Balancing Our Trauma and Creativity

The other day I was having a conversation with a fellow trauma survivor and writer. She posed a question to me.

How do you balance everything you want to do and keep your head together?

There are many blogs about creativity which advise on this subject, and many of them contain very valuable information.  So, I had to answer her from my own personal perspective.  Instead of repeating what is suggested, I wanted to answer her direct question about my daily process specifically.

You see, I am a free-flow creative. Forcing me to follow a set schedule is a sentence for the death of my creativity and passion. It is the driving force that will push me into emotional flat feel. I will strain against the confined system and begin to have a growing irritation towards the control of a schedule until I wither.

Any rigid type of living, for me, is a recipe for depression as I stare at the screen because it’s 1 PM, this is my scheduled time to write, but I don’t want to be writing at the moment. My soul wants to create art, work on other projects or even rest for a while.

Many branding gurus advise to stick to that strict schedule and don’t vary from it. because that is how successful people happen! So it was that I redefined the meaning of success for myself.

Read here to find out makes me feel successful.

Do I pay attention to the marketing side of my brand? Absolutely. I am a lone wolf with a friend who helps me with computer tasks when she can. I have no expectations of her. She has a family and helps me for free. I bow and kiss her feet for that! 95% of my brand is solely controlled and operated by me.

Do I read branding blogs? Absolutely. Following branding bloggers like BadReadheadMedia, by 30 Day Marketing Challenge author Rachel Thompson, have given me excellent information. Partaking in Twitter hashtags like #MondayBlogs, #SexAbuseChat and #NoMoreShame, have helped me connect with some great trauma survivors who are vulnerably baring their souls. Connecting with creative trauma survivors, like artist Liz Ianelli and podcaster Matt Pappas, keep me inspired.

What I don’t do is allow what I read about suggested success methods to pressure me. I glean what feels fitting for my own life and my brand, and I incorporate it. I don’t change the specific routine I have for my-self care, a routine for which no specific schedule really exists. I make a “to do” list almost every day (because 1/2 of it is usually carry over from the prior day), and if there’s a timeline due, I make note of it. In the end, though, I always do things in a rhythm which matches my own positive flow. If something sinks me, it’s not for me.

Being a trauma survivor and a creative can be daunting. When I put too much pressure on myself, I tend to drop into shutdown. My creativity flow is dependent on the state of my mental health.

I always put my mental health and quest to continue being the healthiest before everything.

If two hours is all I have to give to my creativity on some days, that’s what I give. Some days I don’t create at all. Other days I catch a wind and go for hours. All of this is is unpredictable and unknown for me.

My creativity is flowing water at a pace I currently feel happiest following. I cannot re-carve the banks of its river. Instead, I float its calm stretches and row its rapids, staying with the grain of the waves and enjoying the view along the way. To me, this is balance. For me, this is the best route to reach the vast sea of success.

I hope you stay balanced through your creative journey by putting yourself first. I hope you take walks in the trees or lay in the grass and count the clouds. I hope you free flow with yourself, absent of any painful expectation, and know that if you care for the growing plant of your creative well, you are guaranteed to grow into the tallest tree.

P.S. Today I accomplished vacuuming and this blog post. SUCCESS

Vennie Kocsis is the best-selling author of Cult Child and the hostess of Survivor Voices Show and her live Sunday broadcast Off the Cuff. She is an advocate, poet and artist.

Advertisements

Boundaries: Enacting Them With Empowerment

Boundaries

It’s no secret that I have a tumultuous past. From time in jail to extreme sexual misuse of my body to behavioral problems, I have run the course of self-destruction, projection, being attached to petty dramas and other avenues of self harming, trauma based personality traits.

I am purposefully open about my past.  I want people to know they are not alone. I want people to know they do not have to live in shame.  I want people to know they don’t have to let anyone reverse them to the skin they have shed through healing. So, there is nothing which can be hurled toward me in regard to my past, nothing rooted in truth anyway, which I will not acknowledge. Part of my healing journey has included learning to stand in my place, not with shame or regret, but with empowerment.

I get to choose what to discuss or not discuss. I get to choose what to accept or not accept. I get to choose, period, and that’s that.

I also used to have a deep need to defend myself, explain my side and try to make everyone see and understand ME. I have associates who could tell you story after story of the times I lamented and recycled the same situations until I crazy-made my own mind. I was often in a negative-based mental space.

