Stop Skipping, Get Sticky to Get Unstuck

Slightly sticky art to inspire getting unstuck

Is there something bugging you: the unfinished manuscript, the half-launched service project, the aching desire to feel good again? Something you want to get unstuck and get going?

Perhaps you’ve skipped.

The skip gets us all.

The skip is the bypass. the work around, the avoid-dance. We all skip out. Over. Around.

In spiritual practice, it’s the spiritual bypass, the using of wise teachings to avoid what you most need to deal with.

In creativity, it might look like plugging away on a story or a painting, and suddenly, this other idea is SO MUCH better, you just have to do it and… a few moments/days/years later you find yourself completely becalmed. Creating nothing and feeling lost.

In the self-employed space, it might look like doubting this is your “true passion” and signing up for a newest training in acrobatic ikebana or some other “passionate” pursuit.

No shame. Skipping feels good. It has shine. Only hitch: skipping devours your courage and direction.  It costs you self-trust.

So let’s stop skipping and get sticky.

To get sticky translates as dive in, deeply, right where you are. Plug your ears from the Siren’s whines. Borrow the eagle’s eyes.

(Hey, it’s almost the summer Olympics – think of this as not just sticking the landing but sticking the whole process.)

If you want to rest, then rest. Become luxuriously selfish. Ruthlessly prune. Listen as closely to your creative heart as you would your beloved breathing his or her last words to you.

If you want to triumph, ride the horse with all you got. Don’t push, rather sustain — yourself & your dream (notice the singular). Pull your focus in, tight. This is not the time for new learning. Go into your creative hive. If the voices say “But this idea is so much better,” bat them away – with love, of course. If  someone dryly whispers, “Aren’t you worried this won’t work?” rejoinder “Of course. But why would I let that stop me?”

You cultivate freedom and wholeness by getting sticky. You do not cultivate the life you want by following the Sirens on the rock keening, “Skip ahead to something better, something known, even if it utterly sucks.”

Sirens lie. Big time.

Listen: What is calling you now? Not 5 years from now, not 7 years ago, now.

I don’t care how flimsy or unreal or impossible that call feels – listen.

Go there. Go deep. Get sticky. Stay true.

P.S. My last 2 retreats in 2012 will be at Kripalu in October. You’ll experience getting unstuck. Two retreats to choose from – and if you stay in the dorm, it’s a super affordable way to experience the goodness of the best retreat center on the East Coast– and me!



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Jamie Wallace - July 18, 2012

Love this, Jen. 
Love “avoid-dance” – so appropriate. 
I relate to the inability to see things through – to stick with it. In my personal and professional life, I am Miss Stick-With-It all day long. I’m responsible and responsive. I get things done. I bring home the bacon. I’m there when people need me. 
But, in my creative life, I skip all over the place – with my actions, my words, and my thoughts. I work on one thing, but my mind wanders off to another. I’m reading six different books at once and unsure if I’ll finish any of them. 
What happened to the girl who would sit with a single book and read, devouring page after page in one sitting until the whole thing was rattling around inside my head? 
What happened to the girl who spent hours sketching nothing in particular just because it felt good?

I am working on bringing the same level of commitment to my creative life as I currently give to my “serious” life … the place where bills get paid and milk gets bought and clients are kept happy. 
It’s a challenge. Skipping is an ever present temptation and those sirens have wily ways, BUT … reading posts like this one help me get my feet back under me and my head and heart oriented towards the things that make my soul sing. 

It may not be an easy journey, but it’s certainly a wonderful one. 

Thank you. 

    jenlouden - July 18, 2012

     me too! I think the same thing and wonder about how being on line has shaped my brain. I find the most important thing is to keep dropping the drama and the fight, and let the flow come into me through desire and focus. So ease within form, if that makes any sense!

Amy Oscar - July 18, 2012

Pruning sounds good – ruthless sounds better. I am diving in – guided back to my own guidance by your post. 

My sticky promise: Prune the text down to size; call it finished. Move to the next step, already calling to me from inside this one: the memoir that will not let me go.

Amy - July 18, 2012

Ah, yes.  You got me!

I’m hearing the call to go into the creative hive, yet finding myself taking lots of time to provision myself.  I can visit for short stretches, it seems, but the extended stay option is still elusive.  I’m longing for the tight focus I know is available once I welcome myself inside for real.  The tastes are becoming less tasty!

Plugging my ears to the sirens,

Stephanie at Visible and Real - July 18, 2012

Thank you for this post. Something I really needed to hear, right this moment.

Stephanie at Visible and Real - July 18, 2012

Thank you for this post. Something I really needed to hear, right this moment.

Christa Gallopoulos - July 18, 2012

Great timing for me, too.  In the middle of a whole lot of sticky.  And staying here.

Love to you and the Taos tribe…

Christa Gallopoulos - July 18, 2012

Great timing for me, too.  In the middle of a whole lot of sticky.  And staying here.

Love to you and the Taos tribe…

Meshale2 - July 18, 2012

Nice Post! I also like your comments on Penelope 7/17. Blessings!

Melissaiquintero - July 19, 2012

This post was also for me !!!

Sometimes I am so decided , I am going to do this and that, I am going to focus.
Then I question myself, do you really wanna focus on that?? 
Why we do that to ourselves?
I know our minds, like making drama, I am consious about it, but every day, I battle with myself to not be a DRAMA queen. 
It is quind of draining..
It was very interesting to see that many people avoid or make excuses to themselves like ME lol , just because , we are afraid of getting focus on what you really want;;;

    jenlouden - July 22, 2012

    read Stephen Pressfield’s new book Going Pro and see if it helps. helped me!

On Retreat - T. Thorn Coyle: Know Thyself - July 20, 2012

[…] keep you occupied here are some links:Jen Louden’s latest, on the creative process and not skipping steps.Mr. DaveyD writes interesting articles on social justice, music, and black culture. I recommend […]

Inspiration Friday: The Grand Tour - July 20, 2012

[…] I really needed to read this post this week: Jennifer Louden’s, Stopping Skipping: Getting Sticky to Get Unstuck, […]

jenlouden - July 22, 2012

well done Erin! to know what you need is the whole shebang!

The Sincere Path - August 6, 2012

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