AND Look Again

June 25th, 2017

I have fun coloring the daily calendar on my desk. With an artist’s box of colored markers, I color whatever print is in front of me, if I like it. Recently I paused to notice what coloring teaches me that is different from what I experience when I draw or doodle freestyle.

Coloring in someone else’s picture offers me the chance to decide whether I like others’ lines or not. Sometimes I ignore the picture or coloring-opportunity altogether. If I do decide to color, doing so consciously also reminds me to create me own patterns within the broadest lines possible, and not be trapped by all the details someone else thought would be fun. I get to decide what gets my focus, attention, and creativity.

Ignoring some of the lines reminds me not to just respond unconsciously to what is presented in life. I get to consciously choose what colors I want to add and where I wish to put them. I think of coloring as a metaphor for how we use our energy, insights, and gifts. We are presented many situations to which we may respond and we get to decide how much energy to give to which thoughts, situations, and people.

Putting too much energy in places that do not return energy is forcing ourselves to color too small in life. Recognizing situations not worthy of any response can be helpful in remembering to value who we are, what we bring, and how important it is for us to consciously choose how and where we want to invest our energy. Not pausing to recognize whether we want to give our energy can leave us feeling boxed in or frustrated by the effect our energy may or may not have.

Another thing I learned from coloring is that I find ways to practice putting colors together that I might not otherwise choose because I am not attached to how the picture turns out. It is not “my creation” and as such, I play with no attachment to the result, knowing I will just throw out the ones that I don’t like. AND I find it a valuable lesson for remembering to play more, worry less about the result, and tap into my joy, in whatever form it comes.

I find it fascinating how finding ways to experiment within certain contexts accelerates learning, reconnects us with joy, and allows us to recognize how we might constrain ourselves in relationships to fit what we think “should” be acceptable. AND the opportunity to then realize the joy of expanding beyond the lines, with full freedom, is a great reminder that we are not on this earth to play small.

Read the context well. Play in ways that bring joy until clarity about what is really worth our precious life force directs us where to focus. AND then go after whatever that is. AND all we need to engage this process is be conscious of our intention to find our joy, light our light, and watch for insights about how to proceed. Sometimes the simplest activities offer insights, when we pause to look again.

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