How to be Creative

In my development process, I’m always on the lookout for stellar “blueprints” to achieving things.  What follows is a phenomenal recipe for becoming a creative being.  Originally posted in 2004, I think it’s timeless.  (Source:  Hugh McLeod; blog:   http://gapingvoid.com/)  He also has a book out: “Ignore Everybody: And 39 Other Keys to Creativity.”  Enjoy…

So you want to be more creative, in art, in business, whatever. Here are some tips that have worked for me over the years:

1. Ignore everybody.

The more original your idea is, the less good advice other people will be able to give you. When I first started with the biz card format, people thought I was nuts. Why wasn’t I trying to do something more easy for markets to digest i.e. cutey-pie greeting cards or whatever?(more…)

2. The idea doesn’t have to be big. It just has to change the world.

The two are not the same thing.(more…)

3. Put the hours in.

Doing anything worthwhile takes forever. 90% of what separates successful people and failed people is time, effort and stamina.(more…)

4. If your biz plan depends on you suddenly being “discovered” by some big shot, your plan will probably fail.

Nobody suddenly discovers anything. Things are made slowly and in pain.(more…)

5. You are responsible for your own experience.

Nobody can tell you if what you’re doing is good, meaningful or worthwhile. The more compelling the path, the more lonely it is.(more…)

6. Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten.

Then when you hit puberty they take the crayons away and replace them with books on algebra etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the creative bug is just a wee voice telling you, “I’d like my crayons back, please.”(more…)

7. Keep your day job.

I’m not just saying that for the usual reason i.e. because I think your idea will fail. I’m saying it because to suddenly quit one’s job in a big ol’ creative drama-queen moment is always, always, always in direct conflict with what I call “The Sex & Cash Theory”.

8. Companies that squelch creativity can no longer compete with companies that champion creativity.

Nor can you bully a subordinate into becoming a genius.(more…)

9. Everybody has their own private Mount Everest they were put on this earth to climb.

You may never reach the summit; for that you will be forgiven. But if you don’t make at least one serious attempt to get above the snow-line, years later you will find yourself lying on your deathbed, and all you will feel is emptiness.(more…)

10. The more talented somebody is, the less they need the props.

Meeting a person who wrote a masterpiece on the back of a deli menu would not surprise me. Meeting a person who wrote a masterpiece with a silver Cartier fountain pen on an antique writing table in an airy SoHo loft would SERIOUSLY surprise me.(more…)

11. Don’t try to stand out from the crowd; avoid crowds altogether.

Your plan for getting your work out there has to be as original as the actual work, perhaps even more so. The work has to create a totally new market. There’s no point trying to do the same thing as 250,000 other young hopefuls, waiting for a miracle. All existing business models are wrong. Find a new one.(more…)

12. If you accept the pain, it cannot hurt you.

The pain of making the necessary sacrifices always hurts more than you think it’s going to. I know. It sucks. That being said, doing something seriously creative is one of the most amazing experiences one can have, in this or any other lifetime. If you can pull it off, it’s worth it. Even if you don’t end up pulling it off, you’ll learn many incredible, magical, valuable things. It’s NOT doing it when you know you full well you HAD the opportunity- that hurts FAR more than any failure.(more…)

13. Never compare your inside with somebody else’s outside.

The more you practice your craft, the less you confuse worldly rewards with spiritual rewards, and vice versa. Even if your path never makes any money or furthers your career, that’s still worth a TON.(more…)

14. Dying young is overrated.

I have seen so many young people take the “Gotta do the drugs and booze thing to make me a better artist” route over the years. A choice that was neither effective, healthy, smart, original or ended happily.(more…)

15. The most important thing a creative person can learn professionally is where to draw the red line that separates what you are willing to do, and what you are not.

