Peaceful (and Flower-A-Day Update)

“Peaceful” Creativity Journey drawing day 26 of 40

Yesterday I finished my flower-a-day for a year “challenge”*! Even though they only took about 10 or 15 minutes each, it feels like a lot of daily creative energy has been freed up for other things. Am considering making an art print or poster as a celebration/memento.

Didn’t keep up with the posts about it, though, just to #184. (Links below.)

A Flower A Day Challenge: 30 Day Milestone

A Flower A Day Challenge: 60 Day Milestone

A Flower A Day Challenge: 90 Day Milestone

A Flower A Day Challenge: 120 Day Milestone

Flower A Day #121 thru #137

Flower A Day #137 thru #152

Flower A Day #153 thru #168

Flower A Day #169 thru #184

Thanks for stopping by,

Monica

*I no longer resonate with that word.

Waking Up and then Waking Up Some More

“Waking Up and then Waking Up Some More” Creativity Journey 24/40

I’m back to my Creativity Journey after a couple days off due to digestive issues and a general feeling of unwell. It’s been a wake up call – to be more discerning about the food I eat, certainly. And after the first couple of days, it’s been feeling like a transitional state, too. A “caterpillar to butterfly” kind of thing.

What am I trying to digest? Information about the current state of things. Lots of data points and related opinions. What else? I feel like there is something and I don’t know quite what. Yet.

“Something is happening, but you don’t know what it is, do you, Mr. Jones?”

Bob Dylan

Unlike Mr. Jones, perhaps, I believe I will understand better at some point. Some subconscious part of me probably already does.

It’s occurred to me that I’m finding more purpose in my art. People are saying important things through their roles, people who have become more aware and have then ventured back in more unconventional ways. Nutritionists, scientists, etc. I can do this with my art to. Am doing it a little more each day.

Wishing everyone some (or a lot of) happiness or even joy on their journey today. If you are skeptical, I encourage you to take a peek and see if there is a little to find here and there. Like the flowers that grow in the cracks of the sidewalk.

Monica

Suggested Daily Routine

“1. find your center.” Creativity Journey drawing 22 of 40

Suggested daily routine:

  1. Find your center.

Repeat as necessary throughout the day.

🌼🌼🌼

And since I didn’t post it yet, here’s yesterday’s drawing:

“Unique Offering” Creativity Journey drawing 21 of 40

Finding My Voice

“Virus Replacement” Creativity Journey Drawing 20/40

I can’t remember exactly when I lost my voice, probably in my early childhood, perhaps age 5 or so. And, yes, I mean metaphorically.

I have an early memory of being outdoors – at some sort of summer party – and my mother scolding me for something I said. “You shouldn’t say things like that.” I don’t know if this is a true memory – I see it as an observer of both my mother and myself. In a way, it’s an accurate one.

As I grew, my learning expanded to other areas: the importance of being a “people pleaser,” how to be invisible in groups, and how to do well in school. Getting good grades gave me additional value in my family system. (I am not meaning to assign blame as I truly have gotten past that and into the area of forgiveness.)

There may have been a few times that I did speak out in the years between then and now. (I’m currently in my 50s.) I think they were quite rare. Because of my childhood “lessons,” it was almost always a beyond-scary proposition.

I have been concerned (read: terrified) of what others will think of me. Will they hate or abandon me because I don’t agree with them? I have also been concerned with making mistakes that I’d have a hard time correcting or sometimes even apologizing for. This is a weird one because I do often apologize – probably more than I need to, and yet there are other times I find it nearly impossible to do so. I have been concerned with making “stupid” statements. I have been concerned with not always appearing perfect down to my use of grammar, wording, spelling, or the Oxford comma 😉. I have been afraid of being “seen” – not being that invisible child anymore – because it is a huge unknown to me, be the outcome negative or positive.

And in these recent posts, I’ve delved into the area of expressing myself more and more, little by little. Before that, I had made some progress in not caring what others think. I did this by self-soothing and considering other perspectives. Then I realized that every time I entered a higher level mood state, I cared less than usual about others opinions. This was a nice thing to learn. With these blog posts, I’ve been walking around the edge of the lake, so to speak, and dipping my toes in here and there.

