BIG MAGIC - A powerful read for Creatives!
I hadn't really set out to include book reviews as part of my blog content. Although, I am all about providing feedback and reviews for everything I read, and you can follow me on Goodreads if you want to see what I've loved or... didn't, but I had never intended for reviews to be among my blogging content. I'm still not completely sure that, beyond this post, there will be any other reviews to come; however, after recently finishing BIG MAGIC by Elizabeth Gilbert, I am bursting at the seams to have every "creative" that I know, go out and buy this book... Now.. Seriously! Close your laptop, grab your keys, and drive yourself to the nearest book store to get a copy of this.
I know I'm a little behind here, and that Big Magic was published nearly 3 years ago, but I've been busy!
This book was moving, enlightening, surprising and genuinely changed the way I see my own creativity and inspiration. I've read a lot of personal development books, on living your best life, on positivity, on mindfulness, and I generally get something out of them.. sometimes big, sometimes small, but it's been a very long while since I read a book that completely changed my perspective. I also cannot recall the last PD book, or any book for that matter, that was directly focused on mindset for creatives.
Sidenote: When I say creatives, I am speaking of anyone that wants to live their most creative and inspired life. I'm talking authors, painters, photographers, dancers, singers, landscapers, candle makers, architects, etc. Anyone that has found a passion in their life to "create".
I'm going to start, and very briefly boast about Gilbert's writing style, because although it was delightfully light hearted and casual, this wasn't the best part about this beautiful creation.
Gilbert's way of explaining inspiration was remarkable, and struck a chord. So many times I have ignored inspiration, or not given it the attention it requires, and it has left me. It has moved on. In BIG MAGIC, Elizabeth gives life to inspiration, uniquely explaining how it moves into our lives, and out of our lives, and how it's neither good nor bad. How when a great idea passes you by, and you miss out on an opportunity to write your next story, or paint your next canvas, it isn't a negative experience, but one that just wasn't the right fit.
If you look at the reviews of this book, so many have said that it came into their lives at just the right time, but I believe that Gilbert's theories, views, and perspective are exactly what every creative needs, in every step of their journey.
I am not about to spoil this book. I am not going to give you any content at all, because I believe that everyone needs to go into it with an open mind, and a willing heart to experience Gilbert's work for themselves. I will, however, give you my top 3 take aways from BIG MAGIC.
1. Respect inspiration. You never know when it is going to tap you on the shoulder and proclaim that you are its vessel! Show it the time, consideration, and respect that it deserves, and work your butt off, to earn the right to manifest it into reality.
2. Confidently put yourself, and your work out there, and know that no matter what the results are, that you have no control over it. You are allowed to speak your truth, and put it into the world, but so are your critics. The reaction of those who don't like you or your work, doesn't belong to you.
3. STOP CREATING UNNECESSARY SUFFERING! The starving artist is a thing you have created in your own mind. The struggle, the negativity, the "unless you are killing yourself, you aren't creating a masterpiece" doesn't exist. You don't have to hate your work to be considered a genuine artists. You don't have to partake in the emotional rollercoaster. You can love your work, and enjoy every day you create, and still be successful!
I honestly don't go around telling others to read (usually because I always get the same excuse from people - "I don't have time to read", "Books? like real paper books?") but this is a book that can change your life, and change how you approach your creativity.