The Inviting Shift Podcast

S2 Episode 4: Rekindling Creativity and Pursuing Passions in Midlife with Sharon Burton

September 14, 2023 Christina Smith Season 2 Episode 4
The Inviting Shift Podcast
S2 Episode 4: Rekindling Creativity and Pursuing Passions in Midlife with Sharon Burton
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Are you ready to rekindle your creativity through the wisdom of Certified Creativity Coach, Sharon Burton? She joins us in this episode to provide a roadmap to reclaiming your imaginative flair, particularly as we navigate life's middle chapters. Yoga Nidra, curiosity, and supportive surroundings are just a few of the catalysts for your creative resurgence she'll share in our deep dive.

Sharon imparts the importance of being open to new passions and not restricting ourselves to a single creative outlet. She emphasizes that reawakening our creativity isn't just about professional pursuits, but also serves as a form of self-care. Overcoming negative feedback, and breaking the cycle of procrastination, Sharon imparts her journey towards embracing her passion for writing, underlining that it's never too late to chase your creative dreams.

Wrapping up, we'll traverse the often tricky waters of managing expectations from those around us, while still making time for our creative endeavors. Inspirational nuggets like going on solo artist dates and taking advantage of learning opportunities in our environment will be covered. So whether you're a dormant artist awaiting reawakening or someone just looking to integrate more creativity into your life, tune in for a fresh perspective on letting your imagination run wild.

ABOUT Sharon:

Sharon J. Burton is a visual artist, poet, and creative life advisor, and Founder of Spark Your Creative (SparkYourCreative.com) based in the Washington, DC area.  Since 2016, she has focused on helping people at midlife in “creative recovery”…those looking to revive or jump-start their creativity through workshops, her blog, and as the host of Spark Your Creative Podcast which features artists and other creatives who are using their unique talents to create more mindful communities and a safer world.

Sharon is a certified Creativity Coach through the Creativity Coaching Association which is also a member. She received her certification as a Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra guide through Jennifer Reis Yoga. Sharon is also a Level II, Reiki Certified practitioner and received her and received her Breathwork + Meditation Teacher Certification from Faith Hunter Sharon infuses her creativity coaching with wellness practices to help her clients break through the blocks that prevent them from fully engaging in their creative potential.

CONNECT with Sharon:

Instagram  |  Website  |  Facebook  | Podcast  |  YouTube

FREE GIFT:
Need to calm that nervous system down for some creative time? Sharon offers a Yoga Nidra session in the Midlife Mojo Summit to help you prepare your body and mind.  Sign up for free and tune in here.

Is the Modern Midlife Mentorship for you?

Find out here.

CONNECT with Inviting Shift on Social:

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Email me and tell me what you think: christina@christina-smith.com

TUNE IN wherever you listen to podcasts:

Speaker 1:

Well, welcome back shifters. Thank you for tuning into another episode and this might be one of my favorite episodes. I've just spent a whole weekend doing all kinds of passionate, fun things, and I know that it took me a really long time to get here, because it was always about work or the things that needed to get done around the house and I didn't really make creativity time for myself. And there's so much to talk about and unpack about this, because I'm so excited to have Sharon Burton here. Sharon was on our summit, if you remember, the Midlife Mojo Summit, and she was talking about Yoga Nidra, which is one of her passions. However, today, one of her even bigger passions is to talk about creativity and how we get reengaged with it as we get older and how we can reengage with it if we haven't been friends in a while, right? So thank you, sharon, so much for being here.

Speaker 2:

I'm so excited to talk about this with you and I'm excited to be invited to share a little bit today. Thank you, christina. I had a good time working with you and talking with you for the summit and look forward to the summit next year and hopefully the participants got a good idea of what Yoga Nidra was about and how that could work for their creativity or anything in life. So but thank you for inviting me to talk about this topic today.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and what I love about that is like it seems like when I first thought about it I was like Yoga Nidra and creativity. A lot of us need to get to that deep space of calmness before we can actually at least for me I'm speaking for myself is the Yoga Nidra actually really helped me? Because when I get through this anxious space during the day of like doing things and checking off lists, it's so beautiful to just do that for 15 or 20 minutes and then I feel like my body is reset and I can go back into creativity, which I think is just brilliant that you use it as a tool, but tell us who it is that you work with and what you do for them.