I felt owed. I felt people should adjust to me. I sometimes felt discarded, shunned and unaccepted, even by my own friends. Until I realized it wasn’t true. I was literally creating a negative storyline in my head that wasn’t fully rooted in truth and acceptance but instead, in my own self-based perception. There was some behavior from people which made me back away but concerning me, in retrospect, I churned those situations far too long and too much.

When we are in that state of mind or have friends who are in that state of mind, where we are churning instead of growing and learning, we can hold space and listen. I don’t mind listening. If you, the reader, don’t want to listen to others situations or can’t hold space, you also have the right to say, “I don’t have that to give to you right now.”

Sometimes it’s difficult to be in the space holding position. I have had friends tell me how frustrating it was to watch me churn petty problems instead of figure out solutions. So, I get it now. I’m an experiencer of this negative thought patterning.

I have a major boundary when it comes to being in the listening position, and that boundary is enacted when someone’s struggles are thrown at me like darts, and I am suddenly in the scapegoat position.

Writing on this subject was inspired by waking up today to a very long message from a friend explaining a situation that we had already discussed just a day ago and seemed, to me at least, had been lain to rest. Okay. I accepted that some things might still be unresolved for them. So, when I began to read, I was open to listening until I arrived at this phrase:

you have written a book and working on another about your torment and pain that some may dismiss as drama.”

Ah. Now I see. Because this person is attached to adult drama, they had the audacity to compare it with my childhood trauma. What I was reading was a projector’s mindset. I was being crazy-made.

I even further realized I was a target when I continued reading and arrived at… “All the times you schemed, planned, and even asked me to be involved. Or carried on without me, I never said a thing. Yes I was angry.”

At that moment I became slightly alarmed.  My mistrust meter went up to level red.  I began to search my brain. When did I scheme with this person? When did I ask them to be involved with a scheme that made them angry? My brain could find nothing. I attempted to call them to openly discuss it so I could understand more clearly what they were even talking about. They didn’t answer.

Then it hit me. If they were actually really referring to every person who has schemed and planned with them, but they couldn’t aim their anger at the actual person, it was being aimed at me. I was dealing with a deep projection.

This is where I advise not to take everything someone says to us literally as if it refers directly TO us.  If we cannot connect it to a specific event, most likely it really is not rooted in us.  However, we should not allow anyone to speak to us in ways which disrespect our growth and the ethics we work to maintain.

By that time, I was angry. How dare they speak to me this way. How dare they imply such things to me, that I’d ever schemed or been a petty person with them. How dare fabrications be thrown my way. How dare they not have the respect to answer the phone and actually talk to me about it.

By that time, I knew that I was done. I knew that I needed to separate from the recurring theme of this person’s personal life and being in the projected position. I realized this person was just being plain malicious and mean to me. At least that is how it felt.

I realized how hurt I was in that moment. So many times, I’ve been the only one listening to them; the only one understanding; the only one protecting. I sat on my bed, looking at my phone and realizing this was the crossroad we are at, and I had to choose to turn. That doesn’t always feel good.

I sit back now, writing out this emotion and decision to cut ties. I am hurt, confused and irritated to even have pettiness infused into my day unexpectedly. I also understand this really doesn’t have anything to do with me personally. I am being scapegoated. When I am feeling like that, I take my leave for my own spiritual safety. I always wish well, even as I wield a verbal sword when I slam the gate shut, in my heart, I always hope for healing and eventual accountability.

These are the times it hurts to cut ties with people we have been there for and truly care about in regard to their well being. This decision, for me, is rooted in the fact that this person has no respect for my own mental health, in that they found it alright to disrespect me. This person has now chosen to impede on my peace and mental health. That is a strong boundary for me now.

I write about this to both expel the negative energy that it created in me and to really drive home that we get to choose. I used to HATE when people said that to me. It pissed me off because I wasn’t ready to change my self-defeating behaviors. I had excuse after excuse. Everyone else was the problem. While yes, others had issues too, I needed to learn how to just focus on my own and not allow them to project theirs onto me. I had to also learn how to not project mine onto others.

