This is the final part (Part 10) the Creative Intention Series: How To Set A Good Creative Intention. (Read the previous post–about clearly stating intention–here and the Series begins over here).
Before we sign off on this creative intention series, there are a few things you need to know about the quality of creative intention and how it differs from goal-setting and willpower-based resolution.
Intention Is Not Resolution
This video was made in January, around New Year's Resolution time. Below are further explanations of the topics discussed in the video.
Resolutions and goals harness the power of the conscious will. Creative Intention knows behavior is driven by both conscious and unconscious energy and puts a lot of focus on the power of the imagination.
We bring the imagination not just to the end product we hope to create but to the process that will create it.
Creative tools like inspiration meditation, creative visualization, f-r-e-e-writing and creative sensualization strengthen our imagination and feelings and sense impressions. They draw on the inner and outer senses to work with the intention–and to rest and play with it too–in ways that are more fun, more free and more effective than purely applying willpower.
Here are the ways in which creative intention differs from goals or resolutions. Understanding these differences is core to our ability to set a good creative intention. F-r-e-e-writing exercises are offered to expand understanding beyond the intellect.
If you would like to join me and a group of other creative entrepreneurs in a morning meditation and f-r-e-e-writing session, go here.
1. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Don't Judge
Goals are often made from a mindset that see you as flawed, in need of fixing. The motivation for change is guilt, a streak of shame and an all-round feeling of not being good enough.
Creative intention recognizes that before you start, you stop and see that, actually, you are good enough as you are.That your desires and wants are not evidence of some fatal flaw or lack in you, but positive drivers that will lead you to what you most need to know.
F-r-e-e-write your answers to this question: Have I been setting goals that see me as flawed, in need of improvement, in some way insufficient until I achieve this? How might I turn that around, switch my thinking? List 20 ways that things are just fine in this area. Sit into the human paradox that things are just fine and also in the process of change, simulaneously. Always.
2. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Positive Framing
We all have a psychological bias towards the negative. We think negative things are more important than positive things. We give more attention to negative feelings than we give to positive feelings. Which is why we frame goals that are trying to correct something wrong rather than move towards what we want.
F-r-e-e-write this: Frame your intention as a positive proposal, an opening to something you’d enjoy.(“I’d love to…” “Wouldn’t it be great if…”)
3. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Be Selective
Creative Intention recognizes that you can have anything you want but you can’t have everything you want. It sets intention within the framework of your truest values and priorities. It’s not about accumulating more and more, it’s about selection; about choice and commitment.
F-r-e-e-write your answer to this question: What do you most value? Where do your passions lie? What makes you feel purposeful and connected. Do you have a personal mission in life?
When you've written around those big questions for two pages, in a final page ask yourself: how does your creative intention fit into that matrix of values, mission, passion, purpose?
4. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Focus on Expression
Goals and resolutions often aim to control and contain behavior. Creative intention focusses on expression.
F-r-e-e-write this: “I want to create_____________( fill in the blank with what you want to make) because I want to express my __________________ ( fill in the blank with a deeply held value or characteristic).”
How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Keep focused
The core of creative intention is contained and directed creative attention. When we know our intention, then we must record how we are going to focus our attention in time and space.
For example, if my intention is to become a writer: “I’m setting up a desk in the back room so I can write 500 words a day before leaving for work in the morning. I'll then continue the writing on my commute.”
F-r-e-e-write this: I'm going to work on my intention here_______________ (a place) and at this time each day/week __________(a time)
6. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Hold It Forever
A goal is something you tick off on a to-do list and Oscar Wilde best expressed the inevitable failure of willpower and resolution when he said New Year’s Resolutions “go in one year and out another.”
A good creative intention is held in place until it is fulfilled and then it becomes part of you. You take it into the rest of your life.
Some intentions are big enough to hold a lifetime. I want to be as good a writer as I can be, for example, and that is a commitment to continually improving. Some are held until achieved, then a new intention comes in to takes its place but the outcome, the achieved attention, is held, and acknowledged, and appreciated.
The rising and resolution of creative intention becomes an ongoing process, a way of life.
F-r-e-e-write your thoughts about this: What intention could I make that would hold me for a lifetime? How would my life need to change to make room for the constant unfolding of creative intentions?
7. How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Drop It
Contradictory? No, not really. Paradoxical, which is not the same thing.
Sometimes we set an intention, do the preliminary work, or get some way along and then find that actually, we don't want what we thought we wanted.
Great! Score!When that realization comes, we don’t keep driving ourselves on, just because that is who we once were. We drop or dissolve that intention, consciously.
A want dropped is as good as a want delivered. Both make room for the next want, that will keep us moving, growing, changing, evolving.
F-r-e-e-write your thoughts about this: An intention dropped is as good as an intention realized. Do I have old intentions that I am holding unconsciously, out of habit?
How To Set A Good Creative Intention: Conclusion
Ultimately, we come to understand that the real desire is for creation itself and the real goal is to become consicous of our own crative capactiy of life creating us, and through us, what we co-create together.