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A friend of mine was telling me she’d heard that creativity was one of the great casualties of the pandemic (my words, not hers). She noted how she’d stopped doing any of the creative things she’d previously loved to do, like quilting, and even now was struggling to find the energy to return to those pursuits.

Partly to keep her young daughters busy this summer and partly to spark her own creative juices, she signed them all up for a fused glass class and found while her daughters had no trouble getting into the work, she struggled. She could envision…


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A friend loaned me the DVD, Evolve Your Brain: the Science of Changing Your Mind, by Dr. Joe Dispenza. I’m aware of Dr. Joe and have read one of his books, so I knew to expect some interesting science around how our minds and emotions create our lives, but about halfway through the lecture, he said something that fits perfectly in this blog. He said, “My definition of creativity is when I forget about myself.”

He went on to explain that when we’re immersed in creation, we forget everything around us and time slips away. He explained that we’re having…


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When I was a kid, I loved reruns of I Love Lucy. In one episode, Lucy and her gang are visiting Paris and she is arrested for unintentionally passing off counterfeit money. At the police station, no one speaks English. But Lucy’s husband, Ricky, speaks Spanish and English. A local drunk at the station speaks Spanish and German. One of the police officers speaks German and French. And the police captain speaks French. So, they form a line of translation in order to get at the real story. Lucy speaks in English to Ricky, who translates into Spanish to the…


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I was chatting with a good friend the other day about how much I feel I’ve changed since the pandemic. I’ve realized how many of my previous life decisions were dictated by FOMO (fear of missing out). Now, I’m making my decisions by taking a moment to lean in and decide whether my energy is calling me toward stillness or action. And prior to the pandemic, I did everything I could to avoid being bored, but I now realize many of those things did not bring me joy, they just provided distraction. Before 2020, I was either working or thinking…


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Parents love giving advice to their grown kids, at least this parent does. Advice, though, is not always welcomed or well-received. My husband is always reminding me, “They’re not asking.” And he’s right. Sometimes our kids don’t ask because they’ve already made up their minds and don’t want to change them; sometimes it’s because they want to figure things out for themselves; sometimes they already know what I’m going to say because I’ve said it one hundred times before and they don’t need to hear it again. …


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I’ve been working lately on overcoming fear. When I tell my friends that, they react with surprise. “You’ve never struck me as a fearful person,” they say. They know me as someone who has traveled to 26 countries, published 8 books, started my own company, raised three kids, advocated for things I believe in, and spoken to large groups of people. Doesn’t sound like a fearful person, does it?

But the fact is, we all have fear. Whether it’s spiders or flying or the dark, many of our fears have been with us since childhood. Others develop as we grow…


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A couple of years ago, I was listening to a talk or podcast in which the speaker said something about not feeling the need to convince anyone of anything. The concept got me thinking and led to my new motto, “It’s not my job to convince you.”

To me, this means there are people who will resonate with our ideas, beliefs, knowledge, or opinions and those who will not. …


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Before the pandemic, I was away from home five nights out of seven. I was busy attending networking, volunteer, or social events, or maybe teaching a class, or giving a reading or presentation. My days were full, as well. Too full. Even before the lockdown, I could feel myself wearing out, but I loved everything I was doing and I believed it was all important, and it was.

Then the pandemic came along, and we were all forced to slow down. I hated that. There were days I’d stare out the window wishing I could get back out in the…


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When I first started writing for a living, I worked for several local newspapers and small magazines. I wrote mostly feature articles, often history related. It was not uncommon for me to spend 8 hours on an article for which I was paid $25–50. $75 if I was lucky.

At the time, I knew the pay was far too low for the work I was doing, but it was industry standard in our area, and I figured I needed to pay my dues. Besides, I loved my job. Slowly, though, it dawned on me that even the writers who’d been…


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When I was in college, I worked at a popular Mexican restaurant. Every Friday night, I’d watch my friend who was a cocktail server maneuver around the packed lobby delivering drinks to customers who were waiting to be seated. One day I asked her, “How do you carry those trays of drinks through all those people with no accidents?”

“Easy,” she said. “When I worked at a breakfast restaurant and had to carry full cups of hot coffee, one of the waitresses told me, ‘Never look at the cup.’ That’s the trick.”

In other words, if you have faith in…

Teresa Funke

The world needs an army of creative thinkers, and you’re one. Ignite your inner artist/“Bursts of Brilliance for a Creative Life” www.burstsofbrilliance.com

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