How to Heal the Downside of the Creative Processs: Sing Praises.

flock-proudmemberIt is The Day After the launch of Flock. Now that I’ve birthed something new out into the world the post-pregnancy hormones are turning into a big boiling pot of neurosis stew. All my gremlin voices are chattering away at me, and my insecurities are looming large.

The monkey-ish part of my mind is telling me that everything is going to fall apart: I’ll get sick again and not be able to keep up. No one will pay for my services and skill. And the loudest message of all: “Everyone Else is more Helpful than You.”

I’m embarrassingly predictable.

Part of this pattern is attributable to my religious upbringing, which drilled into my subconscious this If/Then clause:

If you ‘step out to do God’s work’ then you will ‘come under attack.’

I point this out because I know many of my readers are in the same boat. I think part of what we do here together, is to re-write our inner narratives so they reflects more health, more shalom. When my voices loom large and I start defining things as “attack,” it helps to remember that this discombobulated feeling is actually a normal part of the creative process; that many of my artistic friends express the same phenomenon; and that like the physical reality of childbirth, eventually these hormonally-things level out.

In the wake of this gremlin uprising, I decided to check in with some of my favorite writers. Once a week or so I go through the blogs on my RSS feeds. I follow about 50 people, and checking in on them is one of my favorite things to do when I feel stuck, or overwhelmed, or lonely. There is so much beauty in these writers and artists, so much wisdom, and hope and breakthrough. Today was no different. Everyone seemed to have cooked up good stuff over the holidays. But this time, instead of inspiring me, those rich, winsome posts started getting me down. “See,” said the monkey gremlins “I told you Everyone Else is More Helpful than You.”

I started getting whiney. Whiney, insecure, and jealous. I don’t want those feelings. I don’t even feel like they belong to me. They belong to my miserly, selfish, un-generous Evil Twin. The real me is grateful and generous. The real me celebrates the success and wisdom of Other Women. The real me is Dangerously Giving. The real me is madly in love with Abundance and throws things out into the universe two handfuls at a time.

So in an effort to quite my Gremlins, settle my Monkey Mind, and banish my Evil Twin, I decided to sing. (Tra La La!) As an antidote, I am Singing the Praises of kind bloggers who have brought wisdom, insight and beauty into my life today. I’m honoring their Passion and Attentiveness. I’m saying: “Hey, look over there at what THEY did!” Most of all, I’m being grateful. Because at my core, that is my truest self.

May you find all these good things and more today.

Much Warmth,


Bloggers to Banish The Gremlin Blues

If you need to banish fear from your life: write a Dear Fear letter with The Penny Has Dropped. (She starts with “Dear Fear, fuck off….). And for more on fear, have a cuppa with the ElderWoman (via Anchors and Masts).

If you need a rite of letting go for the New Year:  Pink Coyote has a powerful one. (It involves fire!)

If you need to set aside all the rush and emotion and ups and downs of The Holidays and just celebrate possibility, The Bliss Chick can help.

If you are dreading re-entry to your work/school/normal routine, The Girl Who Cried Epiphany has some good thoughts on dealing with other people’s energy. (A constant growing edge for me.)

Who gave you the food you needed today? Share some link love in the comments below and pass the goodness on!

Meghan (Making Love In The Kitchen December 29, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Love your new site and there is seriously nothing greater than creating in reality what we dropped into our minds and seeing where the unknown goes. Delightful accomplishment that will surely inspire and enlighten and drive more goodness into the world.

Amie aka MammaLoves December 29, 2009 at 1:59 pm

I’m getting ready to launch into a new venture and I’m hearing the “gremlins” quite loudly. “You’re not good enough.” “Who are you kidding?!” “You’ll fall flat on your face.”

I need some gremlin stomping shoes.

Christine "Blisschick" Reed December 29, 2009 at 4:16 pm

Beautiful, Rachelle. I needed to read this. We can feel so alone in these feelings, can’t we?

Just last night, I awoke around 3 AM (THE time of Gremlins, I think), and I was filled with fear and doubt and “are you crazy’s” about my current Dance path. I am forty one, for God’s Sake, these Gremlins shout! WHO DO I THINK I AM!?!?!?! No one will EVER take one of my classes…

And on and on and on. Pure paralysis, which is what Gremlins feed off of.

My remedy is MORE DANCE. MORE of what it is we are daring to do. Show those damn Gremlins who is tougher! :)

The Girl Who Cried Epiphany December 29, 2009 at 4:17 pm

I am so glad that my words helped you in some way – thank you so much for mentioning me!

I SO hear you in regards to the “everyone is more helpful (or more capable, more creative, more worthy) than me” monsters. In addition to nurturing a real live infant (I so love your pregnancy metaphors as I am still here in the “fourth trimester”) I am also cooking up a new project/business that I hope will allow me to stay home with her. I understand all of the doubts, all of those gremlins as you call them.

Oh, and “Dangerously Giving” – yes! I love the use of capital letters with wild abandon!

Blessings and joy, steadiness and fulfillment,

The Girl Who Cried Epiphany December 29, 2009 at 5:16 pm

P.S. Flock looks like an amazing, inspiring new creation!

Lindean December 29, 2009 at 5:42 pm

Thanks so much for your wise words. I, too, go round and round with being utterly convinced that everyone else in the world is more ______ than I am. And thanks for all your fantastic links – in addition to offering a fantastic blog yourself you continue to expand my blog-reading horizons. Love it!

Tess December 29, 2009 at 8:59 pm

Rachelle, many congratulations on the launch of the Flock, what a wonderful piece of birthing. Glad you liked the Elderwoman link – I read it just after you Tweeted the other one, and was glad of the serendipity.

Sharon December 29, 2009 at 9:06 pm

Rachelle_you are reading my mind all the way from CPh! Thank you for sharing. You make a difference! Congrats on launching Flock…will look moreclosely when I get home . Lots of love-S

rowena December 29, 2009 at 9:06 pm

That’s a good post. Gremlins always show up. I need to check out your folks, but my boy is complaining about being down in the basement where the computer is. I’m no longer online 24/7, just when I can convince the kids to come down and help me do laundry or when I can escape for a few minutes.

I’m not sure what gremlins I need to put to rest right now. I’ve been in some pretty hard places the last couple of years. I’m ready to put it behind me. Maybe I need to say FUCK FEAR too. It’s certainly tossed me about a bit. I’m going to enjoy the new year, though, and I hope you do, too.

pixie December 30, 2009 at 1:37 am

Thank you for the mention! You are onto something very good here, sister.

sue December 30, 2009 at 3:55 pm

Maggie- You have been a touchstone for me for years. Your creativity is so inspiring, and you have stayed the course even when you have felt awful. High hopes for you this day.

Rachelle December 31, 2009 at 9:49 am

Thank you all for stepping into this story with me. It is powerful when we all speak honestly about our challenges, and offer strength for the journey to one another.

Christine — I would kill or die for a dance teacher like you who might take on a never-danced-before 40 something like me as a student — and I’m sure others would as well. You go!

Rowena — you are the most fearless person I know. Seriously.

Sue — thank you for your kind words. They brought a tear to my eye.

Everyone, thanks for your encouragement at this brave-tender time. I really appreaciate your support and I launch Flock.

Much Warmth,


Eileen January 2, 2010 at 5:54 am

Rachelle! ~ Happy New Year! I’m flying a bit behind the “Flock” right now…but, I’ll be catching up very soon! I’m looking forward to embracing my journey with Flock!

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