Hello friends, creatives, journal keepers, artists and small business owners! I've got some fun insights to share with you from this past week. I so enJOY sharing what inspires me, what fills my creative well and what I'm thinking about and working on behind the scenes as Artist, Designer, Creative and journal keeper.
This past week, I watched a movie titled, A Brilliant Young Mind, which is a story about a young man in school who is Mathematically a genius, the mentors/teachers that helped him and his parental story, his pain and his connection with others in the process.
One of the things that fascinates me with these stories of autistic children is how they think, how they process their world, and how they use their gifts to excel and make a life for themselves.
In this particular story, the young man's way of thinking is in Patterns. Thus the mathematical interest and genius in his application and focus. This gave me food for thought concerning patterns and how they influence me as an Artist.
Whether it's a pattern in wall paper, in a rug, with tiles on the wall, and even from questions on a standardized test (remember those?), patterns are everywhere. In interior contexts, I have patterned preferences, ones that are loose and more abstract, rather than repeated, ongoing. You know, the kind that keeps your eye too busy when your'e trying to concentrate or have a conversation and it's distracting you...
I prefer focal points that inspire versus an ongoing continuum.
I once had a rug that had different sized squares with many of my favorite colors. That rug was really cool, and I loved looking at it. It was restful yet colorful. No repeating patterns. Yep.
This movie actually inspired me to think more deeply on what I prefer as designer, artist and resident of my abode.
Of course, I recorded all these observations and considerations in my journal because of its relevance, it being a great way to keep track of my Artistic Mind and where it might lead with future designs that I create.
Want to keep your journaling practice more relevant, revealing and renewing? Check out The ART of Journaling Tool Box filled with 7 Power Tools I use to keep journaling fresh, fun and fabulous. Just click on the image to sign up and get your free PDF!
Ready to P-L-A-Y with your next journal entry with prompts, questions and image suggestions for journaling, art journaling, doodling/drawing? Check out The ART of Journaling Prompt PLAY Book, perfect companion to The ART of Journaling Tool Box. Just click on either image to sign up and get your complimentary download today!
In continuing with the movie's story (spoiler alert if you haven't seen it yet!), the young man has a horrifying experience in the car with his Dad driving, where someone runs a red light and there's a head-on collision, killing his Dad on impact. Traffic lights are featured frequently in the movie as a reminder of what he saw in patterns at the time of his Dad's death. He had a very close relationship with his dad, despite his autism, since his dad understood him deeply and often used humor to connect with him. This created many poignant memories throughout the movie at times in the young man's life that were deeply significant.
As a Grandmother of a grandson with autism, I deeply appreciated the father's connection with his son and his desire to enable his son to feel secure, loved and appreciated for who he was.
I pay close attention to my grandson's development (since his birth!) and when he struggles or when he's thrilled, I try to understand him on the deepest of levels, both in connection with how I felt as a child as well as wanting to feel what he is feeling, which can be challenging when he's in his own "world." Not only do I connect with him emotionally but also through humor, just by the way I say things to him. I have had the privilege of hearing him say to me, "Grandma, you crack me up!"
Sometimes I'll ask him what was so funny, and he will reiterate what I said. It's always nice when he understands my humor and appreciates my communication with him on that level. It brings me great JOY.
As I continued to reflect on A Brilliant Young Mind, I realized that life is full of repeating patterns, some of which we deeply enJOY and others we would prefer to change in order to grow.
Whatever patterns suit you, pay closer attention. They may give you deeper insight into why you like what you do. Whatever life patterns you realize in your own reflections, remember that you always have the power to change in order to grow, if necessary. And those patterns you've developed to make self care a priority, appreciate them afresh as you relish the poignant moments that you experience from the heart.
Recall a pattern you remember from childhood and detail what it looked like. Why did it leave such an impression, and was it positive or negative? Compare that pattern with ones you have in your current environment. Any similarities? What are the differences? Which do you prefer?
Art Journaling Prompt:
Find a pattern you really love in a magazine and use it to frame your next art journal spread, using colors and words to show your appreciation for such resonating visuals.