I could list out the various physical and mental impairments I generally positively live with on a daily basis. I could demand everyone comply to my needs in regard to them. What I’d rather do is tell you that instead, I made the choice to create an environment which is conducive to my own well-being. I created it by building boundaries and standing mostly quiet in them, only raising my voice when it needs to be heard very clearly. It changed my whole life for the better. Any situation or connection which is not contributing to my greater good can be released or even taken a break from.

Once, one of my sons and I took a break from communicating because things were tumultuous between us. As a mom, I felt crushed. I spent many a night crying and lamenting until I finally realized that I was part of the problem. I needed to learn some different parenting skills, became accountable, listen more and stay rooted in my own safety boundaries. I started focusing on how I could do better, and our dynamic grew into a better and more loving space. I needed to lead by example in that situation.

I don’t expect you to compare any situation you may be having to my own. I share these examples because when I chose to own my own life and stand in what felt safe and comfortable for me, it changed everything. When we choose to heal the triggers which once rocked us they aren’t as daunting anymore. We remove the trigger and live from a state of self-care.

Until we choose to put our own peace of mind first, which can also, unfortunately, include pissing people off to do so, we will always be in the negativity zone. Becoming an empowered person means putting our own well being first.

Release unneeded worries. Cease churning negative situations. Create safe boundaries for yourself and adhere to them without fear of backlash. Most of all, accept that we are the only ones who can choose to protect and put ourselves first in our own lives.

Vennie Kocsis is the best-selling author of Cult Child and the hostess of Survivor Voices Show. She is an advocate, poet and artist.

Universal Ethereal String

If dimensions were slightly rounded metal cymbals hung on a string, each would have a different ring to it. Likewise, if the hole was large enough for a simulated planet to pass through, then there would be a mental picture of the movement of strings holding planets as they slowly travel up into higher dimensions.

One might ask who is holding the string, and that’s baffling for them when we explain that it suspends itself with energy. One might say energy “holds” the string. Imagine every human being is a necessary rower of a boat, but instead of using their hands to row, it is their mood, attitude, gratitude, behavior and love which keep the boat either moving forward, going nowhere or even sinking, should the keepers of the boat begin to destroy its structure.

So your planet is rising, and you are responsible for its movement. It is currently pushing its way towards dimension four. It is almost there. This is why the Kabal is scrambling so swiftly to try and push it back down.

Suggested boundaries for you to prevent that from happening are to not watch too much television or read too much news. Please do not expand your fear energy. This keeps your planet from moving into higher dimensions. So mass fear information is released; fear mongers are planted, many disguised as what you call light workers or co-consciousness “leaders”. If ever there was a time to connect to your intuition and follow it without question, it is now. If you are connected to self already, know that it is not only okay, but vital to distance yourself from the unhealthy energies should you encounter them.

The strongest signal that can be sent to you is the urge at which you must simply begin to care. You must feel it inside of your heart. You must care for life, the plants outside your front door, the human who is struggling to care for themselves, the child who needs to be held. You must care. The simple act of caring is illumination. Empathy is crucial to expand your positive energy. You doing this individual work will change your world in ways you cannot see with your eyes so covered.

I do not like to speak of things which create fear in the heart. There will be times of disarray, and yes they are not far away. Yet, the truth is that the reality of it has been magnified immensely as the Kabal would have you believe you are the victim.

You are not.

You are everything you truly know you are. Avoid the human who would tell you that you should fear. That is the human to step away from. Remain close to the humans who remind you of your capabilities; who point out your strengths and who congratulate you for your growth. Stay close to the humans who care both for you and the planet Earth. Support one another’s spirits and do what you must to expand love.

Together you can, by simply working on your own individual change, collectively move this planet into the fourth dimension where it will quietly and peacefully spend it’s time continuing to drift up the string where it will come to rest inside the seventh along with infinite Earths, beautiful and opulent.

Those unable to expand their energies will fall away to be recycled to the old earth now taking its place to enter 2D. Those who are not understanding the crucial need to heal, will not be able to adapt to 4D and beyond. This is alright. It is their chosen path.

The key to opening your heart is silence; inner silence and outer silence. When asked what is the most crucial thing mankind could do right know, we say, stop watching the propaganda box and start observing self through a mirror. Listen to your body. If it is in pain, stop putting trash into it. If your mind is confused, look into your environment. Face you. Accept what needs mending. Then so do the work.

What happened to your love?
Why are you angry?
Why do you live in a me against them mentality?
Why do you feel that those who suffer are ruining your planet?
Why don’t you care that they suffer?
Why do you cheer for tyrants?
Why do you lie about the truth of who you are?
Why do you think that being in victim mentality will make others care more?
Why do you validate yourself with things not of you?
When will you accept who you are?
When will you discover who you are?
When will you cease fighting yourself?

Inside of most humans is a spark that when lit, changes the view of their path. Light yours. Spend time observing. Cast off conditioning in thought and behavior. You’ll be received with inquisitive mindsets as others adapt to the new you. They will adapt. Continue allowing growth.

Start today. Tell yourself of your own capability and in so doing you glow so brightly your light will begin to show the way to others.

K

Listening To Molecules

who stole your pearls? who ripped into your shell without mercy, leaving you shattered, thirsting; mourning? who broke you and told you that you weren’t the all supreme of your own being? who closed your eyes; made your love die, until every cell, each fiber, ached from the heartbreak? who reminds you of your exquisite existence? who holds the mirror to your spirit? how often do you go silent, waiting to hear it? who taught you validation came from confirmations outside of your own musical lips? you are a gift. sing to your ability, for you are fulfilling the path which you have chosen to morph into being. you are freeing your love, one stumble at a time. stay steady on the climb. you have almost arrived.

~K~

On the Merry Go ‘Round

I’ve felt so much upheaval in the beginning of this year. the last month has been an up and down battle of struggles and survival. Things have shifted and changed multiple times. I’ve been forced in positions to face more parts of myself and accept the reality of others. My process feels unsure at times. I take it day by day.

Unexpected moments happen. I spent last week head deep into finishing an art piece. I enjoyed some moments of rare sunshine. I am working on writing my sequel. I’m in my own space right now. Life is twirling. I’m in the middle of a move. I have moments of feeling overwhelmed. I have moments of “freak out my life is going to explode in one big agoraphobic poof”.

Today, a family member ended up in the hospital for the next few weeks. Today has been a day of realizations of where my personal focus should be. Today my support system shifted and redirected unexpectedly.

There isn’t a possibility for us to predict life or what will happen. After today, I have taken one step further into myself. I am learning more and more to stand in acceptance of what is and to give love where I can while holding to my own boundaries.

I will always be a work in progress. Every loss becomes a lesson and a tighter boundary on my life. To be truly understood; to find authentic empathy and intelligent, open minds in this world has become a rare gem for me. I must spend my time cherishing what I have felt I was losing.

The moment I cease sharing my life, my journey, my knowledge, and the moment I cease learning and becoming more than I am today, is the moment I take my last breath.

My Journey into Disbelief

I was born into this world doctrine free. My father was an agnostic lover of physics, and while my mother was raised Pentecostal Christian, she neither practiced the religion nor incorporated religion into our home. However, when my father started working on military projects which kept him away from home for sometimes weeks, my mother became open prey for a cult recruiter who so infused herself into my mother’s life that at three years old, I was forced into the extremist Christianity written about in my memoir, “Cult Child”.

As a child and into adulthood there was a constant war going on inside of me. This conflicted feeling existed naturally in me, both while living in the cult and transitioning into mainstream society as a teenager. My instinct was telling me that this Christian belief system was not authentic, but fear of a place called Hell held me inside of the belief system well into my early twenties.

While attending college in the early 90’s, I read “The Witching Hour” by Anne Rice. This book ignited something in me. There were traits in Ms. Rice’s characters which felt familiar to me; traits such as hypersensitivity and the ability to feel what others were feeling; seeing into people, and there were memories of my childhood which surfaced after reading the book. Because the cult sequestered me so far away from society, my hunger for knowledge delved me deeper into supernatural subjects.

I wavered for a while, still gripped at times by the fear of not believing in God and being sent to live with the demons in hell. I also found that I turned to Christianity when things didn’t go right in my life hoping that if I just believed more, things would change for me. When that did not happen, I explored deeper into paganism, pulling out pieces of my European historical roots. It was during this time I felt I was starting to put my fragmented existence back together.

Paganism led me to Santeria, a short study of Voodoo, Satanism and Shamanism. I curiously peeked into Mormonism and what the Muslims believed. I explored mainly for knowledge, thirsting to know all of the different paths which existed; paths I never was allowed to discover on my own. I delved into my Cherokee history and my connection to nature and the planet. I stuck my toes into Yogi and Osho, checked out the Buddha and jumped on the awakening and oneness trains. Yet, something interesting was happening to me.

