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Inspirations from Kerstin Hack

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How to be creative – 10 Tipps

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My form of creativity. The arm of an old doll gets transformed into a toilet roll holder.

My friend Debbie, a wonderful clever and beautiful woman, a people – lover and worshipper of God told me that she would love to write more songs. She asked me for ideas how she could increase her creativity. Here they are.

1 Make it a habit to be creative (almost) every day

Write, paint, dance, draw etc. regularly. Even if it is only a little. That might sound boring, but the truth is: The more you practice the better you get. After all – Amazing grace was the result of John Newtons habit to write one song per week for his congregation. Discover what helps you and develop habits and routines that help you get into work/creative mode quickly – i.e. same spot, same place, same mug. You might find gems among the dust.

2 Detox from social media and other stuff 

Our brain is carving new stuff. If there is nothing new coming to us from the outside it will use its energy to come up with its own new ideas from the inside – i.e. it will start to be creative. Hence the “best ideas come in the shower-effect. If we constantly junk feed our brain with email, social media, noise etc. it will have no need and desire to come up with new thoughts and ideas. So detox regularly. Make sure you have enough boring times!

3. Care for your brain

The brain is an organ after all. It needs good, energizing nutrients (no, I do not mean Red Bull). You will not be able to do good work if your brain is deprived of sleep, oxygen, water and nutrients and a chance to go and pee.

4. Get moving

If you get stuck get unstuck by taking a break moving your body: walking, dancing… and yes, take care you are in a good body posture while you work. Bad posturer increases feelings of sadness and depression – usually not what you want to work from – unless you write depressing novels.

5. Fill your tank

Nobody can create from nothing. Only God. Maybe not even He worked from nothing – but from all that was in Him. In order to be creative we earthlings need fragments and pieces that we can combine in new ways. So: Get inspired. Take inspiration from others – a lot. But use only what is resonating with you and integrate it into your work.

6. Note all your fragments

Don´t wait for something magically complete to emerge. Use post-its and big pens – so that you see and can read the parts from a distance.

Ipad-holder made from leftover wood from ship-building.

Ipad-holder made from leftover wood from ship-building.

7. Work from the gut – later revise with the brain.

In the beautiful poetic language of German we say we do things “from the belly” when we allow stuff to flow from our innermost being. The belly needs some time to flow. Do not stop it in its flow. It is better to revise your work sometime later after a break.

8. Work from what moves you

Don´t try to write a song or paint a painting. Take time to feel and note what topics, issues, things move you right now. What fascinates you about life, God, people…? Work from there. Thus it will be your own. Find the topics that are on your heart. What have I been fascinated about!

9. Don´t multitask or jump to something else too quickly

When we get stuck or feel bored it is easier to jump to something else – stay there a little while… something new might develop out of that empty space.

10. Trust Gods Spirit in you and others. You are not alone in this creative journey. Pick up and work from what you feel the spirit of God is giving to you as inspiration – either directly or through the people around you. And yes let go of control and fear… what is in you is beautiful and it waits to come out.

Kerstin Hack, March 2017

What are your tipps and ideas to enhance creativity?

March 2014 – A Splendid Month

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This month has already begun splendidly with a day in Potsdam to reflect and pray – with many wonderful small encounters in between.

I am excited for everything that this month will bring. Of course, we never know what will happen and whether we’ll sprain our ankle or if something bad will occur. But, if everything goes according to plan, this will be a good, full month.

– Fitness program: In our world in general and when rebuilding a ship from the 50’s specifically, our livers often have to work very hard. For this reason, I am going to do a liver-cleanse (first a classic one with Glauber salt + grapefruit and oil, then later with milk thistle) and do a whole-body detox of a garlic-lemon tincture (sounds terrible, but it’s not so bad – and it’s antiviral and energizing).

– Learning new things: I wanted to participate in a class at the Kingly Garden Academy about how to create pots for plant seeding. I will need this in the future because I would like to grow as much food as possible myself on the ship. I misunderstood it – it was more like a vending event. But I still learned some things.

