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Turn the Escape Key Now

 by: Stephanie West Allen

“I think I know how bank robbers feel as they wait for tellers to stuff their bounty into a satchel. . . . I damn near giggled as she handed me that bag, validated my parking stub, smiled, and raised her eyes to the next customer, just like that. Clutching my toy to my chest, I shoved through the crowd and hustled towards the exit.

“Geez, would I get away with it? Slip a creative writing book past my mean-spirited internal censor? Would I finally ignore that sour-breathed advisor who had always banished enthusiasm with its sick idea of realism, pointing fingers and thundering, ‘This will go nowhere. This is a waste of time that will cost you. This is PLAY.’”Tama J. Kieves, from _This Time I Dance: Trusting the Journey of Creating the Work You Love_. http://www.AwakeningArtistry.com


I don’t suppose any of you have a “mean-spirited internal censor,” that Judgment Jabber? Judgment Jabber is the voice that lives inside your mind that tells you: “You’re not good enough.” “You’re wasting your time on this job/relationship/recipe.” “Who are you to think you can succeed,/be different/sing?” “What a failure!” “Look at your wrinkles/big ears.”

And lots of other negative things as it causes, exacerbates, and articulates your fears. It is a powerful block to the loosened mind. Do you hear Judgment Jabber (JJ, for short)?

How many creations do you think have been lost to the world due to the JJ Jailers?

JJ Jailers prohibit us from placing before ourselves the clay we can mold into majestic sculptures. They incarcerate poems. They silence singing vocal cords. They put paints and brushes into solitary confinement. They imprison feet wanting to dance. They barricade written masterpieces. They handcuff craftwork. They put all forms of creative impulses under heavy restraint. The put dreams in the slammer.

The JJ Jailers are actually thieves. They rob us of wonderful gifts that will never see the light of day. They shoplift from souls not brave enough to step out with brilliance. They pilfer talent. They rip off glory.

JJ Jailers put us in drab prison garb. Take away our soul food. Shut us in a tiny cell. Lock us in. And throw away the key.

Time for a breakout.


What have you thought of creating that you have not because you knew the JJ Jailer would show up to stop you, to arrest your efforts? Today do not be detained. Begin this thing, whatever it is.

As you take the first steps in this creation (and baby steps are just fine), you may be surprised at how today you have a new degree of freedom. That freedom will grow with each step.

Look what happened because Tama, in the opening quote above, took step after step after step out of the store with her purchase. She has written an amazing book we all can read. She left the practice of law, a profession she did not enjoy. More than that, she is now a writer, that of which she dreamed. Of what do you dream?

These kinds of steps bring exhilaration. Will the JJ Jailer go away? Probably not completely. But it will not have control. You have control now. Walk, run, then soar in your release!

About The Author

Stephanie West Allen, JD, brings humor and motivation to organizations.


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