Live Life. Don’t Just Survive

Here, right now, stop.

Breathe deeply in and allow that breathe out slowly.

Breathe in and out a few more times.

Turn your attention to your heart centre.

Maybe you would like to place your hand over your heart.

Ask yourself the question:

Am I just surviving, or am I living my life creatively?

The Curse Of The Modern World

With the busy lives that are led in the modern world, it is easy to get caught up in just surviving. Rushing from activity to activity. Never stopping, never relaxing, never just having fun. Never allowing yourself to use your creative side to enrich and grow your life.

Scientists who study our ancient ancestors contend that once people were able to move away from spending all their time surviving, they had time and space to be creative. It was this creativity that allowed them to expand their lives and further improve their situation.

It was this time for creativity that allowed our ancestors to become farmers, then to devise new tools and weapons. This creativity allowed progress to occur.

Growing Creatively

In order to grow this way, our ancestors had to allow space in their lives to allow creativity to work.

When you become caught up in surviving, you lose that ability to expand your life and improve your situation. You get caught up in surviving. That is a scary, anxious place. It is a place where your quality of life deteriorates.

But it doesn’t need to be that way. You need to allow creativity back into your life. Creativity feeds your mind and your soul. It should work alongside survival, with its focus on your body.

Yes your body needs to survive, but so do your mind and soul.

Finding The Balance Between Survival and Creativity

Finding that balance between survival and creativity is essential for a happy, full, productive life.

One of the ways you can survive and be creative is to meditate. It is that action of stopping and allowing yourself to just be. In this moment. With nowhere to go. With nothing to do. Just be.

At the start of this blog I invited you to have a moment to just be. At the end of that moment, I invited you to ask yourself a question about how you are living your life.

It is in the moments that you stop and just allow yourself to be that allow you to find space for creativity in your life.

After you meditate and clear your mind to allow that sense of just being, there is a time for creativity to allow yourself to connect to your creative inner self. Your soul.

Connecting To Your Creativity

There are many things you can do. Some people write a journal. Some people write poetry. Others dance to their own sound or music.

Then there is painting. This is my preferred method of creativity. After I meditate I use water colour paints to paint what comes up for me in that moment.

This act of creativity has allowed me to discover deep insights into my life and my place in this world. This has allowed me to live, not just survive.

I run workshops to teach people this method of meditation.

Do You Want To Know More?

If you would like to find out more about meditating and creativity, please contact me on 0409396608 or nan@plentifullifecounselling.com.au

If you would like to learn more, I write a regular newsletter with helpful information, tips, information on courses, and the occasional freebie. At the moment I have a free mindfulness meditation for anyone who signs up to my newsletter. This meditation offers a way to safely explore your feelings and learn to be okay with them. If you would like to subscribe please click on the link here: http://eepurl.com/g8Jpiz

PaintingYourSoul

How to overcome the inadequacy of language to express your feelings

Recently I was reading a book After Story by Larissa Behrendt. At one point in the book one of her characters reflects on the failure of English words to describe many things.

The English language has a rich array of words in many areas, but in others, there is a great lack of words to describe the nuances of many emotions.

The character mused on this fact. I have described her musings in my own interpretation below.

DESCRIBING GRIEF

Grief is one. There are so many layers to the experience of losing someone you love.

The word hope is another. So often you are encouraged to have hope in the future or you feel you have lost hope in the future you dreamed of. The word hope just doesn’t describe the nuances of feeling around the word hope as it relates to grief.

The word tragedy doesn’t even begin to describe the awfulness and extent of losing someone you love.

The truth of what the author wrote really struck me.

This is often something people I see struggle to comprehend.

HOW TO DESCRIBE THESE BAFFLING FEELINGS AND STRANGE EMOTIONS

If you are struggling with grief you may experience the same difficulty.

How do you put into words the impact of the death of someone you love?

There are not enough words in the English language to fully describe it.

It is also important to note that every person’s experience of grief is different.

But how do you express something so far reaching? So life changing?

How do you express the lost hopes and dreams? How do you express the extent of the tragedy that has befallen you?

THESE FEELINGS NEED TO BE NAMES TO MAKE SENSE OF THEM

The difficulty of expressing these feelings doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t express them. You need to. If you can’t express them to yourself how do you make sense of it all?

For this reason, I use a number of different approaches to working with you. Words alone are never enough so I like to use other approaches.

DIFFERENT APPROACHES WORK WHERE WORDS CANNOT EXPRESS FEELINGS

I teach these approaches to use in sessions so that you can encounter these feelings and have them witnessed. Being able to share the array of emotions is an important part of grief.

I also teach these approaches so that you can use them personally whenever you need to. Below are some of the approaches I use:

. Journaling, both with prompts such as questions to answer and free expression of what is in your head is one way.

. Writing poetry is another way. Haiku is a great format to use the haiku is a Japanese poetic form that consists of three lines, with five syllables in the first line, seven in the second, and five in the third.

. Sandplay, where you use symbols in sand to explore aspects of your grief is also very powerful.

. Finally, painting or drawing is very powerful and my personal favourite. I don’t ask you to paint a masterpiece. I just ask you to put shapes, squiggles, dots, stick figures, blocks of colour, anything you feel is important to do. You are expressing what cannot be put into words and it can come out many ways.

CAN I HELP YOU?

If you would like to talk to me about how I can help you with your grief, please contact me on 0409396608 or nan@plentifullifecounselling.com.au

If you would like to learn more, I write a regular newsletter with interesting information, tips, information on courses, and the occasional freebie. At the moment I have a free mindfulness meditation for anyone who signs up to my newsletter. This meditation offers a way to safely explore your feelings and learn to be okay with them. If you would like to subscribe please click on the link here: http://eepurl.com/g8Jpiz