Create a Pattern in your sketch book using colors and motives that are your favorites.
If you are a small business owner, and you desire to feel empowered and confident with the visuals you use to market your products and services, and you would like a more customized approach to how you present yourself in the marketplace, check out my service, Dawn's Dynamic Designs: Hand Lettering and Illustration. My great desire is to create art for your business brand, products and services, so you can approach the market knowing you can attract the right client with the right visual. Plus with 10 years of experience in Social Media Marketing, I can take the overwhelm out of the navigation. I look forward to hearing from you!
Copyright 2019 by Dawn Herring
Copyright 2019 Images by Dawn Herring
I am introducing a new element of audio here at Refresh Daily! I have recorded the blog post below so you have to option of listening in addition to or instead of reading. You are welcome to leave a comment below if you listen and share your feedback.
Dawn's Ten Life Directives
I ran into an interesting series of videos on YouTube called The Ten Rules for Success hosted by Evan Carmichael. He takes clips of folks being interviewed and creates a list of rules for success based on what the person shares.
I found this to be insightful and thought provoking, and so much so, out of creative curiosity, I decided to come up with a list of my own. I wrote them down late 2016 and I've decided to share them with you here, so you can see what Directives I follow for a more Creative, Joy-Filled Aligned path in this present life.
You are welcome to consider these directives for your personal application and maybe even come up with a few of your own (which you're welcome to share in the comments below, if you'd like).
It's important to know how we live and why we live the way we do and to be very deliberate about our decisions, choices and actions since we know they will not only impact ourselves as individuals but also those around us, be it family, friends, neighbors, communities and the world wide, especially if we share it in this digital world of the Internet.
Hope my list of Directives will give you food for thought and some creative inspiration.
1. Stay Aligned with Who You Are
2. Appreciate Yourself for Who You Are
3. Validate Your Emotions and Feelings
4. Nurture Your Soul
5. Stay Connected To Spirit
6. Express Yourself Creatively Every Day
7. Follow Your Curiosity
8. Honor Your Preferences, Your Personality and Your Purpose
9. Give Yourself Permission to do something daily that lifts your spirit and leaves you feeling fabulous.
10. Say No to anything that does not honor your Well Being.
And here's a bonus Directive:
11. Find Your Truth that keeps you centered and grounded so you will recognize illusion when you see it.
And there you have it.
These directives came immediately to mind as I wrote them. They are part of the basic tenants I share here at Refresh with Dawn Herring, and here on this blog, Refresh Daily.
Make a list of your life principles or directives that you already follow or that you would like to implement in your own life. You may want to detail what each one means to you and why you want to initiate this positive change in your life.
Art Journaling/Doodle Prompt:
Using a 2 page spread in your art journal, create a visual honoring of the principals you live by. Use pens and markers to doodle the lettering or use alpha stamps. Use the colors that inspire positive change you want to make, perhaps a color that is new to you that you're really drawn to right now.
EnJOY your life today, and may JOY find you in the most unexpected places.
Copyright 2017 Dawn Herring
Header Copyright 2017 Dawn Herring
One of the things I often note with the issue of keeping a consistent journaling practice is the lack of relevance with what we write. Many folks start up keeping a journal but never find their particular groove of what really matters to them. They often find it depressing to write down how they're feeling or it just gets down right boring since they don't see their life as very interesting, maybe even not worth recording.
Of course, as host of #JournalChat Live for over 6 years, I beg to differ. Every life is worth recording because it's from your point of view, like no other, and your JOURNALING VOICE MATTERS. That's one of the reasons I determined to give folks a chance to share their journaling stories on their blogs and in social media statuses by offering to share their posts where #JournalChat is visible both here on my website (with reciprocating link) and here---> (Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn).
Of course you are welcome to share how your journaling has had the greatest relevance to your life this year. Just follow the guidelines here.
With today's post, I wanted to share with you how my journaling practice has had the greatest relevance for me in 2016...
Although I keep a journal daily, with both am and pm entries, and with evening doodles to make it visually fun as well, there is one technique and purpose that has shown up in my journal pages this year that I think might be helpful to you as well.
