from the flowering tree just outside the front door, or the gratitude that wells up when another really hears you.

We expect greatness to move us.  That is often why we turn to grand events and ceremonies when we need to connect with the sacred.  We also often have a tendency to believe sacred is something others create and we witness.

During my studies of theatre, I discovered that historically performance grew out of religious ceremony.  Song, art, poetry, movement, writing, and drama all have the potential to connect us with something greater than ourselves. That is why those are often components of our big rites….birthdays, baseball games, opening ceremonies, etc.  I enjoyed exploring what that meant for me as an individual by creating sacred moments in my everyday life.

My Simply Sacred journey began with making the space around me feel better.  I arranged the room and the things in it so that it felt inspiring and peaceful.  Then I played with setting up areas in the house that were reminders to me of what was important.  One of my first tablescapes was a collection of things that belonged to my mother, a picture of her, and a small vessel with some of her ashes.

Tea Altar

I found that for some people that kind of arrangement might be called an altar.  The word altar means table.  For me, the altar was not about worship, but more about an expression of what was important to me, what needed attention in my life, what desired change, and at its most simplified, an installation of found objects that when brought together stirred my heart, my imagination, and my inner wisdom.

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Those early installations have grown into a whole aspect of work that I do in my community.  I create simple ceremonies to honor various parts of life….. births, weddings, personal transformation, rites of passage, and even the passing of a loved one.  Sometimes the ceremonies are so simple it feels like people getting together with just another layer of meaning added to it.  Other times the sacred moments are more fleshed out and formal.

This week my family and I came together for a Simply Sacred Moment to honor the passing of our cat, Schatzie.

Schatzie Art

 (Schatzie means Sweetheart in German.)  

Schatzie is one of several cats that have made their home with us.  She has the honor of being the first though.  She announced herself the day we took ownership of our home (which happens to be 8 years ago today).  She was a dear part of our home.art cats

She would never drink out of a bowl!

Schatzie Studio 404

We honored her by creating a small resting place for her in the back yard under some shade trees.  In her little grave, we placed a painting on paper…because she never let us do art without wanting to be smack-dab in the middle of it.  We added some watermelon pieces….her favorite food, of all things!  Shook out several drops of peppermint essential oil because she was a bit addicted to the smell.  We picked sunflowers and offered them along with our favorite stories of her.  We used items from the garden to create a mandala over her resting place and erected a small impromptu work of art as a marker.

schatzie resting

The ceremony was simple.  It was mindfully thrown together and not planned.  We all gave of ourselves in a creative way, thinking a bit outside the box. And when we were done, our hearts felt lighter and more peaceful.

Schatzie Big Eyes

I want to encourage you to use your Creative Spirit to create Simply Sacred Moments for yourself.  They are a great way to bring meaning and magic into your life.

Make Your Life Simply Sacred

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

This SENSE-sational Life: Sense of Self

sensational

One day while sitting and thinking about my life, I realized it was just sensational.  I asked myself what made me move from not loving my life so much to being in this new place.  The answer came to me that I had connected with the senses in a very broad way.  Yes, the traditional senses had been part of it, but subtle senses were also part.  The sense of joy, a sense of gratitude, a sense of connection….when we tap into linking our conscious self with subtle parts of the self and the world around us, we can follow a path that leads us to a more SENSE-sational life.  Sure…it is a play on words, but try it and you may see it is also a great tool for falling in love with life.

Sense of Self

Today I am delighted to share a story that is unfolding in front of our eyes of a woman opening up to her Sense of Self. Nicole Bray is a woman who was born in a man’s body.  Her mother, Carol Bray, is a dear friend of mine and an artist I adore.   Nicole has undergone surgeries to alter her body so that it matches the Sense of Self she finds peace with. But her transformation is not yet complete and being in-between is a rough place to for her to be.

I share her story because if is brave, gives us the opportunity to support her and her mission to help others and because it is ultimately about Creative Living.  And Creative Living is what Creativity Tribe is all about.

This story is a bit edgy because it traces a theme in our culture that many people either are not comfortable with or stand in strong opposition to.  Being a Creative can also be counter culture.  But that is not the place I wish my visit with you to go for very long.  I hope you will hold onto the human aspect of what I share.  I am sharing a person who is discovering after a lifetime of deep unhappiness how to connect with who she is, and she is creating that self for the world to see.

That also is probably too simplified.  So this is probably a good time to invite you to let Nicole share her story with you.  And how she is moving towards her Sense of Self.