Art suffers the moment other people start paying for it. The more you need the money, the more people will tell you what to do. The less control you will have. The more bullshit you will have to swallow. The less joy it will bring. Know this and plan accordingly.(more…)

16. The world is changing.

Some people are hip to it, others are not. If you want to be able to afford groceries in 5 years, I’d recommend listening closely to the former and avoiding the latter. Just my two cents.(more…)

17. Merit can be bought. Passion can’t.

The only people who can change the world are people who want to. And not everybody does.(more…)

18. Avoid the Watercooler Gang.

They’re a well-meaning bunch, but they get in the way eventually.(more…)

19. Sing in your own voice.

Piccasso was a terrible colorist. Turner couldn’t paint human beings worth a damn. Saul Steinberg’s formal drafting skills were appalling. TS Eliot had a full-time day job. Henry Miller was a wildly uneven writer. Bob Dylan can’t sing or play guitar.(more…)

20. The choice of media is irrelevant.

Every media’s greatest strength is also its greatest weakness. Every form of media is a set of fundematal compromises, one is not “higher” than the other. A painting doesn’t do much, it just sits there on a wall. That’s the best and worst thing thing about it. Film combines sound, photography, music, acting. That’s the best and worst thing thing about it. Prose just uses words arranged in linear form to get its point across. That’s the best and worst thing thing about it etc.(more…)

21. Selling out is harder than it looks.

Diluting your product to make it more “commercial” will just make people like it less.Many years ago, barely out of college, I started schlepping around the ad agencies, looking for my first job.(more…)

22. Nobody cares. Do it for yourself.

Everybody is too busy with their own lives to give a damn about your book, painting, screenplay etc, especially if you haven’t sold it yet. And the ones that aren’t, you don’t want in your life anyway.(more…)

23. Worrying about “Commercial vs. Artistic” is a complete waste of time.

You can argue about “the shameful state of American Letters” till the cows come home. They were kvetching about it in 1950, they’ll be kvetching about it in 2050.It’s a path well-trodden, and not a place where one is going to come up with many new, earth-shattering insights.(more…)

24. Don’t worry about finding inspiration. It comes eventually.

Inspiration precedes the desire to create, not the other way around.(more…)

25. You have to find your own schtick.

A Picasso always looks like Piccasso painted it. Hemingway always sounds like Hemingway. A Beethoven Symphony always sounds like a Beethoven’s Syynphony. Part of being a master is learning how to sing in nobody else’s voice but your own.(more…)

26. Write from the heart.

There is no silver bullet. There is only the love God gave you.(more…)

27. The best way to get approval is not to need it.

This is equally true in art and business. And love. And sex. And just about everything else worth having.(more…)

28. Power is never given. Power is taken.

People who are “ready” give off a different vibe than people who aren’t. Animals can smell fear; maybe that’s it.(more…)

29. Whatever choice you make, The Devil gets his due eventually.

Selling out to Hollywood comes with a price. So does not selling out. Either way, you pay in full, and yes, it invariably hurts like hell.(more…)

30. The hardest part of being creative is getting used to it.

If you have the creative urge, it isn’t going to go away. But sometimes it takes a while before you accept the fact.(more…)


Lessons from a Mentor

Yesterday I went deep – exploring EFT. While listening to Carol Look’s podcast, I discovered some very profound insights from Emanuel Swendenborg, an enlightened soul who lived in the late 1700s. What follows are some of the key takeaways:

Experiencing Heaven or Hell while living on Earth:
Keys to living in Heaven – Focus on what is Life Sustaining

The most profoundly life sustaining things; things that live in Heaven that you can give your attention to are:

I don’t have love, I am love
I don’t have God Consciousness, I am God Consciousness
I don’t have value, power and worth – I AM IT

And as God Consciousness:
I can’t create a learning experience that I don’t need
Everything I am doing is bringing me enlightenment and I can be grateful for it

I can trust my human experience
I can trust where I am going
I can trust what I am doing

These things live in Heaven.