One of my favorite techniques is making conversation, or what most call Dialogue. With who?, you may ask. Well, with just about anything or yourself (all parts of you). My aim with dialogue is focused on my personal well being on all levels. So when something isn't right on any of those personal levels, I will head to my journal to figure out what went wrong and what I can do to get re-aligned.
And you know what? I always get an answer to my dilemma. It amazes me what I learn just from asking the questions I want answers to. Of course, it's imperative that I actually do what I'm directed to with the answers I receive (within reason, of course). That's one of the reasons why I know keeping a journal can be a powerful tool to promote and initiate positive change that leads to personal empowerment.
You might think it odd to ask a question of yourself and actually get an answer. And maybe at first it feels a bit strange. But if you're serious about getting what you need, that's often a good prerequisite toward success. You may need to do it more than once if you haven't done it before. But, don't be shy. After all, it's your journal. And it's there for you to help you figure stuff out. And dialogue can be the perfect way to get you there.
When you actually do dialigue in your journal, just use the names to suit your situation, whether it's an emotion, a body part, a situation, a relationship or anything else you need clarity on.
Here's some dialogue to make you smile:
Me: Do you understand the value of talking to yourself (Your Higher Self) in your journal?
You: I'm not sure. I guess it's worth a try.
You betcha! (Enjoy the conversation and create positive change in your life!)
Is there a particular situation or pain you are experiencing that you need answers to? Record this situation in detail in your journal. Now begin a dialogue with the part of it that frustrates you or pains you the most and start asking questions. Pause for the answers, listening intuitively for what you need.
Art Journal Prompt:
Using the word Dialogue as your prompt, doodle conversation that has great meaning for you. Use images that validate how you feel about this conversation and what result you would like to see from the situation this conversation stems from to help you gain clarity.
I always love it when I find a resource that just hits the spot for me as an artist and creative. And Danny Gregory's book, The Creative License, is just such an example. I discovered Danny Gregory through a Creative Living with Jamie Podcast on Jamie Ridler's website. I was so inspired and impressed with the interview, I decided to check out Danny's website and books.
I saw that he had several, one of which I wanted to read right away, a memoir called, Every Day Matters, but I decided to check out his book, The Creative License too. I'm so glad I did.
There are several reasons why I enjoyed and found myself inspired by this book. Danny has a way of presenting the act of drawing from a totally refreshed and relaxed approach, a way of observing your life and the many things and people around you, but in an almost Zen-like quality, totally focused, totally in the flow.
This approach really opened me up to the possibilities of where I could go with my Creative Practice, adding to it in a way I hadn't done before. I did contour and detail drawing in my youth, and did faces for a long time, but all basically from images. Danny's approach to drawing what you see from objects right in front of you intrigued me. I love his step by step narrative for those who have never drawn before or think they can't.
Another thing I loved about this book was Danny's voice: his attitude, his personality, his authenticity and his laugh-out-loud sense of humor. Even if you have never drawn anything before, just the read is worth it because Danny makes the whole explanation of why drawing can benefit you so much fun, entertaining and insightful.
This book is full of full color and black and white illustrations and Danny's no-nonsense attitude about getting a daily sketchbook practice going, with no concern for what it looks like, if it's any "good" artistically speaking, and seeing the whole experience as learning more about yourself and your world.
Danny inspired me so much through The Creative License, I decided to start a drawing practice in addition to my daily journaling, watercolor painting and doodling. I've presented several of these drawings just to give you an idea of how I've approached it, with no concern for how "artistic" it looks.
He does recommend starting with just black pen (no pencil, no erasing or correcting--just draw and don't worry about it!) so these drawings are just that.
As an artist, I've always had admiration for folks who keep a sketchbook full of pen and watercolor drawings, and Danny is one of those people. Thanks, Danny, for being a source of inspiration for me as an artist and observer of life.
Write down a way that you are an observer of your own life. Also, write down a way you would like to be an observer that you haven't tried before and what you can do to get started.