Speaker 2:

Well, I am a creativity coach a certified creativity coach, by the way and I work with individuals who either want to reclaim, rediscover or unblock their creative life, and this is mostly cultural creatives, folks that are artists, visual artists, writers, authors, poets, musicians. You know people that are in traditional creative fields, but it also does not exclude folks that are into creating podcasts, or you know gaming designers and people like that. If you're in a creative field or need to work through using your creative side as part of what you do, I'm your person to help you work through that, and I primarily work with people who are at midlife, and particularly folks that are dealing with emptiness syndrome, people that are getting ready to retire, getting ready for their second act Because we have a sense of freedom that we may not have had when we were younger as well as people who had a lot of messaging when they were younger, about pursuing a creative life, and a lot of us, gen Xers and above, did get that.

Speaker 2:

You know, if we didn't grow up in a family of artists and creative types, we were kind of, you know, shuffled off to doing more maybe right brain.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and by well-meaning people. You know people that wanted to see us thrive and you know a lot of us grew up at a time when being an artist wasn't as cool as it is now. You know we now embrace the creative industries and creativity and the creatives are the ones that are kind of leading the pack with a lot of things that we're dealing with right now Good and maybe not so good, but for the most part, you know, this generation has really been encouraged to embrace their creativity and knew nothing of some of the things that a lot of us had to go through to kind of discard our creativity and then try to regain it. At a time that we're able to do that, what I try to do is work with people to deal with things that might have blocked them in the past and basically help give themselves permission to have a creative life and know that it's never too late to do so. So I love what I do.

Speaker 2:

I do workshops, I do. I have a new book getting ready to come out, hopefully in a couple months, that will address this group, just to help inspire people, and you know we're at a time where creativity is what we're going to need to move past a lot of the ills of society. But also creativity is a leaning on. Our creative gifts can be a bomb and a way to, you know, escape the madness of life, or just to just do it for enjoyment. So that's what I'm about.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and I love that you like escape the life, but it's such a healthy escape, right, because we're using our brains, we're using our hands. We're, you know, putting things together, figuring things out. At least, that's how the process of my art usually goes.

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah.

Speaker 1:

Like a lot of testing and trying without having like. So, when you talk about these creative people, I was never really an artsy person because I did not have good experiences in art classes when I was growing up and I feel like I was humiliated in half of them. So I never really did the art thing. I did poetry, I do gardening, I do those kinds of things. But after I went to a women's weekend and did all this kind of healing, I was like I want to paint. I had this like passion, to like I want to go paint. So I bought all the supplies and the canvas and everything and I sat there and I stared at it for about a year, just stared at it, right, like what am I going to do? What do you know? And it was.

Speaker 1:

It was so stressful. I could have used you back then. But I had another over at a friend that was a little bit older than me and she's like Christina just put the damn paint on the canvas. This does not have to be a masterpiece, this doesn't. This is just fun. This is just you playing around, just swirl the colors on there and have some fun. And that made it easier because for me, what I realized is I was putting this huge expectation on whatever this canvas was going to be, as if you know it was going to go hang in the Louvre or something, and so it stopped me from moving forward. So I'm assuming it's those kind of blocks that you can really help people with.

Speaker 2:

Most definitely, and your experience is not atypical. I was in a similar kind of thing. I did not go as far as to buy art supplies, but when I finished my graduate degree some years ago, I was in my early 30s. At the time, I think I had just turned 30. And you know, at that time when you're just turned 30, you really think you're getting old. Oh God, I'm getting old. You know how we were at that time, anyway. So I was living in Atlanta, georgia, and I had just got my first job out of graduate school, so, you know, beginning to kind of make a little bit of money. And I would. I would pass by the Atlanta School of Art, which is now part of the Savannah School of Art, and something kept telling me like okay, now that you got your your graduate level degree, so you're employable by the world standards that we grew up with, you know, you need to start, you need to enroll over there and take some classes. And I was like no way I'm going to be this old woman at 30, old woman, and I'm going to be surrounded by a bunch of kids. And they're not. You know, I'm thinking I'm an artist.