“We have to live according to what we love – if you give your attention to a limited thing (how am I going to pay the bills; everyone is going to be happy except me, tec.), you have to live within the confinds of that…

If you give your attention to an unlimited truth, you get to live in an unlimited place

And if you give your attention to a limited thing, you have to live within the confinds of that

“The human experience is such a profoundly spiritually accelerating opportunity. Because when we as spiritual creatures come to the planet, and inherit the physical body, it comes complete with the nervous system. So here on the Earth, we have to “feel” the consequences of what we give our attention to…”

Focus on what is life sustaining, unlimited – until you feel it. The nervous system keeps it real, keeps you honest…

“My car accident” “The car accident”

Focus until you FEEL IT – The feeling body is the ultimate higher truth barometer …The intellect has a very supple talent of deceiving us (“Oh no no no we’ve already dealt with this…”)

Trama – car accident – you talk about it for 3 months – you own it “My car accident” it’s just an experience: “The car accident”

YOU are a force of Diviine Love, so when a car accident appears in your life – you don’t keep owning it. It’s “the car accident” it’s not who you are…

Languaging is extremely important in letting these experiences come and go, to get through it which we are designed to do…


There are two forks in the road: One fork, you are only as good at something as you have practiced at – most of us are very practiced at being self-judgemental, self-critical, and self-diminishing.

The other fork in the road – “If you are looking for the magic door that leads to an elevator that opens where you can get in to it and you can start ascending – it’s GRATITUDE. Start practicing being grateful for the health that you do have, the money that you do have, the people in your live that love, encourage and support you today and allow yourself to be possessed by an attitude of gratitude because what that does is that it focuses your attention towards what lives in an unlimited place. It allows you to start living a heavenly existance.”

To make a radical shift in your life – Gratitude is the accelerator…


You have to accept where you are right now and it doesn’t mean you have to be stuck…

You can’t change what you are not conscious o “Accepting where you are will allow you to take the journey to change”

The Universal Truth – There is only the One; there is always infinite abundance (There is only one God) – one Love, one Life, one Abundance and we are all sharing it…

Ego – Frontal Lobe- Designed for solving limited problems in a limited world (pay bills, balance checkbook, dress, droom) Deceptive. It resists acceptance; ego contaminants the present moment because it wants to blame it for x…

The EGO subtly hates the present moment – prefers reliving the past, living in the future

It’s a temporal problem solver…

5% of your daily life are you solving a temporal problem in a temporal world

Relationship problems – can’t be solved by the ego/intellect…

The Swedenborg Foundation: www.swedenborg.com

Good Morning:

Today, I’m focusing on generating value and attracting financial abundance into my life. In fact, I may spend the remainder of the year doing so. In preparation, I went looking at some of my old journals dealing with abundance and these declarations leaped off the page at me. Since a lot of us are focused on resolving lack and attracting abundance, I’m sharing my notes.

A Gentle Suggestion:

DO NOT READ THESE DECLARATIONS YET. Instead, print out 2 copies of this blog post. Then:

1. Find a quite place where for the next 10 minutes you won’t be disturbed (no emails, cell phones, people, whatever)
2. WIth a pen in hand, take one of the copies and slowly read each declaration.
3. After reading a declaration, make a note if your immediate reaction was (“agree,” “bull,” “no way,” “not me” or “can’t happen”) also pay particular attention to whether or not you have a strong reaction positively or negatively (“this is me” “I deserve this” “I don’t deserve this” etc.).
4. It’s okay if you get emotional – JUST KEEP GOING

When you’ve gone through the list, take a minute and settle yourself, then calmly go back through the list. On the 2nd copy, place a check mark next to any declaration you’ve indicated that you are aligned with. Draw a small square next to those declarations that you had an adverse or negative reaction to and finally place and “X” next to the declarations that you felt you aren’t deserving off.

You’ve just completed a rough roadmap, which indicates the degree that you are aligned to financial abundance.

This is basic, and of course you can create addtional declarations, but this is a good way to test. To resolve, use any number of great methods found throughout BLC – meditation, EFT, Psych-K, whatever. Just close the gap…



Affirming Declarations to Attract & Benefit from the Presence of Money…

Tap or meditate away. Rinse. Repeat…. :o)

“My inner world creates my outer world.”

“What I heard about money isn’t necessarily true. I choose to adopt new ways of thinking that support my happiness and success.”

“What I modeled around money was their way. I choose my way.”

“I release my non-supportive money experiences from the past and create a new and rich future.”

“I observe my thoughts and entertain only those that empower me.”

“I create the exact level of my financial success!” “I have a millionaire mind!”

“My goal is to become a millionaire and more!”

“I commit to being rich in all areas of my life.”

“I think big! I choose to help hundreds, thousands of people!”

