Posts Tagged With: self expression

Day 1931: No outlet

What happens when there is no outlet for

  • feelings,
  • thoughts,
  • beliefs,
  • opinions,
  • uncertainties,
  • vulnerability,
  • strengths,
  • talents,
  • honesty,
  • secrets,
  • pain,
  • pleasure,
  • differences,
  • connections,
  • needs,
  • disagreements,
  • the urge to move forward,
  • the wish to stay still,
  • learning,
  • self-expression,
  • growth,
  • communication,
  • self-doubt,
  • self-confidence,
  • mistakes,
  • humanity,
  • creativity or
  • vision?

One of my outlets (for all those things and more) is this daily blog, where I can share what I experience within and around me.

Another outlet for me is music (found here and here).

What are your outlets?

Letting out my gratitude for all who help with this daily blogging outlet (including you!) is another great outlet for me.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 1236: Your Core

If somebody asked you to write, draw, craft a poem, or otherwise express yourself about “Your Core,” what  would you core-ageously create?

Here are my core creations  from a therapy group last night:

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Because confidentiality is a core value of any therapy group, I will not reveal what others expressed about their cores. However, I will tell you that a core member of the group shared this from her core, as we were rounding the last core-ner of the group session:

The universe is more generous and gracious than we think.

That got me, to my core.

In my core, I believe synchronicity is a core force in our generous and gracious universe. Here’s a core photo I coincidentally took two hours before last night’s core group:

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Do any of my other photos from yesterday connect to your core?

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Music inspires me to the core, so I’ve been singing more, lately, from my core. Tonight, I’ll be joining a core group of 25 singers for  Piano Karaoke. (If you want to get to the core of how Piano Karaoke works, click here.)

Here’s my core list of possible songs for tonight:

Mad World

The Lion Sleeps Tonight

Cry Me a River

Blue Bayou

It Had to Be You

Crazy

Mack the Knife

Lush Life

You Are Too Beautiful

Pretty Women

Michael from Mountains

They Can’t Take That Away from Me

 

Over the core-se of three hours tonight, I will sing about a half dozen songs from my core. Do you have any core suggestions of which ones I should perform?

Of core-se, I’m going to share some music in this core post. Here’s the tune that’s touching me to the core, here and now:

Watching that YouTube video, I notice even more core synchronicity. Tonight, my  18-year-old son Aaron is giving somebody a prom core-sage. And, he’ll be wearing his first tuxedo, as elegant as Fred Astaire.

Here’s something they can’t take away from me.

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I hope, to my core, that my core readers know that gratitude is a core value of this blog.

Many thanks, from my core to yours.

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 1197: Where creativity happens

Where creativity happens, that’s where I want to be.

Where creativity happens, I can learn and grow.

Where creativity happens, I can express myself authentically.

Where creativity happens, I am inspired.

Where creativity happens, I am more in the moment.

Where creativity happens, I let go of any regrets about the past.

Where creativity happens, I let go of fear and worry about the future.

Where creativity happens, I am more accepting.

Where creativity happens, I can show up, be gentle, and tell the truth.

Where creativity happens, I can see mistakes and imperfections as opportunities to solve problems .

Where creativity happens, I can let go of assumptions and expectations.

Where creativity happens, I am more playful and spontaneous.

Where creativity happens, I am less concerned with what other people think.

Where creativity happens, I can live non-judgmentally.

Where creativity happens, I feel free to share the love in my heart and the knowledge in my head.

Where creativity happens, I can bring all the different parts of me, without shame.

Q: Where does creativity happen?

A: Anywhere people have the means to create  and feel safe enough to do so.

Yesterday, creativity happened everywhere I went.

 

Yesterday, my boyfriend Michael creatively told me and my son about creative Craig Ferguson and creative Shirley Manson creatively talking about Edinburgh, Scotland, where creativity will happen (1) during the Festival Fringe in August and (2) when my son starts University there in September.

Here‘s creative Shirley Manson being creative musically:

Where creativity happens, there’s room for comments AND gratitude.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 1089: The Meaning of Life

Earlier this year, I attempted to explain The Meaning of Life. Thanks to my niece Julie’s lovely Christmas present to me last night …

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… I am choosing to revisit this topic today.

