Art Therapy Life Coach, Artist, Photographer, Designer—Gina believes that the purpose of the arts is to enrich and heal lives.
You know that great feeling, brought on by a big life event (like a wedding or birth) or something as simple as finding a dandelion and blowing it i the wind when making a wish, or just finding the perfect fruit at the farmer’s market. JOY!
We have experiences based on two different levels, even if we don't realize it at the time.
- On an emotional level, we may get tearful, feel contentment, filled with love. We may become nostalgic and giggle..
- On a scientific level, our neurotransmitters, those tiny chemical “messenger” cells, responsible for processes and feelings in almost every aspect of the body ranging from blood flow to digestion, transmit signals between neurons (nerves) and other bodily cells, signaling our joy.
What Brings Your Heart Joy?
This activity is simple.
You are simply creating a heart drawing filled with notes of things that bring you joy.
- Step1. Draw a heart shape.
- Step 2. Make a list of things that bring your heart joy.
- Step 3. Divide the heart into the number of items on your list. You can use a puzzle design like in one of the images below, or you can choose to divide it however you wish.
- Step 4. In the spaces, write, in a creative way, those things that bring you joy. You can even add a meditation to this section, if you desire. Really contemplate on these things.
- Step 5 (optional): Draw items related to the words that you have written in each space.
- Step 6 (optional): Color.
This can be as simple or as elaborate an activity as you choose it to be.
Have you noticed anything while making your list?
Are any of the items dreams, desires, feelings, or needs of your own that maybe you have
If you added some of these things back into your life, or followed your own dreams and bliss, how would your life change for the better?
Step 1: Draw a Heart Shape.
Step 2: Make a List of Things That Bring Your Heart Joy.
Step 3: Dive Your Heart Drawing Into Sections.
Step 4: Fill in the Spaces in Your Heart Drawing With the Items From Your List.
Now That You've Completed the Activity, Ponder on These Thoughts.
What story have you been living? How does it make you feel? If it doesn’t make you feel good when you tell it, then stop telling it.
What items in the list are currently missing from your life?
What items can you add back in to bring more joy back into your life?
How will it make you feel?
Start telling a story that makes you feel inspired and positive.
Maybe there was something that you've always wanted to do, but were afraid to try.
What activities throughout your life have given you the greatest feeling of achievement? If you could do anything what would you do and what would bring you a step closer to that?
What kind of thoughts came up for you when you were making the list?
Feel the thoughts that make you feel good.
Reach for the thoughts that make you feel good and then practice holding on to them.
It may be something you have planned for the weekend. It may be a memory of time spent with your partner. Or it could just be an inner knowing that you don’t have to think this way, followed by good feelings about that.
The more you can get a hold on your thoughts, the greater control you will gain over your emotions. After all, why would you choose to feel anything but
- on top of the world
What will it be like when you can feel like that for most of your day?
We are powerful creators of our own reality, but so many of us don’t realize our own true potential.
What about gratitude? Do you have a daily gratitude practice? Be grateful for what you have in your life now. Take a few moments every day to really savor what makes you happy, what brings you joy, and give thanks for it. One of the things that I love to do is keep a gratitude journal.
I make a list of 3-5 things that I am grateful for on a daily basis.
It could be that soft, comfy pillow, the birds chirping just outside my window, the full moon, in all its glory up in the night sky, enjoying some caramel flan sitting on the beach and watching everyone splashing around in the ocean, or just listening to the rain as it hits the window panes, because I know that rain is allowing my flowers and herbs to grow..
When you create feelings of gratitude, you change the feeling in your heart. Just think what effect it is having on your mind and the rest of your body!
Extension of the Activity: Create a Bliss Board
A Bliss Board is sort of like a vision board, but you'll be taking the items from your list, or even add to them to create a larger visual.
You will need:
- a large sheet of cardboard
- pictures, captions, or words that you want your life to reflect.
What do you want your life to reflect?
So many of us know what we don’t want, but are not clear what we do want.
Once you've collected your images and words, start gluing them onto your board.
Pin it to a wall in your home so that every day you are reminded of what you want in life, or what you want your life to reflect.
I invite you, now, to
- take a leap of faith.
- allow new experiences
- allow new energy into your life
- meet new people
- let go of what is not working in your life.
You're probably thinking, "That's easy for you to say."
I know! It does take a level of confidence, and ridding yourself of old thought patterns and beliefs. Imagine what life will be like, though, when you do take that leap of take, and "try the new thing!"
What self worth and self-reliance you will have developed!
Take a moment now to reflect on the above and on your life. Remind yourself of just how wonderful this rich tapestry of life is.
But above all, remember that no matter what is happening to any one of us, the only thing that really matters at the end of it all is that our lives were filled with joy.