“I promote my value to others with passion and enthusiasm.”

“I am an excellent receiver. I am open and willing to receive massive amounts of money into my life.”

“I choose to get paid based on my results.”

“I always think ‘both’.”

“I focus on building my net worth!”

“I am an excellent money manager.”

“My money works hard for me and makes me more and more money.”

“I am committed to constantly learning and growing.”

The Twelfth Meditation: Revelation

I turn away from the world about me to the world of consciousness that lies within. I shut out all memories of the past, create no images of the future. I concentrate on my being, on my awareness. I slide deep into the very recesses of my soul to a place of utter repose. Here I perceive fact in the making, am conscious of the one being from which all beings spring. I know that this is immortal Self, this is God, this is me. I am, I always was, I always will be. All me, all things, all space and time and life are here in the depths of my soul. Smaller than small, greater than great meet and unite in me.

That which I thought I was, ego, I never was at all, for it was a changing thing, mirroring the seasons and the tides, a thing to be born and grow and die. I am not a thing of time or circumstance. I am spirit, pure and eternal, birthless, deathless and changeless. I am patient, for I am all time; I am wise, for I contain the knowledge of all things.

I know not pain, for I see there is no beginning and no end, and who suffers pain must see beginning and end. I am rich, for there is no limit to the abundance I may create from my very Self. I am successful, for I need only myself and I am all things. I unite, I fuse, I become one with Universal Subconscious Mind.

The mask of vanity and ego I shall never wear again. I perceive the magnificent Dweller at the center of my consciousness, and I know Him to be my very self. Time and space, shadow and substance, what matter these? I am God, I am Spirit…

One of the big challenges we face when trying to transform our lives is that it’s contrary to our nature.  We’re wired to operate from the status quo – our biological systems are design to sustain a certain level of normalcy, whatever the hell that is for you.

One way to break free of this and shake things up is to “look in the mirror”so to say.  To take a really good look into the soul of that unique being that is you.  We can do this through questions.    What follows is a set of questions that may help.  They’re tough:  you may want to have a close friend nearby to ask the questions of you (less inclined to “lie” in the presence of another).

Personally, I run through these questions every year-using them as a temperature check.  Here they are:

  • What am I pretending not to see?
  • What are the top three challenges that I have faced that I perpetually experience? What will it take to overcome them?
  • When I look in the mirror,what do I really see?  What is the first emotion that comes to mind as I stare at my image?
  • What were the key or significant events that define who I’ve become?
  • What am I great at?
  • What do i most enjoy doing?
  • What three things am I most grateful for?
  • What three things am I most fearful of?
  • What is my biggest regret?
  • What power(s) do I have that I am not using?
  • If I were fearless, what actions would I take today?
  • What am I waiting for?

As you go through these, try to record the first thing that comes to mind (might help to record your answers verbally).  A few days later, go through the questions again, making note of the changes.

Get at the truth.  Go for it…

The Eleventh Meditation: Immortality

I know that I am pure spirit, deathless, birthless, changeless, and eternal. I am not body; I am not Conscious Mind; I am not ego. I am sense of Self only, consciousness, awareness, unadulterated being. The presence that animates all life is within me, is altogether the real me.

I am using my body for a purpose, as an expression of an idea, and when the idea is fully expressed, through my work and my mission, I shall return again to unity with universal Self, leaving body and ego behind. I do not confuse my body and my ego with what I truly am. My body is simply an instrument for my expression, and my ego is simply memory of physical experience.

Returning to infinity and unity, I shall need neither body nor ego. I am free of the domination of the ego. It is not my true self, is simply an illusion necessary to finiteness and the perception of space and time. I turn away from the ego, withdraw into the depths of my being to the immortal consciousness that lies within. Here in this magic center my word is law. I need only speak it with faith and conviction, and it will manifest in my life. I am calm and serene, sure and unfaltering, for my roots are in eternity.

All the things of life shall change and pass away, but I shall never pass away, for wherever life is I shall be, one with Universal Subconscious Mind. I need not strive or strain to attain immortality, nor fear punishment, nor aspire for reward.

