I am connected to my heart and intuition, allowing them to guide me on my life’s journey. I recognize the power of the Law of Attraction and embrace many spiritual practices in my daily life. I believe in the mind-body connection and that we should rule our minds, or our minds will rule us.
| February 26, 2019 |
Nah, this isn’t going to be a post about Ziggy Marley, but I bet this song will be stuck in your head while you read this post! (It’s certainly making my toes tap right now, hehe.)
I sat beside teachers and students at Step by Step Learning Centre, spreading margarine on my sliced bread and passing bananas around the table, all whilst sharing ideas with my kaka and dada (brothers and sisters). Despite our different cultural backgrounds, we found soulful connection around the table. I engaged in side conversation with one of the teachers, who began by sharing how grateful she is for Americans who visit Tanzania: how giving we are with our time and money, and how our riches are vastly needed in Africa. She expressed appreciation for the knowledge we had been sharing during physical therapy lessons. Yet, in spite of the poverty of economy she and the other teachers/students face daily, this teacher saw the holes in my heart, and the weaknesses of our western culture. She saw through our economic strength, expressing that Americans are lacking faith and a relationship with God. Looking in her eyes, I knew exactly what she meant: We are losing our spirituality and are in a state of spiritual poverty and crisis.
Every morning at SSLC in Tanzania, I sat in the morning circle with children whose families may still make $1/day. Every child and teacher sang praise to Lord Jesus and thanked God for his gifts & prosperity. Seeing the light in the eyes of these children as they sang their thanks was humbling and grounding (to say the least). I felt consumed with love and union – the richest I have ever felt. It has since been my mission to find God within me, to better define my religious intents, and break through my own spiritual practice. I wanted to carry the love, community, and faith from the morning circle into my EVERY day here in the United States.
And so, this brings me to love: the love that I know lives within me and around me. Though I don’t feel I can entirely define this love and energy, perhaps this love IS God, and love IS my religion.More
| December 7, 2018 |
I changed the word on my Instagram bio today from “manifesting” to “building.” Words are important to me, not because of the message they send, but because of the meaning they portray and how they make me feel. So, why the change?
I would say I’m a spiritual person. I believe in the power of the Universe and I set intentions so that the divine powers can support me in achieving them. Yet, sometimes “manifesting” is not enough. I feel a lot of New Age self-help books, lectures, and thoughts can be misinterpreted. I think we can all too easily become passive about our dreams and desires. When get a little lazy with making things happen.
I believe not ONLY in manifesting and visualizing, but also putting in the work and actions to make dreams become a reality. When I think about living a creative and adventurous life, I realize that it takes a lot of decisions and intention to BUILD this life. Sometimes, I slip. I become tired and lazy, or come up with hundreds of other excuses. I have seen my creativity slip away in the midst of emotional turmoil. I saw my self-esteem take a nose-dive, and with that, my ability to express myself was at an all-time low. I could never blame others, because in the end, it’s MY responsibility to take a hold of the challenges in my life and decide what direction I will go as a response. I can see how life makes us question who we truly are. I can see how easy it is to slip up, not only as transitions come and go, but DAILY.
I am CHOOSING to be more expressive (personally and, as a result, on media platforms) as a way to re-build my creative life. I have to make this choice as frequently as I can, even when I don’t feel drawn to expression. I am ACTIVELY seeking creative inspiration from within & without. I am dedicating the TIME to opening my journal at night, dropping a line in my phone when I feel a poem or feeling cascade over me, putting water on paint brushes, playing with fonts, and simply meeting a pen to paper as frequently as I can. I am devoting my heart to authentic expression.
Sometimes, I really feel drawn to sharing my feelings, thoughts, or creations because maybe there are other people out there who feel similarly, are questioning similar complexities, and need to be reminded that we are NEVER alone. Rather than seek validation, I seek inspiration. I seek connection within myself, to feel creative and adventurous by my own authority. I am pulling my heart out, looking at it, studying it, and then putting it into words, colors, and visuals. I am returning to my confident, creative endeavors as a way to be truly ME. I love sharing my creative processes and thoughts because vulnerability requires courage, and practicing courage builds strength.
And so, I will do this. I will not just imagine it, manifest it, or dream it. But I will DO it.
So, am I really manifesting creativity? Or, am I building it?
Build, I must.
Build, I will.More
| February 21, 2018 |
[drum roll] Long-awaited “New Year” post. Ha… ha… haaaa… Kristen, it’s been 2018 for basically two months. I know, trust me. Can I say I’ve been busy? How about… tired? Can I make excuses? Nope. I won’t. Quite simply, I’ve been a lazy writer, and my creative self is very mad at procrastinating Kristen. [I forgive me.]
Honestly, I love writing these reflective posts. Not so much because you really want to hear all about my year, how much I changed, the good/bad/ugly… but because it’s so revealing to myself. I love looking back to see where I’ve been, even if some of the moments in the past were painful. It’s like looking in the rearview mirror while driving on the highway: you just kind of peer back every so often, just to be aware of what’s going on behind you. I try not to let this metaphor get too far though, because then I can justify making decisions in the present based on what’s in the “rearview.” I don’t let the past affect me. Instead, I just… let it be (thank you, Beatles). So, I guess I wouldn’t be driving on I-5 (WA!), the Southern State (NY!), or I-95 (FL!) in this instance… instead, I’d be on the Seward Highway (AK!), taking the scenic route, just kind of curious about what’s going on around me.
In all seriousness (why so serious?), life is oh-so-curious to me. I love how the unexpected often comes from within. It’s not always external circumstances that keep me guessing, but my own heart and intuition that make me go “woah!” at times.
One year ago, I returned to Washington state to work in Yakima for my second job as a Traveling Doctor of Physical Therapy. I planned to stay for three months. Then, I was off! I was going to Wyoming, Colorado, Alaska… anywhere! I was only going to be in Washington state for a short time (again).
Well, turns out, this was the second time I lied. I couldn’t leave Washington.
2017 was a big year for more self-discovery and learning opportunities in a variety of colors and flavors (oh my gosh now I’m thinking about ice cream… mmm, mint chocolate chip…).
Okay, I need to get on with this post before I take the metaphor game way too far…
| July 31, 2017 |
In one of my earlier posts, I dove into the idea of creationism for oneself – of being true to nobody but OURSELVES in our creative endeavors. I noted how I don’t want my art to be tireless. I don’t want to create to make you happy. Instead, I will create to connect to myself, to others, and to the higher self that lives inside my soul. As Elizabeth Gilbert so eloquently put it in Big Magic, “Be the weirdo who dares to enjoy.”
And so, I’ve been on a mission to stay true to myself (whoever that is), free myself from comparison, and focus inward for my creative inspiration.
I feel it’s appropriate to again enter the forever perplexing conversation about social media, especially after Delightful Pursuit’s workshop with six photographers in the Pacific Northwest. I also would like to respond to the questions Jacob Moon recently posted about social media. He asked the following challenging questions: What do you see as the biggest problem facing our wild places caused by Social Media? Are Outdoor focus social media influences in general doing enough? When you read through all the captions that people write do you often here messages of conservation and protection?
Let’s dive deep, Fellow Dreamers. I truly hope you comment below on your thoughts. Let’s open a conversation, together.
Get post updates and inspiration hand-delivered to your inbox!