Preparation for the Journey

Over the years I’ve studied with a number of amazing professors.  Each of them focused on human potential, healing, and making the world a better place.  I owe a note of gratitude to Jean Houston, Lucia Capacchione, and Angeles Arrien.  These three women gave me the tools, preparing me for the journey and the path I’ve chosen.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that one of the key ideas I’ve focused on over the years is The Odyssey and the idea of embarking on a journey that is life altering.  Pilgrimage like The Odyssey start with a call that we often turn down or refuse at first, but the clues keep pouring in and show us that the call is part of our calling.

When starting out on a journey of any kind we need to make sure we’re prepared.  What tools do you need for your individual journey?  I made an assessment prior to the start of the Feast for the Soul about the tools I would need so I can maximize the outcome of this adventure.  I do feel that it’s an adventure because it has any many unknowns as knowns.  It is driving me to begin a deep dive into my consciousness and will show me where it intersects with my community.

I have found that it’s important to have the right tools for the right job.  Recently we bought new furniture for the office.  I measured twice before making the purchase and finally once delivered I realized I’d need to take the hinges off the door.  I tried to use a screwdriver but the hinges didn’t budge.  I watched a YouTube video and the “tutor” used a nail sink to boost the pin out of the hinge.  I went a bought a nail sink, lo and behold the pin came right out.

New Cutting Mat, Two Bolts of Fusible Web, Book of Poems by Nikki Giovanni (things I needed for the journey)

Given that example, I went to the store and bought some supplies. These tools will make the journey more productive, and will keep me stocked so I won’t have to run to the store in the middle of a studio session.  It will also keep me focused on the project, the journey to mindfulness.

What will you need before setting out on your own “odyssey”?  The planning will bring you to the present, help you focus, and as Stephen Covey states, “Begin with the end in mind.”  Obviously on a pilgrimage you won’t know every conclusion, but think about what you hope will be the conclusion.

I’d love to hear about your own journey!  Feel free to share and let’s start a dialogue.

The Greatest Contagion of All…Creativity

Creativity is contagious. It gets you to stop, look, and think. It provokes a reaction stimulating the emotional and spiritual parts of your being. When we’re in the presence of creativity we feel lighter, motivated, and excited.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that so many healthcare settings are using the arts in the healing process. Visual artists, musicians, clowns, actors, dancers are showing up to give patients the opportunity to create or be part of a creative process. We invoke the creative aspects of our soul to tell our stories and live fully in the moment.

When I went back to graduate school to study Art and Healing, I had the privilege of studying with noted anthropologist Angeles Arrien. Unfortunately Arrien died on April 24, but her legacy continues. The class she taught was The Nine Muses (also the title of her book) and it focused on the nine muses from Greek mythology. Each of the muses represented a different form of the arts. We can each invoke the muses to inspire our inner artist.

You don’t have to be an artist to catch the creativity bug. I just finished reading the April issue of Fast Company magazine. The cover story was “How to Unleash Creativity”. The article features Ed Catmull, head of Pixar studios. He shared from his book Creativity, Inc. how to create creative teams. He shared the creation of a BrainTrust, a group that shares their creative exuberance allowing for greater success of their movie projects. When we’re around creative people, our, often unspoken creative selves emerge. We stop being mute and begin the journey of ultimate self-expression.

Catching creativity is life affirming. It is the best thing we catch from another person or group. Fortunately when you catch creativity you’re not quarantined, in fact it’s better if you mingle and infect others with the creativity bug.

Catch Creativity, Spread Creativity, Use Creativity, and you’ll feel better.

Looking for inspiration, support, and education when facing a chronic or life-threatening illness visit