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Self Publishing Diary : Create from the inside-out

Updated: Jan 3

We are starting each month by writing our own horoscope. Why? Because planning is boring and everyone wants a magical manifestation pill… As a career strategist I know that there is nothing spooky about 'manifesting' outcomes; it comes down to setting goals, having a plan and working systematically through it. But yes, it can sound all too a bit too boring and a lot of work. So make it fun and instead of coming up with a list of goals and a to-do list, write a horoscope. Here's what I will 'manifest' for our children's publishing house in August, as we set out to create beautiful picture books that plant seeds of wisdom and make early childhood learning effortless.

August 2021 will be about creating from the inside-out!

New month. New Possibilities.

Did you know that many wisdom traditions believe that everything that happens to us on the outside, had it's genesis on the inside - that is they first started as thoughts, impressions or aspirations in our minds?

This is a very powerful idea that speaks to the creative potential of our minds and conversely, the importance of cultivating awareness of all that is going on there and consciously planting the right sort of seeds.

This month may very well be the perfect time to hone in on this idea as you will no doubt find yourself outwardly restricted by lockdown measures imposed to manage the latest wave of COVID.

So take the time over August to explore and shape your inner world so that the reality you are seeking outside, starts taking shape inside.

And yes, as per our blog cover image, don't forget to add in the rainbows and sunshine!

Address the three realms of existence

Our human live seems to be lived across three realms or planes of existence - the material, the emotional and the spiritual. All three realms come together to shape the 'relative reality' that we experience every day. When embarking on a creative process, it is therefore important to work through all three aspects separately and specifically.

The material realm

The material realm talks to the biological needs of our human body such as food, clothing, shelter, security and sex - the things that we need to survive as individuals and a species.

In many ways this is the most straightforward of all aspects to work with but also the most difficult to keep in moderation.

In our heavily populated world, it is no longer sustainable nor ethical to chase never ending growth and mass consumption. This is driving our planet and indeed the very climate we need to survive into crisis. In spite of propaganda being pedaled by rich billionaires, it's important to understand that there is no Planet B.

Now more than ever we need to re-imagine what makes for a good life.

There is no getting away from the material real so may as well face into it as responsibly as we can. The question to work through here is what do you need to survive as a human being?

Take the time this month to really think through this. Draw and write things out if it helps to shape and clarify your thoughts. Remember to focus on the necessities and not be drawn into the realm of excessive wants and desires.

Be inspired by the trail-blazers; those who have embraced things like downsizing, a minimalist lifestyle, a plant-based diet and de-leveraging. This has not only improved their well-being on a material level but also had unexpected benefits at an emotional and spiritual level.

The sad reality for some in this life is that they will never have the luxury or maybe the blessing or consciousness to go beyond the material. All their life's efforts and energy will be entirely invested in the material realm, focused on survival.

If there is one goal that you set yourself this month, make it to move beyond this; address the material and then rise above it.

The emotional realm

The emotional realm is everything that plays out in our minds. It can also be thought of as the mental realm and speaks to the needs we have as a human being for love, care and connection. We are social creatures after all and a large part of our wellbeing comes from feeling involved and connected to our communities, whatever shape and form they may take.

The sad irony of our times is that in spite of all the digital technologies that provide us with near ubiquitous connectivity, the sense of isolation and loneliness in our societies is only continuing to increase.

Mental health issues is a silent pandemic that is playing out right now. No one saw it coming and no one seems to have a comprehensive plan to deal with it. Individuals have no choice but to take charge of their own mental well-being.

Take the time this month to examine your mind and see what is really going on there.

Be honest about how you spend your time and how that impacts your wellbeing. Do more of things that have a positive impact and commit to avoid those that don't.

Sounds simple? That's because it is.

Write down your resolves and keep going back to it to remind yourself of the commitments you made to yourself to protect and enhance your own mental health.

Critically, continue to spend the time you do on cultivating self awareness, care and love. Be your own best friend.

The 'spiritual' realm

The 'spiritual' realm is where we deal with the more existential questions of life. What is this life? Is what meet the eye all there is to it? Or is there more?

We've all had different experiences of life and will no doubt answer the question differently.

Where most people would agree though is that we are more than just biological beings who's sole focus is survival.