From owning to accepting my mistakes

Mistakean error in action, calculation, opinion, or judgment caused by poor reasoning, carelessness, insufficient knowledge, etc.

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You know when certain words make you feel all tingly inside?  Me, too, but mistake is not one of them.  The word mistake makes me cringe, turn my head away, and retract into myself instantly.

That’s how powerful words are btw: say them, feel them, use them if they yield amazing feelings.  Discard, replace, or be sure to end on words that restore positive vibrations in your body when done conversing about said mistakes or other low vibration words.

Anywho, I made a mistake the other day.  A simple mistake, but being the accountable person I am I owned that sh*t.  And my tummy dropped, chest sank, soul crushed…..gasp, “I made a mistake.  I’m not perfect? OMG, I’m not perfect.  Why am I not perfect?!  Why did I have to f*ck up?”  Mind you, I’m in chronic pain from an injury and not sleeping much, so I’m a little sensitive if I do say so myself.  So, yes, I was being a little dramatic.  I know-weird.

 

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But, there I was beating the living crap out of myself for this mistake:  “How could I?  Why would I?  I’m sure words are being spread.  I hate (another ugly word) that others know I made this mistake, they must think I’m stupid, and awful, and horrible, and a terrible human…..” there I was with all of these low vibration words, mentally berating myself, feeling like someone had just ran me over with their car when I finally did silence.

What was my mistake in handling my mistake?  Because there is no excuse for me or you to feel like a low life over a simple mistake, or any mistake, really.  And, I know plenty of people who beat themselves up just the same if not worse.  Where are we going wrong?

First of all, I owned my mistake.  Sounds like a good idea.  I’ve always prided myself in taking accountability.  I know first hand that problems will not be solved and growth will not occur if you do not acknowledge that you were, in fact, an a**hole and want to do better.  But, I internalize, that is different, and that is when I feel my stomach drop and chest sink.  I’ve now housed the mistake and given it a home in my body, and it quickly clutters my mind and drags me down.  Make sense?

So, owning mistakes is no good, it’s not working for me, in fact, it’s deteriorating my mind, and making me feel less awesome by the minute to do so.  Instead, I will try to accept the mistake.  It’s there, it happened, I did it, but I am not the mistake.  I do not have to put it in my pocket and carry it around with me.  The mistake is not mine, it just happened.  The mistake does not need to tattoo itself on my forehead as my newest worry line.   Duh!!  Totally helpful mini or mega realization I had.

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All of these years I feel like I have been claiming these mini mess-ups and carrying them around with me.  Adding them to my repertoire as if they were different shades of blue and I was about to paint The Starry Night.  No, owning mistakes has not done me any favors.  It has not painted any pretty pictures in my mind of who I am or who I want to be.

 

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I love how a simple shift in your perspective can change your life.  Because, I can handle accepting my mistakes.  I can handle knowing I experienced what imperfect feels like, but I can’t handle being and housing the imperfection itself.  It’s weighing me down to do so.  My body feels heavy when I own stuff that’s not mine.  I prefer the light, spacious, kind environment.  I think I’ll remember to accept that it happened, and that I experienced it, but not accept it as apart of who I am.  That feels so much betta.

Do you agree?  Doesn’t it feel good to change your internal dialogue?  Can’t you feel yourself lighten as you release that which does not serve you?  Do it often!  What other words, mistakes, things are you owning and internalizing that you could let go of or change?

Example:  I use to tell myself working out was hard and I hated that my body would shake and tremble.  Then I bought a yoga bundle off  CodyApp.com with Meghan Currie (highly recommend) and she said something like, “just shake, calibrate and enjoy the fruits of your labor, tell yourself you like it, love it, enjoy it, until you do.”  And, I was like, “duh!!  Why have I always told myself working out was a hassle, that I hated sweating, and being fit was hard?  It releases endorphins, it tones, lifts, strengthen, defines, and nourishes my body, mind, and soul.  I love looking good and feeling good, why did I ever think this sucked?”

Her simple words changed my mind so easily.  From that moment on yoga was effortlessly infused into every morning, noon, and night that I could, hip willing. I shook, calibrated, and soaked up all of the goodness I made my own damn self, everyday.   Just like that, I changed my mind, and changed my life.

 

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Yoga has picked me up and put me back together too many times to count.  I use to drink almost nightly at times just to unwind.  My anxiety use to get the best of me more often than not, depression was my go to emotion, energy levels were much lower, routines were non-existent, drugs and alcohol were always my go to stress relievers, and then I found yoga.  If I would have decided to continue thinking that caring for my body was a hassle, I would have missed out on so many amazing moments of clarity, calm, and self love.

Aren’t words and yoga amazing?  How awesome is it that you can change the way you look at things, so the things you look at begin to change, and so your life, and the way you experience it begins to change?……or, something like that.  Say what you mean and mean what you say,  and never be afraid to change how you use your words and the definition of who you are.

 

With Love in mind,

Danielle Atherton-Rutledge

 

 

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Am I creative? Why art therapy?

Am I creative?

Do you have a pulse, and are you breathing?  Yes?  Good, you are creative.

The way you think, move, feel, act, share: it’s all your creative expression.  It’s beautiful to watch people move; life is art.  You are part of it, you are art, and you are creating the work of art that is your life.

I know it can be intimidating to sit down with your own thoughts and a blank piece of paper if art is not your thing.  I very limited on my artistic drawing abilities.  It’s not that we are not capable, it’s that we just haven’t practiced.

