Living My Truth?

The last several weeks have been really interesting. I have found myself questioning myself a lot and wondering if I am on track with my vision and my goals. Things have been so busy. Too busy. Whatever calm I was feeling with life seems to be gone.

I have gone through a couple of times this year where I felt impatient with my progress and stage of being. When this happens, I know it must be related to ego and it is time for me to step back and really try to gain some insight on what I am feeling deep down. Willowing’s Lifebook has actually been a lifeline this year. This week the lesson was tied to the creative goals that you made for yourself early in the year. Although I didn’t connect with the style of the lesson, the meaning was there for me once again. I remembered the words that I chose with Kelly Hoernig’s  first lesson were soar, flit, bloom, blossom, and shine. I made the little cards that went with her lesson and they have been a reminder of my goal with my art to use it to bring more positivity and light to this world. As I pondered those words, I questioned whether I am still on the same path. Am I living my truth? At this very point in time living one’s truth seems ultra important.

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All of the goals that I chose are goals that I have stuck with all year. This month I am reading and working on chapter 9, Recovering a Sense of Compassion in Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. I am reading about fear and creative u-turns. The funny thing is, that I am wondering if I could be living more fully in my truth. I am not sure. I am searching for the insight to find out if I need to step more fully into the light. Where could I be doing better? Or is this my perfectionist veering its ugly head? As I write, it dawns on me that it is a natural wrapping up of 2013. We are nearing the end of the year and it is time to gather in the fruits of our labors. Maybe the fruits aren’t as bountiful as one may have envisioned, but nevertheless, they are there and waiting. The harvest is ripe and it is good. It is time to be grateful and to start to plan for a new chapter.

A Collective Inspiration

Do you ever feel like when there is a message that God wants you to get it comes at you from every direction? I have been feeling just this way for the last couple of weeks. Apparently, the Universe feels that it is time and it is important for my heart to heal past hurts and to be open to new experiences.

I really hadn’t considered how important genuine forgiveness is on all levels. Important not just for others who have wronged us, but for us.. for our hearts. I mean, I’ve said it over and over again. Forgiveness feels wonderful. It is a blessing. I prayed for a forgiving heart. And yet, my heart remained broken from past hurts and past pains. Enough so that I had a difficult time trusting again. Allowing people to get too close. I had my besties. My family. Those who I had deemed “safe,” but that list remains small and contained. I am not proud to admit this. In fact, it sounds pretty terrible to say it, but I am not saying it to hurt anyone. The fact is, that I was truly terrified to allow myself to open up to that level of vulnerability ever again. My heart was broken too many times.

But lately something clicked. A new desire awoke within me. I am not sure if it is all the art, writing, exploration, meditation, pondering, or just blessings being poured down upon me. I really don’t know. I suppose it doesn’t really matter, but the amazing thing is that one day I decided that I wanted to focus on my heart again. I wanted my heart to open. I wanted to have a deeper level of intimacy in my relationships that I hadn’t felt in years. And within that desire friendships were deepened, information became available.. and are you ready for this? Every lesson that I have been taking on Lifebook has had to do with healing and now the heart for the last couple weeks. I was invited to take a relationship healing course called Open Your Heart a week ago. And even Oprah seemed to jump on the bandwagon to help me out with a 21 Day free Meditation challenge. 🙂 Maybe all of these seem like coincidence, but I think not. Everywhere I turn–hearts everywhere!

So, would the Universe be working so hard just to give little ol’ me this great big lesson? Maybe–but probably not. Don’t get me wrong. I know that I am meant to hear this message at this very time. I also know that I am not alone in having this desire–to love deeply, fully. Many people are being moved right now at this very time in history with a message of enlightenment. A message of love, peace, and abundance in all areas of life. The time is right and the information and help is right at our fingertips. When in history was there a time when you could look up just about anything and find out the information that you seek just about instantly? We are living in a world where old barriers are falling because we are literally connected together through this world wide web. Our messages of not just positivity, but of actual systematic change are sweeping over the earth. People who desire better life, better thinking, better behavior, better dreams.. we are able to connect. To become strong. It is beautiful. It is a miracle.

An open heart IS an open mind. As we open our hearts, we remember it is time to let go of old thought patterns. It is time to forgive–to cleanse our bodies of past hurts. It is time to live again. It is time to love again. There is hope. It lies in you. It lies in me.

