What Led Me To The 3-Month Simplicity Experiment?

Along my journey, I’m forever observing what is happening in both my inner and outer world. I take time daily to observe how I feel, notice the general language of the thoughts passing through my mind, and my relationship with the overall state of my external world — the mirror of my internal world.  I began to observe a pattern I seem to create over and over again in my life.

A pattern that looks something like this:

  • I get deeply inspired about a project or idea
  • I immerse myself fully and completely and follow the natural flow of creative energy
  • In the interest of keeping the energy and feeling going, I put in place structures and commitments
  • I begin to feel overwhelmed with the structures and commitments
  • I keep going and doing, going and doing, but somewhere along the journey, my connection to the natural flow of creative energy gets lost
  • I revert to will as my method of continuing to “get things done”
  • I feel exhausted and tired
  • My external world shows signs of challenge and struggle
  • I keep pushing
  • Something happens that pushes me beyond my limits so I will finally slow down and cry “UNCLE!

A few weeks ago, I found myself at the tail-end of this process, feeling drained of any true creative energy. And while I could have kept pushing what felt like an enormous boulder up Mt. Everest (after all, I have the will to do anything!), I found myself wondering, “Is there a better way?”

What most intrigued me was observing the presence and absence of that natural creative energy along my path.  Some moments I am flooded with that inspired, creative flow, while other times it’s like taking blood from a stone.

Wisdom has been telling me for years and years that to live on one’s Authentic Success Path, one must honor the natural flow of one’s creative energy.  I could feel with absolute knowing that to create from any other place is actually counter-productive.  To create from will or force will actually head a person in the opposite direction of their success, fulfillment, and desire.

And yet, here I was, doing exactly what I knew from a deep, wise place within me, DOES NOT WORK.

Why Would I Do Something What Does Not Work?

Why would I continue to force and will success, when I know, deep down, that it doesn’t work?  Well, I began looking at this question recently.  And I’ve discovered that for me, anyway, the reasons are rooted in old limiting beliefs I hold about “what’s responsible,” “how success is made,” and “what productive creation looks like.”  These old, limiting beliefs keep me on the hamster wheel of will power, rather than honoring the more natural ebb and flow of authentic creation.

My old limiting beliefs about what it means to be a responsible, well-respected contributing member of society said…

  • I have to work hard and long, because that’s what “good” people do
  • You must work at least 9 to 5 every day, Monday through Friday, and more than 2 weeks of vacation per year is self-indulgent and bad
  • You can’t make a million dollars a year moving slowly and easily
  • It is bad to take time for myself, especially when I’m paying the nanny to take care of the kids
  • My husband, friends, and family all work 9 to 5 and deal with it, so I should have to also
  • I’m just being lazy and selfish wanting more time to myself to rest, replenish and have fun

My old limiting beliefs about how success is made said…

  • You have to use your mind, not your heart
  • It’s normal to be overwhelmed and filled with anxiety
  • You’re weak if you can’t tolerate a lot of balls in the air
  • You have to create products and programs that your customers will like, even if certain aspects of the programs run counter to your own creative rhythm
  • You have to be completely available to everyone all the time
  • What you have can’t be enough — success is forever about wanting MORE
  • I should do and be more like the “successful people” I see out there in the field, even if doing and being like them feels inauthentic and frenetic to me
  • Businesses run constantly, without breaks in the year. That’s just how it’s done.
  • You have to operate from a thoroughly laid out plan all the time
  • You have to do things even if you don’t feel like it
  • As a small business owner, you have to do everything yourself
  • Customers will leave if I try to run my business in a non-traditional way
  • I have to do everything possible to avoid prospects and customers leaving me
  • I can’t charge too much money for my services or people won’t like me
  • I can’t charge what my service are truly worth, because I think my audience can’t afford those rates

My old limiting beliefs about what creation looks like said…

  • Creation is about sitting down and doing
  • Doing nothing or taking a nap is the opposite of creation — it is avoidance and laziness
  • I can will myself into feeling inspired
  • I should be creative all the time — there should never, ever be lapses in my creativity – if there are then I need to do something to change it right away
  • I always have to be actively creating something
  • There is something wrong with me if I don’t feel creative or inspired
  • I must be depressed if I don’t feel inspired
  • Sometimes you just have to force creation

And I have to say, I was surprised to see how strongly some of these beliefs were (still are) operating for me. Even though I’d been trying to live a life that in many ways challenges these beliefs, another righeous part of me was still irreverent about these thoughts.

All these thoughts kept me on the hamster wheel of will power, even when my inner guidance was begging me to “slow down,” “take a rest,” and “honor your creative cycle.”

But that’s not all that was keeping me from listening to my wisdom.  Something much bigger was operating.

My Business Was Keeping Me From My BIG-ness

While all my limiting beliefs provided the perfect rational web of deceit to stay on the hamster wheel of will power, something much bigger was operating below the surface, where a clash of the titans were duking it out.

On one side lives my Higher Self, who longs for me to connect to inner guidance and live from the prosperous flow of universal love, balance, and wisdom.

On the other side lives my Resistant Self, who longs to keep my life exactly as it is following the old codes of habit and limitation.

My Higher Self is the harbinger of great change — change that forces my ego to let go and find a new way to identify itself beyond being a “hard worker,” “prolific creator,” and “awesome doer.”

My Resistant Self is terrified of the new winds being brought forth by my Higher Self. My Resistant Self holds on tightly to working hard, working long, and staying small. My Resistant Self is terrified of the waiting period between letting go and allowing the net to appear; overwhelmed by the fear that others may judge me as lazy, irresponsible, or unprofessional; and utterly paralyzed by the lingering sense of responsibility of playing a bigger game — a game too big to engage in busy-ness on such a small scale.

The 3-Month Simplicity Experiment Helps Break The Old Habits

Thus, to challenge the voices of my Resistant Self, I could clearly see that I needed to do something radical.  I needed to give the wisdom of my Higher Self space to be heard.  The 3-Month Simplicity Experiment is just that — it is a structure that holds the space for my Higher Self to dance, explore, and create into my life.

I’m already noticing how living life this way is adding fuel and strength to the voice of my Higher Self.  And because the changes I’m seeing are aligned with the wisdom I’ve been hearing for years, it is giving me new experiences to counter the compelling views of my Resistant Self.

Would You Like To Join Me?

If the 3-Month Simplicity Experiment sounds inspiring to you, I invite you to join me on the journey.  You’ll find more details on how to participate in my last blog post. And feel free to post your ideas, observations, commitments, and discoveries here on my blog.

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