Speaker 2:

I grew up doing art and did very well with it. I had more positive experiences with my art classes. There were some negative, but mostly a lot of it had nothing to do with my art. I was encouraged by my parents to create, so I didn't have a lot of the typical, you know, somebody telling me that my stuff was crap. It was just I was just told that if I was going to go to college I couldn't major in art. So I majored in business and then got a graduate degree in public administration, so very much, very different than art. But I did not realize how much I really wanted or that the art thing was still a part of me until I would pass by that school and I was scared. I eventually started doing little things like go, I went on an art tour, a studio tour there, and it was kind of like Telling the voice to shut up. You know like okay, I did this, so I'm part of the art thing, and it was like cool. But you know that's not the level you need to be at. And so I you know it took me several years to actually do Go to classes and learn and relearn drawing and art and in all that and get to the point where I could display my work and all that. But it it took a while. So you know, actually I think you were probably faster than me, you know, because it took like about 5 years before, 5 or 6 years before I got going, but at least you had those things and actually I really like that ideal that you did by having the art in your home and looking at it every day.

Speaker 2:

And I think, when we talk about exploring our passions, when we want to try to do something new, maybe something that we haven't done it before, that we've always wanted to do, if it's something that you used to do and you haven't done in a while and you think you're rusty and it's too late to do it, doing something like putting a reminder in front of you, that sort of triggers something in you, even if it takes a year, you know, not putting a timeline on it, you know, but at the same time saying to yourself you're going to have to move past, just staring at it. So you, you know the other piece that you talked about, by having supportive friends, people that support what you're about and what your passions are, that kind of give you that nudge, because I had the same thing myself as far as displaying my work, because I was started to the point where I created, but then I wouldn't share it, and so you know having supportive people is yeah, yeah, and I'm.

Speaker 2:

You know, I was looking at your work on the other day when we chatted and I was like she's so good, I don't know why she's, you know, because I was like I'm thinking that you had found a good artist or something that you'd like to just was collecting their work and it's like. And then you just said, oh, casual, yeah, I did that and I'm like it's good you are. I mean, that piece in the back there is just awesome, it's, it's cheery, it's fun, you know, and you have a good use of color, you know. You seem to have a good sense of color and how to use color. Not everybody can do that, you know, so you shouldn't, you shouldn't count yourself out with that, but that's a whole lot of questions about that.

Speaker 1:

You know personal About that in a minute. But I would say about some of the things that you just said was and it related to my story too is it's about that expectation like letting go of that expectation of this has got to be great, this has got to be the thing right? And instead what I heard you saying was just being more curious, like, if I like to do this type of art before, why am I not doing this today? And again, this can go anything. This could be digital design, it could be gardening, it could be whatever you're creative or passionate about right Now. Sharon does work specifically with artist types and this I want everybody to hear that this is about anything. If computer programming really does your ditty, then you know going into figuring out how can you be more creative with it, how can you create whatever? Correct, yeah, yeah, fill in the blank you know I can.

Speaker 2:

I can talk about it from an artistic point of view or creative point of view, but just fill in the blank with whatever it is that you're interested in. I think one of the things that you well, I will say this the first thing that I recommend is that curiosity, to allow yourself to be open and curious. You know, if there is something on television that you see and you're like I always wanted to try, that, one of the things that I said to myself, I think. If not the latter part of this year, I got to finish the book and a few other things, but I think next year I want to learn how to play the bongos or the Tamboli's I don't know how to pronounce that, right, I just this thing about drumming and even just playing the drums. But I was like I just think that it's such a cool instrument, something that is sort of what is a percussion. Now, I'm not, I've never played an instrument in high school or anything, but that is just one of those things that's just been kind of playing in my head. But I think you should open yourself to curiosity. Open yourself to what is it that I've always thought was interesting? What, even if it's something on television that you see or on the you know, something like a documentary, a video, something you know, whatever, even if you're in the park and you see somebody doing something interesting, you know. If it really stays in your mind, that may be a clue. It's something you want to try, and so go with your curiosity. Don't get honed in on one thing. If it's several things that you're interested in, try those several things. You know. Some people feel like, well, in order to be creative, I have to just be a visual artist, or I have to be a musician and I have to be a poet and I can't try other things. No, try it all. One thing about this younger generation they do that. I've always naturally did it.

