Emotion: DoWnS and uPs

DoWnS and uPs
DoWnS and uPs, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.
(click on photo to enlarge)

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Lows – deep, dark, lonely
Sweet and sour emotions
Highs – rare, swift, feeble
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Here is another photo in my “emotion” series.  (see my posting on anger).  I saw a flower that had both droopy petals and lively petals, and thought I could use it to represent the experience of being on a rollercoaster ride of emotions.  Although, it could also apply to other rollercoaster challenges one is experiencing.  Obviously, I manipulated the photo and added some unnatural blurring to the flower to evoke the feeling I was looking for – instability even when experiencing the “ups.”

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Emotion: Anger

Anger
Anger, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on photo to enlarge)

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Passionate lava
Erupts through delicate veins
Withering cyclone
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This is an attempt to take a photo that represents an emotion that I may be experiencing.  I would have a better and quicker variety of art to create if I could draw or paint, but since I don’t have those talents, I look for photo opportunities.  The intention is to release the energy caused by that particular emotion and become calmer.  Otherwise, the effects of the emotion will continue to build in the body with each occurrence.

As far as the bees, I watched them for a bit, taking several photos.  I like this one the best.  They continually fought with each other on the flower.  It seemed like the bee that was on the flower first was not in the mood to share it with another.

Body Awareness – Notice the details

Notice the details - Haiga
Notice the details – Haiga, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on photo to enlarge)
This is my first submission to Kim Klassen’s Texture Tuesday

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Whispers of guidance
Subtle taps at awareness
Enlightened healing!
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The foot feels the foot when it feels the ground ~ Buddha

My previous posting on mindfulness meditation touched on the benefits of becoming more aware of the physical feelings in your body, both large and small.  Also, when you pay attention to and study your body, you begin to notice the physical sensations that occur in your body during a particular experience or emotion.

If you ask people what they feel in their body when they experience a certain emotion, a response you might get is, “I don’t know, I’ve never thought about it.”  People generally are not aware of these details. More

Ask and you shall receive an answer – maybe!

Don’t listen to friends when the Friend inside you says “Do this”  Gandhi

In my last post I talked about my first experiences with guided imagery and visual imagery and about asking my “inner advisor” questions.  I had, and still have, many questions.  So, with a new tool in hand, I went home to practice, practice, practice.  I followed the guidance I received, but I wasn’t getting answers.  My inner advisor wasn’t talking to me.

But wait!  The strange part to me was putting a question “out there.”  And even more confusing to me was how I would receive the answers.  I didn’t know what would happen or what I would feel.  How would I know it’s the answer?  How would I know I wasn’t just making it up?  More

Guided Imagery and Visual Imagery – I’m learning more tools!

 Until you make the unconscious conscious,
it will direct your life and you will call it fate.  ~  Carl Jung

Guided imagery and visual imagery are two more techniques based on the concept that the mind and body are connected.  They involve the subconscious and imagination and help with stress reduction and relaxation.  The subconscious, as explained to me, is like a computer CPU continually processing things in the background, mostly without our knowledge.  The conscious is like the computer screen – we only see a portion of what the computer is processing.

In my pain psychology sessions, we approached guided imagery by first selecting something to symbolize my “inner advisor” (the non-conscious, or subconscious self).  This could be a person or an animal, etc. – but something that feels safe to be with.  The next step was to close my eyes, select a safe and secure place where I can feel relaxed, and visualize this place in my mind.  The inner advisor I selected was one of my favorite dogs we had when I was a kid. More

Go with the F L O W

The creative process is a process of surrender, not control. — Julia Cameron

Skipper in the moment
Skipper in the moment, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on photo to enlarge)

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Flow with the river
Float with the breeze, bathe in bliss
Notice nothing else
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In my last post, I cited that getting lost in an activity could be considered a type of meditation for me, which allows an escape from some of the pain.  I can get lost in certain music, artwork, photographing nature, etc.  This is described as Flow psychology (or being present in the moment).  It involves being fully immersed and absorbed in an activity to the point you are oblivious to everything else.  It is being connected to an activity, to a moment.  The expert on this is Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, a psychologist and educator who emigrated from Europe to the United States in the 1950’s.  (I’m  unable to pronounce his name correctly.)

The skipper butterfly in the photo above is a good example of Flow, in my opinion.  This butterfly was so absorbed in drinking nectar from the flower that it was totally oblivious to me.  I stroked its wings, I nudged it back and forth, I put the camera right in its face, which is how I got such a closeup shot, and it did not budge or fly away until it was done.  Great Flow!  Working on getting this photo and enhancing it afterwards was Flow for me.

What activity is Flow for you?

The healing begins: Meditation challenges

The soul always knows what to do to heal itself.  The challenge is to silence the mind. – Caroline Myss

About a year ago, I began meeting with a pain psychologist hoping I could learn how to manage my pain enough to function reasonably well, and do it without drugs.  I didn’t want something that would only cover the symptoms.  He told me it would be hard work but I would be learning some valuable tools.  I felt relief because it was the first time in a long time I didn’t have drugs pushed towards me.  Someone in the healthcare community finally listened to me (I mean really listened), heard me, understood me and supported me.  Wow!

At first, I anticipated being coached and refreshed on some deep breathing techniques.  Instead, we started with “meditation” – mindfulness meditation.  I was surprised because I had never tried meditation before, and I didn’t understand how to do it.  I thought, “What does mindfulness really mean?”  I pictured myself in nature sitting in the typical meditation fashion, eyes closed and uttering “ommmmm……ommmmm……” More

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