By Rebecca Wilkinson, MA

Wellness Counselor and Art Therapist

Many of us would like to be more creative but we struggle with an inner voice that volleys a steady stream of discouraging negativity.  “I’m not talented enough”, “Creativity is frivolous”, “Who’s got time for it?!” “There are real problems that need my attention!”, “You’re either born with talent or you’re not”.  This "Inner Critic" might also have other names such as Nagging Nelly or Perfect Pete which capture the discouraging power of this inner voice.

Although we may feel that our Inner Critic is out to sabotage our creativity, it might actually be well meaning, even if a bit misguided. Someone once said that her Inner Critic, which she called “The Wicked Witch,” was trying to "suck the joy" out of her life. This critical voice often wants to protect us from embarrassment or failure, or it tries to help us avoid frustration and disappointment. However, in doing so, it keeps us from experimenting with new ideas and from the learning that comes with trial and error. It also keeps us from the joy that comes from applying our creativity.

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By Miraval's MaryGrace Naughton, Yoga & Meditation Specialist

Why is it so important to be mindful and to practice calming your mind on a regular basis? 

The importance of mindfulness is practicing present moment awareness with acceptance. Doing this provides us with the opportunity to be more aware of both our internal and external experience. With awareness comes the ability to choose and respond rather than live habitually or reactively. When we have acceptance of what is, even when it is difficult or the opposite of what we want, we are able to empathize and be kind with our internal experience rather than telling ourselves to ‘get over it’ or that ‘we shouldn’t be feeling what we feel’. This also cultivates our ability to be compassionate with others. When we have acceptance of what is pleasant we are able to bring our whole selves to the sensory experience and  enjoy that moment on a deeper lever. Savoring a pleasant experience helps create the memory of it and develops the ability to become aware of pleasant experiences more often. 

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By Rebecca Wilkinson, MA

Wellness Counselor and Art Therapist

Many people do not think of themselves as creative. They think of creativity as a special skill or talent that we are born with. They might admire other people who are creative but they don’t think of themselves that way. They might see creative people as unconventional and right-brained and see themselves as analytical and left-brained. Even people who are more creative might think of creativity as a special state of mind that we are sometimes blessed with.

What does it mean to be creative? Creativity is commonly defined as imaginative and novel ideas and activities. It is often associated with artistic sensibility and originality. A broader definition of creativity includes expanding perspective, exploring possibilities, experimental problem-solving, and flexible thinking. 

 

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By Miraval's Carolyn Crawford, Astrologer

This month begins with good cheer as on March 2nd the very sociable Venus in harmony with exciting Uranus. Unique expression is likely for the creative.  A flair for forecasting trends and ingenuity can bring novel ideas or breakthroughs. A new romance is also possible especially for Aries and Aquarians.

Then on March 4th communicative Mercury squares off with Mars, the god of war. There can be problems and irritations or impulsive reactions. Watch for mechanical breakdowns or heated arguments especially for those born near the end of Scorpio on November 21-23. The best use for this day is to do research and study.

Then on March 5th transiting sun squares Saturn bringing another day of difficulties and hard work. There can be limitations and delays. Don't worry if there are feelings of insecurity. This will stimulate ambition and the desire to prove one's self-worth. Pisces and Sagittarius are inclined now to feel low on energy.

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By Angela Onsgards, R.D.

One of my favorite things to do is cook!   I see cooking as a form of meditation.  I know this isn’t the case for everyone, but with a little guidance and a well-stocked pantry, cooking can become a much more enjoyable experience.

I always have a number of staples on hand to ensure that I will have enough to make a healthy meal in the event that I can’t make it to my local co-op or farmers market.  

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