Clearing The Deck For Creativity

Have you ever had an idea strike you out of nowhere, or feel the creative muse saunter through your body like the lover it is?

When the spark hit, were you in the middle of doing something that didn’t allow you to run with this lightening bolt of inspiration?

— Hello, job to get to, kids to like, watch and stuff, food to prepare and a handsome hubs to squeeze and cuddle or desire to slap (depends on the moment really). –

 

I’ve recently been all amped up with creativity and feel my veins of inspiration pumping like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Total Recall.

As I was getting super festive and New Year’s Eve-y in my kitchen, I was blasted with loads of ideas and writing material as I was cooking. I thought well, this sure as hell isn’t the best time to quit what I’m doing and act on these hits (I don’t believe uncooked meat with a side of salmonella is what I was going for on the menu that night).

I also knew better than to blow that muse off because as Danielle LaPorte talks about in her book The Fire Starter Sessions, you have to move when the muse strikes.

 

I decided to do what I can with what I had…

Clearing The Deck

  • Instead of running off to write a blog in the middle of cooking – I wrote down the core ideas that hit me in that moment, so I could riff on them later. (And riff I did. I kept that jagged little paper and sat down to write with it when I made the time for writing).
  • I planned like a MoFo! And I’m like super serious about this one, more than I ever have been in my whole life. I bought my ass a planner, made an editorial calendar and a compatible schedule with my hubs to get my writing and work flowing and created. **This one is my favorite so far and working the best for me right now!
  • Did I say plan? Look, I’m all about inspired action and all that fairy and unicorn stuff, but when I stayed JUST in that space it didn’t work for me, so I had to add some planning and un-inspired action into the whole picture. Fairies + Unicorns + Grit + Grind = a feeling of elation, movement, progress and consistency!
  • Clear the deck for real. Who knows when the muse will strike, so I decided to do as much cooking, meal-prepping, cleaning, errands, etc. as I can in one short span as opposed to dragging it out. So, when I do get a new blog idea or writing prompt, I can (when appropriate) run to my computer and go to town on that bad boy.

 

What I’ve realized is that it doesn’t really matter HOW you show up with your creative hat on. What matters is that you SHOW UP. You don’t have to have a huge platform or sell out shows.

All you really need is some guts to move whatever is moving inside you and get it out. Whether that’s on a blank piece of canvas or dancing in your living room. Show up + let it out + rinse + repeat.

 

Love + Girthy, Creative Veins,

Keli

CONTINUE READING

A Few Nuggets For The New Year

Have you ever seen a Tasmanian devil spinning around so fast you see smoke coming out of their ear?

No? Me neither.

That is until the last few days when I started resembling that furry creature with rapid movement.

I feel a surge and a pull to clear everything off the deck and blast into the New Year like the rock star I’m pretty sure I was in a past life.

I don’t know where the energy is coming from, but let me tell ya, I’m gonna ride this donkey as far as I can because it feels like fuel instead of sludge – that’s why.

And really, isn’t this the time of the year when we’re trying to clean stuff out and get all junk-free and clarity driven about life, goals, desires, visions, etc.?

 

Whatever you’re “feeling” before we head into the New Year (and even if you’re reading this AFTER the New Year) – what I’ve found true for myself is this:

Every moment is a “New Year” – we start anew all the damn time whether we realize it or not. START on New Year’s Day, start tomorrow, start NOW – it’s the act of beginning that sets the motion forward. As Nike lays it down so simply, Just Do It.

 

Here’s a few nuggets for the New Year I’ve picked up that’s been super useful for jumpstarting my ass when I’m in a rut, or moving me along to propel my growth, so I don’t sit there and shrivel like a raisin:

Prayer – I know it may sound so simple, but that’s the beauty of prayer; so unassuming, yet so profound.

I recall times when I’ve literally cried out to God/Universe/Source/Whatever-The-Soup-Of-The-Day-Is and pleaded for help in desperation. And usually by the end of the day or soon after, that plea has been answered in some Divine way I could never imagine.

Underestimating prayer is like rooting for the “winning” team every time; the underdog is called that for a reason – keep swinging and see what shows up.

 

Pattern Disruption – My life can get super flippin’ monotonous. And I say that with a heaping side of gratitude served with a pint of beer made with the finest Rocky Mountain ingredients.

