The end of the year is typically a time of goal setting for me, of seeing what I accomplished in the previous 12 months and where I want to go next. I won’t bore you with all the bloody details, but I will tell that I have had a year of change and growth. From tattoos to leases, much is different for me now than it was a year ago and, as I begin to decide what I am shooting for in 2012, PEACE is definitely at the top of my list.

Middle Aged Crazy began as a book research project, one I asked you for help with and it has turned into a movement. The questions were two: how do we get through mid life transitions and how do we make our souls happy by releasing our creative side? The problem, at least I found, is that living an examined life often leads to a lot of deep  and disturbing questions. Part of my inner artist, it turns out, is a philosopher and facing discomfort is part of growth and change. I hope that 2012 will lead me to write more about creativity, less about mid life.

Part of my journey has been to complete a huge incomplete in my life, despite a successful career in the financial services industry, I have not attained all I want to academically or intellectually. I have become fascinated by the creative process and I’m taking steps to become a credentialed authority on the topic. Not many folks have a goal of becoming a Phd by age sixty, but I do, I am excited about the second half of my life and the places intellectual curiosity will take me.

When I interviewed artists for my first book, The Affluent Artist, I was surprised to see that all of them drew from a source beyond themselves, being in “creative flow” involves something supernatural and mystical. The more I’ve explored my own creative side, the more I’ve become enthralled by this creative flow, where does it come from? This question will be the driving force of the rest of my life. It has already led me to the work of Jung and Joseph Campbell, it turns out I am not the first guy to wonder about this stuff. There are deep seated archetypes in all of us, we are all drawing on our collective experience as humans when we create. I’m interested in finding out more about this experience and how we can draw on it when we need it most.

Before I start setting goals for the New Year, it is nice to acknowledge that, for the first time in a long time, I have a defined destination. One that should provide me with answers to a lifetime of curiosity, one that should keep me engaged and involved in this life until my soul’s mission here is completed. I have this wonderful image in my meditations of me being this beloved old professor talking to students about depth psychology and creativity over coffee, under some wonderful old magnolias on a campus somewhere. I hope, with your continued support, insight, and suggestions, I will get there.

Rick

 

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