Tyranny Of The White

One of the more uncomfortable, if not the most confronting, moments at the beginning of any creative process, is finding ourselves standing at the threshold of infinite possibility waiting—intellectually vulnerable, emotionally naked, and paralyzed—for inspiration. Some artists refer to this as the Tyranny of the White. For the poet and composer this threshold is the blank sheet of paper; for the painter and the sculptor it is the white canvas and lump of clay; for the architect and the gardener, the vacant lot; for the entrepreneur, a business model; for the parent, a child; for ourselves, our life. 

Stepping up to the creative process and navigating infinite possibility is less about what we are going to do, and more about who we are going to be. In this place, in this moment, we are presented with an opportunity to make a choice. We can choose to force the creative process by projecting on to it what we think we should do, based on what we know about what is possible; or, we can choose to clear our mind, open our heart, and step into the creative unknown guided by the creative muse, whatever that means to you, or whoever you believe that to be.

When we understand how creativity, in all of its expressions, comes through us rather than from us, we position ourselves in the path of least resistance and become a cooperative-component in the natural flow of any creative process. Aligning ourselves as unobstructed conduits through which creative inspiration flows does not expect us from navigating the labor and delivery required in the creative birthing process. We still have to do the work of nurturing the talent, honing the skills, and stepping into the unknown. However, when we have trained ourselves to master the art of being clear conduits of creative expression, the journey thorough the tyranny of the white, though still intense, is navigated with a sense of curiosity and enthusiasm not otherwise assessable.

Many an opportunity has been missed because we were distracted by the struggle as an obstacle to our creative process rather than a porthole providing access to our creative genius. The  darkest moment of the struggle is not the time to surrender to defeat, but, rather, the perfect time to surrender resistance to the creative process; to breathe, clear your mind, pick up your tools, and be ready to move into action when inspiration presents itself.

We are creative beings, with awesome creative potential. Our creative expression is our birthright; the degree to which we allow ourselves to create is our free will. Be willing to lean into the unknown, embrace the possibility, and claim your creative genius.

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