Because I’m a group therapist, I usually like to go to the group, first, about any important topic.  Therefore, my esteemed group of readers, what would YOU express in a journal called “The Meaning of Life”?  Might you fill that journal with:

  • thoughts?
  • feelings?
  • the past?
  • the present?
  • the future?
  • hopes?
  • dreams?
  • disappointments?
  • yourself?
  • other people?
  • lessons?
  • warnings?
  • the facts?
  • imagination?
  • words?
  • images (like these, from yesterday,  Christmas eve 2015)?

Your meanings will give more meaning to this meaningful post.

Happy Christmas, love, and peace to all my readers.  And I mean it.

Sincerely,

My brain, heart, etc.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

Day 1074: The Head and the Heart

Yesterday,  people in a therapy group decided to explore this topic:

What’s in your head and what’s in your heart?

I suggested that we draw our heads and our hearts and fill them with words, images, and whatever else we chose.

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For the rest of the day, I noticed things in my head and/or my heart.

What do you hold, now, in your head?  What’s in your heart?

Thanks, from my head and from my heart, to all who helped me create this post and to you — of course! — for bringing your head and your heart here, today.

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 50 Comments

Day 1064: Audiences

Throughout my adult life, I’ve thought a lot about audiences. As a technical writer, marketing writer, teacher, partner in an advertising agency, group and individual psychotherapist, business owner, musical performer,  AND a daily blogger, I’ve learned that identifying and connecting authentically with an audience is very important.

At the same time, each one of us really knows only our own individual experience. I might imagine and try to understand the potential members of any audience, but it’s impossible for me to really get into anybody else’s head. The only head I can really inhabit is my own — and that’s true for any human being, no matter how much each one of us projects, researches,  empathizes, or otherwise tries to connect with an audience.

So, how can any one of us really comprehend and connect with the other people in any audience, in any situation?

Do you — my audience — have any answers for that question?

As I’m creating this blog post, I am aware that you, among others in my blogging audience, will be reading it. At the same time,  I don’t really know

  • who you are,
  • what you’re looking for here, and
  • how I can give you what you need.

I can only guess.

Therefore, no matter who my audience is — for anything I put out into the world — I need to focus on what’s important to me and on communicating that as effectively and authentically as possible.

Then, if I miss the mark and I do not connect with my audience, at least I’ve created something that matters to one person — myself.

Why am I writing about audiences to you, my blogging audience, today?

Why not?

Also, yesterday I signed up to audition for the U.S. television show, The Voice.

Actually, I wasn’t sure whether I was going to share that fact with any audience.  Why?  Because sharing anything with an audience  involves vulnerability.

And what does vulnerability tell me now?

I may fail.

But then, I can ask these follow up questions — to myself and, simultaneously,  to my audience:

What does failure mean?

What if the concept of failure did not exist?

And I can also tell myself this:

No matter what happens, I’ll have something interesting to blog about.

And  I’ll probably have some pictures to show you, like these (which I took yesterday, not really knowing who my audience might be today):

Speaking of The Voice, what does your voice want to express, here and now?

My thanks to audiences, everywhere.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 520: Let Your __ Out

This post is brought to you by the letter

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Actually, that’s not true.  I’m just letting my teasing nature out.

It was about time for me to use that “T,” too.

Now, it’s time to turn to the title.  “Let Your __ Out.”  What the $!!?$!! does that mean? Well, the underlines — to indicate a missing word — might recall the special characters of yesterday’s post.  It might, but it doesn’t need to. The past can inform the present, but the current moment has enough, on its own.

I just let my philosophy out, there.

How about if I let out my inspiration for this post?  Would anybody object to that?

I didn’t think so.

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I saw all that yesterday.  Here’s a closer look:

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See that?

Today’s title gives me room to talk about things I’ve let out recently.

For example, we let our cat Harley out on the porch yesterday, for the first time.

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That’s not Harley. It’s Oscar. We’ve let him out, many times before. Here’s Harley, when we first let him out:

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There are other things I let out yesterday, including:

  • my feelings,
  • my opinions, and
  • my wishes.

Which all involved letting go of ….

Fear.

I need to let this post out, because it’s time for me to go to work.

I don’t want to leave you — or my inquisitive nature — out of this post, though.  How would you fill in the blank, in today’s title?

Let your you (and your style) out, dear readers.

