Merry Christmas, everyone, if you celebrate. Either way, I hope everyone who reads this has a wonderful holiday.
I find the holidays an especially creative time of year. Even with all the hoopla and festivities (I'm having 21 people over for Christmas Eve tonight, including 2 kids and a nephew who will be dressing as Santa to entertain them, plus 2 pugs, 2 cats and 1 German Shorthair) and the time necessarily spent away from writing, my creative juices are flowing.
Whatever your religion the nativity story is an inspiring one. Taken purely on a symbolic basis, it is a powerful allegory for what it takes to bring light to the world. Both Joseph and Mary (who was a mere teenager) had to endure hardship, criticism from their communities, and undertake a grueling journey in order to birth their baby.
Christmas celebrates the birth of Christ, but every creative project is a birth. A creative life is made up of a whole series of them. And sometimes, along the way, we get overwhelmed with the demands of taking care of our babies. Because, you know, infants and children are a flippin' demanding lot. Sometimes it is helpful to step back and look at how we're dealing with them. So when the festivities are over, take out your pen and paper and ponder the following questions:
1. What am I birthing?
2. What do I need to let go of to bring it to fruition?
3. What do I need to start doing to facilitate it?
4. What do I need to stop doing?
5. How will I tend this project once I've brought it into the world?
And in the mean time, a Merry, Merry Christmas to all.
Discover how you can get an online degree in social work.
Photograph by lumix 2004, via Everystockphoto.