Friday, June 8, 2012

Creative practice as an integrity issue

Many of us set intentions around our creative practice: to write in a journal every morning, to work on a novel that's long been in the creative hopper, to learn to draw better, to design and make a sweater for a gift. And for a few days, we do step into those intentions. And we feel good about that and are sure we have the practice nailed down. But then it's too hard to get up one morning or we're too tired one evening after dinner or we discover we aren't very satisfied with what we're creating and the practice either comes to a screeching halt or dwindles away rather quickly.

In my coaching work, I encounter clients who have had this experience too frequently to be very optimistic about anything else occurring for them. So we have a conversation about integrity, and about aligning their intention for a creative practice with their integrity. By integrity here, I mean keeping your word. Many of us are good at keeping our word with others but not so great at keeping our word with ourselves. It's this latter issue that I'm addressing here.

There is an added bonus of satisfaction, I've found, when we say we are going to do something and we do it. There is the satisfaction of creating, which for many of us is important: writing, painting, knitting, sculpting, however that creative impulse manifests itself. But that enjoyment is greatly enhanced when we also live into the value of keeping our word.