These are some notes I made on my drive from California to Colorado last week. As always, please consider commenting with your own, unique experiences. I love to hear from you all, friends.
It’s so often that I hear, “Lauren, you’re so courageous.” I am, and there is always more to that story. Or, “I want to write a book, too.” These are words I love to hear. I’m a huge fan of other people making big waves in their lives and watching the ripples in the water inspire others. I’m a huge fan of other’s creations. I love hearing people’s stories, reading their words, and pondering the art they create. I love interacting with readers to find out what they experience and know to be true for themselves, not anyone else.
It is the core of who I am, in the deepest parts of my soul, to desire to support people in moving beyond the human “should” and “supposed to” of life and moving into the passion of creation, whatever that looks like for them. In fact, I have never understood the energy of competition or laughing when someone fails or being jealous when someone I know experiences success. Those thoughts and feelings never occurred to me. When someone does well, it makes my soul sing. Period. The end. No if’s, and’s, or but’s about it.
That’s why it was quite interesting to see people’s reactions after I published my first book and it sold and it garnered good reviews. Many of my friends were silent. If I talked about my book, they quickly changed the subject. One woman who was in a writing group with me back in Austin, Texas, never acknowledged the book’s existence – even after she watched me pour everything I had into it as I beat my head against a desk daily. I helped edit two of her books and was a huge supporter of her writing.
“What did I do?” I thought.
It took me days to realize it was that human nudge for competition. Was I mad? No. It certainly wasn’t about me. I would still behave the same if she were to publish a book. I would send her flowers, a note of congratulations, go out of my way to acknowledge the giant task it is to create BIG. Humans will do human things. It was not something to take personally. It was her own stuff.
As I have been pondering what it takes for the human to create – to bring his or her passion into physical reality - there is a inherently human caveat of creation I want to discuss – one I have been sensing into for a few days.
“So you want to create BIG?”
The words rolled across the movie screen of my third eye space.
“But do you know what it takes?”
It is so often that people speak of creating BIG, without actually knowing how to do it, or, even more so, not being willing to give up the comforts of human life to make it happen.
I’ll use my love of travel as a physical example. Many people, not on my Patreon page, love the road trip pictures and tiny stories I share on Facebook. I’m not sure they understood what I was doing fully, and they likely filed it in the vacation category of their human minds. Anyone who was along for the 30-days of self-love experience knows it was far from a vacation. It was a massive undertaking to go into the crux of what it really means to truly love and know yourself. It was not easy, and I moved internal mountains on my journey.
Lots of those people say with a heavy sigh, “Oh, I wish I could go on a road trip. I wish I had the time. I wish I had the money.” It’s as if they are trying to guilt me. It would be an energy feeding activity if I were susceptible to such things.
Two years ago I might have explained how I saved up for such things, making sacrifices in my daily life like not having nice things or patio furniture in my living room, or make excuses for myself. God knows, I could rarely explain to someone one of my past life incarnations left this incarnation, me, Lauren, a small monthly check that when budgeted correctly, could take me far.
That would put me in the crazy category too quick. I’ve taken to smiling and nodding, instead. The need to explain anything not in this type of forum is a human desire I dropped off in the ditch next to the highway somewhere near Seal Rock, Oregon, last month.
On the trip, I took to listening to Audible books. One was John Steinbeck’s “Travels with Charley.” In the book, he details his road trip in search of America with his poodle, Charley. He leaves nothing out of the book, in other words he doesn’t leave out the grit. Something I found fascinating was his pondering of the shear physical power and focus it takes to drive a car cross-country.
It’s almost as if you have to train your body to handle such a task – the pressure on the gas and brake, the constant state of awareness of road hazards, animal and man, the creep following you down the highway touching his tiny penis trying to embarrass you, but I digress.
On this last trip I endured two blizzards, torrential downpours in which you could only see two feet in front of you as an eighteen-wheeler blasted by you on a narrow highway, and, worst of all, Los Angeles traffic. I was stuck in standstill traffic so long, I had to pee into one of Ollie’s dog bowls and empty the bowl out the window. Glamorous.
I happen to love the discomfort of travel. It’s a signal to me I am digging deep into life. For example, my incredible scuba diving experience in the Philippines I wrote about last December on the blog would not have been as grand if I had not been on a ferry in a tsunami for nine hours the day before, watching people throw up over the ship’s bow.
Contrast is one of the greatest sources of pleasure to be had on planet Earth. The sigh of relief when you finally eat after feeling hunger for so long; the experience of love making after a drought of human touch; feeling your feet hit the ground after they have gone numb on your tenth hour of driving; these are the things that make human life satisfying for me.
