creative practice, Creativity, inspiration, instinctive meditation, instinctive meditation, journaling, meditation, mindfulness, Uncategorized

Daydreaming is a Superpower

Sometimes a focal point can serve as a doorway into daydreaming

I found a piece of writing I wanted to share here today, and while reading was instantly transported to the scene that inspired it. I was driving, and while at a stop sign, saw a man waiting for a bus. As I drove on, a whole story was born, simply from that chance encounter.

Then I thought: Oh! My theme for today is daydreaming. I did a bunch of research on the significance and importance of daydreaming, and was set to write A Big Article, and it didn’t feel right. So I did some dishes and went for a walk, and had my AHA.

This was the practice of daydreaming in action!

The default mode for our minds is wandering, which I feel in part is why so many people who sit to meditate feel they fail. Our minds have a bunch of “apps” running in the background, sorting, categorizing, resetting, and when we take time to sit, it all comes to the surface, it’s named as monkey mind, and we decide we are meditating wrong.

In this mode, we are working against the natural process of the mind. If you choose instead to get curious, you might notice a vacillation between analytic/linear and empathetic/creative processes. This is part of the beautiful syzygy of being human- the flow between opposites.

Have you ever noticed that if you are working and working and working on solving something and can’t, you get a sudden urge to do something else? Sure, it can be procrastination, or distraction. It can also be your mind telling you it needs a rest. To go deep into areas that are not accessed often and maybe even come up with a novel solution to what you were so struggling so hard to solve (or find your car keys).

Give into that urge. Set a timer if you are feeling time pressure. Do something mindless for a few minutes. Sudden remembering in the shower, anyone?

Structured daydreaming is when you select a topic. It’s a rehearsal of sorts, where you envision the entire reality, including all the steps, and any obstacles that might arise. Performers and athletes use this technique to visualize future actions all the time.

Some have described daydreaming as thinking for pleasure. Isn’t that a lovely concept? Allowing your mind to wander without a goal. Kids do it all the time. It becomes a social activity when a group gets together and creates a new reality or fantasy world together. It gives you an opportunity to explore interesting topics in new ways, and there are lots of studies showing that daydreaming can enhance creativity and productivity. It can decrease stress.

Hey!

This is sounding a lot like instinctive meditation! Why not set aside some time each day to daydream. Twenty minutes is great, as it gives you a chance to really get in there. Start with five or even two minutes if twenty feels daunting. I sometimes ask “OK mind, where would you like to go today?” After things like to do lists or other issues float by, I’m often delighted to find myself remembering a time I was in Nature, or sometimes music or writing or a visual art idea will come to me.

Daydreaming has been pushed to the back, I feel. Sure, some of us get lost in scrolling on our devices, but on some level that input is still being filtered through the mind, without giving it a chance to dance about in it’s own inner library.

Give it a try, and let me know how it goes. Give your mind some unstructured playtime, without expectation of an outcome. Let your inner critic/censurer take a break. Daydreaming is a great superpower to have!
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For those who are curious, here’s the written piece that ended up inspiring today’s theme.
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The man stood at the corner, hair slicked back. His grubby brown suit was tight, giving the impression that he’d been standing too long in the hot sun and had swollen up with the heat. Entire continents of sweat began to appear, spreading across the oceans of cloth. In one hand was a well-worn paper bag. He would look down the street… at his watch.. down the street.

With a sigh, he sat on the bench and opened the bag. The book was large and covered in elaborately tooled brown leather. It seemed the pages were made entirely of gold, the gilding was so heavy on the edges. He wiped his hand on the thigh of his pants, opened the book, and moved his lips as he read.

While he read, he imagined walking up and setting the book on the lectern. Now they would listen, and see his importance. After the service, the people would walk up to him, talk to him and….

Suddenly he heard the voice of his Grandmother: “The bigger the crown, the bigger the fool”.

The man closed the book, and began to weep.



inspiration, instinctive meditation, instinctive meditation, journaling, meditation, mindfulness, passion, Personal Development, Personal growth

The Many Doorways to Meditation

Today I came across the poem “On Meditating, Sort Of” by Mary Oliver, and I feel it’s a great description of instinctive meditation, which is what I practice.

She describes the common perception of meditation requiring a certain posture, mindset, or even staying awake. How wonderful it feels to enter that place in between, and the deliciousness of returning, feeling refreshed, relaxed, and a deeper connection to self and everything there is.

This is the beauty of instinctive meditation. It can happen spontaneously, like when you look at a flower or rock so intimately that you follow the textures and colours to their own stories. Or become aware of the conversation between different types of trees when the wind dances with them. Feeling the energy of the sun seep into the galaxies of cells in your body. Laying down for a sacred nap and floating for awhile.