Speaker 2:

I started out with visual art and then went into poetry a few years ago, and sometimes, as part of your curiosity, as part of your discovery process, life will kind of move you to a different place where you try something as a way of self expression.

Speaker 2:

So look at your life experiences. What are some life experiences that may serve as a muse for you to try something new, even if it's not the greatest experience? One of the things that happened to me I went through a life lesson that was pretty major and it sort of moved me to a place of healing and a part of my life. The person that was involved with it ended up serving as a muse for me to write the poetry. Now I wrote poetry and stuff as a preteen, as a teenager, but I hadn't really thought about it for years because I was doing my little visual art thing. And here I am writing poems and these different prose as a way of healing from this situation and I ended up having enough poems to do a little chat book and get it out to some folks and start doing open mics and lead to a whole different, creative thing.

Speaker 2:

So, don't box yourself by saying, okay, if I took a class in making jewelry, that's my creative thing, you may enjoy it, but keep yourself open to whatever else you're curious about. You may find that you might just focus just on jewelry after a while, or you may find yourself just being an open, creative person who enjoys doing a variety of different things, and there's no right or wrong. It's just giving yourself permission to try and to fulfill your desires because, let's face it, you're going to have more time, you have maybe a little more money to take classes and you're going to really find the joy and the comfort and the calmness and even, I dare say, the meditative quality of spending time creating something that's really fun or doing whatever it is that you're passionate about.

Speaker 1:

So this multi-passionate I really love, and what I love about it is that you can take these classes that you're talking about and not have to buy all the supplies. Because that used to be really intimidating for me was like, oh, if I want to go learn this thing, even stand up paddle board. Like I don't want to go buy a paddle board until I know that I'm actually going to like it right, so we can go out to these different classes. At least there's a place around here where you can rent one and they'll even teach you how to use it. So you can go to classes and use all of those supplies which I think is so important and try the different things. When I tried glass bead making, it transferred into my art, you know, into the art that I already make, where I was like, ooh, I really like those colors together and ooh, I really like that shape, and so all of the different things, like it's not like you're starting over, you're taking skills with you and different creativity and stuff. So I really love that.

Speaker 1:

And then I wanted to just touch on because I am kind of a geek, so I look up the studies what does science say about this? And Harvard Business Review is telling me that being more interested, having a creativity or passion that you're doing outside of work, can reduce your stress. It increases our creativity and our brain activity. It also can offer higher energy, which makes so much sense to me, because if I'm really excited about something that I've never been excited about before, I can get into a creativity zone and it's like energy means nothing to me. I don't even think about napping or you know doing something else, I just get into that zone. So that space is really really good for us as human beings.

Speaker 2:

I agree, and I think, in addition to the curiosity that we talked about, which I do advocate for people to do, I think the other thing is to look at these endeavors and find the easiest way that you feel that you can enter, like workshops, like those types of things. It also could mean friends. You know, a lot of us have creative friends or people that are involved with hobbies that we're interested in, and it's just a matter of if you've got good friends. You can ask them and say you know, I want to try this, or I want to try that you can teach me or can you guide me to someone that could help me. Some people do well in a class with other people and I recommend it because it's a bunch of folks trying to learn the same thing. It's a networking tool, it can serve as a support community, but sometimes you may want to do things one-to-one. Maybe you might feel a little intimidated being in a class with a bunch of people. So, you know, find someone that might be able to tutor you or, better yet, do something virtual where you may not be in a classroom per se, where someone's looking over your shoulder or you think somebody is doing that and looking at your work, you could do something online.

Speaker 2:

I think the other thing which we talked about earlier today, before we got online, was the whole thing about perfectionism and also the part about capitalistic kinds of endeavors. You know, a lot of people force folks or push people to use their hobby as a money-making thing. Now my thing is this If this is part of your purpose and your plan for your life after retirement or a side gig, go for it. You know, set up your Etsy shop, set up whatever you need to do to sell what it is that you like doing, but don't feel that you have to go into any of these passions to make money. You know, doing it just to do it is just as important and helpful and all that stuff, as deciding that you want to make money out of it. Be clear about what your purpose is and know that it does not always have to end up being a capitalistic thing, because sometimes it takes the joy out of it. If you feel that I got to make X amount of widgets to sell and all that, and you know if that's not, you don't do it for that. If you want to do, write poetry for the sake of poetry, putting together your own little chat book and give it to friends, like I did. You know you don't have to do this publishing thing. You don't even have to share it at an open mic if you don't want to.

