In the last blog post I introduced you to our newest author Adele Spraggon. As promised, here is Part Two of my interview with Adele, talking about what her creative process was for Shaped Within: Reshaping Weight Loss. I couldn’t have said it better—this really speaks to those of us who consider ourselves holistic entrepreneurs or practitioners.
Sheri: What was your creative process for this project?
Adele: When I first wanted to blend Eastern and Western Wisdoms I had no idea how to do it. After all, these where seemingly diametrically opposed philosophies. Eastern Wisdom is based on the concept that the moment must just be accepted as it arises without trying to change anything in any way. Western wisdom insists on a better tomorrow and one must consistently strive for improvement. I could see how each of these approaches had its limitations and I could also see the benefits of both, but combine them, no way.
I used a particular journaling technique that I derived from Kundalini yoga. In Kundalini we are taught that the human being has not one mind, but three. The first mind to come on board is the negative mind and this is the mind which keeps us safe. This mind always finds the flaws in every situation, it is the mind that is most critical of our ideas and that is quick to point out all the reasons why we are wrong and it won’t work.
The second mind to come on board is the positive mind. This is our expansive mind. It sees only opportunity and growth. It is the mind that tells us we will be millionaires tomorrow, lose 20 pounds in 20 days, find the man of our dreams as soon as we are skinny . . . and like the negative mind it never sees the whole picture.
If we can navigate through these two minds we access our neutral mind. This mind takes the input of the negative and positive and combines it with something other – the muses of the gods, I call it. This mind has access to something beyond the individual, something remarkable and profound, and that is so incredibly wise.
When I set out to combine these two techniques I would journal every morning through the three minds. I would start by crying the blues about all the ways things were not working and could not work until I covered a whole page with my negativity. Turning the page was my chance to dream about how amazing things were, about how everything was working out, about a future filled with happiness and growth. But then, when I turned that third page I would simply pause my pen and wait. What appeared on that third page made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.
It was here that the answer to weight loss, and indeed to all self-sabotaging behaviour, started to unfold. What was written there was powerful, simple and profound. I could see both why it would work and how it would work. I laugh now, but I didn’t follow it at first. Instead I started arguing. I couldn’t believe it could be that simple. I couldn’t believe I had sat on a mediation cushion for over 20 years, done yoga daily for eight years and here was my journal telling me I could get to where I wanted to go, like that! My journal however, was most patient. It just kept coming back saying, “Just do it, just do it”, and when I did the results were outstanding. I was effortlessly stepping away from all sorts of compulsive behaviours, from taking second helpings, to drinking wine every night, to eating desserts. Soon after, the weight came off.
It was then that I told myself I would be accountable to that third page. I promised myself that whatever appeared there I would do. Writing the book was just a natural extension of this journaling. Once I got the idea to write about Anna the pages practically wrote themselves. Anna was easy to write. Not only does she remind me of me, she is also a composite of the many people who have gone through the Shaped Within process. Writing her story was as simple as journaling.
Sheri: How inspiring and value added is that! Love it!
Here on our blog we have and will continue to share useful tips on the creative process, individual author’s practices for you to further relate your own experience, along with the encouragement and resources to help you bring your work to life when you are ready.
Remember, creativity is in everything we do! Check out the short YouTube video I did recently called Let Your Creativity Out . . . and begin or perfect your next project!
We look forward to hearing from you as always, via the comment section below.
Sheri and the I C Publishing Team