How are you doing? I can't believe it's July already. How about you?
I've been taking stock of late. Looking back, to my left, right, and straight ahead, and asking myself 'what do I want more of, less of, what are my hopes & dreams and how do I intend to reach them'.
I Love to learn and develop. It's satisfying, fun and once we 'tweak' our way of being, it's not just exciting, it's usually for life. We can't un-learn, un-know.
I remember the first time I said 'No,' and meant it. A long time ago... but I remember it well. I felt wobbly, yet excited. It took a deep breath and a leap of faith but hey, I was so chuffed to actually stand up for myself for once without crumbling.
My spine straightened, my confidence & self esteem surged, I grew taller and more determined. My arms tingled with adrenaline and I promised myself, I will Never Allow Myself To Be Put Upon Again.
A bit like one of those Bridget Jones moments after years of fumbling around ineptly, smiling sweetly, blushing, desperate for everyone to like her, being helpful and kind even when others were horribly cruel at times... then suddenly everything comes together. Bridget is aware of who she is and what she wants. She is clear, articulate, determined and finally feels triumphant. Wow!
I have had many of those growth-full moments along my personal development journey. I've grown. I've changed, and I won't ever go back.
I may be thought of as selfish, but people are entitled to think whatever they choose about me. For me, this is about Self Preservation. Self Care. If I don't take care of me, who will? I was generally too busy taking care of those around me at home and at work. If I go under who will be there to take care of them anyway? So I take care of me too.
One of my Tweaking, Triumphant Moments was when I discovered how creating art, whether a doodle with our non-dominant hand, a painting of an Angel or an intuitive collage could 'say' so much about our struggles, our relationships, our past, our work... In fact whatever the big issue is in that moment, knowingly or not, it emerged through pen, crayon, paint or papers confidently led by our fingers - and I felt enthralled as this knowledge settled in my awareness.
My Inner Child has always known this. She knows the power of creativity. The deeply relaxing process involved in getting in the flow... the clarity of mind that comes from creating... the peace from the busy-busy outside World that we live in. How answers come to us and problems are solved. With so many positives from our Nervous System easing out of Hyper-vigilant mode and our Immune System being able to do its job of Protection and Self Healing.
The majority of those I work with have not painted since primary school. Many share a shameful experience when they were told categorically that they 'Could Not Paint' :-( It is usually the first thing people say to me when I invite them to come and paint with me.
How painful and shameful for a child - or adult - who was totally absorbed, focused and filled with joy as they doodled or painted their Purple Dog or Green Dad to be met with a slow, shaking head and words of disapproval from an authority figure.
How sad that the Head-Shaking Disapprover totally missed the vital information being expressed through the Green Dad or Purple Dog - not to mention the health benefits. Although I don't interpret, when painter and I get curious about their 'Purple Dog' we tend to discover lots of meaningful information in a heart-centred experience.
You may be like me; a lover of journals, notebooks, stationery... Maybe you have a collection of colourful gel pens, crayons, glitter, craft supplies. All those colours... the smell and feel of the journal. The fear of what to put in it, making a 'mess and ruining everything' - There goes our Inner Critic again.
Often though, we work so hard and give so much that there is no time or energy left for us to use our beautiful craft supplies. They just sit there looking truly exciting and we sigh with exhaustion, pain of headache or tension in shoulders and stare blankly at the telly perhaps.
Often, we are truly depleted and almost burnt out by all our working and giving and if you are a Caring Professional - a Counsellor, a Teacher, a Nurse perhaps, and/or a Parent we can almost reach rock bottom some days.... would you agree?
We squirrel something away towards the next holiday, maybe buy new shoes and we meet friends - just like our loving, giving, caring Selves - for coffee and to let off steam, put the world of School or the Surgery to rights and then we carry on as we always have. Working. Giving. Pleasing Others.
I remember that cycle of Caring - Doing - Giving. Of showing up with a bright but slightly wobbly smile. Everyone wants to lean on you... tell you their struggles, aches and pains because you are 'Strong' and a good listener. You rarely complain. Rarely though, do we turn our attention to our Needs.
All that I have learned about Self Care and Personal Development I have put to good use for those I work with. Initially in my studio and now transformed into online courses for caring, giving people who need to tend to themselves at last.
I pass on the message of how creating intuitive art offers us answers, helps us tweak our lives and solve problems. Every time I create, I grow closer to knowing myself more.
I created this space for You to come and experience what I offer for free so you can begin to notice your Needs and Hold your Well-Being in mind. It's all here for you if you want it. Then if you wish to continue a while, I have more for you to choose from.
There is nothing more satisfying for me than witnessing a caring yet depleted Human begin to make sense of their life, their work, their relationships, their feelings and start to tweak things for themselves, with my support. They feel happier, more relaxed, less stressed and can look at their doodles, their Tree painting or their art journal and say 'Wow, I created that - and because of it, I know exactly what I need."
If you have spent a lifetime contorting and twisting yourself to fit in to work, friendships & relationships.then you have probably found me because what I offer is what you Need right now.
If you would like a completely FREE, one to one taster with me online, please let me know. I have a few spaces available and if you would like to try, I am here.
Simply 'reply' to this email the way you would any other, ask a question or request a free taster. I will reply / get it organised for you. You won't need to spend lots of time on this unless you wish to, or need many art materials. I go at your pace wherever you are in that moment.
Here whenever you are ready,