Whenever I feel like I’m retracting into my imposed turtle shell and want nothing more than to scream and throw myself on the bed because I reeeeaaallllly don’t feel like repeating myself for the 10,000th time today…

I try and do something to disrupt my monotony.

What the hell does that look like?

  • Getting up earlier (not gonna lie, that’s a toughie.)
  • Going to bed later.
  • Driving a different route home.
  • Trying a new food or drink.
  • Calling for back-up (hello grandparents, family – the white flag is up for help.)
  • Girls Night + Soul Chats – you heard me, those things can work wonders.
  • Retail Therapy – I may not buy anything, but just the act of getting out of the house and being able to singly focus my mind on tangible items in front of me helps to reenergize my world.
  • Blank Space – when in doubt, do nothing.
  • Travel – weekend away anyone?
  • Move that body!
  • Pick up a book off the shelf and start reading the sucker.
  • Try a new meditation.
  •  Journal it all out and leave everything on the pages.
  • BREATHE! A few deep inhales and exhales really reset my entire mind, body and soul. Try it.

Once I’ve got the motor runnin’ and I’m feeling all energy-fueled for rocket launch, these two things have been a favorite of mine to keep me in the flow:

:: Planner/Calendar

I bow to the holiness of All Things Magical when I write what I’m thinking or needing to do down and then execute (with my dandy planner) like a MoFo!

Seriously, this shiz works for me, yo.

I’m a paper and pen/pencil type of gal, but experiment with whatever works for you – digital or paper – it’s all magic.

 

planner

My 2016 Planner for All Things Magical!

 

:: Journal –

Ever since I was a little girl I’ve kept some sort of journal (from the Lisa Frank lock and key journals with loads of unicorns and fairies to composition books and everything in between) because for me, when in doubt, journal. Get those feelings out – even if you have to burn the pages afterwards. Keeping feelings all gunked up inside us without a container to let them out sucks, so grab a journal and let it all hang out – the pages can take it.

 

Journals

Basic. Black. And takes an emotional beating from time to time.

 

New Year’s or New Moment – begin where you are now and just move and grow. Be open to the journey and may there be grace and love upon you at all times.

 

Love + Turning The Page,

Keli

 

 

CONTINUE READING

The Most Profound Awareness I Had In Therapy

 

A couple intense sessions in and I was, again – like I did most Monday’s, sitting across from the gray-haired, soft spoken lady who guided me as I tried to make sense of not only my mothers death, but my entire frickin’ childhood.

We were at the point where I had discovered some hard truths about how I operated thus far in life and we were navigating a new way to steer the ship – one that was in alignment with who I was now and what I knew now.

I was ecstatic with the newfound awareness’s I was having about myself, so being the extreme Capricorn I tend to be, I sat there with so much vim and vigor and spewed to her:

“Ok, now that I know what I know about myself, that I build walls to keep people out, but it’s really just suffocating me, how do I, like, eradicate those walls? I want to be done with this issue already!”

 

She laughed – hard and from her belly and then broke it down for me:

“Oh dear, you won’t be eradicating walls – that’s your bag in life honey! Your work is in being aware that you have those walls and gently trying to take them down. Think of it like a drawbridge – your reaction has been for the drawbridge/walls/heart to shut quickly – but now, with awareness and choice, you can bring the drawbridge up slowly, or not at all – over and over and over again.”

And then I sat there on a dark red, antique looking couch – stunned.

 

It hit me like only truth + profound awareness does – with full body shivers and goose bumps the size of my eyeballs: there are some issues/challenges in life that we can’t just snap our fingers or wiggle our nose and be done with it, as much as we want to.

And that’s completely cool because when equipped with the awareness of the situation and then select choices in accordance to how we want to grow (and not stay stuck) – that’s where the magic happens. That’s how we become who we want to be and feel how we want to feel.

 

I recall walking out of that session and feeling as free and weightless as a feather because in that moment, I felt like I had my power back – a power I didn’t even know was missing.

 

It’s been years since my mom passed and those meetings with that sweet counselor who gently nudged me along to heal and grow, as I am still continuing to choose development over shriveling.

The journey of life may not always be easy, but I’ve found it ultimately gets better when we choose to grow instead of shrink because then we’re no longer stuck in first gear – movement creates possibility + being gentle on ourselves along the way makes the road a kinder place to travel.

