Life can be messy. Life can be hard. Life can be hurtful, disappointing and freakin’ unfair! (Not my usual lead-in, but stick with me.)
Even though all of those things (and worse!) are true ~ here is another beautiful truth…
You have a choice as to how you react! How you choose to deal with the sh*t storms of life is up to you.
You can roll up in the fetal position in bed and pull the covers over our head. You can plant your butt on the couch with a tub of ice cream or a bottle of wine and binge watch Netflix shows.
Or you can ~
Be gentle with yourself.
Treat yourself as you would a loved one going through a tough time.
Give yourself permission to express your pain, hurt, or frustration creatively.
Choose to shine your own light into the darkness and make a rainbow!
I speak from experience. I feel like I’ve earned my captain’s license navigating through life’s sh*t storms the past several years.
Everything from divorce to family medical issues to personal medical issues to plumbing issues ~ all manner of “issue” right up to my car making a horrifically scary sound yesterday that means it will need to be towed in for service today. Woo-hoo!
And I know I’m not alone. I know that from time to time you too are dealing with sucky, no-fun-at-all, dear-lord-please-make-it-stop issues of life.
Everything from losing a job, to losing a loved one, to relationship issues, to dealing with loved one’s addictions, to money problems, to ‘what the hell has happened to our world?’ issues ~ the list of suck goes on and on!
Here’s what I’m suggesting ~ the storms are going to come ~ that’s a given and it would be futile to try to pretend otherwise.
But rather than letting them take every ounce of happiness from your life, what if you continue to look for the good, the joyful, the beautiful, the kind, the creative, the loving around you? Because I guarantee you when you look, when you shift your attention and focus in that direction you will find it! Especially when you start with yourself.
Here are a few prompts to ponder or journal about to help you get started:
~ How can I possibly turn this current sh*t storm into something positive? (It never hurts to ask!)
~ How can I learn something valuable from this sucky situation? What good might come of this?
~ How can I shine my light into this issue in a way that helps create a rainbow?
~ How can I use my creativity to navigate through this storm?
~ How can I give myself a break and step away from this issue for even a few moments and give myself permission to enjoy creative play and good self-care? (Personally, sitting down at the piano and singing my heart out for 15 minutes can be as cathartic as a good therapy session!)
Important caveat ~ Sometimes a day in bed with the covers pulled over your head is just what you need. (What if you add some self-care to that ~ like a cup of hot tea and a good book?) And personally, there’ve been nights when binge watching Grace and Frankie with some cold chardonnay saved my bacon ~ but that’s a short-term feel-good solution.
For the long haul (because I plan to be living on this crazy planete a long, long time!) it’s my creative self-care habits that help me to stay afloat and sail ahead through whatever storm happens to pop up that day. (And more often than not, with a smile on my face and a song in my heart ~ though I won’t deny the ability to let loose a string of cuss words that would make a sailor blush once in a while too.) For me this means ~
~ Energy routine
~ Walking and running by the lake
~ Working out with my personal trainer
~ Connecting with the women in the Creative Oasis Collective
~ Making music
~ Keeping a gratitude journal & a dream journal
~ Playing with art stuff
~ Trying new stuff (most recently a full moon ecstatic dance party!)
What if you make a list of all of the health creative self-care options that sound good to you and the next time you feel yourself about to be swamped by a title wave of suck ~ you give yourself permission to step away and enjoy 15 minutes of something creative, joyful, peaceful or fun for yourself?
Yes ~ you’ll have to eventually turn your attention back to the tidal wave, but rather than let it crash down you ~ you’ll feel better equipped to deal with it ~ to ride it like some kind of bad ass, extreme surfer!
Again ~ ask me how I know! After taking 30 minutes this morning to write this to share with you (my way of shining my light) I now feel much more upbeat, positive and ready to call that freakin’ tow truck and see what car issues I’ll be dealing with this week.
If you could use some gentle support, accountability and fun ways to practice living a creative life ~ even when times are tough ~ I invite you to join me this fall! I’m happy to share a full roster of new classes, workshops, retreats and coaching packages!
Here’s to making rainbows!
Until next time, lots of love and light from my Creative Oasis to yours!