Thursday, July 06, 2006

3 Happiness challenges

#1. This comes from Julia Cameron's The Right to Write (pg. 12). In it she quotes Henry Miller on writing. "Develop interest in life as you see it; in people, things, literature, music--the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls, and interesting people."
Julia says that when we are the vehicle, the storyteller and not the point of the story we often write very well and a lot more easily. So here's her exercise. Pretend you are resting under a large tree with your back to the trunk. On the other side of this tree there is a storyteller, also resting her back against the tree. Tell the storyteller five things you would like to here stories about.
Here's my five things that I would like to hear stories about: People living quiet lives of resilience and generosity. People being brave and true. People traveling the whole world, learning lots and coming home to find treasure in their own back yard. People learning to love well and live happily. People following their dreams and finding they can live artfully and authentically with very little.

#2. This comes from Vermont art therapist Lore Caldwell. What she likes to do when she goes to the beach is collect rocks and write words on them and then put them back out on the beach. "I then watch as people discover them! It is such a joy to do!" She's even picked up one of her own rocks by accident and found the message was BE HERE NOW. Perfect! And so simple!

#3. This idea came tangentially from "Reflective Happiness" but altered to be more art-based. Get a couple of art buddies together (and this could be mail art buddies) and think about each others' strengths, what you admire most about each other. Create art on a postcard (mail art) for them based on these strengths. You should end up with symbolic representations of what they mean to you, what you mean to them, what they give you, what you give them or what you enjoy most about them and what they enjoy most about you.

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