Nicole’s Story: A Transgender Woman’s Journey

Nicole’s Story from Nicole Bray on Vimeo.

You can find more information about Nicole’s campaign by visiting  indiegogo.com using the following link:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/untitled-documentary-nicole-s-story-a-transgender-woman-s-journey

You can also find Nicole on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NicolesStoryDoc

and on Twitter: https://twitter.com/IdRatherBeGirl

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Increase Your Level of Bliss

time to thriveI just love it when the Universe whispers messages to me over and over again.  Recently the message has been, “Up your tolerance for bliss.”  It is a backwards way to think, really.  Bliss isn’t something you imagine should need tolerating.  But the truth is, it can be an intense ride.

This messages was first something I felt.  About a year ago I had a couple of back to back months when I experienced extreme levels of happiness, felt like I was in my zone, and detected intense waves of ecstasy coursing through my veins.  I was hitting the mark on so many of my dreams and life was just plain good!

I identified all that as bliss.  If I had been any happier, I might have exploded.  I wondered if I had maxed out on the amount of happiness I could handle or if perhaps I might be able to adjust my inner bliss threshold so that I might eventually withstand even more.

SnowDancer

Months later while listening to the audiobook Four Spiritual Laws of Prosperity by Edwene Gaines, I heard her mention that this was an important aspect of prosperity.  She suggested that to follow through with calling more abundance into your life you would need to be able to stretch your capacity for bliss.  Later that same day, I opened one of Danielle LaPorte’s Truthbombs only to find that exact message staring at me from the computer screen.

Ah, I thought.  This message is for me. And so, I am setting out on a journey to consciously increase my tolerance for bliss.

“How does one do that?” you ask.  Indeed,  I am beginning by asking myself that same thing!  Curiosity is a great tool for creating life. I believe that my creative spirit must surely know, and so I have invited it to show me the way.

Journey to Increased Bliss

To help me stay on that path, I have chosen the word THRIVE as my word for the year.  I imagine that when one is in a state of thriving they are experiencing levels of BLISS.  Perhaps the two words are sisters!  

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

The Blessing of a Year

2014 banner

I love this year, this 2014.  I think that is a strange thing to feel, though…love for a year that has yet to take off. But perhaps what I really feel is deep, abiding hope and compelling possibility.

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I felt this same way at the beginning of 2013.  My imagination was alive with amazing projects that were ripe for springing to life. But the year had other things in store for me. It held the secret of forced healings in areas of my life I had pushed aside as I charged forward in my career as a Life Coach and Creativity Guide.

As I write this, I am tempted to throw all my realizations, wisdom, and stories out for you to witness. But this year has been so personal and so magical that sharing it feels like shining a bright spotlight on something better served by cradling it up close to the shadowy protection of a subtle internal light….the light of one’s own heart.

peace face rachel payne

The important part to take from my year, if you want to take anything at all, is that those shadowy, difficult times when life throws challenges your way can be the answers to the wishes you have been making for yourself with that still, quiet voice you can barely hear.  We all have those deep yearnings whispered when we look at the places within ourselves that cry out for peace or release.  Sometimes growing into all we want for ourselves must come from personal healing and soul searching.

life is a journey

And so, for me 2013 brought huge shifts into deeper understanding, forgiveness, acceptance, and celebration through paths I never would have called in consciously.  But am grateful for none the less.

And 2014?

It will wrap up some of those realizations and help me put a bow on the big package filled with 2013’s blessing, but will also leave space for me to pick up and re-examine those original amazing projects.  Some will fall away, having lost their energy, others will rise to the top for me to cultivate with a new, inspired perspective.

In these first days of the new year, I welcome the balance of both.  I am still toying with this fresh place while reaching for the great heights I see myself shooting for.

I hope this in-between time finds you contemplating what last year meant for you while throwing seeds broadly into the months ahead.

Happy New Year, Creative Spirits!  

May it be blessed by all it brings your way!

Rachel Payne life creativity coach

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Welcome to CT

Welcome to CT

Hi, I am Rachél.... the quirky, big-hearted soul behind Creativity Tribe, a sanctuary for your creative spirit. As a life coach and artist, I know the importance of community, celebration, and transformation. Creativity Tribe is abuzz with connections to other creative bloggers and offers tips and stories to inspire your creative lifestyle!
http://creativitytribe.com/

Creative Live Coach

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There is a beauty that comes out of sharing a journey with another person....a dream for yourself, a direction for a project, a way out of the muck that holds your Creative Spirit back. Let's talk about working together. creativitytribe@gmail.com