  

Letting Down The Walls + Therapy That Heals,

Keli

CONTINUE READING

Somebody’s Praying For You

I’ve always marveled at her like she was the Mona Lisa painting or something.

I talk to my husband about her like she’s an act that performed their last show and won’t be on the road again for awhile.

I secretly – and not so secretly – observe her.

And as I stand there watching this barely five foot, long black haired, foreign accented woman interact with her three children under five years old…

I marvel –

I’m in awe of how she handles two tiny, sweet, blonde-haired, pre-school girls and a boy that’s barely walking.

My jaw drops when I watch them walk to the car and she doesn’t lose her shit as all three scurry like ants.

I energetically bow at her feet, try and soak up all of her grace + then I pray for her…and for me.

Because motherhood, dammit.

Why am I so stunned by this woman?

Well, because, I’m short + black-haired with NO foreign accent, and have only one hell-raiser, blonde-haired, five-year old…

and feel like I’m busting at the seams most of the time in this whole motherhood thing.

And a part of me wishes I was that composed, that graceful with my ONE kid.

Why the hell am I praying for practically a complete stranger?

Because it feels good in my bones.

Because it was my way of my soul recognizing her soul.

Because prayer doesn’t hurt.

Because why the fuck not?

 

I believe in prayer.

I believe in sending love to a complete stranger.

I believe were not in this alone.

I believe an invisible force is lifting us up when we can barely lift our own head.

 

I don’t know your beliefs, or what encompasses your world –

What pain you’ve endured, or what triumph you’ve celebrated.

And I don’t fully know what praying for a relative stranger, or sending love to someone actually does…

 

But, I can say that it makes me feel lighter and light is most definitely something the world could handle more of.

Whatever makes you feel “lighter” – perhaps do that, so maybe someone else feels the way you do.

 

Love + A Lighter World,

Keli

CONTINUE READING

Practical Advice + Life Lessons I Learned From The Dating World

I’m writing a book about relationships + radical self-responsibility when we’re in them (and we’re in relationships all the damn time – not just love relationships – friends and family count too, as well as the most important relationship we’re in most of the time – with our sweet self).

As I’ve been diving into book writing (my focus is on those intimate, heart-swelling, love relationships) – I’m walking down memory lane in my past journeys with the men I’ve been blessed to know and love in my life (and even some who were brief moments of exhilaration, as well as heart tears).

Even though I’m a married woman now (and trust me, that’ll be another book because I was SO anti-marriage before I met my hubs) and STILL learning about love -I thought I’d share some quips that my men of the past would impart on me about life, or lessons I walked away with when it was all said and done.

 

So, here’s a little practical advice + life lessons I learned from the dating world and from those whom I’ve shared life with that I actually use and apply to this day. Go love!

  • Turn your A/C/heater off before you shut the car off. Something about it adding stress to your car while it’s resting – don’t know all the details, but I always think of my high school love when I do that.
  • If you’re a budding teenager who thinks you know everything and your hormones are pulsing like crazy – for the love of God, please make sure you know when parents will be coming home before you get all kissy face + sweaty with your main man.
  • Your BF’s family can and just might become your family. And yes, it hurts when it’s over. Almost like two heartbreaks simultaneously, but you’re better for it, so just fall and heal.
  • Sometimes the very best relationships start out as out-of-the-blue, intense friendships + you obsess about whether to cross the line or not, and you do indeed cross the friend line + it’s all worth it because you know now how it feels to be loved in an intimate way from your best friend. And that’s fucking beautiful – even if it doesn’t work out.
  • A large age gap in a relationship has only one meaning + that’s what the two peeps in the relationship give it. Everyone is different and sometimes, two souls have some cosmic stuff to work out – no matter what age they are.
  • It’s hella cheaper when your man changes your oil and brakes. But, it might not be without an entire day lost on going from shop to shop figuring out your car because, well, you have one of those German cars and he does not, so yeah. It gets fixed, money is saved and car lessons are absorbed.
  • When you’re a bartender, making connection with your patrons and tending to your regulars is like working for a consistent paycheck. They’ll take care of you, as long as you take care of them.
  • Country music has a way of explaining your feelings about a relationship + is best used to convey those feelings.
  • When at a bar + you ask a guy what he does for a living and he kindly, shyly says he’s a lawyer and then you proceed to say, “Like that lawyer on TV, with those commercials….” and he says, “Yep, that’s my dad.” Believe him. You truly don’t have to ask for his driver’s license and lead a full inquiry about his family tree (even if he STILL takes you out on a date).
  • That dreamy guy in college math class who turns your head + you love when he opens the classroom door for you – is totally worth playing cool and waiting for to make the first move in asking for your number. Patience is truly a virtue sometimes.
  • When your man has better eyebrows than you do – take his advice on putting together a nice outfit.
  • Dating a guy who’s a smooth talker can totally come in handy, especially when he parleys his way backstage to a country concert and the next thing you know you’re meeting some rockin’ celebs, having a beer with the headliner and hanging out in the tour bus until 2:00am. Talk away, talker.
  • A fireman has a sweet schedule that can indeed accommodate a long distance relationship.
  • And some endings to a love match are totally unforeseeable + completely abrupt and that’s okay. Let it go and know it’s happening for you, not against you – try not to obsess about why.

