Lisa shares a story about how being unable to sleep because of a racing mind became an opportunity to learn about herself, creativity, and how we edit our own thoughts and ideas before they've had a chance just to exist.
"I sometimes get my best ideas when I wake up in the middle of the night. It’s a kind of twilight zone when my judge or inner critic is still asleep but my sage voice is wide awake."
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Wide Awake Dreaming
Sometimes I get my best ideas when I wake up in the middle of the night. It’s a kind of twilight zone when my judge or inner critic is still asleep but my sage voice is wide awake.
While my serious, sensible pragmatic brain lies dormant, unable to comment, judge, weigh-in, warn, evaluate or protect me, the sage part of my brain is clear, wide-awake-dreaming, conjuring , flowing freely, creating.
Sometimes when this happens, I actually get up, as I did earlier this week at 3:30 am. Something needed to come out before “sane brain” woke up and started fighting me to go back to sleep, warning me that I’d be too tired to function the next day. So, like a mouse tiptoeing past a sleeping cat, I slipped into the other room trying to stay in the zone. My creative brain knew, that if roused, “sane brain” would use it’s amnesic alchemy and I’d forget the ideas, or worse yet remember them but somehow be convinced they were useless gibberish. And so the wrestling match would begin and the fear of being too tired would take over, ironically preventing me from going back to sleep again. The ticking clock would serve as a nagging reminder of how much time I was losing and god forbid I’m still not sleeping when the birds start waking up - singing “I-had-a-good-sleep-I-had-a-good-sleep” shaming me for not taking better care of myself.
But that night, I managed to stay in the zone long enough to jot down some ideas. They won’t change the world or help me achieve anything, they are just words.
Unattached to any kind of desire, solution or outcome. No promises or particular purpose, just thoughts that became words on the page. My words. They came out of me.
Days later when I first looked at the words through the lens of my physically awake self, they were fragmented and not particularly poignant. But they invited me to get to know them, assemble and dis-assemble them,
like the child who plays with blocks; enjoying the building as much as the demolishing - happily crashing down creations only to re-build new ones.
What you are listening to right now is some of what was generated. Although there was much more than what I’ve composed today, the experience has provided me some food for thought and an opportunity to reflect.
I should mention that I feel asleep easily that night after I captured some of the thoughts. Maybe I should do that more often.
I’m Lisa Hopkins, thanks for listening. Stay safe and healthy everyone and remember to live in the moment.