All posts by Nancy Marie

Humor

Humor is a wonderful antidote for stress, a delightful way to release bottled-up emotions and ultimately change your perceptions. Some people are natural comedians, while others may find themselves stifled in this department.

I grew-up in an environment where thinking differently was frowned on and poking fun at something was not tolerated, so my humorist outlook on life crept into my art. I didn’t like drawing something the way others saw it, but rather the way my mind liked to twist and reform it. My art became my haven—a place where I could find solace, safety, and express myself.

After many years of playing with the edge in this manner, now I rarely see just a tree or just a dispenser for the dog dropping bags. I see dancing elephants, characters with outstretched tongues, and horse heads in trees. This was a constant source of entertainment when I was a child, and as you can see from the picture above, it continues to be part of my daily life.

If you would like to break out of a mold and explore new horizons in your mind, I suggest you explore some of the ICWIB activities. The one I would like to suggest today is called “What Do You See?” The process is very simple, but the outcome can be quite grand.

  1. Close your eyes and take three deep breaths.
  2. After the third deep breath allow your non-dominant hand to scribble whatever it wants.
  3. When you feel done with the scribbling, open your eyes and see what images you can see in the scribbles.
  4. Remember to turn your paper all four ways because you might find additional images if you turn your paper upside down or sideways.
  5. When you see something you can outline it with a different color or additional lines to make the image more prominent or color it in.
  6. This activity is a great way to increase your observational skills, release stress and entertain yourself.

If you enjoyed this activity, I invite you to explore some more of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

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If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

Messy Room

Within each of us is a tolerance for the opposite states of chaos and order or unpredictability and predictability. This balance is innate to us.

If you expect your system to tolerate either too much imposed external order or chaos than your body can handle—because it is designed to ALWAYS reestablish balance—it will need to create the opposite effect. You can easily see this phenomenon in young children, although it is important to remember the same thing is taking place in all of us.

Whenever you feel overwhelmed, pay attention to how the situation is impacting you and if it causes you to suppress your feelings. If this does happen, also notice how long it takes for those suppressed feelings to play out in another situation in a negative way. You want to uncover this pattern, because when you do, you then have the capacity to change the behavior at its core—in your biology.

I personally have a very low tolerance for chaos. When I was much younger, I often found myself trying to control things outside of me. Over time, I realized I was trying to accomplish something impossible. Now I just pay attention to when situations have surpassed my tolerance and then either do something to restore my inner balance or simply remove myself from the situation.

The ICWIB activities can help you uncover your tolerance for the opposite states of chaos and order. They can also serve as an antidote for when you have crossed your tolerance line and need to restore balance within your system

I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

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If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

We Begin

We begin with scribbling because that is where we began when we were very young. Rudolph Steiner talked about the need to activate all four limbs before the introduction of letters and numbers, because it was a way to prepare the system for learning and improve the potential for success.

Drawing symbols such as houses, suns, trees, and people affects the body and mind differently. Often parents and teachers encourage symbolic drawing and shun scribbling because they don’t understand both the neurological and physiological benefits of scribbling. Scribbling can reduce stress, release bottled-up emotions, and help to restore balance in the brain stem, which is needed before cognitive learning can take place. I look at scribbling as a way to ‘warm-up’ the brain, and synchronize the body and mind so true learning can happen.

I think the ICWIB Just Scribble activity, which teaches the art of self-reflection, is a great way to activate all four limbs, because you use either hand individually, or both hands together. You can also scribble with your feet. In the process, the child also learns to detect when their system is “learning ready.” When it isn’t, the scribbling exercises can help them effectively shift brain states autonomously. In the process, they are able to experience more success.

I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

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If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

Challenges

Most people have experienced at least a few brick walls and challenges, because they seem to be unavoidable and part of life. So the question is: How do you respond when you hit a brick wall? Do you get angry? Frustrated? Anxious? Or do you stop, go inside and look for the lesson the challenge has offered you and uncover an innovative solution that is a reflection of your true nature. Remember, when we are stressed our subconscious mind takes over and the behavior and responses we learned when we were young tend to play out automatically without the control or awareness of our conscious mind.