Speaker 2:

I encourage people if they feel that they want to get feedback and to really test their courage. You know, get out there. But if that's not you, that's okay. It doesn't make it any less or less valid or not important. You know it's all about you.

Speaker 2:

And I think the last thing I did want to mention is you know well two things. First, one is imposter syndrome and you're inner critic, because those will derail you from doing a passion or a hobby. I didn't go to art school, I didn't learn music, I didn't. You know, I wasn't an athlete, I wasn't this, I wasn't that or I'm not that, that doesn't matter.

Speaker 2:

We all can do what it is that we would like to do. Now, if you cannot sing and you know you cannot sing, nobody's saying for you to push that. But if there's something else related to music that is a passion of yours that you can really get the same joy, do that, but don't feel that you have to have all this education and knowledge, hobbies and passions are about where our heart is. It can be a part of our purpose. There's nothing wrong with going back to school if you feel that that's your path, but don't feel that you have to have all these things lined up, that you have to have been an English major to write that book or anything like that. If you have a book inside you I think the popular quote I think it was either Toni Morrison or Maya Angelou, one of my two shearers you have to get that book out. There's plenty of people that can help you creativity coaches, different people that can help you.

Speaker 2:

So move past that and find a way to change those inner dialogues into something positive. For example, I'm big on affirmations. Sometimes I have to write affirmations to negate anything that's going on up here. So I'll write an affirmation that I am a talented and sought after artist. If that's the reality I want to manifest, it's just one way to rewire your thinking and some of the negative biases, that which we all naturally have to move you to a direction to pursue, whatever your passion is.

Speaker 2:

I think the other thing and you touched on it with your friend making sure that you have people around you that understand that you want to try these things. There's always going to be somebody saying why do you want to do that? Aren't you a little old to be doing that? No, you're never too old to try something new. If it means that that side of you may have to just dim a little bit around them, so be it if that person's important to you. But you want to keep people that are positive about what you're trying, maybe want to try it with you, invite them to try something with you. There's always going to be people who are not comfortable moving outside their comfort zone. That's okay, but it doesn't mean that you have to stay there. It means that you make the decision for you, not for other people, not for the naysayers, not for the haters or the people who are not comfortable with themselves to try something new. This is about you, even if people say all their stuff is crap.

Speaker 2:

I had somebody tell me my poetry was like it just doesn't go anywhere. It was somebody that I really felt very close to and I was just very hurt that he said that. But I also knew that that was not necessarily my reality when I have shared it with other people, including folks that are in the field that take those types of things. Put people in where they are. If it's just a layperson who doesn't read or listen to poetry, that's not who you want to hear from. You want to hear from people that really know what they're doing and that are compassionate and supportive. If you can't find someone compassionate and supportive or you're dealing with someone that way find someone else, because there is always someone. Whether it's a creativity coach, whether it's an instructor, whoever, there's always someone that's going to support your dreams and your passions.

Speaker 2:

Don't get caught up with people that are going to be negative and belittle your passions. We all have them and we have the right. We're grown adults now. We're not teenagers where we were sideline onto certain things. We can make these decisions. We can make the time. Speaking of time, I'm trying to get it all in today, Making sure that the people know that this is something that's important to you. If you need to carve out a little art studio, or if you need to on Thursday nights that's your writing group night or class night or whatever let people know hey, I'm looking to do these things now. I just want to let you know I'm not going to be around on Thursday nights between six and eight, because this is what I'm doing. Let your family, your significant other, in on it. Let them know what you're going to be doing and you don't have to keep them in the dark about it, but let them know that this is special to you and that this is the time for you. For the most part, people will support that, I find. Just know that.

