Gratitude thread for October

There’s a thread of gratitude that runs through my life.

Moments, big and small, that I’m grateful for. People and events that I give thanks for. They range from the small things I used to take for granted – a clean car thanks to the car cleaner who comes in early in the morning; a clean desk at work courtesy the office boys who stay back late to clean up our office space – to the larger events, like a month of good health for the husband and me after almost two months of illness.

As part of my evening ritual I spend some time journaling, which includes – on most days – a gratitude list. Over time, this simple activity has led to a tangible difference in the quality of my days. I find myself in a much more positive state of mind, and I’m able to weather the storms that come my way a little bit better.Continue reading

#TheMindfulBreak: It’s a wrap!

As I gather together my photographs from the mindful break project to compile them into an ebook, I’m blown away by the many small moments that I took the time to consciously witness. I’m struck, also, by the pictures that I did not take.

I had planned and written out most of the content for the ebook last month, so I had a fair idea of the quotes I would be including and the mindful practices I would be sharing with my peeps. Somewhere, at the back of my mind, I had a little checklist of the kind of images I would need to illustrate these quotes and practices. Now, as I look through the photographs that I do have, I find – at best – two or three photographs that were on my mental checklist, which tells me that this project took on a life of its own. And that is just as it should be.

Some of the photographs on my Instagram account from the mindful break project Continue reading

#TheMindfulBreak – it starts on Monday!

the-mindful-break-jon-kabat-zinn-mindfulness

As I was getting ready for the Mindfulness challenge, pulling together material for the Mindfulness ebook, this quote really stood out to me. I thought it would be helpful to share it with you, along with a few thoughts on what mindfulness is and how this campaign can {hopefully} help you become more mindful.

What is mindfulness?

It is simply being aware of the present moment, without judgements, without attachment to our thoughts, to the past or the future. It’s about being present.

Thoughts and feelings will continue to arise – that’s part of the human condition. But being aware that these thoughts and judgements do not define you, letting them arise and flow away and remaining centered in the present moment, is mindfulness.

How can you practice mindfulness?

Continue reading

Plumbing the darkest depths of my soul and living to tell the tale

Plumbing-the-darkest-depths-of-my-soul-and-living-to-tell-the-tale

Has this ever happened to you? Periods when you felt like you are drifting along, rudderless, without any ambitions or passions?

It happened to me. It lasted roughly 4-5 long years. Looking back, it was the worst period of my life.

I felt adrift, lost and confused; I had no ambitions and no passions. I can’t remember how many articles I read during that period – articles telling you how to find your passion, how to get up in the morning with boundless energy and raring to face the day. None of them helped. I felt like I was trapped in the darkest depths of my soul and there was no way out. Continue reading

#MicroBlogMondays: A little bit of crystal magic

I’ve been working closely with crystals recently.

After a recent workshop on crystal therapy, I decided to purchase a pendulum. As I rifled through all the crystals available – sun stones, rose quartz, jade – I found a beautiful purple amethyst that was begging to come home with me. While I was waiting for the store manager to ask him something before completing my purchase, I continued to idly rifle through the stones.

Amethyst pendulum

And then, I found another one.

A beautiful green and red crystal. The moment I held it, I knew it was meant for me.Continue reading

Personal stories and the art of the reframe

Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about personal stories. To be more precise, about the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves. And often, these stories are whiny stories, they’re negative stories, they’re stories of lack, of doubt, of fear.

But these stories don’t serve us in any way.

They only keep us stuck and afraid and operating on a very low frequency.

Continue reading

#MicroBlogMondays – On choosing inner work

figurative-landscape-waiting

Sometimes you have to choose between All The Things and the Quiet Things. The outer excitement and the inner work. It can be a hard choice at times. On the one hand you have exciting events, fun shopping trips, lunch dates with friends. On the other, you have quiet contemplation, shadow work, and uncovering of old wounds. But sometimes, you have to let the quiet win. The rewards are longer lasting and beautiful. At other times, do All The Things. It’s also all about balance!

Linking up with MicroBlog Mondays.

{K} Kintsugi: Adapting the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery to your {art} journal

Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer mixed with powdered gold or silver. As a philosophy, the belief is that the object is more valuable and beautiful with its history revealed.

But how can you adapt a pottery repair technique to your art journal?
By adapting Kintsugi as a transformative tool in your journal.

Continue reading

Moving into fear

Basic painted face

A quick face painted with acrylics

How do you deal with fear? A lot of people will tell you it’s only by moving into whatever it is that you fear that you can overcome it. But how do you move into what you fear? How do you go boldly (or not so boldly) ahead into a situation that gives you the shivers? I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t have a clue.

Then, I took up painting. And as I tried and experimented and failed and tried again, I realized – this is how you move into fear!

You move into fear by sticking with something even when you’re scared and have no idea what the hell you’re doing. It means taking a piece you don’t like and working it until you do. And if you still don’t like it, chalking it up to experimenting and experience, and then cutting it up to use as the base of another piece, so you can reframe and redo.Continue reading