Saturday 14 October 2023

Ignite Your Motivation and Creative Spark

Welcome to the Arts and Wellness Cafe! What's in your cup today? As you sip your favorite drink to unwind, we're about to embark on a journey of motivation and creativity. I have been growing herbs and medicinal plants, like fresh bay leaves, right in my garden for a while now and I make sure that I use them in my tea and cooking, and it makes such a difference to my overall well-being. In today's video we look at ways in which we can stay motivated using our creativity, and today, I want to explore these themes with you in this post as well.

Cultivating Motivation

Motivation is the driving force behind our creative endeavors. It's what keeps us going even when we face doubts or creative blocks. I've found that motivation isn't just about pushing through challenging times but also about setting up your own toolkit for those moments when you need a creative boost.

Creating Your Toolkit for Motivation

Think of your creative journey and be prepared to create a toolkit for yourself.  It filled with inspiring ideas and activities. Here are some tips to consider:
  • Variety is Key - Have a range of creative activities at your disposal. Whether it's painting, writing, or crafting, having options allows you to choose what resonates with you in the moment.
  • Journaling - A journal can be a powerful tool for reflection and motivation. You can use it to jot down your thoughts, set goals, and even draw or paint when words fail you.
  • Playlists of Inspiration - Music has a profound impact on our emotions. Create playlists of songs that lift your spirits and help you get back into the creative flow.
  • Creative Breaks - Sometimes, all you need is a change of scenery or a short, creative activity to refresh your mind. Carry a portable project with you, like a small art journal, to seize those spare moments for creativity.
  • Self-Made Cards - Craft encouraging cards for yourself. Fill them with inspirational quotes, messages, or simple words of motivation. Keep these cards handy for when you need a boost.

Fueling Your Creative Fire

The Art of Doodling and Mini Projects

I've found that breaking down creative activities into smaller, more manageable tasks can be immensely motivating. For example, I create small squares of art that I can work on when I have a few minutes to spare. These squares can be filled with doodles, drawings, or patterns. They serve as an excellent way to keep the creative juices flowing and give you a sense of accomplishment, even in short bursts of time. 

Challenges and Overcoming Creative Blocks

Creative challenges are a natural part of the artistic journey. They can manifest as moments of self-doubt, lack of inspiration, or feeling lost in a creative fog. During these times, it's crucial to fall back on your creative toolkit . Take time to reflect, relax, and rekindle your creative spark. Remember, challenges are opportunities to grow and discover new aspects of your creativity.

Creating for Yourself

While sharing your creations with the world is wonderful, don't forget to make art just for yourself. I create wearable art and art journals that are just for my use to play in. They are a space where you can explore and experiment without any external expectations.

Recycling and Repurposing

Don't underestimate the power of recycling and repurposing materials - you probably have a lot of the supplies you need take a good look around, you just have to change your perspective and have an inquisitive mind.   You can check out the video HERE

Before you go

Motivation and creativity go hand in hand. Your toolkit should be filled with activities and practices that fuel your creative fire. Embrace the power of mini projects, altering them where necessary to keep your creative juices flowing even in the busiest of times. Challenges are part of the journey, and they offer opportunities for growth. Remember to create for yourself, enjoy the process, and let your creativity shine.  
Thank you for joining me, and I look forward to sharing more creative adventures with you.  Stay blessed and be a blessing!

What are You doing on Wednesday 18th October 10am EST - Join us and be part of an international 'Art In'

Sign up to my Mailing list for further details HERE

Saturday 7 October 2023

Unleash Your Creativity - Start Creating Today!


Do you ever feel like you're constantly running out of time, juggling multiple tasks and commitments, and simply don't have enough time to express your creativity? If so, you're not alone, I used to moan about not having time to create. 

Many of us struggle to find the time and space to let our creative juices flow. But what if I told you that all you need is a little bit of time, space and a bit of preparation?

A selection of elements cover this art journal

Creativity is not about having unlimited resources or vast expanses of free time and if you are waiting around for that 'day' it will never come. Instead, think about making the most of the resources and time you do have, no matter how limited they may seem. You'd be surprised at what you can create in just a few minutes of focused, uninterrupted time.

