Wednesday, August 10

Five things that get me through the days

I’m not always very good at self-care. I’m well aware I’m not alone in this so I won’t lament too strongly. As I get older though, I’ve started to recognise some really basic things I need to do to get me through the days. That doesn’t mean I always do them, I just know what they are and I try to do them as much as I can.  Here they are…

1. Meditation.  I’ve spoken before about the fact that, even as a meditation teacher, my practice can be erratic. Even so, I KNOW with every fibre of my being that I need to do this every day, even just 5 minutes is better than not at all. It is the rock that supports my little body/mind temple and without it things are very wobbly indeed.

2. Green Smoothies. Yeah, yeah I know, they’re a bit of a trend right now, but I was introduced the world of the green smoothie about 12 months ago (by my kinesiologist) and I can absolutely swear that when I’m having my daily smoothie I am a happier and more energetic gal than when I’m not having them. I’m busy and I don’t always eat properly, the smoothie ensures a good dose of health in a glass and I can get away with a glass of wine for dinner instead of food (oh come on, I’m kidding…kind of).  On work days I make it before I dash out the door, pour it into a ‘to go’ cup and have it in the car on the drive to the big smoke. Then my friends, I set the frickin’ world on fire. Seriously. Ask anyone.

3. Yoga. I spend a lot of time at the computer, my work depends on it and so does my business.  I seize up. Yoga fixes that, I’m not a yogi in any big way, I don’t go to a class but I do yoga stretches during the day and a session with a DVD a couple of times a week.  Good for the body and the mind and ace at keeping me flexible enough to…I dunno... do bendy stuff.

4. Creativity. I’m only just getting back to my arty creativity after a pretty long break but I’ve come to realise that it is really, really important to me.  When I draw (or paint or create in some way) I become absorbed. I’m no longer caught up in the monkey mind that plagues me a lot of the time. It’s a like a kind of busy meditation, I get so lost in my art I lose track of time.  I don’t think about work, or the business, or the phone calls I need to make, or the bills I have to pay, or the people that take up way too much space in my mind for no damn good reason. I relax. Apparently I’m more pleasant to be around as well. Who knew?

5. Spending time with Tom and our two girls and smooching the velvety nose of my puppy Jack.  No brainer really, these three people/one dog are my crack cocaine and I need a hit every single day. When we’re apart my equilibrium is seriously compromised and I become fractious. You wouldn’t like me when I’m fractious.

So that’s it, five little things. Obviously there are more things I enjoy and need on a regular basis - nature, exercise, Dr Who… but really, the five mentioned above are the things that keep me alive and breathing and functioning in the world without getting locked up.  They don’t cure all my dysfunctions but they’re a good start.

Tuesday, August 2

Allowing Creativity

For a long time I haven't exercised my creative side...actually, that's not entirely true, I have been creative, just not artistically creative in the way I used to be.  I'm not beating myself up over this, I've had a lot to do, raising children, working, running a business, being a wife, looking after a home, keeping a blog (albeit erratically). easel lies paints have dried art supplies box gathers dust.  Over time I've had little whispers from the part of me that misses making art. Sometimes I've answered soothingly that one day I'll get back to it, sometimes (most times) I've just ignored it.  Like many ignored things the whispers became more that they were not so much whispers anymore as irritated hisses, then shouts, then heart aches and lustful thoughts of long afternoons abandoned to acrylic, oil and pastel. 

A couple of months ago I decided that there was never going to be a convenient time to get arty again.  There would always be something to do, someone needing my attention and/or a job to be done. I couldn't put it off any longer, I had to create, but I've forgotten how. I struggled to see where it would fit in my life nowadays...I still don't really have an answer to that.  What I did decide however, is that I was going to drop some other things for a while and give that time to art. I looked for inspiration and found it here and joined up, being an EssCee* seems like a calling.

Then I decided that for the month of August I would take a little break from social media, let my friends out there in the Twitter, Facebook and Google+ lands miss me a little and devote some time to getting all painty and gluey.

So now what?  Today I will pull out my art supplies and see what's there (and still usable).  I may shop for replacements. I may doodle a little in an art journal I bought several years ago that still lies pristine and untouched. I may rummage through my collage images and I may actually begin a project.  I'll see how the spirit moves me...but it will be baby steps, all the way.

I’m hoping this creative break also includes more blogging. 

*S.C. Spiritual Creative

Monday, August 1


Whether you’re in the Southern Hemisphere (Imbolc) or the Northern Hemisphere (Lammas), blessings to you.

It is also our wedding anniversary and St Sofia’s day…it’s a busy one.