My digital diet for the week of April 9 helped me be more mindful about my time. I was able to write, rest, practice yoga/Reiki/meditation, go to the gym, take care of home and personal finance responsibilities, attend an art exhibition opening at the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery, participate in the monthly artists-in-residence meeting held at the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, create collages with patients and staff at the Walter Reed National Medical Military Center, and read chapters from Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection during my morning commute with greater ease. I noticed my creative juices were flowing much better. The best part of the week was not carrying my smartphone with me most days.
My biggest challenge was going online in the evenings to check my email and other social media accounts. On some days, I spent more time than I originally budgeted. So I am working this week on sticking to my plan.
My greatest lesson learned was that when I write my Digital Sisterhood book chapter drafts on paper instead of my lap top I am less likely to go online in the evening.
Last month I started making a weekly collage to nurture my creativity journey. These collages help me stay on track with my commitment to expressing my visual voice. Many of them serve as visual affirmations that I use to support my fierce living commitment to self-care, fitness, unplugging, and completing my Digital Sisterhood book. I included two collages above from my April collection. What do you think?
How are you nurturing your creativity?
Are you making collages or artwork? If yes, share links in the comment section.
Happy Friday! Happy Good Friday! Happy Early Easter!
How is your day going? I hope it is treating you well. Mine started with a confession and a double dose of positive inspiration for my writer’s soul.
Here’s my confession: when I write books, especially memoirs, I have an opportunity to really explore some deep parts of myself. Sometimes the writing journey can get emotionally draining, scary, and overwhelming. When that happens, I look for positive inspiration. Today I reminded myself to slow down, breathe, and look for some positive inspiration. Guess what? I found two great sources.
Artist Kelly Rae Roberts’ April 5th blog post was the first source of inspiration. Roberts’ post about the benefits and pitfalls of an online life reminded me I need to continue taking great care of myself by setting more boundaries on my online life. In short, it’s time for me to revisit my online boundaries, establish a new schedule for going online, and have a more consistent practice of daily and weekly UNPLUGGING (my digital sister and friend Danica Kombol calls it a digital diet).
My second source of positive inspiration came from a YouTube video featuring storyteller/researcher Brene Brown’s TEDx Houston Talk on the power of vulnerability. Click here to watch the video. What a game changer! It’s making me dig deeper into my Digital Sisterhood book writing journey. I’m so grateful for Brown’s talk, the power of connection, and the belief and acceptance that I am enough as a spiritual being having a human experience as a woman, friend, daughter, sister, author, artist, coach, yoga teacher, innerpreneur, speaker etc. etc.
So what positive inspiration have you discovered lately?
How do you keep yourself inspired?
Any plans to unplug, set boundaries on your digital life, go on a digital diet (check out Daniel Sielberg’s TheDigital Diet— great tips), or take a digital sabbatical (similar to the one Gwen Bell talks about in her book Digital Warriorship – fantastic book I read in 2011 — had a chance to participate in Bell’s BlogHer 2011 workshop — awesome experience)?
Image #1 Wisdom from Yours Truly: Always open your hand to receive.
Image #2 Wisdom from poet, post-trauma specialist and Jungian psychoanalyst Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes: “In the face of ‘too much’ we gradually become dry, our hearts get tired, our energies become spare, and a mysterious longing for – we almost never have a name for it other than ‘a something’ rises up in us more and more.”
Image #3 Wisdom from author Madeleine L’Engle: “Every so often I need OUT.”
These messages represented a Spring wake up call: Continue practicing awareness of what I need. They also invited me to return to the first page of my 2012 journal. Here’s what I wrote on January 1.
2012 must be different from 2011. I must return to the deep, juicy space of creativity that I discovered in 1992, the year I baptized myself in poetry, meditation, journal writing, self publishing my own work, art, daydreaming, museum and gallery visits, and travel adventures. I must come home to myself. What road must I take? When I start walking along the road, how do I come home to myself? Through fierce living from your creative heart. What’s that?
Fierce Living is
F – Finding your
I – Inner women inside of you by
E – Exploring who they are and
R – Receiving them into your life as your
C – Community of
E – Expression and
When you tap into your inner women be sure to
L – Listen to them because they offer
I – Intuition
V – Vulnerability
I – Imagination
N – Nurturing and
G – Growth opportunities
This acronym of fierce living from my creative heart has become my personal theme for 2012 and a reminder of what I need to do to come home to myself.
Coming home to myself has allowed me to spend time reconnecting with my eight inner women otherwise known as archetypes and personalities. We’ve known each other for many years now. They include Ancestor, my wise woman; Ananda, my spirit woman and mystic; Kiamsha, my creative woman; Madelyn, my CEO woman; Cheryl, my balanced woman and peacekeeper; Puf, my girl child and Black American Princess; Sapphire, my warrior woman and sexy vixen; and Broomhilda, my inner critic.
Since January, we have reconnected through mindful meditation, Reiki healing touch, yoga, journaling, collage making, writing an intention statement, playing with six-word memoirs, going on creative adventure dates and walks, reading magazines, listening to music, shopping for our favorite things, and playing dress up in my closet. This investment of time has helped me deeply listen to myself. So far, I have discovered that I need to do a better job of taking care of myself. I need to practice self-compassion. I need more ME time to just be, to rest, to daydream, to imagine, and to create. I need to set better boundaries with my time, energy, resource sharing, and relationships. I also need to say NO to certain people and requests so I can have space to say YES to the people and things that nourish my creative heart. Today, I discovered coming home to myself is a daily necessity and an essential part of my life journey.
Copyright 2012 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All Rights Reserved.
This morning I got up early and practiced yoga outside, meditated, chanted the Sanskrit word dharana (concentration) with my mala bead, read my Science of Mind daily devotional book, and ate my usual breakfast – oatmeal with raisins and honey. Right now I am sipping a cup of green tea as I pause from reviewing the latest version of my poetic memoir manuscript that my publisher sent a few weeks ago. The music of Eric Roberson, a brilliant independent artist from New Jersey (a Howardite like me and my brother Matt!), is keeping me company. His new CD, Music Man First drops on August 25. Click here to learn more about Eric: http://blueerrosoul.blogspot.com. You can pre-order a copy of Music Man First here: https://ericroberson.btruu.com. It’s $12. When you pre-order the CD like I just did, you get an autographed copy. What a treat! Don’t sleep on this one folks! Eric’s music is AMAZING! Check out his latest video below.
Eric’s music has been a creative inspiration for my writing process over the past eight years. When you read my debut novel, Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One (www.lovestroubadours.com), you learn about Eric’s music and the role it played in the life of the main character Karma Francois. Love’s Troubadours even begins with a scene that discusses Eric’s music! Now you know that shows how much I love his work! This cat is fantastic! And yes I am a HUGE fan! Does it show?
My new book, That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetic Memoir of Self-Discovery (September 2009) also pays tribute to Eric and his music through a poem. See below. Let me know what you think. Enjoy!
Have a positively wonderful day and week!
Peace, Creativity, and Music,
Inspired by Eric Roberson, an African American independent soul artist, musician, and song writer.
Something more happens when I hear his music or see him perform.
His energy sparks my imagination.
It helps me dig deep and uncover what I have been hiding from: fear to put my creative expression in full rotation without industry support.
The moves he makes as an independent artist liberate my consciousness.
They offer a creative paradigm I can duplicate in my own world.