You don't have to be a professional artist or writer to be creative. Creativity comes in many forms and can be expressed in countless ways. Whether it's doodling on a art journal, listening to some music (and dancing like no ones watching), or experimenting with a new recipe, there's no limit to what you can create.

Give yourself at least 10 minutes to get the ball rolling. Set aside this time for yourself, free from distractions and interruptions. Use this time to tap into your inner creativity and let your imagination run wild. You might just surprise yourself with what you come up with!

Embellished art journal page

Check out the Embellishments video which will show you how to create your own embellishments for your art journal or creative projects. In this way you are creating elements for future use and they are there when you need them or if you only have a short time to create. You can also find ways to create pockets of time that you are able to dip into.

There's no better time than now to start creating. It's time to stop letting time constraints and busy schedules hold you back, you have to schedule your daily creative time, and you won't regret it. Embrace your creativity and enjoy the journey that brings immense satisfaction and joy.

Check out some ways to embellish your art journal

Creativity isn't about perfection. It's about expression, exploration, and most importantly, enjoying the process. So see where the journey takes you. You might just find that you have more time for creativity than you thought.

I have a wide variety of videos on my channel and you can get some tips on creating your own backgrounds and working in your art journals, along with the many other free classes and resources that you will find in the Arts Resource Hub.

Tuesday 3 October 2023

3 Creative Tips for Carers: Nurturing Yourself in the Caring Role


Being a caregiver is a role filled with love, compassion, and dedication, but it can also be incredibly demanding and emotionally taxing. In this blog post, we'll explore three creative tips for carers that not only encourage self-care but also enhance the caregiving experience.

As someone who has cared for a loved one with dementia, I understand the importance of finding moments of respite and self-expression. As we look at these tips think about how you can incorporate creativity in your own journey.

Tip 1: Embrace Creative Activities for Self-Renewal

As a caregiver, it's easy to get caught up in the daily routine of providing care for your loved one. However, it's crucial to remember that taking care of yourself is just as important. One way to achieve this is by embracing creative activities that allow you to express yourself and find solace in the midst of your responsibilities.

During my time as a caregiver for my mother, who battled dementia until 2022, I discovered that creativity became my sanctuary. Engaging in activities such as art journaling, and writing provided an outlet for my emotions but also allowed me to step away from the constant demands of caregiving even if it was for 5 minutes. These moments of self-renewal were essential for maintaining my own well-being.

Whatever time you might have available there is a creative activity that you can try out.  Find a creative pursuit that speaks to your heart. Dedicate time to this activity regularly, even if it's just a few minutes a day. It will help you recharge and bring a sense of balance to your life.

Tip 2: Share Creative Moments with Your Loved One

Caring for someone doesn't mean sacrificing all the activities you love. In fact, involving your loved one in creative endeavors can create meaningful connections and beautiful memories. Consider sharing your creative moments with them.

For example, if you enjoy painting, set up a space where both you and your loved one can create together. Even if their abilities have been affected by their condition, the act of creating art can be a source of joy and connection. It's a wonderful way to engage with them on a different level and create lasting, positive experiences.  

This is exactly what I did with my mum, I asked her if she would draw something for me, got out a few supplies and we both sat at the kitchen table enjoying our creative activity and each other's company.  I had some music playing in the background and a light snack for when she wanted a break, but she spent the next hour focused on her activity.

Be patient and adapt the activities to their abilities and interests. These shared moments can strengthen your bond and offer a welcome break from the routine of caregiving.

Tip 3: Connect with a Creative Community

Caregiving can often lead to isolation, making it essential to seek support and connections outside your caregiving role. One fantastic way to do this is by joining a creative community or group. Whether it's an art class, a writing workshop, or a local crafting club, these communities can provide you with a sense of belonging.  I joined an Art Therapy group run in a local community center and you were able to attend for 6-12 sessions.  There may be initiatives being put on in your area that you can check out and they may have resources to help you.  You can join our online creative community as well HERE

Interacting with others who share your passion for creativity can be therapeutic and uplifting. It allows you to step away from your caregiving duties, even if temporarily, and focus on your own growth and well-being. Additionally, these creative communities often offer a space for self-expression and learning, which can be immensely beneficial for your personal development.

