Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Are you neglecting yourself? Where is the Love? 10 tips to get back on track

Are you neglecting yourself?

How many times have you neglected yourself in the past month, have you stopped treating yourself with kindness?
I have been there, it creeps up on you, and you have to make some decisions about how to get yourself out of the heaviness. 

When I have lots of different things going on it can be easy to forget about self-care and nurturing, and when caring for my mother who is living with dementia I found that turning to creativity, my art journal and a few other tips help me put things into perspective.  This last few months for me have been a challenge, some good and some bad.

Mixed media art Journal
The journal page says 
"The gentle breeze, the birdsong, the still small voice reminded her to step out of the self imposed barriers......she was enough"  

You are enough, have value, are absolutely brilliant and more!  We often put up those comparison charts, the "Not good enough Chart", "Self sabotage Chart " and "the 'Throw away' negative comments made by other people that hurt" chart and we put the breaks on our moving forward.  Which one have you used on yourself?

We forget ourselves don't we? and before you know it you have this ache....When I am out of balance and without routine or any scheduled 'Me Time',then things that I would normally brush off get on top of me. I find that comments that people say play like a theme tune in my mind, I try to put out fires and it is almost like a bottle that gets full to the brim and then overflows (well that's how it sometimes feels).

The Neglect Effect

Neglect effect can showcase itself in different ways:
- lack of exercise, 
- not allowing yourself to have a break, 
- taking too much of a break, 
- not eating right, 
- not spending quality time with loved ones, 
- sabotaging your work, 
- comparing yourself to others, 
- feeling stuck
-  self doubt, 
TV series binge, 
-followed by the cake and ice cream you wouldn't normally eat, 
- self loathing that follows and then beating yourself up for the work you didn't get done while you were watching back-to-back series of something you really weren't at all interested in before.

I am sure that you can think of other ways - the list goes on.  The knock-on effect is that it impacts on our commitments and relationships.

Admit you have a problem

The First step is admitting that you have a problem and that the pain of staying how you are is worse than the pain that comes from change!

My name is Amanda, a Mixed media Artist, and I have been neglecting myself.  For one reason or the next I allowed things to slide, became overwhelmed at the amount of work that I needed to get done around my art, commitments, my blog and to top it all I am in the process of moving again!

New Temporary Studio space

The move itself had stresses of its own, but then I started to stress about where I would put every thing, this is the new temporary studio space which is half the size of my current studio.

Current Studio space

This is my current studio space. minus the strapping young man (I will do a post-move studio tour on my YouTube channel in the next couple of weeks), just where would I put every thing, stay on top of things I needed to get done and I found myself becoming inactive while continuing to internally stress-out, secretly hoping somehow someone else would sought everything out.  

At the end of the day you have to realize your worth and value and what really matters and make the move, make a decision and take action, shine your light and be good to yourself.  

Here are also some quick and easy solutions for you to try and to get back on track, there are obviously loads more, but these helped for me and I hope you find them useful if you need them.

Here are 10 Tips to tackle the self-neglect and give yourself more love

  1. Admit you have a problem - realizing that this neglect will be a problem if you allow it to continue you have to put in the right ingredients to ensure that you can turn things around. 
  2. You have a choice - If you do nothing you are still making a choice, you can choose to start making the most of the situation, what are the ways you can see the good things that you have going. 
  3. Take small regular actions - What small actions can you make that will eventually create the big change.  
  4. Acknowledge your achievements - keeping an achievements book is a way of looking back at how far you have come, and celebrating those achievements, and the impact that you may have made on another persons life.
  5. Eat right - Make sure that you are getting the right nutrition from your foods, and take supplements were necessary.  I firmly believe that food has an impact on our health and well-being, and it might be some small changes that you have to make.  Check out my Smoothie Recipes
  6. Clear up your mess - Tidy up, and declutter, start with a clean room - sometimes being around mess will hamper your productivity.
  7. Get Fit - When was the last time you got some exercise? Go for a walk - get out in nature, this helps refresh your ideas, and keeps you fit.
  8. Creative Challenge - I usually kick off with a creative challenge, that helps me focus on what I really want to have in my life, and creativity impacts on our health and well-being as well.
  9. Share/Give -  Think of the needs of someone else, what could you do to help their situation? why not see how you can give of your time or other resource to be a blessing to others.
  10. Love yourself - show some self love, think about the things that you enjoy, going for a walk, beach, swim, visit a gallery, work in a journal, learn a new skill, read a book, achieve a life long goal

Feed your mind - listen to encouraging and positive messages feed your mind and get a shift in perspective.