Speaker 2:

I think the final thing I can say about pursuing your passion. I think we should see creativity, or whatever our passion is, as a way of self-care. I think a lot of people think of self-care and all that is going to yoga and massages and all those types of things which they are. But when you pursue something that's inside, gives you joy, that's self-care and you should do what you can to support that, as if you were getting the massage, if you were doing some kind of spa treatment or whatever. That self-care my time to create is part of my self-care. That helps, keeps me sane. See it as that. Sometimes, even if you have to explain it to people who don't understand, this is a part of my self-care. This is how I relax. This is something I choose to do to stay sane in this crazy. That's a different lens, but I really push for people to see it that way, because there's so many things that people try to tell you not to do. But this is one thing you can be selfish about.

Speaker 1:

It's okay, I give you permission to do it, all right, well, sharon said so, so y'all go out there and create time. And I do have clients who come in like, well, and they're not quite empty nesters or maybe they're not planning on retiring, maybe their career is still in heavy flow, and they're like, oh, I don't have time. And I hear this a lot about a lot of different things from my clients and I'm like, really, I want you to track your time for a week, right, just track it for a week and see how much time you spend scrolling on Facebook, playing, games on your phone doing things that aren't feeding your soul the same way that creativity or something that you'd be passionate about would do, and you can really find blocks of time where you have time to do this.

Speaker 1:

The other so I have this client that has this creative business, and the whole reason she wanted a business for herself was to be creative, right, but then what happened was the business took over and now she's like, oh well, this has to get done, that has to get done. And then she's like I don't even have time for creativity anymore. And so one thing that I encouraged her to do was, before you start your work day, do something creative, whether that's she builds little widgets and stuff Like. So build your widget, or get creative with a widget ahead of time, like explore, be curious, as your points were, and just give yourself that permission to. You know, eff it up if that's what you want.

Speaker 1:

Like, this isn't about whether you're failing or you're succeeding. This is about just being creative and doing the dang thing, cause I mean, how many sketches of the human man did Da Vinci have to do before he started painting big cathedrals or starting that big project? Right, like there was. So that's learning. So my information is always like I'm learning and I'm curious. I'm learning and curious.

Speaker 2:

There you go. I'm learning and curious, and let me just say a note about professionalism. It's not about being perfect, it's not about running out the gate and looking like somebody on television or on social media or whatever. And, by the way, do not compare yourself to people on social media whether they're musicians, whether it looks like they're successful in the business or whatever.

Speaker 2:

You don't know. The backstory number one you don't know how long they've been doing it. Some people have had the luxury of being able to, let's say, be an artist all their lives, and we're able to. You know, don't do it. You know, if you want to get ideals and get inspired, that's fine, but don't get caught up with oh, you know, I can't do stuff that looks like that. Or when I posted my music or my poetry, I didn't get as many likes as this person. That just erase all of that. It's about you. It's about being the best that you can be, not based on what you feel success is. And you know, I really am glad to see that people are talking more now about what is success and everything else, and I had to really redo that myself what society says it is.

Speaker 1:

My back is out. Success is really about.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and I mean I'm not saying that having a good bank account is not something to strive for, sure, but I also know that for me, success is having peace of mind, whatever that is for me, and so if creating, if pursuing my path is giving me peace of mind, that's success for me. Whether I'm selling anything, whether I have a hundred and thousand likes based on a post I made of whatever it is, the success is being able to be proud of what I've done and feeling good about what I've done, and feeling good in my mind and being in my right mind, and to be at peace in a world that is not at peace right now.

Speaker 2:

So if I could have a little bit of fantasy and a little bit of fun and play as part of my create, my passions, and pursuing that despite what the world says. I'm supposed to be showing up, as that is the piece that we all should strive for. We're writing and that's why we pursue the passion.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I'm writing down this little saying so what I'm hearing is experience over expectation Cause for me when I create expectations of my art, like I'm copying something that this person is teaching me how to do on this YouTube video and all of a sudden my lines don't look as little strong as hers, or even as hers or whatever. So, instead of having these huge expectations, what I really love about art for me is that it can still become anything and I can change my mind in the middle of it and go. You know what actually I'm coloring over all that orange with some blue. I don't like it, and that's the joy of creativity.