 

Relationships are teachers – guideposts – forks in the road; sure you get to be a part of someone else’s world, but even more, you get the opportunity to know yourself even better.

And that, to me, is where choice and freedom intersect.

 

Love + Knowing Yourself Better,

Keli

 

CONTINUE READING

When Google University Makes You A Better Mother

You’re holding that sweet baby all wrapped up in their softer than a babies ass blanket + gazing into their sleeping eyes (ummm, eyelids) thinking, “This actually came out of me!”

And I guess in that moment it didn’t occur to me that this serene little cherub had the potential, in particular toddler and pre-K years, to be ruder than Donald Trump and give more attitude than Naomi Campbell on the runway.

I don’t know what I thought, but a tiny 4-year old mouth spewing stuff at me like I’m in the ring with her and all I want to do is chime the bell, throw her arms up in the air and state, “You ARE the winner of this round!” isn’t really something I conjured up in my mind when I was rocking her to sleep as a baby (but then again her lungs gave Steven Tyler a run for his money, so I guess I should’ve had a clue).

My babe is almost five now and sometimes when her words and/or actions gut-punch me (they range anywhere from full-on meltdowns to the 1-2 punch that’s thankfully rare, but stings like a mother, “I hate you”), I try to stay calm or I lose my shit – not much in between.

 

With a bit of road travelled vacillating between being calm and then high decibel pitches of crazy madness in these situations, and after countless convos with other rockin’ moms that also nodded and said, “yep, that’s definitely a stage they go through” (like that should make me feel better?) and then of course, trying to whip out the mala beads and go all Ghandi…

I still didn’t feel much peace with the situation.

Would there ever be peace with this stage of their life?

Did I need a major dose of Acceptance?

 

Recently, one afternoon she felt super inclined to up her I’m Getting My Way Game and put on a full-out Joan Crawford performance of trying to persuade me to do what she wants.

I sat on the recliner, looked at her and literally NOTHING came out of me. It felt like I was chewing on air + her tussling of, “Did you hear me mama?!” rattled not one of my cages. I couldn’t even pull out any of my tricks – I was exhausted.

 

When Google University Makes You A Better Mother – 

I knew I needed something fresh to work with + I had this inspiration to Google “how to handle a rude 4-year old” – yes, you read that correctly – I was turning to Google University for parenting advice (don’t act like you haven’t turned to GU for advice, yo).

As I read through answer after answer – I was finding gems along the way and the consistent one was this: the power of the question, baby.

Basically, some articles were talking about how kids need a little depth added to their tantrums, meltdowns and sharp tongues.

People were recommending to add more questions to the inferno than reprimanding or being overly controlling (which I really want to do when it feels like she’s pretty much waving her middle finger up in the air at me. Dude!).

 

I thought, shit – I’m giving this a go! And I did…

Whenever her world began to unravel, I gently asked her a question, or two:

ME – “Hey babe, how do you think it makes me feel when I’ve asked you a couple times to put your shoes on so we can go and you don’t do it?”

AVA – Stops what she’s doing + actually thinks about it, “Not good. Not very nice. I guess I’ll go get my shoes on…”

 

Even my husband bared witness to these interactions + he was like, “I’ve got to try that!”

Now, I’m not saying that she will never have a tantrum again or I am now cured of never losing it, but I can say this feels way better to me in my soul than anything else I’ve tried.

I’m using this Question Gizmo right now + adding it to the parenting toolbox – which is super interchangeable at ALL times.