– Receiving inspiration: Transforum is taking place in Berlin on the 6-8 of March. This is a conference that occurs every two years and deals with the question of how we as Christians can positively shape our society. I am still thinking about many of the inspirations from the last Transforum. I am thankful for this inspiring conference – participation is free, by the way, in order for people who can’t afford it to participate. And people can decide to come last minute as well.

– Giving inspiration: After the women’s pamper days were so nice for both participants and speakers, we planned two sequels. On March 14 and May 9, the theme is „Spring into Abundant Life“ at 8pm in the Gemeindehaus des SV.  I am already excited to see the wonderful ladies again. In the afternoon, we are offering the option to book a coaching session with me – a special service for those for whom Berlin is too far away and telephone coaching is not a good option. At the end of March, there is another women’s cafe in Britz with me and the theme is SWING.

– Writing. There are several things laying on my desk. In addition to all of the organizational tasks that come with running the publishing company and building the ship, I’m writing two more inspirational booklets: Friendship and Grief. I would also like to begin work on the new online course, IDA – In deinen Armen.

– Ship: Of course: continue building with all my strength and as much wisdom as possible!

– Men-Teams on board: On March 14 (Treptow Church) and on March 22 (Lukas Church) a whole bunch of men are going to energetically help with the ship. I am looking forward to showing the ship to the „guys“ and making an impact with them! In addition, a „mixed“ team (1 man/1 woman) is coming for two days – also wonderful!

– Women in Paris. This is probably the biggest surprise. For months, I’ve been occupying myself with the life of Coco Chanel, probably the first modern woman who out of her own strength – she came from bitterly-poor circumstances – built a worldwide undertaking. The wish awoke in me to visit the places of her work, but it was more of an idea than a plan. With the ship, I have more than enough to do and to pay for. It was just a silly idea until I began to research pictures for the inspirational booklet. The pictures cost 180 Euros each! This is way over the budget. But we still need 3-4 expressive pictures. A plane ticket to Paris only costs 120 Euros – much cheaper. In addition, I haven’t taken a real vacation in over a year – if you don’t count the moving of the ship (4 days) and Antwerp (3 days during which I was ill!).

So, I asked a friend if she was interested in coming to Paris with me (she’d pay for herself). She wrote back, „For the past few weeks, I have been working on cleaning, organizing, and clearing out the house of my recently deceased great-aunt. I really need a change! And I have friends who have an apartment in Paris. They live in the middle of the city – only a 15 minute walk from the Chanel head office!“

Accordingly, I am looking forward to this exciting month!

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/allgemein/maerz-2014-ein-glaenzender-monat/#sthash.TQksvmSF.dpuf

Miracles Take a Little Longer

2014-02-05 16.23.55„Miracles take a little longer!” This is so easy to say when you aren’t waiting for one… yet it is wonderful when something occurs about which we can wonder…

One side of shipbuilding: Hard work

Building a ship is a lot of work. I putter around on the ship on any given 3 afternoons and on Saturdays. It also takes work to earn money. I do what I can to bring the required finances together. I rent out my guestroom, recycle bottles, sell used items and books, coach, hold seminars, and much more in order to earn money. Hard work is one side of the coin.

The other side of shipbuilding: Miracles that occur

A friend of mine who identifies as an atheist mentioned recently that as he noticed how often things that I prayed for happened, he began to wonder: „Until now, I have always just believed in coincidence, but in your case, it’s pushing the limits!“

A few miracles from the last couple of days:

– The money that I have earned, borrowed, and received as a gift has sufficed so far. Sometimes, like with the high wharf rent, it was really tight, but it has always been enough. I am so thankful for all of the big and small donations that have made this possible.

– I’ve been praying for several months that God would send me a ventilation engineer who can help me with the ventilation plans. A man from Ghana who studied ventilation in Spain and just came to Berlin looking for a job has contacted me and is now going to make the calculations and plans for me…

– On my list of things that I still need for the ship is „espresso machine for seminar operation.“ At the birthday party of my father, I told one of his friends about the ship without revealing any details about the needs. Suddenly, he asked, „Do you need an espresso machine?“ And he gave me a fancy, barely-used unit.

– Friends were telling a young woman about my ship. She has visited the sea for many years, loves ships, and currently has more free time than she’d prefer, and now, she’s getting involved with the ship…

Someone – was it Luther? – once said: “Pray as though you cannot work. And work as though you cannot pray.“ Absolutely!