It’s a beautiful gift to yourself to set aside intentional time each day for meditation, as well. I like to do this when I first wake up, before getting out of bed, and last thing. Mid-afternoons, too when I have time. It doesn’t have to be for long. If your day is busy and you are in the midst of other people, you can make a couple minutes private time to remember a favourite place, or a time you felt so at home with yourself, and come back a bit more refreshed. Maybe you have a rock, or shell, or some other small object you can carry with you as a reminder.

These times you gift yourself don’t have to be spent in stillness, with your eyes closed. If you enjoy listening to music, listen. If you like e to make your own music, play. Dance, go surfing, run, or go for a walk if movement is your jam. Make jam! Write in your journal, draw long flowing lines, or paint, or weed your garden. Anything that is time just for you, and brings a sense of ease to your day.

Try it for a week, and let me know how it goes!

creative practice, Creativity, focus, goal setting, inspiration, instinctive meditation, meditation, passion, Personal Development, Personal growth

Desire, Devotion, Discipline, and Dedication: Ways in to Habit Formation

Now that we’re a month into the new year, many of us have had resolutions or goals that have started to fall by the wayside. There are a lot reasons that this happens, and for so many. It could be that the goal was too ambitious, such as “I’m going to go to the gym everyday and work out for 2 hours” when you’ve only worked out an hour a week previously. Or “I’m going to write 3,000 words a day” when the most you’ve done is a couple of 140 word social media entries a week.

Why does this happen, why do we do this to ourselves, and how can we change this?

For one, as I said earlier, it might be too ambitious from the standpoint of our current reality. Or it might not be in alignment with our core values and life purposes. Or maybe we did it because we’re “supposed to”, and not because we want to.

Desire is the first key. What are some of your deepest longings? How are they currently appearing in your life, and how might you bring them forward? How do they fit in with your values? I’m a big fan of meditation being a form of mind-wandering. Take a moment to explore your desires. Something might show up asking for attention that surprises and delights you.

I feel devotion is the second key. Devotion is about love, tenderness, curiosity, and playfulness. Without engagement of joy and enthusiasm, the thing we’ve vowed to do can quickly become a burdensome chore. Sure, at times something will feel like a chore and not hold meaning, but the center of that will always (or mostly) be there.

Discipline I see as more, for lack of words at the moment, more linear or rigid. It can contain the training to learn a skill, or commitment to a time each day one sets aside to do the thing, such as writing first thing in the morning. It might include the rules one has around their practice.

Dedication to me is an amalgamation of it all. Desire, devotion, and discipline working in partnership.

It might be helpful to ask yourself these questions, originating from the work of Alan Seale, and I have used so much in life:

  1. What wants to happen? Not what do I want to happen, but what is coming forward, asking to be expressed?
  2. Who is what wants to happen asking me to be? What inner parts of me are going to be engaged to make things happen?
  3. What needs to happen? What are the action steps?

Then make time for creating the habit of what you want to do. Schedule 2, or 5, or 20 minutes to do the thing. Be realistic, and perhaps start small. You can go beyond the time if you want. With any luck, the doing, the making, the moving, will become as natural as say… cliche, I know… but as natural as brushing your teeth.

If you’re still having a challenge working something into your day, try making a list of parts of what you want to do, like a menu. Choose one, two, or three things to complete that day. A sense of accomplishment can be a reward in its own right, and created the desire to do “the thing” again.

I invite you to try this out, and let me know how it goes!

Creativity, inspiration, instinctive meditation, instinctive meditation, journaling, meditation, Personal Development, Personal growth

Creativity as a State of Being

“Even if you don’t call yourself an artist, you have the potential to be a
dynamic creator who is always hatching new plans, coming up with fresh
ideas, and shifting your approach to everything you do as you adjust to
life’s ceaseless invitation to change.
It’s to this part of you — the restless, inventive spirit — that I address the
following: Unleash yourself! Don’t be satisfied with the world the way it is;
don’t sit back passively and blankly complain about the dead weight of
the mediocre status quo.
Instead, call on your curiosity and charisma and expressiveness and lust
for life as you tinker with and rebuild everything you see so that it’s in
greater harmony with the laws of love and more hospitable to your soul’s
code. ” ~ Rob Brezny

What do you envision when you think of creativity? An artist/writer/musician/performer of some kind? The act of making? Do you feel uncreative if you you don’t have output? Or if it isn’t “perfect”? If it doesn’t get recognition?

To me, scientists, mechanics, gardeners, teachers… anyone really, are just as creative as what is often thought of as such.

What if instead you shift your perspective to envision creativity as a state of being, rather than a state of doing? To being a continual process of making meaning in one’s life, rather than completion of a painting/novel/song/performance piece? To make for the joy of making, how it warps time and space and you get lost in it.

Being willing to seeing things differently.. to reordering routine.. having the courage to try something new… all of these can open up dimensions of reality and possibility that have remained hidden behind old perceptions.