Using the word, Observe, create a spread that pays homage to how you view your world. How does your point of view enhance to the way you see life?
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When you look at something in your immediate surroundings that you put there, what comes to mind? Does it just become a back ground visual or does it stir you in some way? Is there a reason why it's there?
It can be anything.
From a piece of clothing to your laptop or the car in your driveway. It could be paint supplies, a toolbox or a memento from a loved one.
It really doesn't matter what it is. It's a matter of what it means to you.
How does it benefit you?
I think when we take a closer look at what we have chosen to have around us, it can teach us something about ourselves. And perhaps having a new appreciation for what it is, what it does and why we chose it can activate a higher awareness of what matters to us.
And, in essence, it can invoke gratitude.
But what is the essence of gratitude? Is it just an attitude? An idea? Or just an expected reference to the Thanksgiving Holiday?
When we see something anew and ask ourselves, why do I have this? What does it do for me? And we answer those questions, we can discover a fresh vision of Who We Are right now.
Especially since what we say today may not have been true a year ago or even a month ago.
How we perceive what we own or what we choose for ourselves can speak volumes about what is inside our hearts. And when we get that fresh perspective on what we may not think about very often, we can find ourselves smiling and saying, Wow. I think I should consider how benefited I am more often.
We can lose sight of the 'why' of what we possess, which can sometimes cover the essence of what we value.
It can be as simple as appreciating the towel we dry our hands off with or the necklace we wear that was a gift from a loved one. Or even the calculator we use in the office.
Seeing anew what we value and saying, I am glad I have this, it makes life easier and more pleasurable, can instigate the essence of appreciation and gratitude that can especially carry us when we feel heavy with burden.
Carry that essence of what you appreciate with you every day. You may find yourself smiling when you least expect to.
Write a list of three things in your immediate environment. Detail where they came from, who gave them to you if applicable or why you purchased it. How does it benefit you most? Would you buy it again if given the chance? Capture the essence of your appreciation for these things.
Art Journaling Prompt:
Use images of some of your favorite things and doodle your appreciation for their value in your life, what they remind you of, and what meaning they have for you.
Isn't it fun to dress up in a costume and take on a persona for a day or evening? With Halloween coming up, I was thinking about folks who dress up in costume for either a party gathering or dressing up with the kids as we take them out into the neighborhood for some Trick or Treat activity.
I have many memories of my costumes over the years from my childhood and adolescence. From a China Girl to a monster to a rock star with microphone in hand. Fun times!
Pretending to be something other than what we are on this dress-up day can be interesting and lively.
But when we take that pretense into our everyday, that takes on more of a Trick vibe than a Treat.
We may have dreams and goals we aspire to fulfill, yet we find ourselves falling short simply because what we have in our imagination doesn't really align with what's in our heart.
We may get side tracked or distracted by what others are doing and want to align with their direction even when it doesn't quite feel right inside.
That's when we need to really get honest with ourselves and take a closer look at what we perceive is "missing" in our personality and in the roles we play in life and see what we are already doing that we may not be giving ourselves credit for.
We don't need to pretend to be something or someone we aren't in order to "fit in" or to make ourselves feel better about how we think we don't measure up. This is just a mean ole trick we play on ourselves that throws us out of our center and leaves us feeling less than.
Instead we need to FULLY EMBRACE EXACTLY WHO WE ARE. Relish the specifics of our personality, our preferences and our purpose in life. This is the greatest TREAT we can give ourselves, loving ourselves from the inside out, seeing ourselves honestly and with gratitude for what we have to offer the world.
It's okay to pretend once in a while...use your imagination and have some fun. But don't allow that to create discontentment with who you are and where you are right now.
Now, this doesn't mean you can't create positive change. It simply means you start from that honest, raw place of truth to get you started and then take one small step at a time toward what you know is right for you.
No tricks. Just joyful, deliciousness to treat yourself with that fills your heart to the full.
Write a letter to the self you may sometimes pretend to be and tell that persona why you are attracted to it. Then share why you love yourself just as you are. Then determine what one small step you can take toward loving yourself more and bring about essential positive change that you want to make in your heart of hearts.