I still have far to go. I think my posts can be vague. There is more I feel I need to, or at least want to say. I think my viewpoint matters with respect to current events. Even if not, it’s important to be more open just for me and my personal growth.

It’s progress. And I want to go further with it. And I think that’s enough for today.

Thanks for “listening” and thanks for stopping by.

Monica

Intuition is a Credential

“Intuition is a Credential” drawing for day 19 of 40 of my Creativity Journey

I had a couple blog ideas but nothing felt very solid today. So here’s the drawing. The title, “Intuition is a Credential,” says a lot, IMHO.

And here’s yesterday’s (Sunday’s) drawing, too.

“Finding My Way Home” drawing for day 18 of 40 of my Creativity Journey

Finding Equanimity in Difficult Times, aka Wherein Lies Your Greatest Power?

“seeking the calm within” Creativity Journey 17/40

Recently, I’ve been having trouble finding my “happy place.” This comes after several days in a pretty consistent higher mood state, which was thrilling as it’s something I’ve been seeking for years. The current news and situation, however, has been getting to me. For the purposes of this post, I think it’s best not to go into my viewpoint in detail. Everyone who reads this will have a different perspective and find different things upsetting. What follows applies in any case.

While I realize some may find this antithetical, even bizarre, I believe true solutions always start from within. And that finding calmness and/or higher mood states (happiness, contentment) is the first step to accessing the right answers and next steps. Abraham-Hicks suggest there is “the power that creates worlds” in “connection with source.” Depending on the person, source could be God or Universe or whatever-that-place-is-where-intuition-has-the-answers. This is personally meaningful to me.

If you don’t buy into the above woowooness, though (or even if you do), here’s another perspective. It seems we make our best decisions from a place of calm. Even if a situation makes you rage or puts you into a state of terror, isn’t it better to calm down a bit before acting?

So here’s a question. Why is it that there are so many sensationalist headlines showing up in the news these days? (And, for those deciding to step away from the mainstream and seek alternate opinions – the fearmongering is there as well.) Yes, these headlines will throw in a scientific “fact” here and there, but that does NOT mean they are scientific. My take is that if your first reaction is intense emotion – terror, anger (rage), self-righteousness (smugness), then maybe these news stories aren’t designed to present the science. Best to take a step back, at least, and consider the “information” in a more even-tempered state before taking any action.

For a while now, I have been seeing the obvious “leaders” adding to the fear. Is this right? Or would you prefer leadership that is based on calm and authenticity? I would! And yeah, there are some who are stepping up to the plate in this regard. Perhaps we need even more. Perhaps we need everyone who is willing to take the next braver step to go ahead and keep going. Perhaps that means me. Perhaps that means you.

If you think you might be among those being called to leadership, I urge you to develop your inner connection first. To find some peace-of-mind, if you need to. And work from there.

If you are unsure how to go about this, I first and foremost suggest meditating. And if you balk at that, if you just can’t sit still, then is there anything in your life that has worked in the past? I think taking long, slower paced walks (which I have recently been doing) is wonderful for this. Running or biking could be great. Getting out in a natural setting can be wonderful. These are just a few of many possible ideas.

A step toward mind and body calming activities may mean a step away from those that jar the senses and emotions: social media, texting without boundaries, movies, “tv” shows, etc., etc. Also, while substances such as alcohol, drugs, and comfort foods can get us in the right state, I don’t think these are the answer. IMHO, they are OK to partake in sometimes, just not to be relied upon to feel good.

This is a post I needed to write for myself. I hope it’s helpful for others as well.

Wishing you all a day of increased peace, calm, and clearer and better direction.

Monica

Restoring Energy

“Energy” Creativity Journey drawing day 16 of 40

Have been resting a lot over the last couple of days and plan to continue. Seeking energy restoration, which perhaps means finding internal reserves, or “natural resources” if you will.

I thought it’d be nice, though, to do a recap of my Creativity Journey drawings so far. Day 16 – so a nice number for a gallery view. And I’ll add links and a slideshow further below, too.