Next Steps

Being a caregiver is a demanding and selfless role, but it's crucial to remember that your well-being matters too. By incorporating creativity into your caregiving journey, you can find moments of solace, foster connections with your loved one, and build a supportive community around you. Whether it's through painting, writing, or any other creative pursuit, nurturing your own creativity can help you maintain balance and find joy in your role as a caregiver. 

Join me on my Realityarts Course Platform where I have a series of FREE courses and digital projects that you can access.  Find out more HERE

So, what creative activities do you do to help you unwind and relax? Share your experiences and ideas with us in the comments below, and let's inspire each other to embrace creativity in our caregiving journey.

On the Blog

Saturday 30 September 2023

Arts and Wellness Cafe - Enhance Your Creative Journey


Welcome to the second episode of the Arts and Wellness Cafe. In this episode, we are diving into our creativity, unlocking the potential of your creative journey. Have you ever wondered when that spark of creativity ignited within you? Creativity is not just a privilege reserved for artists; it's a tool that can enhance everyone's overall health and well-being in a number of ways. Check out the video for more details.

Benefits of Engaging in the Arts on Health and Well-Being

Here are a few benefits for engaging in a creative activity:
  1. Stress Reduction: Engaging in creative activities such as painting, drawing, or crafting can act as a form of mindfulness, allowing you to focus on the present moment, reducing stress and anxiety.
  2. Emotional Expression: Art provides a safe space for emotional expression. where you can explore and communicate your feelings.
  3. Self-esteem: Completing a creative project can give you a sense of accomplishment and boost your self-esteem.
  4. Increased Brain Function: Engaging in creative activities stimulates various areas of the brain, promoting memory retention, and overall mental acuity.
  5. Social Connection: Participating in group creative activities, such as joining an art class or theater group, fosters social interactions and reduces feelings of isolation. Join our arts Community on my course platform HERE
Learn about the Arts Resource Hub HERE

When we explore some ways to kickstart your creative journey: There are a variety of ways you can start your Creative Journey and here are a few ideas to try:
  1. Art Journaling: Begin by keeping an art journal. It can be a mix of sketches, writing, collage, or any other medium that resonates with you. Use it as a space to document your thoughts, feelings, and ideas visually.
  2. Creative Writing: If you enjoy writing, start a personal blog, write short stories, or even attempt poetry. Writing allows you to explore your imagination and express your inner thoughts.
  3. Crafting: There is so much joy to be found in crafting - trying activities like slow stitching, woodworking, or jewelry making or other crafts can offer a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.
  4. Visual Arts: Experiment with painting, drawing, or sculpting. You don't need to be a professional artist; just pick up some supplies and start creating. The process is often more rewarding than the end result.
  5. Music and Dance: Learn to play a musical instrument or enroll in dance classes. Music and dance are excellent outlets for self-expression and emotional release.
  6. Photography: Capture the world through the lens of a camera. Photography allows you to find beauty in everyday moments and share your unique perspective.
  7. Cooking and Culinary Arts: Get creative in the kitchen. Experiment with new recipes, flavors, cooking is a delicious form of artistry.
  8. Gardening: Cultivate a garden or tend to indoor plants. Gardening connects you with nature and allows you to create a living work of art.

    Join me in the Creative Garden LEARN MORE

Incorporate art into your mindfulness or meditation practice. Coloring books designed for adults or mandala drawing can be particularly soothing, and check out some cool FREE courses, there are free courses and digital downloads that you can try out.

Remember that creativity is a personal journey, and there are no right or wrong ways to explore it. The key is to start, enjoy the process, and embrace the positive impact it can have on your health and well-being.

When did you realize you wanted to do something creative? 

It's never too late to embark on this creative journey, and the benefits to your overall wellness will be worth every stroke of the brush or stitch made.

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