Unsticking the Stuckness

by Julie on October 7, 2016

Share

pinkthroughtheglass

“Being stuck is good—it means that what needs to be written
is intense, maybe painful. Or it’s complicated
and requires careful consecutive thought.”
~ Alice Mattison

 

I just returned from co-leading a weekend writing (and more) retreat with Ronna Detrick at a place lovingly named Pine Manor, in Lake Elsinore, Ca. There were fifteen of us, total; fifteen women who gathered to deepen our capacity to write and trust our hearts.

I learned so much from guiding these beautiful women deeper into both their writing and their ability to trust their voices. This process to go deep into trust isn’t easy. It can be intense and painful. And it is beautiful.

I’ve found in my own writing journey that when I come upon, then enter into, a place of stuckness, I’ve invariably found a rich vein of gold just waiting to be freed and woven into something of yet unknown strength and beauty. When we touch into the edges of these stuck places, we begin to feel what the place holds. And, the whole reason there is stuckness there is because we haven’t wanted to feel what is in this place.

Somewhere inside of us, we know what the place holds. It’s why we’ve worked hard to ignore it, stuff it down, and pretend it doesn’t exist. And when we begin to feel it, just about everything within us tries to turn away from this entry into it. We judge what we find. We resist it. We look for something else more positive to focus on. After all, if we are writing, we want to write something beautiful and positive, something others will want to read. Yes?

This is where trust is especially important. It’s trust in the unknown, the dark, the wisdom of your own body and the mystery of existence. It’s trust in the greater intelligence of life – that everything being offered to us is for our own unfolding, our returning home. And trust in the process of writing – that when we truly write what is here, right now, the deep intelligence and beauty of life can come through, even through seemingly gnarly, uncomfortable places.

On the last morning of the retreat, I realized how clearly and closely the creative process is tied to the grief process. The creative process brings us into a deeper relationship with our true nature by opening us to the unknown. As does grief.

Grief brings us to this place, right here, right now. Grief fully engaged brings us present to life as it is. If we’ve entered into a forest of loss, it is grief that brings us home to what is true no matter how painful it is to embrace this new reality.

What lies in those places of stuckness? Grief not felt. Experiences never honored through the ritual of grief. Grief isn’t a one-time thing we save for big losses and then only superficially engage in. No. Grief is the gift we human beings have been given as a way to engage with the difficulties and vulnerabilities of this human life. Grief is how we navigate this life that is anything but easy and always-light-filled. Grief is the way we navigate the healing of the tear in the fabric of our own being that we experienced when young. Grief is what brings us out of the stories that keep us locked in the past and fearful of the future so that we can finally come home to now – to our true nature – to our infinite and vast creative potential.

Grief is what finally, as it brings us home, offers us a glimpse of the astounding beauty that is here in every moment if we are aware of the essential nature of this world and our place in it.

To access the depths of our creative voice, as well as transform the part of ourselves that does not trust our own voice, we must journey through the grief process to set free the experiences, feelings, and habitual patterns that are lodged in our bodies. Yes, these are places of stuckness, and…they are also beautiful and sacred places, like elements buried deep in the earth that have been pressed hard into jewels, like carbon into diamonds. When we enter into them, all the way in, when we hold them in a deep embrace and come into relationship with all they hold, the light held there is set free and can finally begin to shine through.
Alice Mattison’s entire quote is this:

“Being stuck is good—it means that what needs to be written
is intense, maybe painful. Or it’s complicated
and requires careful consecutive thought.
It’s often possible to get unstuck by
asking oneself simple, sensible questions
(like, “What do I already know about this story?”
or “about the next scene?”).
But maybe I’d write better books
if I let myself remain stuck longer.”

I agree there are many times where a simple, sensible question will unstick you. And, I know when we are willing to BE with the stuckness until it reveals what it knows, words you never expected can begin to flow.

***

orangeandgreenwritingrawOn October 18th, we begin the fall Writing Raw circle. Come join us as, together, we dive into these diamond places within, write from what we discover, and then read our writing aloud into the circle.

It is freeing to begin to trust this voice within you enough to write it and share it with others. It not only frees your writing, it frees your soul.

Read more and register here.

 

 

 

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
Share

Previous post:

Next post: