The Creative Season of Rest

pastoral scene with sunset over mountains and red picnic table in the foreground

Creativity isn’t something that happens in a vacuum, in a cabin away from the world.  It is lit in the push and pull of everyday life; in the moments that tug at your heart and stop you just long enough to see in a new way, in a way that brings you more alive.  

I scrawled this in my journal as I sat beside the rocky Maine ocean this summer, taking a week vacation from the farm, staying in a cabin that did indeed feel far away from the rest of the world.  

I believe creativity is a force that runs through the everyday, but also that it’s easier to cultivate away from screens.  

Like a plant or a child, creativity grows when you tend to it, pay attention to it, open yourself and be present with it.  

Instagram, Facebook, and mindless scrolling doesn’t spark the kind of presence I’m talking about — the opposite, really.  I usually leave social media more stressed and less present.

I grew up in the 90s and early 2000s.  Facebook was still a fledgling project, that only college students had access to and the only picture you could post was your profile picture.  I didn’t get my first smartphone or join Instagram until 2015, when my son was 2.

All to say that I spent my formative years without social media as we know it.

Which meant that my relationship to creativity grew without the outer pressure of constant posts and 24/7 social media or news cycles.  

As I honed my writing voice in college, I learned how creativity comes in cycles, like seasons.

How there are times when writing flows easily, times when projects come to completion, times when the first draft struggles to emerge, and times when you have to simply retreat and rest and let the lapping movements of creative energy sift through your body as breath.

I took all of this for granted.  

I didn’t know I was learning the seasonal cycles of creative work.

It wasn’t until this year, when I took an unanticipated and unannounced break from writing on The Good Heart Life, that I realized: I’ve been resisting the creative season of rest.

The truth is, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with this site anymore.  In a time where everyone on the internet has a personal brand, I wondered, after building up an audience and image, am I allowed to change?

The answer, of course, is yes. 

But before I could come back here, I had to let it rest for a while. 

There was the practical aspect: running the farm, doing all the marketing, CSA communication, CSA pick-ups, and so on, that can easily extend beyond an 8 hour work day.

There were personal challenges, too: parenting while running a business, navigating the pandemic with a child who can’t yet be vaccinated and a loved one who’s immunocompromised.

It all added up to too much.

So I came back to a simple practice: Pruning.

Fruit trees and berry bushes and flowers all benefit from it.  So do people.  

I asked the questions: What can I let go of?  What kind of letting go will help me grow more effectively?  What kind of space do I need to find my way?

Part of me wants to tell you what this site will be going forward and how often I’ll post.  Instead,  I’m going to leave it open.  

There are some changes I have planned that aren’t quite ready to share, but I can tell you this: 

The Good Heart Life will always be rooted in soil to soul.  My writing here grows from the  intersection of organic farming, business, parenting, and creativity.

Some days might bring articles about marketing, social media, and branding.  

Other days may dive into the tangled mess that is parenting and farming, how creativity influences business and vice-versa, or the practical aspects of running a CSA.  

There is so much to explore.

If that resonates with you, I hope you’ll stick around to see what grows.

If it doesn’t, that’s totally okay.  We all change, and if nothing else, I hope this gives you permission to make the changes that help you live the fullest version of your life.

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