Creativity and the Lure of the Open Road

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Reunited with my van and my pup, headed to our extended family’s farm in North Fork California and listening to TED Radio Hour’s “The Source Of Creativity“. In this episode Elizabeth Gilbert suggests that following your curiosity may lead to your deepest passion …or it may not. But regardless, “If you get to do that, that’s a wonderful way to have spent your time here…” What a comforting thought.

It was a brief, unofficial stopover in Los Angeles with the mission to get MoBo road worthy, slap-chop some necessary life stuff and to pick up Tux from his doting aunties, who did little to suppress their mixed emotions surrounding my return. I saw a few friends and showed up unannounced at a couple of events but otherwise laid low. It was a fascinating experiment to drift around my home town, a ghost of my former socially over-active self. In this ethereal mode LA felt especially gigantic, distracting and even a little lonely. It was a stark reminder of why I started Mindshare LA almost a decade ago. Those events made this vast, frenetic city feel smaller and provided an epicenter for bright minds to connect for business, friendships and plenty of romance too 🙂 In a sobering moment on Venice boardwalk, I considered how easy it would be to lose myself, drop out of the social fabric and be just another guy talking to his shadows. I let myself drift along for a while with thought thoughts and feelings. It felt dark and before long my inner dialogue began scheming event ideas and creative space concepts. As the temptation to return to my old ways rose up, I reminded myself to be patient and to remain in receiver mode until my creativity and ideas felt more grounded, natural and unforced. Life often tends to want to draw us back to old patterns quickly, and it takes clear intention and determination to forge new pathways. It also helps to have some savings and places to crash or do a load of laundry from time to time. I’m very grateful for the friends who have supported me during this transitional period and also grateful to be able to have this opportunity to invest in myself. I see no reason to rush that.

Before LA was able to draw me back in I decided to continue my travels, this time bound for NorCal, Utah, Colorado and beyond. The open road lies ahead, accompanied by the calm and seductive draw of mountains, high deserts and farmland. I’m giving myself some time to dive into the writing assignment of transforming my Thailand journals into a novel. All the while I plan to continue to strengthen and align my mind, body and spirit through meditation, exercise and healthy eating. Intuitively I know this alignment is the single most important task at hand for whatever is to come next. Our collective future seems so uncertain, balanced on the razor’s edge between self actualization and self destruction. And my personal work seems to perfectly reflect that. But I remain committed to the light, to reigniting my creativity and refining my unique skillset. As one chapter comes to a close I feel a little uncomfortable not knowing what my next will look like or where it will take me, but I’m comforted by knowing what it *feels* like. It feels warm, loving, creative and trusting and a million other things that make my heart swell. I feel open and connected to myself and my community in a deep and genuine way. It means focusing on solutions and collaborating with those who share my values. So I’m staying true to all that and confident that the rest will work itself out accordingly. I don’t have to have all the answers right now. In the meantime I’ll just follow my curiosity 🙂

Posted by: Dougie In: Updates