Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I Woke Up in a Giant Jar of Peanut Butter

Today is gray and rainy. Not a torrential and scary rain, but the dark skies and gentle drops kind. The best kind of rainy for napping, eating cookies, watching quirky documentaries, and listening to Cat Stevens. The best kind of rain for basically doing NOTHING. I got some important work done this morning. Now I am schlepping around and thinking about the concept of "being stuck."

I've been working on developing a new creative path for myself lately. I've been a bit stuck on what direction to take next. Where should I focus? Should I be doing this? What about that? Maybe this! Hey that looks sparkly! Wait, what about that? Ugh! I'm not moving fast enough! ... Can anyone relate?

I love the way Oliver Jeffers' story so perfectly illustrates how I feel lately...

Ok, so maybe a more professional approach might help.

My business-minded husband recently forwarded a great article from Forbes that I think addresses the topic. The article is called "Three (Incredibly Simple) Questions The Most Successful People Use To Change The World" by Mike Maddock. (I know, I know. I was really just looking for advice on how to get out of my fuzzy socks and get motivated, but hey, I am happy to change the world as well.)

The questions are perfect for un-sticking of any kind.
1) What's the outcome I want?
2) What stands in my way? (and what is my plan for combating that?)
3) Who has it figured out already?

pretty thought provoking, eh?

A final approach... the art-making kind. For this approach, I am turning to a creativity expert, Noah Scalin. I've got a copy of his book, Unstuck, and have found it to be a great resource in times of wuh?

Today I decided to spend a few minutes writing six-word memoirs. Have you ever done this? It's quite a blast once you get rolling. If you don't know about six-word memoirs, check out SMITH Magazine for mountains of personal sharing in the six-word memoir format.

My memoirs started out silly...

 But then they got more thoughtful...

And that's when I realized that maybe I wasn't really stuck. I was just tired.

So... I am in my fuzzy socks, dipping a chocolate bar into the jar of peanut butter. Yum.


  1. Hi Jenny,sorry it was at your expense but you have given me a good chuckle with this post. The little video was cute and I love Oliver's accent. I have realized that I tend to feel that way when I'm trying too hard to make something work-the harder I try, the more stuck I get because I'm not relaxed either.
    I've heard about the 6 word memoirs-they actually have peoples submitted words printed on the bottle caps of Just T(I think that's what it's called). The one I remember most came from a father- "Ask my teenager, she knows everything." How apropos and what a hoot :)
    Doesn't seem like you were stuck-wasn't it a great exercise to play the 6 word game? And then again, there's nothing like fuzzy slippers and the sublime combo of chocolate and peanut butter to set one right again.

    1. Linda, I think you hit the nail on the head... sometimes we feel that way when we are trying too hard. I can get so impatient and look so hard for answers, that I miss the ones right under my nose!

  2. What a great post! I love your honesty and honestly... we all go through this at one time or another. Or some of us stay in "la-la land" which drooling over other people's creative endeavors. I'm not naming names, here! LOL Anyway.. two things. Cat Stevens??? Love him. His latest CD was fabulous! Second, those three little questions from the Forbes article pack a wallop!! Simple always seems to work for me.

    1. Kadee, so glad you stopped by. I think you are right, keep things simple!

  3. "didn't I just pluck that hair?" *snort laugh*

    I definitely can relate to your paragraph about being stuck and trying to decide on a direction. Have you ever read "Refuse to Choose!" by Barbara Sher? It's on my keeper bookshelf, and the one I tend to go to first when I get in these funks. Hope you're feeling all better and rested...in the meantime, happy pb & chocolating!

    1. I have not read that book, but I love the title! I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to define ourselves in only one way. Perhaps the answer is to just to keep the path wide!

  4. LOLOLOLOLOLOL, too funny. I like the youtube very much, shall have to read both the Forbes article and Smith magazine and the book. Six word memoirs, I love it. xox

    1. So glad you had some giggles. Isn't Oliver Jeffers wonderful?