Kassi Martin's Blog
Flawsome-ness for Confidence & Reduced Anxiety
How are you today? It's a beautiful, bright sunshiny day full of daffodil faces smiling up at the sun.
Many of you who read my blog have been surprised it isn't all about Art or Art Techniques. Although I use Expressive Art as a Tool, it is about healing, growing, changing, authenticity, autonomy, feeling happier and more satisfied with your one precious life.
Making expressive art offers us a doorway in to who we are, our behaviour, our emotions, our patterns, our thinking and by tweaking some of these ways of Being, it tends to leads us to happier more fulfilled and satisfying lives. Expressive Art offers us a way to find Our Self. To know how we Feel and what we Want in life. It is an amazing Tool for personal change and that change is usually a step closer to being our Real Selves. This in itself reduces Stress and Anxiety and lifts our Mood.
This is why I blog about aspects of being human, our emotions, our stories, our experiences... and today it's about perfection and embracing our 'Flawsome-ness' .
Embracing our Flawsome-ness is a speedy route to greater Confidence, raised Self Esteem, reduced Anxiety & Stress and a feeling of Inner Calm, which has a wonderful knock-on effect, not only for greater health benefits, but for those who come into contact with our Flawsome Selves.
How Can This Be you might ask.
I believe when we set aside our need to be "Perfect" and loosen off our shackles of "Who Will Think What" about (fill in the gap - our clothes, our intelligence, home, job, our shape and size, our sadness, our lack of cleverness.....) this then instantly enables us to step into a much more relaxed way of Being that releases us from the Prison of Perfection.
Our Prison Of Perfection was created way, way back in time when we were very young and easily manipulated into believing all that those influential humans told us.
Let's face it, we believed in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and the 'Policeman' who would lock us up if (fill in the gap) so we were likely to believe everything else we were told without question.
I remember I didn't want to wear a dress to a church event. I was told with a Very Concerned Expression that my preference for jeans and tee shirt would be seen as (fill in the gap - it doesn't matter what with, as long as it manipulates the other to put that white dress on!). Back then I believed what I was told and resentfully put on the scratchy dress. My 'resentful' attitude was then also judged as being a 'Heathen' in an effort to further manipulate me. I had no idea what a 'heathen' was but clearly it was someone who liked wearing jeans and tee shirts.
The simple truth back then was, I felt much happier in jeans than a dress. I didn't care about "traditions" or "expectations" or white ankle socks with lacy frills around the top. Jeans and a tee shirt meant I could roll down the amazing, huge grassy bank at top speed following the ceremony. A scratchy, white dress meant 'acting like a lady', clearly a 'value' that had been lurking in my family since Emily Bronte's Era (late 1800's?) as it was repeated often enough by all those who went before me.
In the great scheme of things what did it Really, Really Matter what I wore to church? I would still sit there in that dusky, musky, echoey, cool space and love the sound of all the voices singing brightly and pick out my Mum's harmony and soak up the oldness of the wood and bricks from a hundred years ago. Nobody cared to ask me how I felt when I was in a church. I love old buildings. I wanted to be an Archaeologist. Not one of my family knew this about me because they were far too busy finding ways to make me conform instead of enquiring about my interests and passions. How sad this is.
Funnily, 40 years on my Sister and I were chatting over coffee and we discovered both of us had wanted to be an Archaeologist!
The Prison of Perfection had been planted in me not long after birth. The belief that "What People Will Think About Me" was A Very Big Deal to everyone around me, it seemed. 'Why were they all so bothered?' my Child Self was baffled by their preoccupation.
Being concerned with what others think of us brings about huge Stress and Anxiety. It takes our attention to what others want or expect, removing me and my wants and needs from the equation altogether.
Conformity is hugely over-rated in my opinion, but back then, I was 'trained' to consider my Teachers, Friends, God, my Grandparents and basically Everyone Else's needs, all except Me. My focus was snatched from me with a clear message that I Don't Matter.
How about you? Did you receive messages that You Mattered Equally or were you too, right at the bottom of the list?
People; friends, clients, family, Michelle my old hairdresser :) all love how relaxed I make them feel. They tell me how calm I am to be around. They say I should be 'bottled' and available on prescription. A lovely complement for sure, but every one of us has the capacity to be Accepting and Self Accepting. It just needs to be freed up once again (I believe it was there at birth) and nurtured.
My calm, easy going way rubs off on everyone I come into contact with. It gives them much needed "permission" to relax and release themselves from all the "shoulds, must & ought" messages they continue to carry around with them in their Inner Child - sometimes throughout their entire lives.
If only they had made some expressive art with me... things could have been Very different.
They feel completely safe to share and open up to me even when packing my bags at the supermarket checkout. My Beloved will say to me "how do you know that person?" and I say... "I don't know them..." and he shakes his head as we wheel our bags out of the supermarket.
Coming into contact with Acceptance reduces stress levels, heart rate and blood pressure regulate. People suddenly feel so happy, relaxed and elated about themselves. They feel as if they could conquer the world.
HOW DOES THIS WORK?
It's simple. My Abundance of Acceptance has no expectations of them. I offer a spaciousness around me where others can be truly who they are and I can truly be Me - warts and all. It is hugely empowering for them and for me.
This gives Permission to others to just relax. Let down their Defences and ditch all those 'What Will They Think Of Me' rules. They get the message from me that they can take a nice deep breath and realise that they are absolutely fine Exactly As They Are.
I believe it is a beautiful gift to oneself and to others to embrace our Flawsome-ness and just Be Yourself so others can be who they really are too.
This isn't an invitation to become a Pushover or a Doormat for everyone else's Wants and Desires however. I will come back soon and share more about this. It is a very important aspect of being Accepting and Self Accepting to equally not be a Pushover or Victim for others. Getting The Balance Right is vital... <3
I work online and in person through Expressive Art, Body Wisdom, Creative Conversations, Self Care Coaching. I am a Counsellor and Expressive Arts Therapist with 20 years experience of helping others Reduce Stress and Anxiety, Relieve body Pain, lift Mood and embrace who they truly are. I love to hear from you.
I am reading this on the early morning ferry to Arran. Ahhhh... how necessary it is to receive permission for being authentically me. But not only does this resonate with my own childhood experiences, I see the mother of a 12 year old young woman, ready to support my daughter's awesome growing authentic self. So precious Thank you for spending time writing and sharing.
How wonderful to be on the Ferry to Arran.... ahhhhh imagining glorious Spring skies and spaciousness. Enjoy!
I am delighted to read that my blog touched you, and gave you permission to be authentically You. It is very touching to read about your loving intent to support your daughter in growing her authentic Self - as you say, very, very precious and vital.
It's a pleasure to write and share, thank you also for writing and sharing in response