Speaker 1:

So it's more about the experience, right. Like I love that you and I are on that same page where it's like getting in that zone of our creativity is so fun, like when I can get my whole brain and body and inner wisdom like focused on this one thing without my brain going. But you know we should be doing this or we could be doing that, or we could get that laundry off the line and blah, blah. You know I mean my brain can go crazy that way, but that's why I really love that you you also incorporate that yoga nidra, because that is the space and I'll put a link below of the yoga nidra from the midlife mojo summit.

Speaker 1:

Yes, definitely that would be a great idea, I think it would be great to get a look at that so that they can try it, because it's like it just kind of for me. It gets me out of my head and back into my body, where my creativity actually is. So instead of thinking about the past, thinking about my to-dos and all the future stuff and preparing, I'm like really present with my art and my creativity.

Speaker 2:

So that's the best way to be. I think. When we think about different things, sometimes we forget it's the experience and how we want to feel that drives us to do the things that we do. And if you get, that in your mind. Yeah, and being present. The yoga nidra is one of those things. That's about being present, activity. If that's what you wanna do, whatever your passion is, it's really about the experience. Not necessarily accomplishments, not necessarily. All of that will come if that's something you really want.

Speaker 2:

But, just remember, it's the feeling, the experience, and allowing yourself and giving yourself permission to do those things, to get that feeling you know, it's a healthy way of self-expression and I think people at Midlife especially really can find the time, can make the time, as you mentioned. You know all of us are on social media way too much and you know a lot of the time can be cut to be able to do what you really want to try to do.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I love that so much. One of the things I've learned to do is when I find myself just scrolling, I'm like, hold on, Christina, what could I be doing? And I'll turn on YouTube and like I'll explore new, new creative stuff to do, Like, oh, how does she make that? And then I'll watch the videos of how they made it. And I may or may not ever do that craft, but it keeps me excited to go try new things to. Oh well, I see what she's doing there.

Speaker 1:

I wonder how I could adopt that to what it is that I do. And so that is even creative time. So even for me, when I'm procrastinating on something because when I get to the hard part of a project, then I'm like, mmm, it takes me weeks to get back to it I just start watching videos every day because I'm like, at least I'll get excited about it. Right, Like that's what I'm trying to inspire myself to be like oh right, that's why I'm doing what I'm doing and I want to see this through. And then that becomes much different than I have to get this done, which is, I feel, like we're so many of us live, and I don't want my creativity to live there where I have to get this done. I almost take the spot where I'm going to start this. I have no idea if this will ever get done.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. I think that really not only you know, like you said, about the videos, but also try to find ways to get out and see things to help inspire you.

Speaker 2:

For example, julia Cameron in the book the Artist's Way. If you're not familiar with it, I suggest everybody go get that book, because it's about creative recovery and rediscovering your creativity, and one of the two things she talks about is artist dates and morning pages. Morning pages is journaling like three pages of long hand stream of consciousness writing every morning, and that enables you to open your mind to new things for the day so you can kind of incorporate them into your life. The second thing is artist dates, and I love artist dates because they enable you to go out, take yourself on a solo date and actually find some things that inspire you, whether it's at a museum or an art gallery, whether it's going to the park, whether it's going to a concert by yourself, a movie by yourself, whatever it is, but those are designed for you to take in new information that may inform your creative practice, your passion, whatever.

Speaker 2:

So, instead of scrolling and instead of sitting in front of the television, get out and see some things that inspire you, but go by yourself. Sometimes, when we go with people, with distracted people, bring up stuff that really has nothing to do with us or bias what we're seeing. You want to trust your eye. You want to trust your ear. You want to be inspired by what it is that you see, not by what someone tells you they're seeing or how they feel about it or whatever so then you have to go at their pace instead of your own pace.

Speaker 2:

So if I don't like this one, I'm going to go a different way.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I love that Again. What a great idea Again this is about self care.

Speaker 2:

You know, pursuing hobbies and passions is about self care, you know, and when we see it that way and see that things that we do in support of that as an extension of self care, it really takes on a whole different meaning.

Speaker 1:

And what I love to do. One more point I'm going to make, and then we should probably wrap up, because I know that we can go for hours and hours. But what I loved about earlier was when you said you know, if a friend of yours does something that you were like, oh, I'd like to learn how to do that, go ask them. I don't have one artist friend where I've ever been like, hey, could you teach me how to do that? And they were like no, me personally.