For example, the next time you go for a walk, focus fully on the experience. The sounds around you, and of your feet, step by step. The textures, visual and felt. The smell of the air- the feel of it against your skin. How if the walk is strenuous enough, everything falls away other than the act of walking and your breath.

Do you feel other things arise? A solution? A song? A poem? A dance? Someone you’d like to visit?

All of this is creating and being creative.

We are, from birth to death, through all our experience, the embodiment of creativity.

You can listen to a podcast version of this post here:

https://anchor.fm/adele-satori/embed/episodes/Creativity-As-a-State-of-Being-e1cs9l3

goal setting, inspiration, instinctive meditation, journaling, meditation, mindfulness, Personal Development, Personal growth

The Glass is Never Empty

You can listen to a podcast version of this post here: https://anchor.fm/adele-satori/episodes/The-Glass-is-Never-Empty-e1bka8d

When I entered the consciousness of this morning’s dream, I was in a large meeting room. It seemed Craftsman in style, with open rafters and large light fixtures with amber panes of glass. The quality of light, though, was harsh.

The room was filled with women, mostly, wearing activewear and seated on their yoga mats. I was at the front of the room, and at first thought I was leading the group. Gradually though, almost as if I was being nudged away from my seat, were a man and woman clearly in charge. the woman was dressed like the other women, and the man was dressed business casual, with a very thin black belt worn a few notches too tight.

The women, one by one, were bringing up small tokens they’d made as part of an exercise. One brought up a slice of wood with writing on it. The couple asked her what it meant, she shyly muttered something, and then the couple interpreted what she’d done, and told her what to do next. She went back to her mat, looking disheartened.

And so it went, person after person. They would open up a little, then were told what they should do.

From out of no where, as it often happens in dreams, came a man dressed in full punk regalia- shaved head, black leather motorcycle jacket, all black clothing with paint splatters and patches, boots. His process art was huge, and he distinctly made the couple leading the workshop uneasy.

His art immediately brought tears to my eyes. It was a large frame of roughly hewn timbers that looked like a torture device. Suspended in it a few inches above the ground was a rectangular slab of stone. It looked like it was hewn with the same tool that shaped the wood. It had a chain wrapped around the center, but somehow he’d manage to connect the stone so it looked like it was floating. Above the stone was floating a bouquet of dried brambles and large dandelion type flowers. (If I could figure a way to make this in waking life, I would, it was so powerful!)

The couple quicky moved to conclude the workshop, but I kept pushing to hear what he had to say. Eventually they relented.

“I’m going to leave this path,” the artist said. “I’m going to pursue mathematics” and he went on to say how he didn’t want to leave art, because it was his soul, but mathematics was more practical, and he could manipulate it to make a lot of money, and someday, maybe some day, he could get back to art.

I asked him what the art represented to him. He replied that the stone was obligations weighing him down, yet somehow also his strength, and that the chain was binding his power. When I asked him about the bouquet, he responded “I just put it there”. I invited him to explore deeper. “It’s my hopes and dreams. My hopes and dreams are withering away”

I asked him to explore his desire to focus on mathematics. To consider that mathematics, once you dive in deeply, is beyond numbers. I mean.. look at the beautiful art created by fractals! That maybe if he got curious, he would see a correlation between the kind of art he did, and math. That he didn’t have to have just one life purpose. That sometimes goals can get in the way of our true heart.

And then I woke up. Thinking about the dream, but also the good old “Is the glass half full, or half empty” thing.

You know what? The glass is never empty. The space above the liquid is full of things we can’t see- air molecules, microscopic bits of plants, stardust, music. We see the glass as half full or half empty because that’s what our perception has been conditioned to see.

And what about the world outside of the glass? What potential is there? What if there were no glass at all?

What would happen if we approach other things in life with this shift in perception? I invite you to stop reading for a moment and pick up an object near you. Look at it with your ordinary vision, then begin to look at it differently. Get curious about the texture, weight, smell, perhaps taste. What are the stories behind any markings on it, or how it came to be in your possession?

When you are ready, explore something going on in your life. A goal, maybe. Sometimes when we hyper focus on a goal, we can lose sight of other corollary goals that might support it, or be a more life fulfilling way of being.Some people know from an early age what they were “meant” to do or be. Others spend their whole life seeking, aching for meaning. Or what they long to do or be doesn’t fit into every day existence.

Many of us believe that we have a life purpose, often just out of reach or perception. Or we’ve been trained to think of it as impractical, or not noble enough. What if we were to consider the possibility of having multiple life purposes, working in partnership? Or look at the deeper meaning of our goal. What basic needs are we wanting to be met with that goal? Love? Attention? Money? Appreciation?

Practice shifting your perspective, and see what unfolds. Maybe you too, will discover a way to create magic within every day life.