Wednesday, July 25, 2018

MY DANCE WITH ANXIETY


I know a great deal about anxiety both from a personal perspective and from a professional perspective.  There are so many articles about what it is, how to cope, medicine vs. natural solutions.  Yet with all of the information out there it seems that the way to work with it can be a difficult thing.  The fact is, while there is no real cure for anxiety disorders there are so many things that help relieve the aweful and overwhelming sense one gets when anxiety does occur.


Practicing mindfulness techniques is a very good tool and many have found it helpful.  Several of my students have shared that meditation helps.  So does having a hobby that you may be passionate about. Still, there are those who have found that traditional meditation makes their anxiety worse for them because they worry that they are not doing it right or that it doesn't bring them the immediate relief they are hoping for.  
For those who understand the benefits of meditation but find it difficult, I teach a type of meditation that brings them into a mindful state almost immediately.  In fact, it helped me so much that I became certified to teach it. I have listed three sites that hopefully will be helpful for you.
https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/myth-conceptions 
www.creativemeditations.us
www.zentangle.com
Please take care of yourself.  It is the most important thing you can do! I believe in you.
Namaste,
Andrea


May you have Peace  Click the link to the left for some quiet meditation music.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

I BELIEVE IN ME

I will admit that I have my moments of doubt.  Believing in yourself is a challenge and one we all have to work on.  Even me.  As I write this post the voice inside my head is trying to chip away at my confidence.   "What do you know about this stuff!?"it keeps telling me.  Plenty!  What?  You think I don't have stress?

How can we strengthen our belief in ourselves when there is so much negativity around us?

1.  Practice positivity about yourself.  Whenever that inner voice tells you that you can't,  immediately reframe your thought with you can.  Change words like impossible to I'm possible.   It is a simple notion I know, yet we often forget to practice positivity.

2.  Manage your stress.  Another easier said than done.  I think of stress as a bully!  Do not let it ruin your life. There are so many ways to manage stress and the internet is an excellent research tool.  Everyone has stress of some kind; some more than others.  There are countless articles about its effects mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  There are also many articles of what you can do to relieve it.  Diet and exercize are the most talked about and are extremely important.  I have a daily mindful meditation practice that helps me and more recently I began to practice zentangle which is a drawing meditation.  It has become my favorite way to practice mindful meditation and has been so helpful that in 2013 I became certified to teach it to others.  Some people love to sew or create art.  Whatever you like to do.....lose yourself in it.

3.  Surround yourself with positive thinking people.  There is no bigger downer than being constantly reminded that the world is going to hell in a handbasket. It isn't and don't let anyone tell you that it is.  Find a group that strives to make this world a better place.  Perhaps a local garden group?  Volunteer at a local Domestic Violence Center where the committment is to stop violence against others.  And for goodness sake, limit your exposure to the news.  I am not saying that you should bury your head in the sand but rather, don't watch it first thing in the morning or read it on your cell phone.  Watching it later in the day can save you hours of anguish. 

I could go one but instead I will just leave you with this.....I believe in me and I believe in you!!!!  Don't doubt it for a minute!  With a bit of practice we can do this together.

Namaste,
Andrea

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

SELF LOVE

Tomorrow is a day of celebrating the ones we love.  It is a long time honored tradition that has an interesting history.  Loving others has been the focus in more recent history and it is an honorable one.  Yet spending any time loving ourselves is often left undone.  Women are especially vulnerable to only having notions of selflessness, having been taught that being selfish is not only something women must never do but to even think about it is quite vulgar.  I say enough is enough.  Love yourself first.  Find ways to give to yourself the gift of self love.

I invite you to also take tomorrow and spend some time thinking about how to show yourself some love with the intent of taking a moment every day to do the same.  Listen to the meditation above.  As you listen silently repeat "I love myself deeply and completely".  I offer you this because I believe in you.  I offer you this because I believe you deserve to love yourself.

Namaste........

Friday, December 22, 2017

INTENTIONS

Setting Intention
When I first started my meditation practice so many years ago I will admit that setting an intention was not part of my practice.  I had all I could do just to sit still and be "mindful".  But as time always shows, continued practice not only makes me better at the things I want to do but allows other things to come to light as in the case of meditation.  At some point I began to set an intention at the beginning of my meditation.  This intention would last throughout the day.  For example setting an intention like "today I will practice being grateful".  Or "today I will practice mindfulness, being in the moment in all that I do".      