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/erlebnisse/wunder-dauern-etwas-laenger/#sthash.IcpAcJd1.dpuf

Finishing the Ship: 10 More Weeks?!

2014-02-08 14.07.23There are only 10 or 11 weeks until the planned deadline at the end of April. It is ambitious but not impossible. Whether it’s possible I can’t yet say; it’s hard to tell exactly with construction projects. One thing is clear: we’ve made a lot of progress over the last weeks and months, despite some adversity. The whole ship is finally derusted and painted and the seminar room is almost finished. We’ve started with the substructure for the walls and the window frames under the deck. We’re making headway.

Since August, over 1000 hours of work have been put into the ship!!! About 90% was from people who gave a couple hours, days, or even weeks to help. The many motivated helpers have been a huge blessing and a large portion of the work doesn’t require technical knowledge or it can be learned quickly when someone explains things well. For the next phase (until finishing at the end of April), I will continue to need people who simply want to tackle it with me, although I will also need specialists for different things (ventilation, heating, electric, sanitation, etc.).

Including specialists, I still have about 800-1000 hours of work until the ship is finished. I myself work, when I am not travelling, about 30 hours per week on the ship: 5-10 hours of planning and the rest on-board. A carpenter friend who currently has free time and knows how to do everything (wood, welding, etc.) offered to work for me whenever he can for the next while. Of course, he still needs money to live on – 10 Euros per hour with legal receipts. I would love to hire him for 100 hours per month through the end of April.

I am searching for people who will help finance one or more of his work hours so that the progress on the ship continues. If you would like to contribute, you can donate via Betterplace, Paypal, or bank transfer. This would really help with my burden – and increase the chances of finishing soon.

Of course, just like before, helpers are warmly welcome and will be utilized.

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/hausboot-heart-of-berlin/zieleinlauf-schiff-noch-10-wochen/#sthash.dfYPvK1t.dpuf

Growing in Trust: Sad Answers to Prayer

Did I trust today? Yes! Trusting God – during and despite disappointment in humans During the first phase of renovation, I worked together with a shipbuilder who took responsibility for the work. He worked on many areas properly and well, but unfortunately not on all. In some areas, this is not so tragic: when new lacquer is laid over old lacquer on the ceiling and both come off together when someone hits their head against it, it’s annoying. However, when in the underwater areas of the ship rusty spots aren’t cleaned or insulated, it’s not just annoying, it’s life-threatening. Every rust spot is a source of danger if not treated. So my prayer in the last few months was that God would make me aware of all of the places that need to be reworked. I discovered a spot with black core rust in the seminar room in the keel of the ship and another further above. 2014-01-18 17.06.30Yesterday, someone helped me lay insulation. He didn’t get it stuck well in the corner, and I pulled the insulation up to show him how to do it properly. Suddenly, I didn’t just have the insulation in my hand but also a palm-sized piece of lacquer and rust. I almost cried. It is so frustrating when I can’t trust the work that someone else did (The black areas on the picture to the left are rust spots. The big black areas to the right are black insulation). Hier ist der - gerade erst 5 Monate alte - Lack schon wieder abgeblättert. Here it is – only 5 months old – lacquer already flaking. This morning as I was talking with God about it, it became clear to me: God is answering my prayer. I had asked Him to show me the areas that aren’t sound. The area yesterday was really a random find… normally rust hides well under white lacquer. Yes, I am sad that there are bad spots on the ship despite the performed and paid work, but I am thankful that we’ve already discovered some of the most critical spots. God has obviously answered my prayer. 2014-01-13 16.02.37 I am also thankful for the people who help me. Last week, my cousin derusted and oil-sealed about 15 square meters that according to my estimation and the opinions of multiple shipbuilders whom I asked hadn’t been worked on at all. Now, friends from Portugal are painting it again with primer, and then we can put on the insulation. The whole thing cost me three extra weeks of time and was very frustrating, but better safe than sorry. In short: I am sad that the situation is the way it is and thankful that God answered my prayers and thankful for the support of other people! I ask my God to comfort me about my experienced harm… and am excited to see what He comes up with! – See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/glaube/im-vertrauen-wachsen-traurige-gebetserhoerung/#sthash.CcHN4Gs4.dpuf

