'Picking up something new in this context is a distraction from your feelings and thoughts. Use the time to do what you are creatively or instinctively drawn to in the moment.'
Challenge Work Vacuum
Do you want to test out a Work Vacuum without taking a vacation? Take a 30-day diet of no TV, movies or box sets, no news media of any kind, no social media or magazines, no reading, no networking, no drinking alcohol and no socialising or networking. I would encourage you to throw in a couple of silent days each week while you’re at it. This will heighten your sensitivity to your inner voice.
Reading non-fiction self-development books is allowed but a maximum of only one hour a day. No eating or drinking non-alcoholic drinks more than you normally would to placate any feelings that come up during the challenge.
'We miss this because we are overwhelmed by our own busyness. We fail to realise how distracted we are by the knock-on coping mechanisms, good or bad, that we turn to without question day in and day out.'
The Creative Loop
We’re always struggling against the clock. Literally pulled from pillar to post to deliver any number of project and business objectives. Even if we’re in a position or role of focussed responsibilities we’re likely still battling with time and spread too thinly. Despite the stress and overwhelm, it may even be that we’re getting the opportunity to do some creative work in our day to day working lives.
This rare respite from the onslaught of busyness is just enough for the grass to always appear greener. Indeed, engaging with the moment of creativity can leave us dissatisfied with the rest of our expanding and never-ending workload. Contrary to our heartfelt instincts the surrounding overwhelm forces us to retreat further from the unknowns and challenges of exploring our creativity, especially at work, where budgets and deadlines loom large.
'I couldn’t even fall back on a traumatic childhood as the deep-seated reason for my discord and the seemingly constant set backs in my work and personal life.'
Making The Change
We yearn for simplification, yet we are in ourselves very complex creatures by default. We pray for a magic pill that will solve all of our problems and get us back on track living the life we want on our terms.
Despite my years of experience, the responsibility I’d taken for my life outcomes, no matter how negative they were and the fact I’d tried hard to be the master of my destiny by starting businesses I wanted to I’ve waited and hoped for one too. It never came.
The first and persistent problem we hit in the Endless Search is that of course, we are actually all very different despite what the spiritual, business or marketing gurus might lead us to believe.
Now I realise there is no one-size fits all cure-all that will release us from this right-of-passage jail time anxiety inducing anguish. I’ve wasted years looking for an escape from this perpetual prison sentence.
'...there has always been something I couldn’t quite solve. This persistent, recurring issue was no ordinary common or garden problem.'
Ending The Search
If you’re anything like me, you’ve read countless books on everything from personal development and self-help, through spirituality and psychology to business and marketing searching for ways to solve your life and work problems.
With over twenty years of business experience and forty years of life lessons to draw from I found I could solve all kinds of problems and achieve a level of success in the process.
But, there has always been something I couldn’t solve. This persistent, recurring issue was no ordinary common or garden problem. Until recently I could never quite put my finger on it. As far as being able to put my mind to unearthing it so I could break free from it’s annoyingly elusive and persistent hold over me, that’s a different matter entirely.
Sure, indulging in the Endless Search via these books, courses, seminars and workshops can be useful and empowering to some degree. Employing a process of elimination is a proven way to bottom out many a situation to reveal the core underlying causes of the undesirable effects they create in our lives.
'This vital component of the Creative Loop isn’t always apparent...'
Whether you’re overly absorbed in or regularly distracted by the High Definition Life or not we would all feel better if we were more creative in our life, work and relationships. When I talk about being creative I’m not just referring to the obvious forms of creativity like the arts, crafts or design professions, inventing a new product, or starting and building a business.
I’m also referring to being more creative in how we approach situations, events and relationships in our personal life and work life. It doesn’t matter if these are big things or little things, creative thinking not just creative doing permeates all of our lives to varying degrees depending on what we’re dealing with. Implementing change is inherently creative.
'....only 1 in 50 people had a mobile phone...the Internet was only dial-up.'
The Future of Home
Futopia 2096 was my final thesis project. It was presented and submitted 20 years ago at the end of my 4th year at architecture school which was the first year of my post-graduate diploma in architecture at The Bartlett, University College London.
The project set by my tutors was to explore the concept of ‘HOME’. I decided to look to the future and envision how technology might marry with a more traditional model of luxury villa or mansion style suburban home ownership complete with separation, security and privacy while still establishing and maintaining a level of meaningful connection with family, friends, neighbours and colleagues.
'We are in conflict, caught between a healthy desire to give more and an insecure need to get more...'
What is the High Definition Life?
In my books, blog articles and videos I talk about the High Definition Life and Idyllic Illusion. To expand more upon these concepts I’ve included an extract from the third book in my Work Life Wide Open series ‘Master The Seven Works - Repurpose Your Life’.
In a world of excessive overwhelm, increasing busyness and a lack of truth and integrity few would deny that many amongst us are disorientated and questioning our purpose in life. We agonise over the value we are giving, or not giving. We question our contribution to our partners, our families and the local and global community we are continually co-creating.
We are lost whether to spend more time on our work life to make ends meet and be of value to the world or to focus more on our personal life so that we have good reason to keep working so hard by having something of value to come home to. We are in conflict, caught between a healthy desire to give more and an insecure need to get more.
'I’m thankful that I'm no longer trying to work out how to fix my life.'
Back to Basics
The breeze is whistling gently through the wind chime, the harmonic hum reverberates off the majestic megalithic stones surrounding and enclosing The Cave, the Ricardo Rochilez Retreat.
I notice something different for the first time since I can remember. I don't feel like I need to be anywhere else or doing anything differently. I’m exactly where I am and doing what I should be doing right now where I want to be doing it. I’m thankful that I'm not trying to work out how to fix my life. For a change, I’m living and working it and enjoying both the process and the outcomes as they unfold.
In Part 3 - Conscious Communication I talked about the experience of different, forgotten and new forms of communication and how they can influence change if we take the time to remember and engage with them. In Conscious Connection I summarise the most important external and internal outcomes and milestones reached in my post-SLC world so far and how you can take the next step in your creative journey.
In Part 2 - Conscious Creativity I covered some of the ways I was able to re-engage with my creativity consciously once I had made the time and space. In Conscious Communication I talk about the experience of different, forgotten and new forms of both external and internal communication.
Whether we realise it or not we communicate with ourselves, with intimate others, and with the greater whole all of the time. We are never truly switched off. Through life experience and life change we develop and grow into an intention to meet the world more authentically, regardless of the change that might result, whether it is wanted or not. This is the only real way we can communicate consciously.
In Part 1 - Conscious Change I talked about the concept of Breaking Your Busy and Significant Life Change. Here, in Conscious Creativity I cover off some of the catalysts and triggers that led me to realise and accept that I had no real choice but to make a seemingly abrupt significant change in the interest of reconnecting with my creativity. Neglect of my creative instinct was, I believed, at the heart of my dissatisfaction and despondency.
While reviewing and editing I noticed that each of the outcomes included in my review of This Year vs Last Year fell, without my thinking about it, as if by magic, into the conscious action categories for living and working a better life that I’d defined in my shiny nearly new Author Biography. I’d written and published my bio on my website and various other book retailers including Amazon over three months earlier and added these actions almost as an afterthought as I was rushing impatiently to get it live.