First, here’s a standalone view of yesterday’s drawing, because I didn’t do that yet.

Creativity Journey day 15 of 40 (Untitled)

OK, and now for the recap:

Blog Post Links:

Slideshow version below. (And, if this still looks weird in WordPress Reader, my apologies. This was an issue a while back and I don’t know if it’s been corrected.)

Thanks for stopping by and taking a look. Wishing each of you a day with just the right amount of energy.

Monica

dobedobedobedo

“dobedobedobedo” Creativitty Journey 14/40

Shortly after starting today’s drawing, it started to feel all “up in the air” or ungrounded. So I did my best to give it groundedness, first by adding the flower pots, and then all the things connected to the baseline near the bottom – mountains, hearts with tethers, etc. To me, it still has a bit of a frenetic feel and that’s OK because it’s a good message.

Yesterday, I was heavily into doing mode. And while it was great to get a lot done, I think I ventured too far into an ungrounded state. I got caught up in a certain news story, which on reflection is something that may or may not happen and even if it does may not affect me much. But I couldn’t see that yesterday. So, for me today, it’s back to more “being.”

Some of you may recognize the phrase “dobedobedobedo” from the lyrics of Frank Sinatra. I also know about it from the teachings of Tara Brach. My understanding is that “dobedobedobedo” (Do, Be, Do, Be, Do, Be, Do) means taking time to “just be” between actions.

Meditation is the obvious way to do this. I think any type of stillness activity will do. (Minus the device, OK, and also minus the book or other reading material. Sorry/not sorry!)

Abraham-Hicks suggests something similar – meditate – a mere 15 or 20 minutes in the morning – and then take “inspired action.”

I could write more. Truly I want my today to be more about being mode, so I will soak in the message and “let go” of wanting to explain further, at least for now.

Wishing you all some time to “just be” today, even if 5 minutes is all you can spare.

Monica

What Level Are You At?

“Levels” Creativity Journey Drawing 12/40

What level are you at? That’s a bit of a trick question in two ways: a. I’m talking about life, not video games, and b. I don’t think it matters nearly as much as people think.

Many people are trying to get to the next level at something. Could be the next level of wealth – becoming a millionaire, becoming a billionaire, getting out of debt. Could be spirituality – even more enlightened and non-dualistic! Or health related – losing weight, running the 5k a little faster, being able to run a 10k instead of a 5k. And so on.

Sometimes the levels are more of achieving an expected life stage – getting married, having a child, having more children, etc. Levels are very important to many of us.

Back to the video game reference. I am not into “gaming.” However, I have gotten caught up in “Candy Crush” at least a couple of times. And in that game, the levels don’t really change much as one gets more advanced. Yeah, they tend to get more difficult and there are new things added here and there. The essence of the game remains the same.

Maybe that’s how it is in life, too. While the term “level” implies better, I think that’s the ego talking. Getting better at things – reaching higher levels – can feel very enjoyable (or not), but it doesn’t actually make some people better than others. A billionaire that just went into space is no better than a drug addicted homeless person on the street.

That might be hard to take – it is for me, too. Of course we don’t want to see people suffer. It’s just that ego can make us get caught up in something untrue – that because of our life situation, we are superior to some and inferior to others.

I remember once reading something about “enlightenment.” I think it was written by Ram Dass – not 100% sure. Whoever wrote it said that some people, through meditation or whatever, only reach a low level of enlightenment and then stop there and enjoy life and family, etc., more than they might have before. And others keep going and “awaken” to higher and higher levels.

For a long time, I thought this sounded egoic. Now I am wondering if he meant what I am trying to say, too. That although the word “level” implies superiority, it’s all good (as the saying goes).

“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everyone rushes around in a great panic as if it were so necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.”

Alan Watts

I think the desire to achieve is natural. Perhaps the best thing is to not take it so seriously – to have more fun and enjoy the journey.

Wishing you all some happy steps on your journey today. (And for those of you wondering where Sunday’s drawing went to, I’ve added it below.)

Monica


“Happy Sunday” Creativity Drawing 11/40