I see a therapist who is very pro art therapy.  It’s come up in conversation at 3 different sessions.  So, I think she really wants me to benefit from its goodness.

I’m going to commit to a page a day and see what happens.  Care to join?

What is art therapy you ask?

Exactly what it sounds like–  creating art as to feel “better” about life, the situation, yourself, etc……

There are plenty of credible articles online if you’re wanting a fancy explanation.  That’s not what I’m here to chat about, so, google you must if you need a more proper description.

Why would this help me?  Why would I make art therapy a regular priority?

We all live with emotions that are craving to be unleashed and let go of.  They want out, and you’re keeping them in.   Having the jitters, cringing, white knuckling, biting your tongue, clinching your teeth, holding your breath, getting butterflies, etc…..  These are feelings that simply want out.

I do yoga, journal, and see a therapist to get out many of my emotions, but there are always other ways as well.  Some garden, dance, sing, workout, read, the list goes on.  Art therapy just seems like the next thing I want to add to my self help repertoire.  I’ve always wanted to be a better artist.  Of course, practice makes perfect.

I feel like releasing my emotions more consciously and creatively seems to make the process smoother, more enjoyable and more continuous.  I notice when I am being more creative in my releases that I feel more at peace with letting go of whatever belief or emotion I was trying to part ways with.

We can sit down, open a book, and use our pens to let go of that which does not serve us.  Layer by layer, inch by inch, day by day, we can take the time to notice what is going on inside, and let it out; good or bad, happy or sad, let go and create room to grow.

By connecting and paying attention to our creative selves, we have created the opportunity to grab thoughts that feel good,  fuel purpose, and the thoughts that can solve problems.  We can write them down, and remember them more clearly when we need them.  We can let emotions guide the pen or marker and bring us some clarity and peace of mind.  We can pin point what it is that is holding us back or making us feel stuck when we give ourselves space to listen and learn.

You are choosing and deciding what you want to see, heal, help and do,  either consciously or by default.  When we do things more purposefully and fully we add more value to the moment, yes?  Art therapy is  me committing to 15 minutes to allow my inner-self to speak creatively.  It’s me saying I’ve always wanted to be a better artist and so I’m going to invest a small amount of myself everyday in order to do so.  It’s one more way for me to safely express myself.

You’re feelings are valid, you matter, what you want matters, who you are, and where you are going is going to change the world.  Period.  Remind yourself where you’ve been, where you are, and where you are going everyday.  I think art therapy can help me get clearer on my path, and become more appreciative of my past and present if I’ll let it..

We might create a more peaceful place in ourselves and in this world by picking up our pens and setting down the remotes or iPhones.  Or, at least this is the theory.

But, I’m not creative….

If you want to know how to be creative in terms of writing and art, first of all, you must sit still long enough to let the feelings arise that help you create.  Emotions charge the particles on your paper, and make the words, and strokes come to life.  Give yourself space to feel.  Stillness is your friend.  Being alone with paper and pen a few minutes a day can help you discover who you were, are, and wish to be.

If it’s scary to be alone with your thoughts, write that down, get it out, don’t own it anymore; give it away, and then write down how you want to feel-I am safe, I love and appreciate myself, and time.  Then just take a few deep breaths as you scribble and doodle your way to creating healthier thought patterns.

Do not underestimate the power behind getting to know yourself through creative expression.  You must feel more deeply if you want to create more passionately.  Silence, space, feel, accept, release, create, breathe, moving on.

Open your chest and you will find magic pouring out, begging to come to life, asking your permission to come into existence.  You have emotions that want to be known, they want to come out and play, and if you don’t let them, they bounce around in your body creating their own kind of fun, which  may not be your kind of fun.

What are you suppose to do or say with this blank canvas?

Whatever feels fitting that day.  Today, I was struggling with not taking a friends comments personal.  Instead of continuing to be angry, I drew statements that reinforced who I want to be, not who she thinks I am or should be.  I paid no more attention to her ill words, and instead created words that felt good when I said them, read them, wrote them.  I also drew owls which always make me feel connected to my beloved grandma (read more on her here), and just let myself breathe deeper as I colored away.  That’s it.  Piece of cake.  And, my first page took 15 minutes of my time, and I do feel way better about the situation at hand.  Mission accomplished.

I know, I know, don’t quit my day job.  I’m not here to sell you art, I’m here to help you understand that a little goes a long way.  I know journaling and art has saved my life a time or two, and I think if I put in a little more effort it can help me create momentum and healing to move more easily through the coming days of my life.

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Commit to 5 minutes a day and let it grow if the time, and you say so.  Maybe you’ll notice yourself feeling more focused on what is helpful, so you may choose wiser next time.  Maybe you’ll discover that doodling, coloring and drawing are soothing for the soul, even if all you did was scribble a few words and lines down.

You didn’t create the Mona Lisa or write Harry Potter, but you did create a moment that aloud you to feel, express and move.  Art brings people to life.  Art allows blood to flow, circuits to open and puzzle pieces fit.  Create your own everyday.

Create your mood, find solutions, vent, laugh at yourself, build yourself up, say nice things to yourself and be responsible for your own sh*t, but do it with crayons, and make it pretty and fun, so you like life and yourself.

Each day, the theory is that you’ll speak more thoroughly, clearly, calmly, effectively, and lovingly to yourself, and of course, that can only help you communicate more beautifully into the world around you.  Yes?

Which can only create more enjoyable moments, correct?

Get creative, get clear, get excited about who you are, where you’ve been and where you are going.  Color your way to more enjoyable days.

In love,

Danielle Atherton-Rutledge