The Kingdom of Heaven awaits all, the wise, the foolish, the sinner, and the saint, for we are all one in reality, clothed in different forms in this moment of incarnation. I do not fear death, for by it, I attain the consciousness of higher Self. Neither do I invite death, for it must wait until my work is done. I forsake the ego, perceive self in Self, see the majesty, the grandeur, the immortality of the power that dwells within.

I’m seeking the fourth dimension.  I want to go beyond empowerment, beyond striving for things and simply be.  This is want this year is about for me – bringing what’s inside me out into the world and thus remaking the world…~Chris


And Five of Them Were Wise (excerpt from The Secret Door to Success)  http://florencescovelshinn.wwwhubs.com/secret.htm

“And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.

They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them.” –Matt. 25:2-3

My subject is the parable of the Wise and Foolish Virgins. “And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.  They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them. But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.”

The parable teaches that true prayer means preparation…

Jesus Christ said, “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive” (Math. 21:22).

“Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them” (Mark 11:24).

In this parable he shows that only those who have prepared for their good (thereby showing active faith) will bring the manifestation to pass.

We might paraphrase the scriptures and say: When ye pray believe ye have it. When ye pray ACT as if you have already received.

Armchair faith or rocking chair faith, will never move mountains…
In the armchair, in the silence, or meditation, you are filled with the wonder of this Truth, and feel that your faith will never waver.  You know that The Lord is your Shepherd, you shall never want.

You feel that your God of Plenty will wipe out all burdens of debt or limitations.

Then you leave your armchair and step out into the arena of Life. It is only what you do in the arena that counts.


I will you give you an illustration showing how the law works; for faith without action is dead.

A man, one of my students, had a great desire to go abroad.  He took the statement: I give thanks for my divinely designed trip, divinely financed, under grace, in a perfect way.

He had very little money, but knowing the law of preparation, he bought a trunk.  It was a very gay and happy trunk with a big red band around its waist. Whenever he looked at it it gave him a realization of a trip.

One day he seemed to feel his room moving. He felt the motion of a ship. He went to the window to breathe the fresh air, and it smelt like the aroma of the docks.  With his inner ear he heard the shriek of a sea-gull and the creaking of the gangplank. The trunk had commenced to work. It had put him in the vibration of his trip. Soon after that, a large sum of money came to him and he took the trip. He said afterwards that it was perfect in every detail.

In the arena of Life we must keep ourselves tuned-up to concert pitch.

Are we acting from motives of fear or faith? Watch your motives with all diligence, for out of them are the issues of life.

If your problem is a financial one (and it usually is) you must know how to wind yourself up financially, and keep wound up by always acting your faith.

The material attitude towards money is to trust in your salary, your income and investments, which can shrink over night.

The spiritual attitude toward money is to trust in God for your supply. To keep your possessions, always realize that they are God in manifestation. “What Allah has given cannot be diminished,” then if one door shuts another door, immediately opens.

Never voice lack or limitation for “by your words your are condemned.”
You combine with what you notice, and if you are always noticing failure and hard times, you will combine with failure and hard times.

You must form the habit of living in the fourth dimension, “The World of the Wondrous.” It is the world where you do not judge by appearances.

You have trained your inner eye to see through failure into success, to see through sickness into health to see through limitation into plenty. I will give you the land which you though seeth.”

The man who achieves success has the fixed idea of succes. If it is founded on a rock of truth and rightness it will stand. If not, it is built upon sand and washed into the sea, returning to its native nothingness.

Only divine ideas can endure. Evil destroys itself, for it is a cross current against universal order, and the way of the transgressor is hard.

“They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them. But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.”

The lamp symbolizes man’s consciousness. The oil is what brings Light or understanding.

“While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made. Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us your oil; for our lamps are gone out.”

The foolish virgins were without wisdom or understanding, which is oil for the consciousness, and when they were confronted with a serious situation, they had no way of handling it.

And when they said to the wise “give us of your oil,” the wise answered saying, “Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.”

That means that the foolish virgins could not receive more than was in their consciousness, or what they were vibrating to.

The man received the trip because it was in his consciousness, as a reality. He believed that he had already received. As he prepared for the trip he was taking oil for his lamps. With realization comes manifestation…