Gratitude's - what are you grateful for in your life that you have been taking for granted?

OK, now what are you waiting for, you don't have to wait until your feeling off to put some things in place, but start something today!

Stay blessed and be a blessing

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Celebrating Your Achievements - Filling your Well

Picking up my Art Awards

How often do you celebrate your achievements or do you brush them under the carpet?

It is important to regularly celebrate the achievements and accomplishments that you make, it doesn't have to be anything big or lavish, but needs to be noted, so that in those times of doubt you have something to look back on, or you can as it were 'dip into the well' to remind yourself.

Do you quietly allow those momentous occasions to pass you by with other people getting more excited than you?  Do you hope your achievements will gain the approval of others, not valuing the importance of stepping out and knowing your worth?

When I talk about celebrating your achievements there are so many different ways in which you can do it, and the important thing is that you do celebrate in some way to mark the occasion acknowledging the work that you put in to get to where you got.

We can get in the mode of achieving things but not acknowledging them because other people feel insecure,  or are you the sort of person who waits for affirmation from others, and don't recognize what you have done as an achievement.  

Blow your own trumpet!

Not everyone grows up being told how great they are, how much talent they have or that the world is indeed their oyster which means they can have anything their hearts desire.
You can't wait for someone to see your value you have to see it first within yourself.  Why not make something of the hard work that you have put in there are others who would be happy to celebrate alongside you and would be inspired.

I shared some of the recent success I had with some of my work in Barbados.

Angles Walk Among Us - Silver Award 

I received 3 awards (2 Bronze and 1 Silver) in the The National Independence Festival Of Creative Arts (NIFCA) Barbados for 3 Sculptures I created. I shared my successes HERE.  It was great to be part of the exhibition and there were many beautiful pieces of work on display, both professional, and emerging. 

Mixed media art Sculpture - The Dancer - Bronze Award
The Dancer, which received the NIFCA Bronze award was snapped up and made its way to a home in the UK.  I shared my achievements, wrote down the date and how I felt about it in my journal.

The Dancer - in her new UK home
 My work is available for viewing and sale on my website -  

So why not blow your own trumpet, even for a moment, look at what you have achieved, write it down and give thanks for a new day to achieve something else, and the fuel that keeps you going in those times of doubt when you look back and see how far you have come.  

What about you?  what have you done in your life that you have brushed under the carpet?  what can you celebrate be it big or small? And without knowing it you could be that spark and motivation that someone else needs to celebrate their achievements. 

Stay blessed and be a blessing!

Thursday, 1 June 2017

BADASS Art Journal Course - The Women they Became

This was a lovely class taught by Sharon Harkness-Dobler, and she showed us how she uses vintage photographs in some of her work.

I found these three images of children that I had and thought that I would use them.

I had applied some color to the page and added the images, then started to think about what the girls would be like all grown up.

They then began to share their story 

If you have time, perhaps one day I will share it with you

As they grew up they blossomed into beautiful women with a tale to tell, inspiring and successful, and they remained sisters and friends.

Remember if you would like to take an online class with me and a group of other artists then sign up in the side bar for some of the sessions.

Monday, 29 May 2017

BADASS Art Journal Course - Bloom

The session that Tiare did as part of the online Course BADASS Art Journal was great fun.  It is so amazing how you can add just a few simple colors, allow your imagination to run away and you can be so surprised by the results.

After adding the color I embellished mine with doodling.  It is such a relaxing pastime you have to try it if you haven't already.

When your involved in creative play there is so much power that comes from the activity.  It is a healing one that can be done at any time, not just with the arts but any other activity that allows you to let your creative sparks fly.

The sentiment used 'Bloom' for me is about not being afraid to shine your light, and grow in your creative pursuits, so go ahead and Bloom!

Stay blessed and be a blessing
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