February 16


My Obligation to Compelling Creativity!

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Compelling creativity? Regardless of the cement that may be holding us back, we all have an obligation to seek opportunities for compelling creativity.

About cement: it is a very useful thing in the right place, for the right purpose.  

  • It is great for paving a sidewalk so we can walk and run and skate and draw with chalk.  
  • It’s great for pouring footings for a structure to be built upon,  so our house or store doesn’t sink and collapse.  
  • It is not; however, a good covering for children and other living things.  

So do we have that, now?

Cement as building material = good.  

Cement as a child’s sweater = bad.

Compelling Creativity

We are born from creativity; therefore, we are creative.  A sunflower seed does not fall to the ground and grow a duck.  We enter the world and are the same in kind as that from which we came – and then the paintbrush loaded with fear starts applying the cement.

I came from good people who lived through the Great Depression and World War II as children and young adults.  Their intentions were for my good and I understand and appreciate that.   Looking back on it now, I see that so very much of the decision-making in our home was fear-based.  

The only way my mom knew how to bring in an income was to work in an office – so I grew up thinking art classes were a waste of time.  She probably never said that, but that’s the impression I got – so I never took art classes.   My dad worked long hours, leaving before sun-up and getting home after dark.  

He was grateful to have a job – and probably fearful in the background from watching scores of people without jobs, without food, and without hope during those awful pre-war years.  When he retired, he had weeks of unused vacation days.  He was a loyal company man and a great provider.  I am so very grateful for them, and for their love and provision for me.

Under the Cement

But, under the cement, my heart beats for music, for dance, for visual creativity, and although I have not a great singing voice, I love to sing.  

compelling creativity

And as a child of the 1970’s – when Disco was king – I love to dance.  So, I’m grateful for a very loud worship band at church, where I can sing and not offend by being off-key, and I love my Jazzercise classes, where I can dance, and if I “grapevine left” instead of right – they love me anyway!  I’ve always loved photography and with technology, I can create beautiful, visual art which I share with friends and family.

Sometimes I look back and say, “I wish I would have done ____ years ago.”  

But back then, my old blueprint and the cement didn’t give me permission to do something that might not be “safe”.   I remember an old commercial for Arbor Day or somesuch – “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago.  The next best time is today.”  

Grateful for MKE

I’m so very glad for the Master Key Experience (MKE) showing me how to chip away at the cement and to have the life I was created to have.

One of my favorite quotes from the Charles Haanel’s Master Key System is:

Thought is a spiritual activity and is therefore creative, but make no mistake: thought will create nothing unless it is consciously, systematically, and constructively directed; and herein is the difference between idle thinking, which is simply a dissipation of effort and constructive thinking, which means practically unlimited achievement.

Haanel, Master Key System (13:23)

Join the MKE community in compelling creativity and unlocking the life you were meant to live!

To read more from Nancy, check out her blog.

Read more articles by Nancy Ottinger

About the author

Nancy brings a wealth of life and health-care industry experience to her role as a successful and sought-after Master Guide. For over seven years, she has supported and encouraged dozens of MasterKey members to claim their best life. Her members include best-selling authors to best-loved Grandmas, whatever the member's bliss, Nancy's ready to guide them as they discover their true selves!

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  • Hi Nancy, I can so much relate with your story, as my parents were teenagers during world war II, and I spent quite some time with my four grand-parents too until I was a young adult…It took me to my mid-forties to start realizing how much cement I had accumulated during my childhood, and this awareness came as a hilarious event: I just had my first week in a group training, when the teacher invited us to do something out of our comfort zone for the next class; I decided to not shave my face that day and to wear an old Jeans with a hole in the left knee…When I entered the class I felt so ashamed that I dared not look at my fellow students, until the teacher asked me what I had done to leave my comfort zone…I then realized that nobody had noticed the hole in my Jeans and my two day beard…Now, when I read your great post about compelling creativity and I thought of that funny episode, I realized that I had created the concept of wearing a Jeans with holes in it in public several years before it became a fashion worldwide 😊 Gasp, I just have to create a time machine, thanks Nancy to have shown me a new way to abundance! 😉

  • Nancy, your blog touch my heart in many ways. The first way was in your first paragraph-“We are born from creativity; therefore, we are creative. A sunflower seed does not fall to the ground and grow a duck. We enter the world and are the same in kind as that from which we came – and then the paintbrush loaded with fear starts applying the cement.” You are so right in your thought here. We are all born with creativity, gifts, and the desire to grow. It’s sad that we allow school, the paintbrush loaded with fear, people to start applying the cement and conforming us into a box of “you should be this or you should do that”. I’m glad that you looked for other options to develop your music skills, your voice, and your inner joy for dance. You are an awesome lady filled with so much richness and wisdom. Thanks for sharing your fascinating thoughts.

  • Great blog post Nancy! I can really relate to that, having grown up with my little sister and single mother. She was really not so worried about money but in her mind she just presumed that she ought to fight as a single mother with responsibility for her daughters and that as a single mother she would always be short of money. Life was a struggle. Period. Today when we talk and I tell her stories that I go for my heart, using money for courses and educations I love, she always expresses worries, wondering if I maybe better should save some of my money for bad days to come. I always answer her: There is never a bad day for me!

  • You are so right, Nancy! We must deny the cement and allow our true selves to shine and create as we were created to do!

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