Category Archives: creativity

I’m firing my inner critic

Dear Sir or Madam:

It has recently come to our attention that you have elected yourself to be the critic of our life. We believe this appointment was tacitly agreed upon by us quite a few years ago. You were able to stay undetected for quite some time, as we were already convinced that you were right. The purpose of our letter today is to let you know of some upcoming changes in regard to your role as self-appointed Critic of me, myself, and I, and our creative output.

Your role as critic has been carried out with brash aplomb; with brusque equanimity; with bold commentary, and without a scrap or iota of compassion. Your one-dimensional approach has been exhausting to us, but unfortunately seems to be what you actually thrive on, much like the Monsters of Monstropolis did when they used the fearful screams of children to power their city.

You’ve done your job quite thoroughly. I recognize that you have been attempting to keep me in my place; to prevent Tall Poppy syndrome from arising, as it were. However, your insistent words of caution and unrelenting words of criticism are no longer welcome, and indeed are decidedly unwelcome. All of us are just as Tall Poppy as we are, and do not need the likes of you and your cohorts to cut us down. Have you even ever looked at a field of Poppies? Have you ever considered the beauty that is in every one of those poppies? Same things applies to people, dude (or dudette).

Although yours is a familiar voice, Critic, I will be listening closely for it to creep into my consciousness. That familiarity has rendered me insensate at times and unable to dispute your comments because they have simply oozed into my awareness. Your observations entered just below the level of my conscious awareness, right in the tender spot where I feel my life. No more. Believe that I will be paying attention so as to be prepared to respond to you immediately; to tell you in no uncertain terms to get lost; stop talking; cease and desist; STFU.

Your most-used refrain seems to be all the things I shoulda woulda coulda done; denigrating, minimizing and ignoring what I DID do, overlooking the brilliance of the try, the power of the step. Perhaps you feel mighty when you point out my imperfections. Perhaps you feel in control. Perhaps you don’t know any other way. Perhaps I’ve had enough.

To borrow a phrase from Matthew Kelley, Critic, I’m perfectly imperfect. I do not embrace your equating imperfection with being defective. I learn from my mistakes, Critic, every attempt, every failure, every step — even the backwards ones.

Your most beguiling trait is your ability to take something that has some truth in it and twist that morsel into a weapon. No, Critic, you are no longer welcome. You shall be as children of old; seen, but not heard.


If you wish to hang around, listen and observe and learn something, I’ll allow it, but make no mistake: comments will get you banished from the area.

Aside from that, you’re outta here.

750Words and HealthMonth — 2 websites that are inspiring me

This is Buster Benson. I don’t know him, beyond the detailed information on his website but he must be a very fun-loving guy, from what I’ve seen on two websites he has created that I am enjoying immensely.

First, there’s 750words. Anyone familiar with Julia Cameron’s “morning pages” will recognize that each page is about 250 pages of written words, and she recommends 3 pages per day, preferably first thing upon waking. Buster came up with the idea of providing a website where anyone can sign up and have a blank screen every day for the purposes of writing their “morning pages.” He sends out a daily reminder, and he came up with a scoring system that is somehow related to the idea of strikes and spares in bowling, which gives you more points when you complete your words on subsequent days (and the day after that and the day after that). I have done Morning Pages in a spiral-bound notebook every time I’ve have periods of completing them, but I love having the computer availability for this. It’s not a blog. I could relate to what he said about not wanting to put private thoughts on my blog in case I forget to mark them “private.” Eek! While I think there is a different type of benefit to writing words down on paper which is also valuable, I love being able to put my lightning-quick fingers on the keys and get my thoughts out quickly. He even tells your wpm, your streak of days, and a few other bits of information. From what I am seeing on his sites, he must really know computers. And he clearly enjoys creating websites to inspire other people through fun.

His second website is called Health Month and is one of the most creative and playful sites I’ve ever seen to track health habits i am trying to establish. He’s made it into a game, which you can play with your friends, or just keep track of your own info. Checking in every day is part of the game and gives you points. If you complete your goal, you make it to the Wall of Amazingness at the end of the month. It’s free to use, but if you want to work on more than three activities or habits in a month, he asks you to pay a small fee. All I can say is, both of these sites have really been encouraging me to get outside and exercise every day, to stick with the way I am eating, and to do my private journaling every day. It’s only April 4, but the successes I am experiencing are building momentum, and I can see really completing the goals I have set for this month.

Sometimes in the day-to-day busyness, I can forget to look for and enjoy things that are fun, and I am really excited about having these two built-in opportunities every day to log in and smile. They are both extremely easy to use, and I highly recommend both.