Speaker 1:

I think people who create things, they want to share it with other people, they want to share the techniques. They want to share I mean people who are really passionate about it. They love it. When you're like, yes, I would love to show you that, and it really gives them an opportunity to serve within their craft, which I think is just. You know how lovely is that? What a compliment that is that you think I do great stuff and you want to learn how to do it. I think it's fantastic. And so go ask somebody. I'm sure you know someone who does something creative. If you don't know where to start, that might be a great place to start of just asking your friends what do they do for creativity. Can they share that with you?

Speaker 1:

We used to have when I lived back east. We used to have get togethers where, like, everybody brought their own art and shared how they do it with other people, and then they either learned from each other or we just did our own art projects together. But it was very supportive. To your point about needing support, you know it's so helpful. Plus, I'm watching what they're doing and that's inspiring me and motivating me to want to do more of my own work, even on my own. And so you know, all of these are little steps that you can take, right, we don't have to imagine the whole painting done, but I can get support. I can ask for, you know, guidance from people. I can go, start watching those videos or taking myself out on a date to get inspired. So there are things that we can start doing, even if we don't know what exactly we want to do. That's all stuff I include in from this conversation, that's right. Any huge highlights that you want to just bring up? Where we go to remind anybody?

Speaker 2:

Just yes, tune into your curiosity, follow it.

Speaker 2:

Give yourself permission. Try some things and don't box yourself into just one thing. Try whatever it is that you're interested in. Rewire any thoughts that says you can't do it or it's too late or you're not talented or whatever. Don't even give into that. Don't compare yourself and make sure that you're surrounded by somebody or some bodies that are supportive of what you're doing and you know, just be open to the process and that you're not going to be perfect. It's all about trying and experimenting and being a beginner. I know, as midlife and older adults, we're used to being the professionals in whatever it is we've done all our lives. Just kick that out the window. You're being a beginner and it's okay to be a beginner.

Speaker 2:

It's actually refreshing and be open to that process.

Speaker 1:

It's part of the journey. I know, when I have accomplished things, like when I graduated college, I looked back and I was like, wow, did I really enjoy the journey as I was going, rather than feeling like I had a rush, rush, rush so I can graduate? Sometimes, when we're done with the journey, we miss being that newbie, we miss experiencing those things for the first time and learning techniques. It's all part of the journey. My affirmation I'm learning and I'm curious.

Speaker 2:

I love that affirmation and that can go through so many things, but be willing to be a beginner again. Let's face it a lot of us are sages in our workplace and everybody goes to us for things. You can be the novice and you can rely on going to somebody else to be shown the way. You don't have to have that badge on you and it's okay. No one's going to think of you as anything but someone who's open to learning. And that's what life is about, and it does support healthy aging Exactly.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely. It keeps our brains busy, our hearts excited. All of the parts of us can get really into it. Thank you so much for sharing your passion about passion. You're welcome. I appreciate you, you're subject yeah, I appreciate you so much. If you are tuning in and you're like I'm going to go try something new, hit the comments up and let us know what are you going to be trying. We want to get excited with you. We want to be inspired and motivated right along your side.

Speaker 2:

So, sharon, we'd love to hear about it. Yeah, thank you so much for being here.

Speaker 1:

Sharon, I appreciate you. I know that you love the subject and you were the first person I thought of. I was like oh, sharon's going to want to talk about this.

Speaker 2:

I knew it. I just want to say thank you. I'm very grateful and thankful that you thought of me, and I look forward to seeing what people have to say, and I invite people to check me out too, if you need some help.

Speaker 1:

All of our links are below.

Speaker 2:

So I look forward to hearing from you. No problem, no problem. Thank you, christina, yeah, all of our links are below.

Speaker 1:

So if you are having these creative blocks and you just really want to start pursuing more passion and more creativity, sharon is your woman to go to. So go check out her links, make sure that you get on her list and you get all of her juicy information, and follow her socials. Thank you, shifters, for tuning in. We'll see you again next week. Bye.

Reconnecting With Creativity in Midlife
Exploring Passions and Trying Something New
Pursuing Your Passion as Self-Care
Embracing Creativity and Finding Success
Finding Inspiration and Creativity in Self-Care