The Gift of Courage – How To Unleash Your Creativity

The Gift of Courage


Yesterday, I met a fascinating and sweet 75 yo lady. She said she downloaded my book, printed it, and read cover to cover in just a few days. She said she loved the way I was able to convey such complex ideas in a simple way, without losing their depth and meaning. I was overcome with emotion, it was such a surreal feeling that I felt happy, excited, and confused, all at the same time. Honestly, I’m still trying to understand it as I write this, haha.

(Btw, you can download my book for free HERE)

One of the reasons she reached out was because she wanted to explore her creativity, and honestly, this is one of my favorite topics to explore with a patient. I just love participating in creative processes. Then, we touched on the subject of not feeling capable of creating and being afraid to share our productions. At this moment, I was very vulnerable and shared that I was deeply afraid of publishing my book. I had many doubts about my capability, my writing, and to be judged by others.

She was genuinely surprised when I shared this, and this moment ignited a few reflections. You see, I wrote a book, but I don’t consider myself a writer. I don’t say that in a demeaning way, it’s just that I never dreamt about writing a book, never took any courses nor read a book about how to write. I just gave myself permission to experiment. Of course, the words didn’t magically come to me, as I’ve been religiously writing almost every single day for the past 3 years, but I digress.

This got me thinking about how the way we label ourselves has the power to impose many expectations and also limit ourselves. Before I ever thought about becoming a therapist, I went to music school. At that time, reaching perfection was the law to me. I’d spend hours practicing scales, and different pieces, but I never felt like I was good enough. Even when I got compliments, I’d just shrug it off and continue with my obsession.

With time, the joy of playing vanished and everything became very mechanical. I had this fixed idea about how a musician should be that left no room for spontaneity or creativity. I was deeply identified with my playing that any wrong note was a direct hit to my self-esteem. Naturally, I had stage fright and avoided playing in front of my colleagues. Most of it had its roots in an unresolved mother and father complex, but I won’t explore this here, as there’s a whole chapter dedicated to it in my book.

Because of all these internalized rules, I couldn’t enjoy playing my guitar. Now, with writing, I never labeled myself, I didn’t have any role models to compare myself to. I had a natural fear of judgment about sharing my articles, but that was it. My relationship with creativity shifted from striving for perfection to allowing the creative spirit (or creative complex) to guide me.

I read The Creative Act: A Way of Being by Rick Rubin, a month before finishing my book, and it completely changed my worldview and relationship with art. He translated into words many experiences I’ve had and expanded it in such a beautiful way.

The main lesson to me was about “asking” your creation what it wants to become. Instead of coming up with your own agenda and exploring creativity in a narcissistic and utilitarian way, you become a vessel for it (you can’t be more Jungian than that!).

The most important thing isn’t the outcome anymore or to please others, it’s about producing something that’s sincere and honest. It’s about allowing your soul to express itself. And it just happens that when you do that, others can connect with you and appreciate your creations. There’s an uncanny feeling that I have, that takes up my whole body and makes me wanna shout “This has to exist”. That’s when I know I have to dedicate myself to allow this creation to come forth.  

I understood that all you need is a bit of courage and to act wholeheartedly and wonderful things can happen. I had the pleasure of being inspired by this 75 yo lady and her fascinating story, for context, I recently turned 31. I’m also blessed to have received many wonderful messages from you guys on this sub. 

Another thing that brought me to tears was this Argentinian guy who translated the whole book to Spanish, but this deserves its own post. Buckle up my Spanish speaking friends, tendremos una versión en Español!

I’ll be honest and say that I certainly wasn’t this wise (look at me calling myself “wise”, haha). A few years ago, I’d look at other people’s creations and feel jealous, and I’d try to diminish them by saying “I could do better”. The problem is that I didn’t, I allowed fear and shame to rule my entire life, while others were rising above this childish narcissism and sharing their creations despite being afraid.  

I was about to finish this article, but then I watched this video while having lunch. Basically, Jacob Collier took one string out of the guitar and created his own unique style of playing. He ignored almost all the rules and came up with his own chords using only 5 strings and a different tuning. 

This got me thinking again about all the preconceived notions we allow to rule our lives. This rigidity is attached to complexes, and they have the power to shape our whole lives. The more unconscious we are, the more our life is predetermined by them and we become mere puppets to our unconscious affects.

Carl Jung proposes the use of the dialectic method, exactly because it doesn’t work with fixed rules and preconceived notions and we can tailor it to someone’s individuality. We never know exactly where we’re going to arrive because we allow the spontaneity of the Self to come forth. That’s what the individuation journey is all about, questioning the scripts we’ve been given, questioning the assumptions we have about the world and ourselves, and tapping into our unique and authentic way of being. 

Again, all we need is a bit of courage and to follow our souls diligently:

“Follow your bliss. If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life you ought to be living is the one you’re living. Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be” (Joseph Campbell).

Rafael Krüger –  Live an Audacious Life.

Start your journey with Katabasis – The Shadow Integration Manual

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