 

Google University was a tool when I exhausted other avenues. The information I found there shifted my paradigm and who knows what else it did for my sanity + Ava’s as well.

When in doubt + you feel stuck – take a left instead of your usual right, pivot, go the opposite direction, do something different – and see what unfolds because insanity truly is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result.

And now I must Google other quandaries. 😉

 

Love + Getting Your Google On,

Keli

 

CONTINUE READING

What Lt. Dan Taught Me About Chilling The F*ck Out

Lieutenant Dan: (looking at their fruitless shrimping) Where the hell’s this God of yours?

Forrest Gump: It’s funny Lieutenant Dan said that, ’cause right then, God showed up.

 

You know that scene in Forrest Gump where Lieutenant Dan + Forrest are on the shrimping boat + Lt. Dan has it out with God atop the boats mast and a whaling storm?

That was me – for sure…insert my head for Lt. Dan’s.

Raging through life, storm after storm with a hint of peace, yet a gusto for more. I never knew when to rest.

I’m a fiery Capricorn, and most of my life has been full of goal setting + go-going coursing through my veins.

I devoured the ever-living-hell out of to-do lists and spit them out with a streak of red check marks that signaled – DONE.

 

As I’ve grown and life, along with my body, tried to bitch-punch my ass to chill the hell out and slow down, speed racer – I finally began listening to the cues from shamans + adrenal fatigue.

Self-care had to become a PRIORITY, not an OPTION, woman!

You know, cut to the scene in my life where I’m praying for a miracle like Lt. Dan – except mine isn’t a boatload of shrimp, my miracle is to chill out.

For me, not until the Universe threw enough boulders my way to wake me up to lessons swirling in my orbit, did I know…

+ you can indeed bleed out your thoughts and emotions with pen + paper.

+ some deep breaths can connect you to your own conversations with God. 

+ a few classy drinks with some soul sisters can cure most everything.

 

And these nuggets were dropped straight from the cosmos, upside my head:

:: Creativity happens in the white space of life.

:: Creativity flourishes in BE-ing, rather than DO-ing.

:: It’s where Divine downloads get nourished + your soul gets stroked.

:: And rest is as sacred as play.

Rest is as sacred as play.

Rest. Is. As. Sacred. As. Play.

Did your soul ping or throw a cupcake at the computer screen?

This one was HUGE for me, yo!

 

Recently, I was reading Change Me Prayers – The Hidden Power of Spiritual Surrender by Tosha Silver (p.s. – if you aren’t familiar with Tosha’s work – it’s frickin’ amazing + I can honestly say changed my life).

Ok, in one of the stories she talks about God giving us rest at certain points in our life.

When I read that it was like the Universe bitch-slapped me like only truth singing to your soul knows how.

I was in a season of rest + trying to make it about everything but rest.

 

And when I say rest, I sure as hell don’t mean sitting on my ass + watching Maury Povich scream, “You are NOT the father!” all day.

No, I’m talking rest in the sense that my priorities have changed + it’s kinda not ALL about Keli right now. The continuous striving I’ve done most of my life could kindly sit the fuck down.

 

My season of rest is NOT about…

 – Pushing + trying to “make” something happen.

 – Ego.

 – Chasing my dreams while I downplay the fact that I’m a mother + a caregiver and a gazillion other “things.”

 

My season of rest IS about…

 – Actively participating in the evolution of two human beings whose ages are on opposite end of the spectrums.

 – It’s about tending to my soul, instead of strategy.

 – It’s about reading books for pleasure and nurturing my writing, so when the season changes – my craft is being cultivated instead of ignored or scarcely loved.

 – Saying “no” to things that simply just don’t light up my soul, or take me away from my current priorities.

 – Honoring the Divine Feminine in me, which I’ve ignored far too long.

 

Now, I’m not sure how long this flavor of rest will last.

What I do know is enjoying the holy time of rest is no different than when you win a trophy from busting your ass, or score big in a game.

Rest might not be adorned with tons of plaques and medals, but if you don’t take that time-out when that phase is thrown upon you…

You could be left with fractured pieces + broken fragments of your life from being thrown around in the storm like Lt. Dan…

OR, you could grow a set of balls + get yo’self some Lt. Dan legs, prop them babies up while enjoying your season of life + chill the fuck out.

 

Big Love + Lt. Dan Lessons,

Keli

CONTINUE READING
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