Handling The Bully


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Sometimes the voice of the inner bully is deafening. It screams so loud that I can’t hear myself think, let alone receive the creative inspiration I need when I’m writing. On those days I take my inner artist by the hand, walk her to our writing desk, and stand behind her as she gets started.

I have your back, I tell her.
Don’t worry.
Just write.

I’m getting pretty good at handling the critics that live in my head. Sometimes I simply let them have their say. I sit on the floor in my office while they drone on and on about how I’m a good writer, but not great, and I do my nails until they get tired. Other times I go to my computer, open my journal, and type everything they say until they notice that I’m merely taking notes, not taking it in, and they quiet down.

The best tactic of all is when I call a fellow artist and spill the beans about what’s going on. I tell her what my inner critic is saying so I can hear her tell me that she has the same voices squawking in her head, too. We laugh and cry, coach and console each other, and then we both get back to work.

For years I tried to silence the inner critics by fighting them tooth and nail. But with every battle they just got stronger, meaner, and more skillful at getting in the way.

So I gave up the fight. I surrendered to the reality that anything worth doing is going to rouse critics (both inner and outer, by the way), and since I’m only interested in doing worthy things, I’d have to learn how to live with them.

And now I do. When the artist in me is being suffocated by the voices of doom, I gently whisper in her ear…
Trust yourself.
Keep going.
The groove you’re looking for is just around the corner.

Fortunately, she listens. Because in the end, that’s all we really need – a loving friend to host our fear until it feels seen and heard and ready to dissolve. And it will. The power of creativity is too strong to be held hostage.

A committee of critics will always be on the attendee list of any significant creative event. Just make sure you invite way more friends.

Cheryl Richardson is a NYT bestselling author of many books, including her most recent Waking Up In Winter: In Search of What Really Matters at Midlife. Treat yourself and join Cheryl for a daylong workshop about practicing extreme self-care at midlife at Circles of Wisdom in Methuen, MA, Sunday Feb 24. www.circlesofwisdom.com.

See also:
Automatic Brain: The Magic Of The Unconscious Mind
Self-Esteem Might Boost Our Egos, But Self-Compassion Opens Our Hearts

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May 26, 2019

During the wee hours of the morning the Moon arrives in Pisces. Moods grow fickle and sensitivities increase. Imaginations are also fertile as a lunar sextile to Uranus implores and inspires curious souls to explore new horizons. The uneasy Last Quarter…
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May 2019

Sunday afternoon: 3–4:30pm at Hillside Herbals Healing herbs for women's health part I: tonic herbs for hormonal balance—normal cycling and aging. Rachel has created a 10...

Cost: Drop in Fee $10 includes all materials and handouts.

Where:
Hillside Herbals
Jefferson, MA


Sponsor: Hillside Herbals
Telephone: 508-847-8615
Contact Name: Rachel Ross
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Sunday Reiki treatments with Reiki master and practitioner Linda Simons in Brookline, MA. Start your week off on a more balanced note with a Reiki treatment on a Sunday afternoon. Please join me...

Cost: Sliding Scale $25-45

Where:
233 Harvard Street
Suite 36
Brookline, MA  02446
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Telephone: 617-304-2205
Contact Name: Linda Simons
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This is a light fun evening to help get you going into the summer season. This evening we will be discussing and working with Geraniums and Pelargoniums. We will be discussing the plants, their...

Cost: $ 20 includes material, pre-reg required

Where:
Brookside Farms
8 Mammoth Rd
Sute #A
Pelham, NH  03076
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Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey Smith
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Instructor: Pam Driscoll Wednesdays, April 17, May 8, 22, June 5, 19, 6:30pm–7:30pm Join us for the Mid-Week Meditation Sampler at Creative Spirit…an opportunity to pause,...

Cost: $20 per class

Where:
Creative Spirit
80 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA  01945
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Sponsor: Creative Spirit
Telephone: 781-797-0389
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Be An “Eat to Thrive” Graduate This Summer. Come to an introductory class for the summer session from June 6–August 15 in Point of Pines, Revere, MA. Congratulations to the...

Cost: Free—all are welcome!

Where:
Point of Pines
Revere, MA


Sponsor: Eat to Thrive
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Activists and artists will create inspiring chalk imagery encouraging kindness to animals On May 31, people around the world will gather to create colorful chalk imagery promoting compassion for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Worcester City Common
Worcester, MA  01604


Telephone: 617-5430189
Contact Name: Melissa Scher
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Experience the process to a past life. Learn why it is beneficial and potentially: Clear emotional trauma and physical issues Calm feelings of stress and/or sadness Get insight into...

Cost: $50

Where:
Voice of Clay
16 Meetinghouse Hill Rd
Brookline , NH  03033
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Sponsor: Voice of Clay
Telephone: 603-672-2626
Contact Name: Wendy
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You do not need any musical background but please be sure to register early! Class is limited to 16 students. 6-hole flutes in G are provided for use during class. You are welcome to bring...

Cost: $35

Where:
Circles of Wisdom
386 Merrimack Street, Suite 1-A
Methuen, MA  01844
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Sponsor: Circles of Wisdom
Telephone: 978-474-8010
Contact Name: Cathy Kneeland
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Learn an intro to the magick and science of dowsing. Tools, techniques for information, clearing, balancing, healing, and more. Bob will introduce you to dowsing and basic radiesthesia,...

Cost: Class is $45

Where:
The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
68 Stiles Rd
Suite #A
Salem, NH  03079
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Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey Smith
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In celebration of ushering in the Strawberry Moon Cycle and we will be doing a new moon planting. This is a great opportunity to literally sow the seeds for some of our other upcoming workshops...

Cost: Pre-reg $35, $40 at the door, materials included

Where:
The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
68 Stiles Rd
Sute #A
Salem, NH  03079
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Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey Smith
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June 1–2 Join other like-minded seekers as we take a journey through the concepts of the new Earth paradigm, higher self and soul sovereignty, ascension mechanics, and spiritual alchemy.

Where:
Chester, VT


Telephone: (617) 366-6042
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Using Lessons from Music to Harmonize Your Life You know how you want to show up in the world—expressing yourself through your essence, centered in your heart, effective in your life and...

Cost: $90 prepaid by May 30th, $100 at the door

Where:
Center at Westwoods
590 Gay Street
Westwoods, MA
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Telephone: 617-784-4426
Contact Name: Janet Kessenich
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May 4–June 8, 2019 Saturdays 10am–11:30am Taijiquan (Tai Chi Chuan) is a healing martial art using breath and movement. It is just one way to stay young and healthy. It...

Cost: $120

Where:
Metta Wellness
679 Pleasant Street
Paxton, MA  01612
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Sponsor: Metta Wellness
Telephone: 774-245-5487
Contact Name: Rick Rocha
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