Chocolate is a great teacher.

One of my art teachers used to say relax, breathe and come to the page ready to draw a load of old rubbish. Of course she didn’t mean it QUITE like that.  I’m sure she was trying to encourage us to enjoy the experience of being artistic, without the pressure of having to create a masterpiece.

That’s ok for them I remember thinking, but SURELY she can’t mean ME?
… can she?

Yummy in the making. First drop the blobs ….

I’m slowly coming to the realisation that she very much did mean me. I think she spotted my Inner Grandiose Girl. This is the voice of my very “extravagant illusions” about what I am able to do.
No plan of action, just a desire to try something.
She believes that IF I try my very very best “I will create paintings and drawings in the footsteps of the magnificent Michelangelo, cook like Ina Garten Goddess and write like Julia Cameron.”

In reply, my Inner Mean Girl has  equally definite ideas about my abilities – and they are mean!

Then there’s another voice insisting… “Why do it if you’re not going to do it well or properly?” Dad, you have a lot to answer for 🙂

This is my struggle when I am writing about Living at the Speed of Love.  Today I have been stumbling erratically along attempting to reach for that pleasure of just being here and having fun. Instead there is a full scale battle raging in my mind. How did I not notice this before?

After the swirl…

My Inner mean girl sarcastically reminding me “you’d better be good at this! “Why on earth would anyone want to read this? Do NOT make a fool of yourself here!!!”

My Inner Grandiose Self quickly pooh poohing her, assuring me of the wisdom of taking the proverbial leap off the cliff, stop thinking and just go for it.

So today I stopped, listened to the madness and finally asked myself: why is this such a battle ground for me? What am I missing?  And what do I need to do or be in order to write with ease and pleasure just for myself?

And then it hit me!
It’s a very big part of a course I am involved with and something that is VERY difficult for me to apply. I have ideas, but that’s as far as I’m willing to go. I guess I’m afraid if I look further they’ll dissolve and why wouldn’t I from my past experiences.

In theory I understand that when you create from a place of  Clarity, then you can create a structure to work within.  This you can tweak if the original plan doesn’t work as you’d like, it also provides clear steps to take. It’s not like I haven’t tried to create with more structure but, whatever systems I have tried, just didn’t work well. I’ve had just enough successes MY way, I really think I believed my way was better, It was just me that wasn’t great!

Today my super duper  girlfriend Sian totally nailed it for me by helping me realise  I do love having lots of ideas and alternatives in my mind so that if the one I am working on doesn’t work I still have something else to try.

Chocolate heaven

I have really been telling myself that taking a “leap of faith” is an act of bravery!

However, in this instance it’s nothing of the sort.  It’s more like a death wish or recipe for failure because, I do it with no support and no parachute for awkward landings. I’m not even looking where I’m going.

And all too often, instead of landing on sturdy ground which I ALWAYS expect to do.  I find myself up to my neck in a murky swamp. Smeared in self defeating thoughts, feelings, a whole lot of procrastination, and I don’t even know where I am!

Yet I repeat the process again and again, because I just tell myself, I have more ideas, I can pick another one!  I wonder how many creations and projects have gone astray because I was so sure this is the best way I work … I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry or go eat chocolate!

And if you are wondering why my pictures are all about chocolate, I will tell you. I am a great cook of savoury food because,  at my happiest, I fling in and swap ingredients depending on what I have, and how I feel in the moment.  And this really does work for me. However I suspect that’s because I have a lot of experience cooking… NOT the case with my writing.

On the other hand, baking and making deserts has been a real hit and miss effort for me. Until lately.

As I’ve been writing today my AHA moments are more like intergalactic explosions … Deserts and baking require a great deal of attention.  There’s a real structure to them, you need to be precise, stay focused and do a bit of planning before and during if you want good results… and for the last few weeks  I have been practising all of those things carefully with my baking experiments. And had fabulous successes.

I naturally do this when I do my Zentangling art pieces.  But it has never occured to me that I actually could do this with my writing.

OH the joys of waking up and discovering Clarity!


My first effort was an amazing chocolate cheesecake that pretty much takes your breath away…

I’ve put the recipe for that and the Raspberry swirl bars here

Speak Your Mind