I started out by saying that I practice meditation every day and that I include an intention prior to sitting.  Does that mean I am some kind of Gandi? That I don't lose my temper, or become anxious? Not at all.  What it does do is allow me somewhere to get back to when I am out of sorts.  To take a moment and reflect back on my intention that I set at the beginning of the day.  Today's intention is "I am at peace and I believe".  It is a good intention and comes up from time to time.  

Adding an intention to your practice helps guide you through the day.  It does not have to be complicated.  In fact simple is always the best way.  Sometimes one word intentions are all you need.....peace, thoughtful, gratitude, focus, mindful.  These are just a few of the many to consider.  Practice does not make you perfect, you already are perfect.  Practice makes you more, well, practiced.

Namaste




Wednesday, December 6, 2017

MAY YOU HAVE PEACE

Experiencing true peace is not easy these days.  And during this time of year it seems almost impossible.  Yet, it is something most of us strive for. But what does it mean to have peace and where do you find it?  How do you find it?  And once you find it how do you keep it?

The answer is to these questions is different for each of us and changes depending on where we are in our lives.  When I was young with small children, I got some peace whenever they were napping.  Now that I am older the meaning of having peace is very different.

How one finds it depends on what method you may be looking for?  Does meditation seem like something you might try?  Perhaps taking long walks in the woods may suit you better.  We all have different things that help us achieve peace in our lives.  What are the things you do to find peace when you need it?  I would love to know.

May you find peace
May you have peace
May you be peace

Namaste,
Andrea
.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

OCTOBER IN THE CATSKILLS

October has always been one of my favorite months of the year.  There is something to be said about the cool brisk mornings helping me to wake up and pay attention. October also is a celebration of the seasons abundant harvest.  It is also the month of the pumpkin and I dream of them in abundance.  Did you know that the color pumpkin (orange) is a healing color?

Orange is a color that has been understood very little, and not often used. However, orange offers many benefits when it is understood and utilized properly. This dynamic color is associated with the second Chakra or energy center. Its area of influence on the body is the reproductive system and this is why orange is associated with the energy of sexual orgasm.
I look back at the past 10 months to witness the things that I have learned this year so far.  What Creative Meditations has been up to in the studio and all of the changes that have occurred that makes evolving such a challenge yet a blessing.  For now though, I am concentrating on the color orange because it makes me feel so happy and energetic.  


BEHOLD THE MIGHTY PUMPKIN


quote in orange taken from www.heavenmeetsearthyoga.com




Sunday, August 13, 2017

ALL ART MATTERS

 I am writing this post with a somewhat heavy heart concerning our understanding (or lack of) the importance art has played in human development.  I am beyond words but I will try to explain.

Yesterday, a good friend of mine called me and told me about a new art gallery opening in the little town of Leeds where I live.  She said that the opening was in the evening and would I like to come.  I was so excited and grateful that she called to let me know about it.  And of course, I said yes.

Now, my friend's husband owns a garage right across from the gallery and it was there that I agreed to meet her and her husband so that we could go together.  As I entered the garage I was greeted by her husband with a warm hello and a "how's Mrs. Trump doing?"  Now anyone who knows me at all also knows that I would never support ignorance and violence and white (male) supremacy. (Keep in mind that it is NOT white males, but rather the supremacy that I do not support.)  I did not smile and in front of everyone there I reminded him that he knows I am not a fan.  But the story does not end here.  Oh no!

I turned and started across the street towards the gallery and was joined by another art enthusiast who mentioned how upsetting it was to her that the National Endowment For the Arts was no longer in the federal budget.  I returned comment by saying that I was upset as well.  All of a sudden we heard the most ignorant comment of all and I quote " I don't think it should be in the budget.  Let them work for the money the way I have to!"  (yes, it was my friends husband) All I could say was WOW!

I had such a hard time sleeping last night as I thought about his comment and the thought that there are others out there who think the same way.  If there ever was an appropriate time for "What would Jesus think?" it was now.

Art is everything to the development of humanity.  It gives us hope and helps us cope.  Creativity is coping in motion and it does not matter what form it takes. But above all.....IT IS A MATTER OF NATIONAL PRIDE AND WORLDLY CELEBRATION!  It soothes the soul and speaks volumes when words fail us.

Did I say any of this to him?  No I did not.  I just turned and continues to walk across the street.

The show was beautiful and the talent was abundant.  The rooms were filled with color; vivid color that made me smile.  It told me stories about the artists and their interpretations of the life around them.  I left feeling good about that part of humanity that keeps me uplifted.

Art matters....in every form.  Namaste my friends.  Namaste






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