Growing in Trust: The Foundations for Trust

Stapel Bild0006Did I trust today? Yes! Above all, I trusted that I have enough time for taking breaks – despite or perhaps because I am currently in the middle of a writing marathon. A first milestone has been reached: the manuscript for the inspirational booklet about Coco Chanel is finished. I enjoyed being preoccupied with this fascinating woman. The next weeks will bring the following: an article about God’s promises, the quadro Lean and Fit, a lecture: Nonviolent Communication, another lecture: Spirituality and Psychology. Then two more inspirational booklets: Friendship and Grief. Although I enjoy writing and do so quickly, this is still a lot of work. Oh yea, I’m building a ship on the side which means all kinds of organizational work. The Foundations for Trust I recently asked myself what the foundations for my trust in God are. The basics for me are these four things:

  • – God is good and trustworthy in His essence.
  • – God is powerful and can shape and change situations (even if He doesn’t always do so).
  • – God is relational. He want’s to be close to me.
  • – God is task-oriented. He wants to cause good things in this world.

Upon these cornerstones, I can anchor my trust:

  • Because God is good, I can trust that He is also good to me.
  • Because He is powerful, I can trust that He can also act for me.
  • Because He is close to me, I can feel secure.
  • Because He wants to affect things in the world, I can trust that He will help me in the tasks with which He has entrusted me.

This doesn’t mean that I expect everything in life to go smoothly. That would be a delusion. God is powerful, but He limits His power within the boundaries of the personal responsibility of people and the expectation of being invited to act (Christians call this invitation „prayer“). – See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/glaube/im-vertrauen-wachsen-die-basis-fuer-vertrauen/#sthash.dyKesEZQ.dpuf

Joint Effort 2013

A few days ago, I discussed with a good friend about which word could be used to describe the year 2013. My word for 2013 is “effort!” This year was an effort.

I had to reconcile five jobs:

  • – Publisher
  • – Author
  • – Coach
  • – Speaker
  • – Shipbuilder

Then there were still a handful of challenges to overcome:

  • The flooding of the ship in January
  • The unexpectedly high wharf costs
  • The difficulties with transporting the ship
  • A long time of illness within the publishing team
  • A stupid chronic cold

Short and sweet: It was a handful of life and a handful of challenges: a real effort. I am thankful that I overcame them, which wasn’t only because of me alone. I estimate that so far over 50 people have practically helped with the ship for a few hours, days, or even weeks. Over 250 different people have made the shipbuilding possible through small and large donations. Even when I try to do as much as I can myself, I would never have accomplished it alone.

So I am thankful that this year, which was a real effort, was so well managed and is mostly behind me now. I am excited for 2014, which will surely also be a bit of effort but will hopefully also bring me closer to the fulfillment of my dreams.

 

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/erlebnisse/gemeinsamer-kraftakt-2013/#sthash.f55e7iUY.dpuf

Discovering Life – Ants and Kings

IMG_0220Was I alive today?

Yes!

What new thing did I learn about life?

From a report via a television program on the topic the beauty of women: Lebanese women are considered the most beautiful women of the Near East because of their facial features and figures – my German-Lebanese friend told me about it. They spend tremendous amounts of time and energy on creating and maintaining their beauty and go, when they can afford it, to the salon around three times per week. In a society where the ratio of women to men is 3:1 (many young men work abroad), enormously high competition reigns. 90% of all women choose to have their children via cesarean section, because they see it as safer and less beauty-threatening than natural birth. Right now, the young women who are educated are finding themselves in conflict regarding whether they want to continue to „play the game,“ but they often don’t have a choice.

What new thing did I learn about myself?

Sometimes it bothers me when I compare myself to how things should be done – and I find it wonderful when God then says to me, „You are good enough.“ There are people who can plan things to the smallest detail – I am not one of them. I can only approach things in stages and layers.

Once in a while, people criticize me for the way I am approaching things with the ship, „Kerstin, you should first contract with engineering consultants to draw up a complete plan before you proceed.“ „You should contract with a ship-builder…“ etc.