Learning how to identify when we are in our subconscious mind versus our conscious mind and learning how to shift from one brain state to another can help you bring about positive changes in your life because you will be able to step out of subconscious reaction and access clarity as needed. When we are clear, it becomes possible to devise a strategy that supports you to change a negative situation into a positive learning opportunity. So when you encounter a difficult situation ask yourself: Do I want to take the high road? Or the low road? Do I want to steer clear of the problem? Or confront it directly? Each response will provide you with a different outcome and a different learning experience. There is no right or wrong way to approach life—just opportunities for you to become more aware and transform damaging patterns and beliefs you acquired from your family in your early years of life.

I have found that playing with the ICWIB activities is a great way for me to stop reactive behavior, reclaim my center, and handle my challenges in a more conscious and effective manner.

I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

 If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

Adult Coloring

Many people have told me they love coloring in the new adult coloring books. While I find coloring in predesigned coloring books too restrictive, at the same time, I can see how they can be a great source of pleasure and creative expansion for others. On that note, I would like to offer some insights on how to enhance your coloring experience so that it goes from just fun and enjoyable to physically, emotionally, and spiritually transformative.

Here are my suggestions:

When you draw or color in straight lines (back and forth), you create a different frequency than when your color in a circular motion. It is the frequency that is created by both the motion and the color you are using that affects your body-mind state. When you color—your own drawings, doodles, or in predesigned coloring books—pay attention to how you naturally move the crayon, pen, or colored pencil. If it is a circular motion, then also pay attention to the direction you find the more pleasurable. Do you prefer clockwise or counter-clockwise? If you prefer to color in a back-and-forth or straight-line motion, then also pay attention to whether you prefer coloring in a horizontal, vertical, or diagonal pattern.

What you are uncovering is the innate movement pattern that allows you to unravel or release that which you not longer need, thus allowing you to become who you really are.

The arts have always been a vehicle for self-transformation, but now with coloring books, doodles, or the ICWIB Program, you don’t have to be a trained artist to reap the benefits of the creative process. Simple scribbling, doodling, and coloring in coloring books can now help you reduce stress and bring you back home to yourself.

With this in mind, I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

Don’t Let the Noise

When we allow other people’s beliefs and opinions to control or define us, we can also lose touch with our own inner barometer and voice. This also means we can also lose touch with our authentic nature, our soul’s path, and lose track of what is really important to us.

So how do I know if I am defining myself or if I am letting someone else define me?

Normally if I feel lost, overwhelmed, or confused, I know I have lost touch with my internal GPS and I am allowing someone else’s opinion to direct me. Fortunately or unfortunately, this is rarely a satisfying situation. However, if I stop, look inside, and figure out what I need in that moment, I can usually reconnect with my own inner barometer and voice.

When I was younger, I used to try to override or ignore the unpleasantness of feeling lost, confused, or overwhelmed, and follow other people’s opinions and advice, but that rarely ended well. Over time, I have found it is easier in the long run to stop, go inside, and look for where I made a wrong turn or made an incorrect choice. Then I just need to shift my perceptions—or find a different approach—to what I am doing. The change is rarely large, but it does need to be accurate and the direction needs to come from within me.

We are not supposed to be, nor does the world need us to be, the same. Instead, we are supposed to know, embrace, and share our authentic nature with the world. When we do, we feel great joy and the world benefits.

If you would like to deepen your connection with your authentic nature and strengthen your inner voice I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

 

 

Stronger

“I am stronger because I had to be, I am smarter because of my mistakes, happier because of the sadness I’ve known, and I am wiser because I have learned.” –Unknown

Personal growth does not magically happen. Growth takes place because we are challenged and instead of running away, we step up and accept the challenge whole-heartedly. Some challenges are fairly easy, while others are more difficult. It doesn’t matter if the challenge is large or small, the question you need to ask yourself is, “What do I choose?”

