We live in challenging times. The world is complex and full of too much fear, hatred and violence. Our lives have become cluttered with a proliferation of information, products and choices that often overwhelm instead of simplify. Instead of stepping to the side to observe a situation, we are too often swept up by the drama and become part of the problem.

Terrorists, war, economic uncertainty and a host of hot-button issues fill our thoughts daily through the widespread and powerful influence of the media. Living paycheck to paycheck is a reality for many. Credit cards still tease us as an easy solution. I could fill pages with the challenges we face, but you know them personally.

The good news is that this is an exciting time in which to be living. All that was swept under the rug in the past is now being exposed. The dysfunctional elephant in the room is sitting in the recliner smoking his pipe and will stare us down until we clean up our act and clear him out. As long as he stays, we stay in the drama.

Self-responsibility can no longer be denied — in fact, it should be welcomed, for the view beyond the drama is exhilarating. There you will find a world that operates in perfect order and harmony.

When you begin to align at a conscious level with the higher laws that are running the universe you begin to know peace. Then, when challenges and tough times confront you, you have the ability to calmly tap into inner guidance.

Easier said than done? Of course, because it requires strength of mind, body and spirit to consciously choose a higher path. It requires surrender and the relinquishing of the ego that believes it is the throne of creativity and power.

Most of all, it requires a humble spirit that bows in awe of such grace that would bestow us with the privilege of allowing universal power and creativity to flow through us.

Use it wisely.

Susan Ann Darley is a creativity coach and writer who works with artists, creatives and entrepreneurs to re-energize their careers and redesign their personal lives. Click here to read her blog. Follow her on Twitter: @Coach7700. For more information, click here, e-mail her at susan@susananndarley.com or call 805.845.3036.