Clearing Mental Clutter

Making Room for the Big Idea

I’ve been working on a Big Idea for a while now. If I told you how long, I’d have to kill you. But let’s just say it has been percolating in my creative unconscious since at least 2014.

This past week, as Mercury stationed direct, I felt the gears starting to click into place. (There are a lot of moving parts here!)

My initial reaction was mild euphoria, followed immediately by suspicion: “Whoa! Can this really be it? After all this time? But what about…?”

Since I returned from New Orleans, I feel like I’ve been playing catch-up on all of the work I couldn’t get done while I was on the road – and the tasks I couldn’t focus on during the Mercury Rx. And we’re still working on the house. A lot of things are competing for my attention each day.

But this idea concerns what I feel called to do for the foreseeable future.  It’s about my calling. My life’s work.

Coloring in Words

hand letteringAs the initial euphoria faded, I started feeling paralyzed. Last night, instead of working through my to-do list, I found myself sorting notes and lists and lyrics and charts into folders. Then I broke out the new colored artist pencils I bought with my kid in New Orleans and started hand-lettering subject titles on the folders.

The monkey-mind was shrieking at me. “What are you doing?! You don’t have time for this!”

But my soul wanted to color in words. And this morning as I saw what I’d done, I realized I was making room for the Big Idea.

And…there’s something about drawing words in colored pencil. I thought back to times when I’d done this in the past. It seems to be a way for me to focus my conscious mind on the completion of a task that requires a certain degree of attention — while also getting it out of the way. Making space for my my creative unconscious mind to work with the deeper creative meaning behind the word I’m coloring.

Plus, it feels good!

Update: Mercury Conjunct Uranus

I’ve been into the Omega/Chandra symbols lately and after I published the post above, I was looking at the degree symbols for Wednesday’s Scorpio Full Moon. And I thought: “hey, I should look at the degree of the Mercury-Uranus conjunction (just after midnight EDT tonight)…Here’s John Sandbach’s write-up from his TwinkleTwinkle blog:

You may often find yourself focusing on something and not knowing why. When this happens, rather than trying to ignore it you need to actually focus on it, for the universe is trying to tell you something. Underneath all the layers of outer distractions exist deeper wells of being which you need to explore.

The Chandra Symbol for this degree is “The man in the moon smiling.” The crater of the Omega Symbol is in the shape of a cup – it is a place where the earth has received a message from outside its sphere. This degree is acutely receptive, and all it takes to bring it to its highest manifestation is to focus on that which is worthy of being received – that which is nourishing to one’s being.

(emphasis added)

So many messages today about how crucial it is now to follow the heart and act in alignment with the soul. That sound you hear in the distance, reminiscent of talking heads arguing loudly on a TV news show? That’s the death knell of the old world.

The world in which a grim determination to live up to society’s expectations was actually considered a great virtue. A world in which billions of humans broke their bodies, poisoned their souls, and betrayed their spirits to accomplish their appointed duties, casting only sidelong glances at the simple things that would have brought them joy.

Your Turn

How about you? When you don’t know what to do or can’t seem to connect to what you think you should do, what little trick helps you snap back into resonance with your deeper self?

7 thoughts on “Clearing Mental Clutter

  1. JJ says:

    Yes!! Sounds good, DK! Collage is my meditative medium and I made one on the cover of my latest journal the other night instead of ‘getting stuff done.’ It was wonderful to play!

    • DK Brainard says:

      Cool, JJ! Just curious – did you collage as a kid? I have a hunch there’s something for me about colored pencils, crayons, and markers (any of which I’ll use in a pinch) that puts me in touch with my no-holds-barred, the world-is-an-adventure-to-be-explored child self. But that’s about as far as I’ve gotten with my hypothesis. Maybe because the kid doesn’t want to philosophize; he wants to color!

      • JJ says:

        I’ve always liked cut & paste, as I knew it as a kid. My earliest memory of this is when I was 3 or 4 and was ‘forced’ to go to Sunday school by my mom (while my dad got to stay home and garden without me!). I remember I thought all the stories they told me were BS – BUT – the construction paper!! the glue!! the scissors!! I remember the round table where we got to use that stuff!! THAT was heaven, forget all that other shit. Then I glued stuff through the years, covered notebooks and boxes with paper and fabric. After I left college, I tried all sorts of different art forms, but it was a show of Kurt Schwitters’ collages at MoMA that made me remember that I loved cutting and gluing and I did that for many years before the camera got involved. With the camera I began by photographing cut paper and images from magazines. The flower pictures have been the creative stage since then but now it seems to want to segue back into collage. I LOVE cutting things with scissors! I did an entire design class in college with scissors instead of an exacto knife. :)) And I am so lucky my smashed thumb didn’t cripple my cutting hand. But with all that said – I used to color big-time in high school when grown-up coloring books were just making their debut. I loved my 100 color pen set, but could get better shading and variety with colored pencils. Costco has a 50 pen Sharpie set, and I’ve gotten 100 color gel pen sets there, too! Woo hoo!

  2. Kelly says:

    Reiki! When i fall into that space of unsurety, i ask for guidance and do a Reiki session. If I didn’t feel resolved afterward, I put on music, cook something delicious and watch the sunset.. then more Reiki… then if I’m still wobbly, I go for a conversation with someone verrrrrry close to me. My brother. We have twin brain and being with him always connects me back to myself.

  3. Sara Waskuch says:

    I knit. It creates a soothing rhythm that evens things out, calms, opens the back door of my mind. And then suddenly there is a hat or shawl or baby blanket falling off my needles and the world seems just fine and satisfying.

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