As each of our seasons progress, my good friend Felix Scardino passes on a seasonal message meant to inspire and provoke thoughtfulness in each of us. As Spring has arisen, so, too, has the Season of Creativity. Felix’s message for this Spring is as follows . . .
In our winter message, The Season of Inwardness, Thomas Merton urged us to Trust the winter when the plant says nothing. He was reminding us that, although things appear dead, hidden within them are resources that lead to new life. With its burst of color and growth, spring validates that concept. Let this season be your teacher. Spring can remind you not to jump to dire conclusions when all seems lost, when you can’t see much in your future, or when you feel that your reserves have dried up.
Take a lesson from nature. Our resources for new ideas and insights are often so hidden that our lives look like dead branches. If you find yourself in a personal winter of doubt, confusion and fear (what Shakespeare calls the Winter of our Discontent), rest assured that there is a creative source within you. You will begin to see shoots of life and hope, which usher you into your spring. But be prepared to work for it!
In spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt. ~ Margaret Atwood
‘Smell like dirt’ means be willing to do the work, take a chance, experiment, risk disapproval, fall on your face, start over! New biomedical research suggests that you will thereby activate your healing system. We feel most alive when, acting from our deepest nature, we allow what lives inside of us to come out.
Don’t wait for the big bang of colossal insights before you roll up your sleeves. Trust the “still, small voice” of your quiet inkling and hunches–not by thinking about them, but by acting on them.
Honor them, work with them, shape them as you would clay. Speak them, write them and teach them in your office and at school. Stir them, mix them and chop them in your kitchen. Hammer them, sand them and paint them in your workshop. Make bold strokes. Make a mess. You can always clean it up and start over.
Welcome spring and your new creative self!
Felix Scardino, LCSW
Hopefully making a ruckus, one blog post at a time!
Be sure to check out my other blog, Joe’s Journey, for personal insights on life and its detours.
And, check out creative selections from my website.