Thanks to the Alewife T Station, Fenway Park, people who express themselves, creatures who try new things, those who help others let go of fear, and to you — of course! — for letting me let my me out here, every day.

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , | 26 Comments

Day 168: A dream of dancing

In Day 148: Dreams I Have Known, I wrote about a dream where I knew I was asleep and dreaming, didn’t like the feeling, and tried to wake up, fighting the typical “dream paralysis.”

Last night, I had a dream that started that same way: that is, I had just fallen asleep and I knew I was dreaming. Usually I don’t like those early-sleep dreams, because I often have a sense of discomfort or foreboding … like there is some danger present. Last night, I didn’t fight the dream or try to wake up, and it quickly shifted into something else. I was in a room that was like a big studio, with mirrors on the walls. I could see myself, and I decided to try some dance moves. Specifically, I wanted to kick my legs way up, to a full extension. Something like this:

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Or this:

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And I could see myself, and that reflected image looked like me and dressed like me, and — lo and behold — I could do those kicks.

It was great.

I woke up and I thought, “I want to remember that dream. And I want to blog about it tomorrow.”

I did and I am.

I’m enjoying the memory of that dream, right now. It was fun, freeing, and effortless. I felt graceful and centered. I was surprised by my skill and knew that it was the Dream Me, but the movement and expression seemed to come out of the Real Me.

While I might not be able to kick exactly the way I did in that dream, I know I can kick — in other ways — in real life.

Thanks for kicking back with me, here and now.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Day 153: Do I Dare to Tweet a Tweet?

Yes.

A few days ago, I wrote a post called “To Tweet or Not to Tweet (is that the question?),” where the “real” topics included aging, resistance to change, fear of the new, embracing life, dealing with illness, and the d-word (death).

However, Twitter was definitely in there.  And several of the much-appreciated comments I got on that post (including a few from fellow blogger Charmin) have kept Twitter On My Mind.

And then, in another peep of synchronicity, Twitter sent me a friendly, freakishly timed e-mail saying, “Hello, Ann!  We haven’t seen you in a while!”

Because I did sign up for Twitter a while ago.  (My memory is that my son was interested at that time, and we had some kind of mass, household sign-up).

And I have Tweeted twice before, I realized this morning.

The first tweet, quite a while ago, was something related to “Top Chef.” (I confess: I  love me some reality shows where the contestants — or in this case, “cheftestants” — are good at and passionate about what they do.) (Note to self: possible future blog post topics: (1) Reality Shows, (2) Passion and Skill, (3) Made-Up Words and What They Do To Our Souls.)

The second tweet was A Celebrity Tweet. I had tweeted my guitar hero, Pat Metheny, thanking him for the music he’s given us.  (I expressed that intense gratitude to him in person, too, many years ago, at this building:

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which used to be a Tower Records.) ( I re-encountered that building, in April, when I felt ready to walk down Boylston Street, after the Boston Marathon bombings.)

Today, I did a Tweet With A New Attitude.  The new attitude was less tentative, less Twitter Toe In The Water. (That idiom — putting your toe in the water to indicate trying something carefully, reminds me of a FABULOUS blog I encountered here recently: Toemail, where people send in wonderful pictures that include a toe somewhere in the scene.)

This time, I jumped in with both feet.  I sent a Tweet, Intentionally, to reach people.  (The content of the tweet doesn’t matter. Suffice to say: it was goofy. I love me some goofy.)

Whenever I do that:  try to reach people — whether it’s through blogging, speaking, tweeting, writing, mailing, calling, at my work, or in my dreams — it can be hopeful, exciting, rewarding, frustrating, and scary, too.

What are my fears about doing this?

I don’t have messages that are important enough, that justify asking for people’s attention . I don’t want to “bother” them, in the midst of all the other things they need to pay attention to.

And, I can experience shame, too, when I act  like I AM important enough (to send messages, bother people, etc.).

(And here’s another one, that my friend Joe just reminded me about, in his explanation of not accepting my invitation to join Twitter. If I send a message, will kind and thoughtful people be concerned about my reaction, if they decide to set a limit and not to engage in this way?)

But these are all things I’m working on this year, dear readers.

And I guess I’m making progress, because I’m Bothering People here in the Blog-o-Sphere, every single day! (And who knows how often I’ll be bothering people through Twitter?)

Thanks for reading, for not being bothered, and for spending your valuable, important time with me.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

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