Writing a book, especially a personal one, is not free of discomfort, either. Perhaps the greatest discomfort of all is to dig so deeply within yourself you flip inside out. Then you run into the the seemingly impenetrable task to go about turning yourself right side out, but only after you’ve wrung the last drop of wisdom from your soul.
When I wrote Book One, I had to cut off all communication with the outside world. I did not drink alcohol or go out with my friends. I fasted daily as digestion affects the flow of my writing. I left no stone unturned as I shifted through the shambles of my existence and rearranged them to bring the reader into my story, to etch it into their memory, as so many stories of others are etched into mine.
On my way home from California, I re-listened to “A Moveable Feast,” the great American writer, Earnest Hemingway’s memoir. He talks of his time in Paris, where he wrote some of his best work. He does not glamorize his life in Paris. He talks of skipping meals because he could not afford to eat more than once a day. He details beautifully how careful and creative he had to be to survive in the city. He describes how he made his appearance unapproachable as to not be bothered when writing, which is something I also have done, a tactic I continue to use.
Further into the book, Hemingway quits his day job as a newspaper reporter to invest in his novel writing – a big gamble and with a family to support. They had so little money he wore a sweatshirt for long underwear because he could not afford new clothes in the winter. The result - the critically acclaimed "The Sun Also Rises" and the career start of a great American writer.
When I was listening to his memoir, I could tell that his decision to dedicate his life to his craft was never really a choice. It was something that permeated every cell of his being and the space between the cells. He rearranged and shifted until he created a perfect space to create his masterpieces. He sacrificed the perceived human pleasures for the sake of creation, a pleasure and passion of the soul.
All the sacrifice seemed but tiny details in the grand picture of his creations in his memoir, and he looked back on his time of being poor as the happiest time in his life. The simplicity of it is something I understand and can savor like a piece of melting dark chocolate in my mouth.
The soul journey, the experience of getting to know all of the parts that make up your body of consciousness, the realization that your soul has been incarnating on this planet for thousands of years, and that there is so much more to you than this singular human existence is not for the weak of heart. It is not for those lacking in courage, which is simply acknowledging fear and then acting anyway.
It is uncomfortable more so than any other human task. You have to face your demons and call them your own. You have to take responsibility for knowing every single thing in your life you created. There is no one to blame for your misfortunes. You have to gather up your human shortcomings, sort, and rearrange them until they work for you, not against you. It is not easy but it is beautiful and it is worth it.
I started this article with the title people do not know what it takes to create big, but that is no longer a truth for me. Perhaps people do know what it takes to create big, and that is why they have chosen to sit on the sidelines. I’ve certainly had the times in this life where I simply wanted to observe, where I went numb for a bit to have a break.
I’ve had lifetimes where I ignored my passions, my soul’s desires, to stay in the human comfort zone, which is also an experience to be had. That’s the beauty of the earthly set up, if you don’t create big this time around, there’s always the next incarnation waiting for you. Your soul is so patient, so unconditionally loving it will never leave you. It will never give up on you. It will honor your journey, your free will, and the knowledge it gains with every breath you take in the physical body. The act of being human is an act of courage, and sometimes that’s enough.
If this is your life to create BIG, to follow your soul’s passion to create and experience those creations, you already know no one is going to hand it to you. That would defeat the purpose. It would take away from the joy of experiencing the creative nature of the soul - your unique soul - and, for me, the entire point of human existence.
As your friend and fellow human, my only advice is don’t avoid the grit, don’t avoid the discomfort, dive into the deep end of terrifying simply to witness your ability to float. If you want to write that book, paint that picture, quit your day job like Hemingway, know that it won’t always be easy for the human. There will be sacrifice involved and the beauty is in the sacrifice. It's not a step to skip. Later, the sacrifice seems like a gift you gave to yourself. The difference lies in perception. What's poverty to one person is simple living to another.
One of the most satisfying of all human experiences is to go into the mess, the chaos of creation, to pull the diamond out of the lump of coal. The illusion of unbearable pain and breath-taking defeat is part of my story, something I chose. It was an essential ingredient to enjoying the sweet satisfaction of creating BIG. One I will choose again, in awareness and sensuality, as I write my second book and continue to canvas this amazing blue-green planet.
Lauren Hutton is an adventurer who writes about the soul journey and what it means to be a human in expanded awareness. She is the author of Becoming Sar'h and shares more intimately on her Patreon page. If you enjoy these offerings, please consider becoming a monthly patron or making a one-time pledge of $12 to keep this website up and running.
Oh-be-Ahn, friends. I honor you in your unique journey.