An Aha! Moment of Enlightenment

An Aha! MomentHave you ever seen, heard or read something that was so profound it stopped you in your tracks and made you say “Oh my gosh”?  An “Aha” or “light bulb” moment that just grabbed your attention and even took your breath away?  I had that kind of moment the other day and I was so unprepared for it that I screeched loud enough to jolt my sleeping dog awake!  It came to me when I was watching Super Soul Sunday with Oprah.  Read on to learn more about it.

I love Oprah Winfrey’s new Super Soul Sunday (more info),  but haven’t been able to watch any of the aired shows so I’ve been taping them.  (Hoping that during those long nights of insomnia I could do a marathon!)  I was particularly interested in the shows with Brene Brown.  For those of you who haven’t heard of Brene Brown, she is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work (as well as a NY Times best-selling author and renowned speaker) and has spent decades studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness and shame.  (About)  All feelings that so many of us struggle understanding and for which I have a keen fascination.

I finally found a day where I could listen to the playbacks.  This wouldn’t be any ordinary day either; this was going to be a day of pampering and I made sure to give it the attention it deserved: I came to the living room in my most comfy pjs, a warm cup of tea and all electronic communication shut off (okay, maybe not shut off, but at least turned down)!  My faithful companion and I curled up on the sofa together and I hit play; wouldn’t you know, Murphy’s Law kicked in immediately – the first part never taped!  Sighing, I thought, oh well at least there’s another part.  Taking a deep breath (and crossing my fingers that Mr. Murphy didn’t show up again), I pushed play one more time.  Oprah and Ms. Brown began discussing a myriad of topics and settled upon the 10 Guideposts to Wholeheartedly Living that was the subject of her latest book, Daring Greatly.  (I had missed the first 5 from part 1, but at least they were going over the last 5.)  And then it happened and only a few minutes into the discussion!

They were talking about the 6th guidepost: Cultivating Creativity: Letting Go of Comparison.  This is what I heard:

Creativity has to be cultivated.  Unused creativity is not benign; it metastasizes and turns into: grief, judgment, sorrow, rage and shame.  It can be very dangerous.  We are divine beings and by nature creative.  But our creativity gets lost along the way and is often shamed out of us.  

I gasped, “Oh my gosh” so loudly that the dog jerked her head up and stared intently at me for several minutes.  THIS WAS MY “Aha” MOMENT. 

You see, as a professional organizer, I surround myself with structure, order and planning, but what many people don’t know is that I am also very creative.  The two sides of my brain are often at war with each other because most of my life has been spent concentrating on using the structure, order and planning side.  The creative side always got pushed to the back waiting for me to take the time to cultivate it.  As a wife and mom of 26 years, I had been solely focused on raising two sons, running a home and working full time; there never seemed to be enough time to cultivate my personal creativity.  In that instant though, I understood that because I had been stifling that need, I had been experiencing many of the feelings that Brene had just described; it was as if she was pointing to me through the screen when she said it.  I realized I was close to a danger zone – I could see that resentment had started creeping in from not using the creativity locked deep within myself.  It was as if Ms. Brown had unlocked a door that I could walk through.  It was clear as day.  I understood it was now time for me to unleash and cultivate my inner creativity; there was nothing to hold me back anymore. YES, A LIGHT BULB MOMENT FOR SURE! 

Once I heard those words, I knew that I couldn’t just sit back and “listen” to this show; I needed to pay attention and make sure I took notes along the way.  I was certain that there would be other golden moments of clarity that I would want to remember.  There was, but I’m not going to let those secrets out just yet….that will be subject of future blog posts of introspection, so you’ll have to tune in again to find out!

TELL ME SOMETHING: Have you ever had a moment like that – a moment of clarity that was so profound it stopped you in your tracks and took your breath away?  If you have, would you share it?  For, I believe that, in sharing we find the greatest gift of our Aha moments: passing them on to someone else who is open to experiencing the profoundness of our enlightenment.

8 thoughts on “An Aha! Moment of Enlightenment

  1. I need a professional organizer in my life :-). Awesome blog post. As a former teacher, that AHA moment is one that I always loved in my students. But, I got my own while working with my business coach and realized that a lot of the things I feared were from stories that I made up in my head. I’m creating new stories now….ones where I WIN! 🙂

    • Robert,
      I love how you are creating new stories where you WIN! Sometimes all it takes is changing our previous habits – easier said than done, right?

      And you have a professional organizer in your life now! 🙂 Why don’t you sign up to receive the blog posts, organizing info and learn all about our exciting special programs that will be coming up? Please feel free to drop me a note if you would like to speak directly to anything in particular you are struggling with; I’m happy to set up a free, no obligation phone consultation.

      Thanks for reading the blog post today!

  2. I’m also a loyal viewer of Super Soul Sunday and really enjoyed the Brene Brown episodes. One of the moments that really took breath away was when she talked about comparative suffering. It was an a-ha moment for me because there have been times when I didn’t want to share my true feelings because I was worried to bother another person who was going through what I perceive to be ‘much worse’. It was a lightbulb moment to recognize that you shouldn’t rank your struggle and that everyone deserves the chance to be heard.

    Great post.

    • Chivon,

      Thank you for sharing your Aha moment! You are so right, all of our struggles are important and we all need a chance to voice them. Thanks for reading and commenting on the post.


  3. Wow, Lynn, this was such a beautiful read and so serendipitous because my post too speaks about how I discovered how my son’s school admission woes helped me draw a parallel with my writing life.

    Eagerly awaiting more posts about the ‘secrets’.


    • Sonia Rao,

      Thanks for reading my post and responding. I’m catching up on my reading this weekend and I look forward to reading yours to find out what your Aha moment was! The next “secret” will be posted in a few days – I think you’ll appreciate the concept!


  4. I totally understand how the lack of creativity can become a problem. As a teacher, I put my whole self into my job, my students…I am proud of the job I do, but it leaves me feeling spent at times. This last year, I made the commitment to writing every day. I am amazed at what this has done for me. This creative outlet has become essential to my being. Even nights when I haven’t felt good, I have drug myself to the computer to keep my commitment to myself…It has been amazing…

    The Other Side of the Equation

    • Shannon,
      Isn’t it wonderful to be able to let creativity warm our souls? I’ve challenged myself in a few arenas over the last few months to let the words flow out of me and I have come to realize the benefits are infinite.

      Thank you for sharing and continue cultivating your creativity.


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