I was definitely awakening. I was waking up to myself. Thirty years after being taken into a cult and losing all of my identity through an indoctrination which restricted my critical thinking, I regained my mind, deprogrammed myself and realized that I actually did not need a belief system which involved group think. In fact, to be who I am, I did not need a belief system at all.

So who am I? I am a non-believer who doesn’t worship anything or anyone. I journeyed deeply into disbelief, and what I found there was my free and clear mind. What I found inside of disbelieving was a knowing that empathy is inside of my DNA, not my belief system. For me, there is no reason to wonder where I came from or where I am going, but instead to be present inside of what I am doing right now, being mindful to the needs of others and defining my own boundaries of self love. In this space is a peace that no belief system has ever brought me.

I Don’t Have a Boyfriend, and Apparently That’s My Fault

A male friend told me that I don’t have a boyfriend because I don’t want one.

What does that even mean?” I asked.

He said “You want too much.”

It left me perplexed. How is that possible? How can I ever want “too much” when it comes to the peace and comfort of my own existence.  This does not even equate in my own mind.  No.  Those days are over; you know, the suffer in silence type of give in to bullshit type of not going to do that anymore because I matter to me now.   Say that twice.

So what should I do?” I asked him.

I love to ask questions of people to satisfy my fascination with psyche; to listen to the thoughts and words of the human; soak them in and read what lives beneath their skin.

Like quit being so picky. You know, if a dude is married, for instance, sometimes he’s not happy or it’s on the rocks. That doesn’t make him a bad guy. Like, open yourself up.”

::BLANK STARE. TRULY. BLANK FUCKING STARE::

That doesn’t even need explanation. I’ve been that route. It’s called self abuse. Now at this point, you guys, I’m giggling to myself inside, in a hysterical kind of “am I really hearing this ridiculousness?” kind of way.

I don’t have a boyfriend because I don’t want one. I don’t want one because I want too much like…

laughter
time
special presence
dedication
loyalty
passion
integrity
ethics
stability
commitment
insane sex
understanding
acceptance

you know, all those far fetched things that might take a little,

emotion
giving
selflessness
true interest

Yeah, the type of things I tend to freely give in a relationship.

Once, I sat across the table from a man who said, “I just need to get me a trophy wife.”

I got offended. Then later learned what a trophy wife was and immediately stopped being offended. There are just some superficial terms that I didn’t understand the meaning of. Trophy wife was one of them. When I found out what it meant, I immediately thought “Oh no. I don’t want to be one of those.”

Emotionlessness does not become me. Putting on airs is not my forte’. Giving a shit what anyone thinks of me is not something that often crosses my mind. I’m me equivalently. I have passions. They matter.  Anyone else’s opinion just doesn’t. I’m amicable.  I have grace.  I form relationships.  We’re not swimming in the shallows, though.  I don’t stay there long.  I like the bottom, where the coral reef and colorful fish live.

Here is my answer, dear friend. I don’t have a boyfriend because I am at peace with my aloneness. I am so at peace with this aloneness that I will disallow anything less than what is at one with my own state of being to enter my temple. If these parts that make me feel at peace do not match the current male existence that is floating in my grid, then I am fully at peace with the resulting aloneness.

I haven’t time for small talk, and I love to be silly. I am deep as oceans and crave savant conversation. I like silence that is not mistaken for anger. I can ride in cars and listen to music and not need to speak. I am most comfortable with space and time around me. I need to be allowed to BE. And if that means being with only me;

Then okay. I am in acceptance.

I have moments I long for touch, to be held to a chest, looked at with tenderness, surprises and early morning not giving a shit breath, but they do not override my unwillingness to bend from what contributes to my heart’s happiness, and the greatness I know that I am.

You see, I believe chivalry was murdered during the feminist movement when human beings mistook the right of women to have equal pay, equal treatment and the right to vote, to mean we no longer wanted to be involved in romance and connection. Illusion killed chivalry. Feminists didn’t.  Apathy replaced empathy, and that is a choice.

and I figured that all out… alone.

[image credit: “The Arrival” by Paul Bondart art – paulbondart.com]