The Joy Diet: Creativity and Risk

image from Jamie Ridler, Jamie Ridler Studios

This afternoon, I leave to co-lead a weekend retreat. 

I’ll be sitting in circle with trusted colleagues in a beautiful space in rural Kentucky with 15 incredible women.  Women who have survived incredible abuse and lived to see the other side.  Women who have been incarcerated themselves and are now recreating lives outside once again.  Fifteen amazing women with powerful stories.

And its my job to create a loving space for them to connect, to listen, to dream, and to release.  And I so desire for this to be a beautiful experience for them.

In Martha Beck’s The Joy Diet [that’s the book we’re discussing in The Next Chapter bookclub], Martha asks us to create ideas to step into our desires…and then to practice taking one frightening step each day towards it.

If this is the diet, I’ve been nibbling on these two ingredients for the last two weeks.  From speaking at conferences to creating birthday bashs, I’ve been creating ideas as well as stepping further into them than ever before.  I’ve been living into my vision, if you will, both personally and professionally.

And yet, this weekend offers an even more juicy nugget for creating and risking.  For me, the risk will be about letting go of my agenda and my exercises and my most-perfect-you-have-to-hear-this quotes.  It will be about taking the risk of showing up fully myself, without props, and trusting that that is enough.  That I am enough and that I know enough already to create a beautiful container for these women.  Because that’s my desire.  To offer circles of women the space and place to connect and dream together.

In the Creativity chapter, Martha says, “you are always responsible for creating your life, whether you like it or not.”  I’m responsible for taking my work–and this desire for my work–to the next level.  I can feel it all–the discomfort, the desire, the stretching, the messiness.  It’s all part of the process.  Leading me to deeper joy.



12 thoughts on “The Joy Diet: Creativity and Risk

  1. I love this from your post: ” I can feel it all–the discomfort, the desire, the stretching, the messiness.” that is so good – isn’t that a great way to see if the risk is the right one?

  2. I love that you have recognized that what is needed is just for you to be there fully. I have a tendency to want to bolster myself with the good quotes, etc., too – feeling insecure about what I can offer gatherings besides recommendations for a good book, what someone else has said, etc. It feels so true what you are doing. Thank you

  3. Oh what an incredible risk-taking experience I had on retreat! I was blessed to sit with so many wise, loving women!

    Lisa–all I can say is go for it! There are so many women waiting for us all.

    Becky–yes, yes and yes. After a morning of reading my notes and quotes, I took a deep breath and connected with my heart. And began.

    Thanks to each of you for stopping by and sharing your well wishes. I can feel your support through the virtual waves! 😉

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