In my work lately, I’ve been seeing the same questions arise:
I have this idea but I’m stuck. How do I continue?
How do I know this is the right idea?
I understand these concerns. I like to get things done, so when an idea shows up, I want answers on how to implement, what structures are needed and the rest. My mind is active, and it likes to solve puzzles.
It also enjoys tormenting me when the answers aren’t readily available, which when it comes to creative things like what to produce next can be challenging, if approached from a logical, linear perspective.
So how do we move through this space of confusion and annoyance?
Clarity is a priceless commodity.
Without it, no matter how many systems you put in place, the greater vision – if expressed prematurely – will not produce the results you’re out for because it simply isn’t ready.
Ideas need space.
You’re fired up about something, and you’ve been pushing it forward but something is stuck and you can’t understand why? Step away.
You had a daydream about a new product, but it’s hazy and it’s been on your mind for days with no additional clarity? Step away.
Not like “forget the idea”, just give it breathing room.
The point is to move from the linear space into an abstract one.
Creative (and physical) balance
I was born a lefty.
Communism didn’t prevail, and they failed to retrain me to write and do everything else with my right hand. So I happily continued being a lefty in all things, until I realized several years ago that I wasn’t.
At this point, just about the only thing I still dominantly do with my left hand is write. Other clerical things like using a mouse, cutting things and wasting time on a smartphone are done predominantly by my right hand.
This was not a huge deal – many products are designed for righties, so it’s no wonder lefties adapt.
But the big surprise was that the rest of my body had become right-side dominant too. As in, most of my knots and tight muscles were on the right side.
Now this made the least sense of all because I was a lefty tennis player (an extremely one sided sport) since I was 6.
Shouldn’t the knots be on the left?
Oh my brain!
Looking deeper into it, I was led to the brain.
The left hemisphere – controlling our body’s right side – is the logical, linear side that relates to time. The right hemisphere – controlling our body’s left side – is the abstract, artistic, emotional one that does not process time. In general terms.
Now – again, in general terms – our society values ROIs, GDPs and SATs. Those are all left-brain stats that require left-brain dominance. Right-brain achievements haven’t been valued equally in centuries, for, I imagine, survival reasons. So we were trained to count, read, chop stuff, compete, not so much to slow down, breathe and listen.
Those skills rarely generated equal income or respect, rarely translated into money – in a linear sense.
Now brain function is obviously more complex than I’ve described. The two halves share information and are meant to work as a team. But if your right brain is dominated and suppressed, the expected outcome is left-brain dominance, a more linear, time bound perspective and approach to things.
So how does all this apply?
Well if your creative imagination (loosely speaking) is birthed in the right hemisphere, and you instantly try to confine it to structure through the left hemisphere, you create nothing but unyielding pressure if the idea is not ready to be materialized.
The right brain doesn’t understand time.
It’s abstract, void of confinements; it experiences life as “IT IS”, so when something arises, it arises. When it hasn’t yet, it simply hasn’t yet.
Since most of us are left-brain dominant in just about everything we do, not having been trained to allow space to occur as diligently as doing math or reading, when the answers don’t come NOW, we think that something is wrong.
But that simply isn’t true.
Discovering that I had become right-side dominant in the way I walked, moved and the rest, I began to focus on realigning my body, removing the knots, tight muscles and returning my spine to straight. I began to find amazing deposits of space that have wanted nothing but to relax. My body felt better. My mind felt better.
We are meant to be balanced, not lopsided. We are meant to walk straight, not lead with the mind.
Same with ideas.
Ideas need to be nurtured in a state of balance, and the right-brain needs space to do it’s thing.
Via the old method of squeeeeeeeeezing it out, something will be produced, but it won’t feel as good or be as effective as when the truth arises suddenly and difinitively, your whole body zinging with truth resonance.
It’s a physical reaction I’ve noticed in myself countless times. I highly recommend it.
And as everything in the universe is holographic – as below so above, as they say – observing the body will help you see your mind and vice versa.
The idea is to begin using our right brain more so that it is in a healthy relationship with the left hemisphere. This way they happily share data and rely on one another for guidance, thus ultimately creating fantastic, inspiring things in the world.
There are tons of ways to do this.
Step away from the point of incessant analysis
Einstein used to just go to sleep when confronted by a seemingly unanswerable problem with the intention of waking up to a solution in the morning; this works. I’ve done it myself.
Answers also often come after I spend time in nature, play with friends or draw – one left-handed activity still alloted to me.
I also meditate regularly, which has helped balance out my entire life in general. More on that at another time.
The body practice I’ve discovered and really enjoy is Body Rolling. It opens up your muscles and bones, allowing not only (often instant) pain relief but the realignment of your entire body. You can instantly see which side is dominant, where the muscles are contracted and have a simple, enjoyable way of shifting it. I love it.
As a result I am walking straighter and my muscles far more flexible and less tense; my mind is clearer. I feel better.
New ideas – completely unfiltered – fly in, and I now have space to watch them, surrender to the ones that persist and follow the feelings that put a smile on my face.
It’s a practice
My brain perspective above is a supposition, so in no way clinical science.
Some people have knots on the left side, some on the right. All I know is that as the study of the brain evolves, people are seeing right-brain, left-brain use in correlation to a vast array of activity, inactivity and pain in the body.
So all this not only made a great deal of sense to me but has also led me in the direction of balance in my life, physically and creatively.
Structure is important, but we must allow our inner genius free reign.
Only that way can we actually get clear on and manifest the dreams that make us giddy.