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Lesson 32, “Heart Sight” with Effy Wild

This journal page was a great exercise in processing a lack of forgiveness for self. You were to write a list of things that you don’t like about yourself–your weaknesses. You then reframed them as strengths. Effy’s technique was unique because she didn’t want you to rewrite in affirmations. She wanted you to reword your weaknesses into hopeful, action type of statements. For example, if you said that you were lazy. You would rephrase it into a statement like. “You’ve made goals to achieve your dream of…. “ The point is to make the statement believable to yourself.

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Lifebook Lesson 29, Making Our Key to Freedom by Danita

Don’t you find the Universe amazing? This week it really seems to be working to get me this similar message. That is the message of healing a very old hurt. My personal belief that I am alone, will always be alone, and am only safe when alone.

I worked on completing week 29’s lesson, Making Our Key to Freedom, which was taught by Danita (one of the most precious art makers). Before starting, she had you watch Tara Brach’s Beyond the Prison of Beliefs, which I found to be a powerful healing exercise in itself.

Next, you were to write that old hurt, feelings, and thoughts it a white watercolor crayon. I chose to write a story. Then you drew your cage and your figure with your key to freedom. I used watercolor for this journal page.

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On another page, you wrote your answer to being free from your cage (your old beliefs). My new belief is that I am safe. It is okay to love and trust. This new belief is one that I have understood in my mind for some time, but I really appreciated the video and journal exercise because I was able to “feel” this in my body as well.

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Peace Realized

Week 23: Honouring your Feelings with Tamara Laporte

This lesson took several steps to create. First, you were to sit with yourself quietly and feel what you were experiencing at that moment within your body. You were to then journal your sensations and emotions on the page. By doing this, you acknowledge those feelings (even if they are negative) by doing this, you give them freedom to release. Next, you may take some breaths and just relax and feel what it is to be in that space as well. All the while taking moments to journal this to your page.

The figure you draw is a representation of your feelings of well being and you were to choose an animal to be the gardian of your feelings. The background is whimsical and fun (I would say this is true to Tamara’s artistic style).

While I believe recognizing and honoring feelings is vital, creating the guardian was my favorite part of the lesson. Imagining a protecting and comforting presence will remind the journaler long after the page is put away that we have sources of love surrounding us ready for us to beckon.

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Color Choice

Week 21: Divine Colour with Dion Dior

Identifying one’s “divine color” proved to be another lesson that absolutely spoke to me. It did not take me long to choose indigo as the color that I need to have more of. Some of the identities of indigo that Dion identified are imagination, intuition, visualization, insights, dreams, and visions.

I chose jonquil as the flower to paint because its Victorian meaning is “desire.” Desire motivates me and keeps me focused.

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This journal page was started with water colors and quickly switched over to acrylics. For some reason, acrylics are more comfortable for me lately. I added the text with a photo editor.

The Tree

Week 20: Artful Shamanism with Effy Wild

This week had another personally powerful exercise. Effy shared a meditation technique where you listen to a drumbeat while using a prompt that she provided. The prompt had to do with becoming aware of the symbols that came to you during the meditation and to later explore their meaning as you are doing your journal page.

The symbols that I saw were an old growth cedar tree and and eye. The tree could symbolize steadfastness, life, vitality, prosperity, culture, etc. The eye could symbolize watchfulness, awareness, spirituality, seeing, knowing, & accountability. This is what I wrote:

The tree has a masculine, protective spirit–everything I love about masculinity. It is protection, it produces the seed of life, oxygen, art, shelter, a portal. We use it for staying out of the harsh elements, for telling our stories, building our communities. They have been here before man. A tree is a tree. It teaches us to be authentic. The cedar has many uses. It was used to build huge war canoes & masks that told the natives sacred stories. The eye tells us to be watchful of our planet-God is watching. The tree has life & has an awareness of that life that we cannot understand. We will understand only through spiritual eyes. We know deep down the right things to do and this makes us accountable.

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Connecting With My Muse

Week 19-Messages from the Muse with Shiloh Sophia McCloud 

This week’s art journaling class fell like a gift from heaven. I have been playing with the idea of getting to know my muse better and Shiloh’s instruction presented as beautifully as her final product. She is an artist that I will continue to follow.

First, she set the stage to coax her muse into a visit. She set a place for tea, brought a rose, and offered chocolate. She then guided the student through a short visual imagination exercise in order to help them connect with and see their muse. In the end, the journal spread was magical and spiritual and a technique that I will use again.

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