Fiona writes: Today I’m honoured to be welcoming a hero of mine to our site…
Brad Blanton was trained in Gestalt Therapy by Fritz Perls, M.D., Ph.D., the founder of Gestalt Therapy, and in hypnosis by Milton Erickson, M.D.
His first book, Radical Honesty: How To Transform Your Life By Telling The Truth, became a nation-wide bestseller in 1996 and has been translated into nine languages. He now lives in Stanley, Virginia, where he spends his time writing, farming, community organizing and conducting seminars in Radical Honesty. To read more about Brad and his trail-blazing work, click here.
Thank you for your time, Brad, and welcome to Writing Our Way Home. What drives your creative work?
As a result of how I was raised I wanted to help people. The first half of my life I did that reactively as an activist and by getting a Ph.D. when I was 25 years old in Psychology, specializing in Cognition and Creativity. About 25 years ago or so I decided to live my life as an act of creation rather than a reaction to how I was raised. I came to understand that there is a big difference between using what you learned in your early life as a creator, and just living in reaction to it, either predictably acting according to how you were raised or the opposite to how you were raised. Using and modifying the technology I learned from numerous sources, which is gone into in more detail in my book Practicing Radical Honesty, I have consciously designed my life each year by writing up the projects of my life, making them consistent with my life purpose (by either changing the projects or changing the purpose of my life). So I have three children, seven books, good physical health, a couple of divorces, another marriage, a house, a yurt, land in the country, several Promenades, a respectable golf handicap, some songs and poems and articles and hundreds of radio and TV shows and a few dozen other things–that were originally written up as projects, whose vision statements were consistent with this Life Purpose Statement: “The purpose of my life is to use my intelligence, love of children, love of people, creativity and skill in attuning to others by writing books, conducting seminars, doing publicity, raising children and grandchildren and playing with others to bring about a world in which every human being born on the planet has food, shelter, medical care, security and the opportunity to live an entire lifetime of play with and service to others.”
What would you say to yourself if you could go back in time and meet yourself at the beginning of your creative career?
Keep doin what you’re doin. It will turn out O.K.
How do you keep creating when things get difficult?
I can always write. I have never really had a writer’s block. I write all the time. I either write emails or work on books or edit drafts already written. I love doing all of it. Now and then a poem or song will start writing me so I follow it. A writer writes.
How does your creative work affect the rest of your life?
I think it is what my life is. It is hard to imagine not creating. I can’t imagine a life without creating. The last few days I have created some fine golf shots, a tomato patch, a solution to car trouble, about a hundred emails, a bunch of phone calls, some fine mixed drinks, some renditions of songs I learned or wrote a long time ago, some conversations with friends online and in person about the March on Washington on October 6, the outline of a book on the Truth of Experience to co-author, several Skype conversations, getting the wash done, etc.
What is it like to send your work out into the world? That is fun. It also inspires me constantly to hear from people who have benefitted from what I wrote or taught in a seminar or coached. It is like riding on a sea of support and encouragement. There is a constant invitation out there to keep on keeping on with what I am doing, a lot of joy and enjoyment, and a lot of funny things happening all the time. For example, we have just made an executive decision here at Radical Honesty Enterprises to attempt to educate the poor ignernt persons who are stupid enough to vote Republican or for ass kissing corporate Democrats, with t shirts! Our first one, being printed this week, is: “I DON’T NEED SEX! A Giant Corporate “Person” FUCKS Me Every Day!”
What was the best advice anyone gave to you?
It’s O.K. to feel sorry for yourself. You’ve had some hard times. Other people have too. It’s O.K. to feel sorry for all of us including yourself. Let yourself grieve for all of us.
What helps you to pay attention to the world?
Work coaching people, one on one, with couples or in groups. Meditation. Yoga. Pot. Alcohol. Golf. Hot Tubs. Sex. The Dailey Show with Jon Stewart. The Internet. Exercise. The Love of Children. Modeling myself after 4 year olds.
Thank you Brad. So grateful that you’re doing what you’re doing in the world : )