Monday, October 29, 2012

30 Day Positive Challenge

Morning pages fiddled with in the FREE on-line
Pixlr software with very fun instruction from Susan Tuttle!

Over on Facebook I noticed the 30 Day Positive Challenge which is the Community Page for Positive Positive Positive (which is in itself a fascinating story so visit if you get a chance!)  If you want to try these prompts in your journaling practice, I think they are great!  If you are on Facebook and you'd like to participate there simply tag @30 Day Positive Challenge in your post along with that day's "rule" or prompt. Here they are... 


Day 1 – The most Inspirational Quote you have ever seen
Day 2 – Post a photo that you Love
Day 3 – Make a list of the top 5 things that you appreciate in your life
Day 4 – Find a photo of a Painting/Drawing that makes you happy and post it
Day 5 – Read and post something Positive (Either something from a book, an article, something from Google)
Day 6 – The most Inspirational Book you have read
Day 7 – Spend 30 minutes and relax and listen to some nice music. What did you choose?
Day 8 – Make a list of 5 dreams you’d love to come true in your life
Day 9 – Focus in the Now (For the whole day) Describe the experience
Day 10 – Watch a good funny movie. What did you choose?
Day 11 – Say yes (Like the Yes Man Movie) all day! How did it feel?
Day 12 – Call someone you haven’t called in a while
Day 13 – Be calm all day
Day 14 – Tell a friend how amazing they are
Day 15 – Give a compliment to the first person you see and post what you said
Day 16 – Describe a time that you that you did community service. If you have a picture post that up too
Day 17 – Post a picture of something that reminds you of peace, love, and/or happiness
Day 18 – Post a picture of a time that was really fun and made you happy
Day 19 – Post a music video that makes you happy
Day 20 – Post a picture of someone laughing
Day 21 – Quote the lyrics of a positive / peaceful song
Day 22 – Talk about a Dream that has come true
Day 23 – Find and post a Poem which is Inspiring
Day 24 – Describe something that you have always wanted to do since you were a child
Day 25 – Talk about your BEST memory from Childhood?
Day 26 – What are 5 Positive words that describe you?
Day 27 – Post a photo of the most relaxing place in the World that you have visited
Day 28 – Google the word ‘Inspirational’ and find something special to post
Day 29 – Talk about someone who has influenced you greatly in life
Day 30 – Post anything Positive.. Photos, Art, Drawings, Articles, Websites, anything you like!!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Creating Possibility

Morning pages with photoshop layers and fun.
 The thing about art is that it really can make all the difference between an existence and a life of wonder and joy.  Part of my daily dose of fun includes morning pages before breakfast, and now with my iPad I can take a picture of my page and play with it while I have my breakfast, run it through a couple of Apps and post it on Instagram.  It's fun to be surprised later by what I have done.  An art therapist friend, Allison Fox, writes "...thank you for keeping on advocating for quick, easy and often in art making. It is hugely helpful - even when I don't actually do it. It makes the transition back easier."  Well I actually advocate the things I advocate because some days I can use a little reminder about "quick, easy and often" as well.
Morning pages with iPad apps and fun
 The one here, "Create Possibility" is really a neat idea.  It was one of those dreary, foggy, overcaste, cold, gray days, kind of bleck if you can picture it.  And as I was playing with image and words, it suddenly came to me that it's all in constant flux isn't it?  One day is dreary, the next is sunny.  So we don't have to have the perfect day right now, we don't have to have all the ducks in a line, we don't even have to have all our creations be brilliant, we just need to create the possibility for good things to happen.  Which for me means getting up early, doing some yoga and art before breakfast and seeing what the day brings.
Morning pages with iPad Apps and fun.
 And finally one of the best lessons I've learned from positive psychology and art is that life has shadows and difficult times.   It's not about plastering over the bad stuff, more like building up your strengths and resilience to deal with the difficulties.  And heck, if there were no shadows, there'd be no variation of tone, there'd be no contrast, there'd be very little of interest without shadow.  So here's to morning pages, with shadows and all.  And here's to creating possibility!
"Through Shadow" morning pages with iPad Apps and fun.

Making friends with the Inner Critic, or allowing the IC to make friends with you.

"Little me" played with in Pixlr
The easiest way around the dreaded Inner Critic is to help it develop empathy for you.  I'm sure that the rational for inner critics in general is to help us with our best work.  But they do tend to go over board.  So try this.  Find an old photo of your self as a younger individual and play with it a bit in some photomanipulation programs.  As you play with this image, try to imagine the world through this young person's eyes.  You may find yourself empathizing.  You may find that harsh inner voice tone itself down a bit.  Keep the empathy evoking image around where your Inner Critic will see it.

This technique works very well with other relationships as well.  If you have a somewhat difficult person in your life, rather than attempt to remove them, try to find an old photo of them as a very young person, a photo that evokes empathy.  Let me know how this works for you.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Workshop Alert

Workshop in NYC

Expressive Therapies Summit
Art Drama Music Poetry Psychodrama Dance and Sandplay

 Lani A. Gerity, DA, ATR
Susan Ainlay Anand, ATR-BC, ATCS

Exploring Cultural Identity & Strengthening Resilience through Story and Cloth

FRIDAY, November 9
10:00 am – 5:15 pm

In this Master Class class, we will weave experiential art-making (simple narrative cloth structures, group mural and individual pieces), with resilience narratives and an examination of cultural strengths.

What to bring for the day-long workshop! Bring your curiosity, dreams, strengths and hopes. We will start the workshop with an exploration variety of cultures’ use of fiber arts to create what is both practical and expressive. We will look at Narrative and Other quilts from the African Diaspora in North America and in India. We will look at the Hmong narrative quilts created by refugees in North America. We will look also look at prayer flags from a variety of cultures as artistic expressions of hope and strength. 

For the hands on work you might like to bring a variety of pieces of cloth that have personal meaning for you (lace, bits of clothing, ribbons, buttons, embellishments, all are welcome). If you have particular scissors, embroidery floss, needles, thimbles, etc. please bring. We’d like to do some very simple image transfer so if you have some ancestor photos that you would like to play with in this way, please bring LAZER copies.