Posts Tagged ‘creating’

This month, my article focused on understanding what we want out of life and why we want it, so I thought I would share one of mine….

Several years ago I knew an important want in my life was to start painting again.  I wanted art, painting, creativity to once again become an integral part of my life.  How did that look?  At first my thoughts were to take classes, buy supplies, have a subject to paint, have a space in my home to paint with all materials at the ready

I knew what I wanted to create and the actions to make it happen.  The anchor to get me moving – was why.

For me the why is value of beauty, capturing nature, colors.  It is the need for expression of emotion and creativity.  It serves as a stress reliever for when in the flow I am calmer, more present, in another space entirely.

Do I paint every day?  No I don’t, but I have everything at the ready when inspiration or need for expression surfaces.


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Several years ago I was completing some exercises as I was embarking on career and life exploration of my own.  One of exercises asked me to write my 20 year vision.  My first reaction?  20 years?? At the time I found it easy to plan my weeks and months, even loosely knowing what I wanted to accomplish that year, but the next 20??

After a brief challenge of wrapping my head around the concept that I could plan that far ahead, I began to imagine what I wanted my life to be like 5 years from then, 10 years, 15 – and I was able to get to 20.  So I sat at the table on my deck and began to write, letting my imagination run free, thinking about my big goals and dreams – especially those that had lain dormant for a while.

It was fun, soon the ideas began to flow so much so that a giddiness took over.  Could this really happen – I asked myself?  Why not I answered.  And that marked the beginning of my life and career transformation.

Now it’s your turn.  Whether you want to focus on 1 year, 5, 10 or 20 – begin to let your imagination run free – remember the dreams of your childhood, uncover those you never dared dream and create a realm of possibility currently beyond your imagination.  Then take it to paper, letting all your thoughts form words and images.

Your vision for the future is limited only by your imagination!

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Most of you know that I love painting – you may have seen some of them in the Journal of Possibility I created.

This creative journaling is something different for me.  You see, when I painted, I would always paint a picture, sometimes watercolor, sometimes acrylic.  I always wondered what to do with all of of the small paintings I made.  There are only so many I can put on the wall and I didn’t want to put them away, I like looking at them.

I had never experimented with creative journaling until a few months ago.  I started as a way to prompt me to write my thoughts and emotions, gain clarity about an issue, and a place to capture beautiful quotes or passages from books that move me.  Writing on white paper is not inspiring to me, so I began using watercolor to paint the pages of a blank journal I bought.   This brought the pages to life and made them inviting to write on.

I then started adding some of my paintings to the journal, adding more creative touches and backgrounds.  Now I am finding images from magazines that move me and adding them as a collage.

Having a journal (or now several) that I am working on inspires me to paint or create almost every day.  Here is a picture of my workspace.  I leave everything out or within arms reach.

How do you journal?

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It has been a while since I have written, painted or read much.  My creative/meditative time lately has been focused on home improvement projects.   We have changed some surfaces, rearranged what we have to breathe new life into it and of course treasure hunted for some great finds!

I realize that while I crave variety in my days/weeks, I am often singly focused when I’m working on a special project and go through cycles where my creative passions shift.

What brings me into each new cycle?  For painting, its when the mood and inspiration strikes, usually when I have a reason to paint and something to paint.    Since I love to learn, my cycle of learning/reading shows up often when I’ve had great conversations with friends or colleagues about a topic I want to learn more about.  That leads to exploring other things I want to learn and just reading for pleasure.   Writing is more challenging for me.  It’s not something I love but something that I love having done.  When I see, hear or experience something interesting and thought provoking is what helps me step into the cycle of writing.

What cycles of  introspection or self expression do you experience?

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With a Sunday all to myself I chose silence.  What does that mean?  No TV, no radio – just me.   I often have said aloud that I am not really a TV watcher, yet if I really stop and think about it, the TV seems to be on all the time, especially if I am not at my computer.

By force of habit, and sometimes craving noise to fill up quiet space, I turn it on.  While I’m cooking, while I’m eating, while I’m painting…  Yesterday I chose not to.

Instead, while I cooked I focused more on what I was preparing.  While I ate I listened to the birds chirping outside and gazed at the landscape outside my window.   While I painted, I was intent on what I was creating – even experimenting with some new techniques.

It was such a nice day, such a nice feeling to choose silence.  To be comfortable with a solitary focus instead of my usual divided attention.   To me more fully present with where I was and what I was doing.

How often do you choose silence?

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Believing you CAN accomplish a goal, handle a situation or stretch out of your comfort zone provides you a strong foundation to build upon.   The next step is to transition from I CAN to I AM.

Brian, who commented on my No Such Word as Can’t post brought up this topic.   He had already begun his transition to writing his book using these tools:

  • Gathering information and resources about writing and publishing a book
  • Seeking advice from other writers
  • Telling everyone what he was doing
  • Taking the leap and starting to write

Fantastic tips Brian! 

Here are more thoughts to ponder about transitioning to I AM:

  • I AM is a commitment to yourself and your desire
  • I AM is taking consistent small actions that build ove time
  • I AM is determination to achieve even in the face of obstacles
  • I AM is enjoying new discoveries, possibilities and potential paths toward your goal. 
  • I AM is being present with and accepting where you are right now in your process

How have you transitioned from I CAN to I AM?

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I’ve always been fascinated by dreams.  I usually remember most of my dreams, even days afterward especially if they were vivid and emotional – though I never took the time to record them until now.

Inspiration to record my dreams came from two sources, a book I am reading and a friend’s experience.  The book is The Not So Big Life by Sarah Susanka where a chapter is devoted to recording and discovering the meaning in your dreams.   My friend is also reading the book (we are in a book club together with this book as the subject) and she started not only writing her dreams but recording them using collage!  

My method of recording my dreams?  Painting of course!  I cut watercolor paper into quarters and when I remember a vivid dream, I write notes on one side of the paper and on the other I paint a watercolor scene of what I saw in my dream.    My latest dream?  A visit to coastal Italy with visions of the sea.  I can’t wait to paint it!

How do you record your dreams?

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