One can have no smaller or greater mastery than mastery of oneself.
—Leonardo da Vinci

Remember recent experiences of excitement and childlike joy with new experiences, such as with nature, traveling to a new country, or engaging a new idea.

Mastery retains the spirit of our beginner’s mind, as we experience things in childhood with an openness, a first time freshness without preconceived ideas and developed notions influenced by others, when we were totally receptive to new information.

One of the ultimate impediments to creativity is when a successful process becomes a paradigm, an established procedure. Subsequently, the paradigm and a lifeless set of techniques are followed that then move from new and vibrant to conformity and rote procedure.

The desire to fit into the needs or wants of others, to accumulate all the voices internalized from others, including parents and significant others without amalgamating and transforming them into your own voice creates conformity.

To consistently oppose positions or authority, to counter convention or rules, are an antithesis of mastery, as each embody an external point of reference.

Both opposition and conformity occupy the same prison.

Creating a new story can reengage that beginner’s mind. We do that by remaining open, asking questions, embracing childlike excitement and playful approach, and thinking beyond words and limitations. This creative reverie accesses preverbal and unconscious forms of mental activity that generates surprising ideas and creativity. We must sustain the risk of failing and the anticipation of being criticized in order to expand beyond the familiar and habitual way of thinking. Hindrances to this process include a pressure to produce results, a need to generate profits, or a fear of inadequacy or non-productivity.

A powerful sense of purpose and passion can sustain setbacks and failures. A deep-rooted interest sustains the rigors of hard work to get to creative action. It allows you to surpass doubters, critics, non-believers.

Creative brainstorming, to allow imagination to soar, catalyzes imagination and intuition. Deduction and logical thought are components of a different mindset, not to be interspersed with this creative time. Each is valuable, yet each is a different state of mind, much like creative writing and editing.