Ever pondered the power of the written word? Well, perhaps the most powerful words come from within – Julia McCutchen wants us to discover who we really are through a conscious approach to creative writing
Imagine that you are at the top of a busy, high-level publishing career and that one day this ends suddenly, and without warning, when you experience a life-changing accident. What do you do? Give up? Despair? Or reach deep within and reshape your career with renewed vigour?
Author, intuitive mentor and founder of the International Association of Conscious and Creative Writers (IACCW) Julia McCutchen knows this experience first-hand. She also knows that authenticity is the key to transformation and growth.
After a head injury left her unable to work for over a year, it was during her recovery that she completely reassessed her priorities in life. She left the corporate world and started teaching and mentoring people who feel drawn to creative expression through writing and authorship.
“The accident was a turning point experience for me and one that I found very challenging,” says McCutchen. “It took me apart at every level as my identity as a successful publisher unraveled and I was left not knowing who I was any more. I had some very dark moments of loss and fear; yet at some level deep down, intuitively I knew that it would eventually turn out for the best. In the emptiness of uncertainty, I came face to face with my true nature and rediscovered my true self. From here, gradually the essence of my own creativity returned which had previously been focused on publishing other people’s ideas; but now I knew I had to honour my own creative impulse and express my true voice in the world. My journey has been all about discovering my true self and expressing my true voice in all areas of my life.”
McCutchen’s background meant that she had been at the forefront of creativity but it was only as she was developing the body of work she calls conscious writing that she found a way to tap into her authentic inner space in a way that she could teach to others.
“I was in a creative role as a publisher,” explains McCutchen, “and had a very intuitive approach which led to launching some groundbreaking books. I loved the whole brain approach of publishing which enabled me to back up my intuition with a strong practical skill set. However, my own creativity always fell to the bottom of the priority list until the accident gave me the opportunity to review my priorities and discover my true voice.”
In her recent book, Conscious Writing, McCutchen leads readers to use creative writing to discover their true self and express their true voice. It’s a technique that has won praise from personal development stalwarts Robert Holden and Mike Dooley. McCutchen believes that it’s a technique that can be used by anyone to reveal a deeper, more authentic aspect of themselves.
“My own journey features a dramatic change,” says McCutchen, “but it doesn’t have to be that way. You don’t need to hit rock bottom to make positive changes in your life – you can make a conscious choice and choose change that serves the truth of who you are. Most people have an inkling that there’s more to life than the everyday level. Yet, we’re so often caught up in conditioned patterns of thought and behaviour that it can take a major life event to stop us on our tracks. But we can create our own opportunities to make different choices that are truly authentic to who we are, support us to realize our full potential and enable us to live creative and purposeful lives.”
McCutchen’s book provides a practical guide to starting and succeeding with the process of bringing all aspects of ourselves into alignment to connect with greater awareness beyond our everyday self and open up a deep space of inner truth. It’s here that we discover our richest and most original ideas, and the source of our true voice.
While creativity is an outlet that some of us find easier than others, McCutchen believes it is something that anyone can experience. “One client who was an academic with a PhD came to work with me as she wanted to learn how to write from her heart instead of exclusively from her head. Intuitively I felt there was more going on for her. It transpired that she had been born with a cleft lip and palate, had experienced multiple operations as a child, and felt a paralysing fear at being visible in the world. She had taken a decision during her teenage years that if she couldn’t be beautiful she would be smart so had studied hard to achieve a great deal in the academic world.
“Now she wanted to explore deeper levels of possibility, and although it took a while for her to find the courage to apply all of the principles and the practice of conscious writing, eventually she succeeded in opening herself to write from her heart. From here, it wasn’t long before she experienced the positive effects rippling out through all areas of her life. She made it a priority to make time for conscious movement through yoga and walking, for nurturing her creative soul and gave herself permission to take action to realize her creative dreams. In the process, when she finished her academic project, she continued to experience a gradual ‘peeling away’ of the layers she had developed for protection at the level of her everyday self and started to show up more authentically in all areas of her life. This led to her discovering her true calling in life which is to be an ambassador for the message that we are all essentially born whole, regardless of our physical appearance. From here she followed her new sense of mission and purpose to volunteer with the charity, Changing Faces, which helps people with disfigurements and their families. She has now also taken a previously unthinkable step to set herself free from her old fears and launch a ‘Born Whole’ blog to share her story and her message publicly for the very first time in her life.”
This story of McCutchen’s client clearly demonstrates the transformative impact that her conscious writing teaching can have to change people’s lives and not just develop their ability for deep and meaningful writing. With her book encapsulating the detail of this core teaching for anyone who has a message to share, the next step for McCutchen is to take her message worldwide. By encouraging a new wave of conscious writers, her goal is to help others discover their true purpose.
“Fear is a product of the everyday self,” says McCutchen, “and doesn’t exist at the level of our true self. Conscious writing has the power to transform our whole perspective on life from the work we do to the way we relate to others so that our real purpose rises to the fore and enables us to make the contribution that only we can make.”
Julia McCutchen is author of two books including her latest, Conscious Writing: Discover Your True Voice Through Mindfulness and More (Hay House). An intuitive mentor, she is the founder and creative director of the International Association of Conscious & Creative Writers (IACCW). Find out more at www.JuliaMcCutchen.com and www.iaccw.com
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