My good friend, with whom I am currently enjoying a few restful days, prayed this morning and asked God what He would like to say to me. She felt like she should read Proverbs 6. Among other things, she read, „The ants are self-organized, have no king, yet still fill their barns!“

She felt like God wanted to say to me, „Kerstin, there are work teams that don’t have a king to tell them what to do. With your ship project, you have teams that more or less organize themselves. And that is OK! That’s also a possibility. And you will reach your goal and ‚fill your barn.'“

That really encouraged me. I don’t need to be anything other than myself… I am allowed to be how I am… and my God deals and works with me in my fashion. How incredibly comforting!

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/erfolg/leben-entdecken-ameisen-und-koenige/#sthash.qe0ztKJQ.dpuf

Discovering Life – God has Outdone Himself Again

2013-12-21 17.59.59Was I alive today?

Yes! I am thankful that my biggest wish is being fulfilled and also that the first layer of insulation is up in the engine room before Christmas. Now, the cold (if it comes) isn’t a huge threat anymore.

What new thing did I learn about life?

It is amazing and full of surprises.

What new thing did I learn about myself?

I have a lot of fantasy and imagination. I think I’m creative in my solutions. Yet, sometimes God does things that surpass my wildest fantasies, and that means something.

His last coup: I had prayed for several months for a real electrician who could support me in the whole electric installation (about which I am clueless). This was one of the things that gave me the most stomachaches. When I have a stomachache about something, I pray and ask God for help.

His answer: He sent me an electrical engineer who is also a trained boat builder with a passion for ships. A few months ago, he found his way through gospel music that deeply moved him to the God about whom they were singing. My project is composed of many things that relate to him: his abilities and passions and his new journey with God. He is now helping me with the planning and will support me as much as he can within the limits of his possibilities (he is self-employed)… It doesn’t get better than that.

Icing on the cake: The only time that was possible for him to see my ship for the first time (he lives further away) was Saturday morning. The only time that worked for the man who is going to build the solar system for the ship was Saturday morning. So they came at the same time and planned things out so that everything works together. Some of it was Greek to me, and I had some things translated for me into layman’s terms, but it sounded really good.

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/erlebnisse/leben-entdecken-gott-hat-sich-mal-wieder-selbst-uebertroffen/#sthash.MVMauP5m.dpuf

Discovering Life – Side by Side

2013-12-18 08.07.30Was I alive today?

Yes! Experiencing a sunrise on the ship was wonderful!

What new thing did I learn about life?

There are rarely „purely“ wonderful or terrible times. Most of the time, life is a good mixture. Today, I was on the ship pretty early in order to welcome a helper… I am so thankful that Bernd (the third person I know who is named Bernd!) is helping me to remove over a hundred fishplates so that we can install insulation.

In addition, I am thankful that so many different people are currently helping me practically or supporting me with small or large contributions via bank transfers, Paypal, and Betterplace, which help me to purchase the necessary materials to finish the ship.

Last but not least, I am thankful that we have removed most of the fiberglass that proved itself unsuitable for insulating non-flat surfaces onboard. A piece of it is now insulating a hut in which a homeless man has found shelter. Another piece is helping a young man to save on his heating bill, because his landlord doesn’t want to insulate the attic, and he was heating all the way to the roof.

2013-12-18 09.39.36Only – as we saw the steel under the fiberglas, I was shocked. I had expected to find good anti-rust paint underneath, but what I found was approximately 18 square meters of steel covered in a light coating of rust. The world isn’t going under and neither is the ship (not yet!!!), but it is a new problem.

What new thing did I learn about myself?

I feel emotions faster and can accept them sooner than I used to. If such a situation had occurred in the past, I would have said, „We’re tackling this; let’s get rid of it!“ This is the first thing I thought today as well. Then I noticed relatively quickly that I also had a few feelings that wanted to come out: disappointment, sadness, frustration. So, I swallowed a few little tears and then said, „Now, I’m tackling this…“

I experience this as more consistent, healthy, and authentic.

– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/allgemein/leben-entdecken-nebeneinander/#sthash.ROeMWNkZ.dpuf

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