My mother was an art teacher, so I grew up doing crafts. And the tradition continues in my home. At any one point, if you were to walk into my house when we were unprepared for your visit, there would be tiny scraps of paper all over the floor, glue and tape stuck to furniture, half-finished paintings, and glasses of paint water around.
Art is our happy place. And it makes me happy to see that more people are enjoying the benefits of coloring these days, and understanding the connection between art and feeling mindful. But you don't have to be an artist to reap the benefits of the pleasure of creating. What I've been reading about is that many of the benefits of being mindful are about simply appreciating a moment--being in the moment and enjoying it. What better way to do that than with a photo?
Now, there are some people (maybe my kids sometimes) who think it's better to just enjoy the moment and not try to "capture" it. However, we are about to undertake a craft project here... a craft project about appreciation.
- For one whole week, starting today (why not?), take your phone/camera with you, and whenever you feel a moment of appreciation or gratitude, shoot a picture.
- I'm serious. Take a picture. It could be a photo of home, work, nature, TV, food, people, animals...the only rule is to be truthful with yourself. DON'T FAKE IT! This is a project for you, and you don't have to share with anyone else.
- At the end of the week, put all of your photos together, and see what it tells you. Are you feeling enough appreciation to make you happy? Are there people close to you whom you don't appreciate enough? Are there photos missing from an area of your life in which you aren't getting enough joy? Do all the things you DO appreciate point you toward a direction you never considered before? What do you appreciate MOST? And how can you get more of it?
For more from Maria Rodale, visit www.mariasfarmcountrykitchen.com