Art Journaling Prompt:
Using images of people in costume, create a spread honoring that persona you think is the most fun and doodle words around the spread sharing why you like it so much. Then Honor Who You Are right now in color, image or doodle.
Copyright 2016 Dawn Herring
Copryight 2016 Header Image by Dawn Herring
A Golden Buzzer Moment.
A Moment in Time when all seems to stand still as golden confetti cascades down over you after one of the judges on American's Got Talent determines that after your fabulous performance, you're ready to go to the live shows. Now.
That's pretty amazing...especially when you have no idea of how good you really are.
I've had the wonderful opportunity to be the hearing recipient of a very talented young girl's performance on AGT; her name is Grace VanderWaal. The thing that really struck me about Grace is her authenticity. She offered a self-penned song that has gotten a replay in my head on repeat for several days. Quite catchy and I must say, quite empowering. She's got my attention! See her performance below. (I've seen her follow up performances which are just as delightful and heart warming.)
After thinking about Grace's Golden Buzzer Moment, I realized what this can mean for us on a daily basis.
A Golden Buzzer is a validating and very surprising external action on someone else's part letting you know how good you really are.
Sometimes we get that kind of validation from someone who sees our potential or who appreciates us for Who We Are at the Heart of what we do every day.
But we can actually create our OWN Golden Buzzer Moments on the internal side.
How, you ask?
By paying close attention to our own Value, to what we are contributing every day to our immediate worlds: our selves, our families, our communities and our worlds.
An example of an Internal Golden Buzzer Moment:
when you're writing a journal entry and you experience clarity on something that's been puzzling you.
when you connect with someone on a deep level that is totally unexpected.
when you validate another person because you see their potential.
when you're working on a painting, drawing, collage, or sculpture and it works out exactly the way you want it to in that moment
when just the right word comes to you to complete a poem you've been working on
when you are aligned with Who You Are and you know you are exactly where you are supposed to be
when you hit that sweet spot in your creative practice and you wouldn't change it for the world right at that moment
You know your Golden Buzzer Moments when you feel them because they leave an impression. (And maybe even a life changing one.) But when you are LOOKING for them actively, you may find that they replicate, which only increases the Value of your every day experience.
So, go on. Validate Yourself. See Your Own Potential. Congratulate Yourself on a Job Well Done. Enjoy that Sweet Spot with Relish and Relive it in your journal!
The more you pay attention to those GB Moments, the more you will experience them. And it might just lead to some external ones too!
Record every Golden Buzzer Moment that comes to mind. Make a list. Don't be shy. What have you experienced that would qualify? Think Small too. It doesn't have to be huge. Look with expectation over the next several weeks for those moments when you simply hit your sweet spot.
Art Journal Prompt:
Using the words, Golden Buzzer, create an art journal spread that speaks of your potential, of a time when you hit your creative sweet spot. Relish with colors that showcase you at your heights. Really Celebrate!
As the creator of a 21 Day Refresh Intensive Course, I wanted to get a Fresh Perspective on the course content and decided to engage with it once again. One of the things I appreciate about Refresh Intensive is the fact that it's evergreen, so it never grows old. We change every day, so each time we engage with questions we can answer or an activity that can show us something about ourselves, we can learn something new and profound.
I wasn't disappointed! I was quite amazed with the discoveries I made throughout the course; it really did reveal things to me I was unaware of and it also clarified and affirmed some things I've experienced before.
I don't mean to make this post an info-mercial for my course. My purpose is to simply share with you how I benefited from the journaling and other activities I engaged in and why I think it was a good investment of my time.
First, I determined to do each day's Journaling either before or after my usual personal journaling since it seemed to fit and resonate with that time the best. I was fresh and ready to dig in at that time, so I could get the most out of it.
One of the things I really love about each day's content/engagement are the options for further reflection and activity, such as art journal prompts, poetry ideas and more, and I felt like I could just run with something that really resonated and not feel obligated to do something that didn't interest me.
I think the use of COLOR was the most FUN element in whatever context it was contained in. I found the music topic to be revealing and even profound as I worked through the questions.
