Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Joy Diet - Chapter 4 - Creativity

And we continue on the journey through The Joy Diet, hosted by Jamie Ridler...
When I first read the heading to this chapter, I thought: "Easy! I do creative things every day. I paint, I knit, I cook..." Well, after I read the chapter, I was at a loss as to what to say about it. It's less about being creative and more about finding one creative idea every day that will help us realize our desires.
I have to admit that I didn't work with it much this last week as my week was super full and we were out of town for a few days, but now I am ready to go with chapters 4 and 5 this week. They sort of go hand-in-hand anyway.
What I found most intriguing about chapter 4 was the part where we obsess on the people or groups we dislike the most and see how we can incorporate the traits we dislike into our repertoire to reach our goals.
Now that brought up some interesting stuff for me. What I really dislike in others, for example, is judgment without compassion, loud and obnoxious behavior, constant talking. Ok, none of those are behaviors I want to start cultivating in myself, but they revealed something about me that I've been aware of, but not really as an obstacle in reaching my goals.
I realized that I am often way too concerned about what others are thinking and how others are feeling. Where I don't like a lack of compassion, I sometimes have too much and I often feel responsible for others' emotional responses, forgetting that how we feel is always our own choice.
I also tend to be overly quiet and polite (as opposed to the loud and obnoxious behavior I dislike). It's the people pleaser in me. And my overly empathic side. There is much that even those close to me don't know because it's more peaceful for me to be the person I know they will be most comfortable with. Do you know what I mean?
It's easier being the person most know and are comfortable with, but if I am to realize one of the big dreams in my life (one I will tell you about eventually as it begins to unfold), that will no longer be possible.
Starting to paint this year and writing this blog were similar steps in allowing more of my true self to shine - and not just shine but do so in a public forum. The response was more than I could have ever dreamed of.
And then there's the constant talking that I don't like in others...well, sometimes I have an opportunity to speak and really say something that I know is important and can give a different perspective, but I keep quiet.
Most of the time because what I would have to say would disagree with what the other person is proclaiming. And there's the people pleaser again and my overly empathic self not wanting to upset the apple cart.
Add to that my discomfort with conflict, learned early on in my life, and I'd rather keep the peace, even though I have much to say that is of importance and sometimes even profound.
In a way I love that there's always more territory to uncover and become familiar with. We are never done learning about ourselves, are we?
This week we get to take risks in some action steps toward fulfilling our desires.
(All photos were taken on our weekend trip to St. Augustine, FL - more to come this week)

And even though I am quite the scaredy-cat, I will try to live this week with the heart of a lion - I am a leo after all...


  1. Hmm, well that really gives a person something to think about. I think I'll leave it at that other than to say that often those who appear meek are really the bravest of us all.

  2. Very serious tonight, Silke. Come to my Halloween party and lighten up! teehee

  3. What a wonderful post and so insightful! I think I read somewhere once, that bravery without fear is just recklessness...

  4. You're so beautiful in how openly you share your thoughts and feelings about your self discovery. OMG, quiet, empathic leo, taking responsiblity for other's feelings, being who others are comfortable with - what, are you my twin??!!

  5. I think I am ready to do the diet!

  6. Silke! You are amazing. So determined. I envy you. I am undisciplined. Look at the live oaks! OMG! beautiful photography. You have so many talents. The picture of the boat would make a great painting!

  7. Silke, I know exactly of which you speak. I wonder. If we were to meet and have coffee together, would we both be so concerned with the comfort of the other that we'd barely manage to squeak out a few words? Oh, I know what would happen. You'd bring over your giant coffee mug and your plate full of....what are those!?....delectable pastries, and we'd stuff our faces in pure pleasure, and there'd be no need to express words, because we'd know exactly how each other feels and what each other means.

    I loved your spiral staircase photos. Gorgeous! And your painting of you and Daniel --- OH FANTASTIC!!!

    Thanks for those avatars, girlfriend. They really made me laugh!

  8. Oh my gosh! A platter-full! You make me hungry. I only had coffee today.

  9. Nice read,
    Thank you for showing the loveliness of the hibiscus and Jasmine!
    Love it.. hugs, Darlene

  10. Such true words! It takes real honest work to find our way to being ourselves, without apologies to make others more comfortable but with confidence & genuine grace. Roar Silke Roar!

  11. What beautiful photographs, and even more beautiful thoughts and insights... I love this: "I realized that I am often way too concerned about what others are thinking and how others are feeling. Where I don't like a lack of compassion, I sometimes have too much and I often feel responsible for others' emotional responses, forgetting that how we feel is always our own choice." This sounds WAY TOO familiar to me... :) What a brilliant discovery!

  12. This joy diet sounds very serious. It is really making you think and dig deep. I've enjoyed reading your post about it. Lovely photos of your get away.

  13. i went and got the book after hearing you and another blog i like to read regularly going through the chapters
    you did this post exactly as I would have
    with lovely photos interposed with your reflections