I have found that in those profound decision-making moments I need to go inside, get very still and look for what my heart wants to do and how to accomplish that outcome. Once I know what I want to do, and how I need to approach the situation, I have a map and a path to follow. This approach helps me stay true to myself and maneuver through even extremely difficult situations.

I often use one of the ICWIB art activities to go inward and still my mind. With this in mind, I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

 

Stifle

Over the years, I have found that people who are comfortable with their own creativity are rarely critical or try to stifle another person’s creativity. Instead, they usually are inspired by other people’s unique gifts and encourage their development. So if someone has said something negative about your creativity, please note they are probably just sharing with you how their creativity was stifled.

If that happens, what can you do?

You don’t necessarily have to say anything to them, but also, make sure you don’t take on their belief system. Instead, just note what has transpired and move forward with a deep appreciation for your own connection to your creative nature.

If you would like to deepen your connection to your creative nature, I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.

 

You Are a Master

We are not victims to our genes; we can become masters of our genetic activity because we have the ability to change our environment and our perception of our environment. In the “Heal Documentary” to be released later this year, Dr. Bruce Lipton discusses the findings of his scientific research that revealed cells depend on the nervous system’s interpretation to adjust their biology, so if a person changes their perception, or belief about life, it changes the signals that are going in and adjusting the function of the cells. So how can increase our ability to see more clearly and change our perceptions?

Heal Documentary – Dr. Bruce Lipton Ph.D                              www.healdocumentary.com

The I Create What I Believe! Program, endorsed by Dr. Lipton and based on his research, offers a fun and scientifically sound tool to strengthen your observations skills and subsequently have the ability to change your perceptions in Activity Eight-What Do You See?

What Do You See?- Activity Eight:

This activity tends to be very freeing and quite magical. It also has the capacity to increase observation skills, and refresh the mind.

On a personal level, I have used this activity to re-center myself and explore new ways of viewing a personal challenge. In the family context, I have used this activity to connect more deeply on a nonverbal level with my children, because it puts the child and adult on a level playing field and inspires wonder in both. In a classroom situation, I have done this exercise on the blackboard with the students, because it can increase authentic connection and interaction very quickly within an individual and the group.

To explore the ICWIB! Program further and continue follow our weekly posts here.  If you enjoy these activities, Like us on ICWIB Facebook and share in the conversation.  We’d love to hear your feedback—see you there!

Right Mood

Do you have to be in the right mood to create? Or does creating put you in the right mood? I personally feel that creativity is a simple and powerful way to put yourself in the right mood because it activates your conscious mind. When you are in the conscious mind, your brain dumps oxytocin and dopamine into your system. This makes you feel good. Also, in this brain state you are able to gain a deeper understanding of yourself, and when, if, or how to share your gift with the world.

For me this was a great stumbling block when I was younger. I often found myself unable to speak my truth and share my “what” because of shyness or fear of alienation. I also found myself sometimes sharing the “what” and the “why” when it was inappropriate. This would create a counterproductive situation that would often leave me feeling awkward, vulnerable, and uncomfortable. It was only after I learned how to quiet my mind, and listen deeply to the Universe that I was able to share my insights more effectively.

What I am talking about is the ability to detect when I was in my reactive mind versus my conscious, problem-solving mind, and then effectively shift from one brain state to the other quickly and effortlessly.

I have found that playing with the ICWIB activities, especially Just Scribble, is a great way to become more aware of when you are in your subconscious mind versus the conscious mind, and also to learn how you can easily shift from one brain state to the other.

I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB art activities and videos for FREE.

If you enjoy these messages, Like us on Facebook and share it with others to enjoy.

If you would like to read previous posts, you can find them under resources.