I think really focusing on my preferences and why I loved what I was drawn to so much helped me appreciate my own personality on a deeper level because of what I learned about myself in the process.
I've shared an image of items I found during two of my "Field Trips" I did for those portions of the course.
I had a great time following the directions and questions about my Field Trip experiences and what they had to teach me on a deeper level. I was surprised by how much I learned from these activities.
Journaling is a powerful tool that I use daily, and yet, engaging in the journaling exercises in this course showed me things I might not have otherwise discovered if I hadn't worked through those specific processes. I answered the questions as honestly as I could and I think that really initiated a more profound and enlightening "opening up" to Who I Am in the process.
Each activity truly gave me food for thought. And as I looked back on each one during my Wrap Up time, I was freshly appreciative of what I learned and look forward to going even deeper in the days ahead.
There are suggested ways to extend each activity, if it especially resonated with you. I found this especially helpful in the EMOTION days and the DECISION MAKING activities.
Of course, COLOR is a part of my daily life as a watercolor painter, so using it in a fresh context really made it fun and insightful and revealing into deeper dimensions of Who I Am.
I really look forward to more insights, reveals and fun fabulousness as I engage once again with a Refresh Intensive, with the purpose of always Activating My Intuition, Honoring My Preferences and Listening to my Life Messages. I always want to know what my Life has to say to me!
Creating Awareness and Appreciating Myself For Who I Am are key elements to Refresh Intensive, not to mention being personally empowered by recognizing things that I didn't realize before where positive change can be initiated toward a more refreshed life.
What specific choice can you make for yourself right now that will create more awareness of your preferences? How can you celebrate specific elements of your personality? What there something you did today especially that you can celebrate as a direct result of a choice you made today to honor your preferences?
Art Journal Prompt:
Create an art journal spread to show appreciate for a specific aspect of your personality that you don't normally like to pay attention to and give it homage. Do this from the heart without hesitation.
You're welcome to check out my 21 Day Refresh Intensive Course to see how it might benefit you.
So, here we are at Back to School Time. Where the school supplies are in abundance (Stocked up on those trusty composition notebooks of course!) and the kids are getting ready to start classes to get them one step closer to graduation, to meeting goals, to establishing what their direction will be and to figure out their purpose.
This time of year can also be a source of inspiration toward life-long learning and activating self-discovery as we choose to go deeper into Who We Are. As we watch the kids gets their school supplies, clothes and gear gathered, we can also be inspired by what motivates us and where our curiosities are bringing us. This can enable us to learn something new about ourselves, which can lead to more self-appreciation as well as motivation to initiate positive change.
As an artist, I am constantly looking for inspiration by taking photographs, looking through magazines, and watching videos, reading inspiring blog posts, articles and reading books and also listening to podcasts.
And I often find it!
And when I do, I get excited and motivated to look more closely at my own motivation, direction and purpose as a creator.
One thing I've already learned in my life-long pursuit of educating myself about Who I Am and What My Purpose Is is to always be willing to make a change when it's needed, with no apology, no second guessing.
When I see what is working, I look to expand on that. When I see what isn't working, I start journaling, connecting with Spirit and determining what my next step is.
Life is constantly changing, just like our kids and grandkids do as we see their growth and feel proud of their accomplishments as they learn about Who They Are, what talents they possess, and how they can leave their meaningful mark in the world.
And because of that flux of change, we need to always be looking for new opportunities to grow, to create, to discover, to go deeper.
That's why I love my creative practice so much. Each activity I choose to engage in, as often as I choose to engage in it, is another way of learning about myself, giving myself space to think, dream, love, discover, follow "rabbit holes" of curiosity, and learning to be more flexible with myself with what I choose to do, what supplies I choose to work with, and with what I choose to express myself.
It's easy to fall into a creative rut, doing the same thing over and over. That's when it's good to change things up, be open to new possibilities and try new things, things that excite your heart and make you want to do a happy dance.
And a happy dance in just the beginning. Who knows where our creative practice can lead us, what new places we have yet to explore and what new inspiration will come across our path and lead us into a new love?
See yourself as a student of your Creativity; see what it has to teach you; listen carefully and relish each moment. No, not everything we do has to be "just so." Stay open to making mistakes (If you perceive them that way) and not being completely satisfied with the job you did. That's okay. It's all a learning process.
I think one of the key issues is being True To Yourself.
Honor Your Preferences. Pay Close Attention to Your Intuitive Nudges. Follow Those Curiosities.
What Life Message can you glean from each creative experience, each creative act, each creative project, each creative journey?
Enjoy each creative moment, whether you're going solo or sharing it with your kids or grandkids. Let Life Teach You and Relish the Learning.
What does your creative practice teach you? What have you learned about yourself, your creative work, your world? What is the most recent creative experience you've had and what did it show you about yourself? What positive change can you initiate based on what you now know? Celebrate in your journal what you've learned!
Art Journal Prompt:
Create a Back to Your Creative Practice spread, using images of creative projects you've completed and what they have taught you about yourself. Or dream on the page about what you want to learn and try that is new for you.
And if you're wanting to go a bit deeper into Activating Your Intuition, Honoring Your Preferences and Listening to Your Life Messages, you're welcome to check out my 21 Day Refresh Intensive Course.
Copyright 2016 Dawn Herring
I just love that word. It's something you feel on the inside that makes you want to do a happy dance, but only if you make space for it.
It's easy to allow the distractions of this life to fill up the space where joy can be felt and experienced.
What kind of distractions?
Well, let's see.
"Obligations" that aren't really the obligations that you think they are.
Conversations that are completely irrelevant to you.
Getting stuck in a rut that you've created for yourself.
Feeling boxed in by responsibility that you think you have to attend to at a certain time when you really don't have to. (This can feel heavy which is the opposite of JOY.)
Unnecessary activity that doesn't add to you or enhance your daily life experience.
So, what do you do with all this distraction?
I think the first step is recognizing what is a distraction in your life and how much space it's taking up. You may be surprised with how much room you can make in your life for the JOY you really want just by eliminating what isn't necessary and just focusing on what really matters to you.
You know what question I often ask myself when I want more JOY?
"What do you really want to do right now?"
You see, we often think we want things that we don't want when we really stop to think about it. If we're truly honest with ourselves, life can be much simpler and satisfying when we listen to our hearts.
And that makes sense since it's our heart that feels the JOY when we create it or when it happens spontaneously. Keeping our "ears" open for what is distracting us and taking action to remove or greatly reduce it can help us be more open to the JOY that awaits us with greater awareness and mindfulness of how we are spending our days.
I love it when I experience JOY in my heart when I choose to eliminate what is unnecessary and focus on what really matters. Then I know I'm truly aligned with Who I Am and I'm more able to leave my meaningful mark in the world.
List any and all distractions you currently have going on in your life. Determine the first one you will look to eliminate or greatly reduce to make more space for JOY. Take note of how you feel once that distraction has been dealt with and the space it makes for you to feel more JOY.
Art Journal Prompt:
Use the word JOY as an art journal prompt, showing and telling what brings you JOY. You can also create a spread expressing how you feel when you reduce the distractions in your life, honoring this positive change you have chosen for yourself.
Dawn engages in many roles: As Writer/Blogger and Artist/Creative and Founder of Refresh with Dawn Herring: Where Art and JOY Align, She enjoys sharing from her vast experience as award-winning, life-long artist and leader in the field of written journaling, offering encouragement and proven tips to other journal keepers. Dawn's focus is on written journal keeping, artistic expression and finding your Creative Voice, and positive change that leads personal empowerment, encouraging you to leave your authentic and positive mark in the world. Dawn is a Commercial artist, hand letterer/illustrator and writer/blogger and enjoys sharing insights, humor, and encouragement as she shares from her life experiences as a woman, wife, mother of two grown daughters and as a Grandparent to a special needs grandson. She enjoys keeping a journal and reading spiritual texts to help keep the light on. May JOY Align with Your Creative Heart.
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