The Power of Your Inner Voice
by Lily Simmons (Madeira Intern)
I believe that you speak things into existence, whether this be to other people or to yourself.
I was never excited for art class in elementary school or middle school. I would compare my drawings or paintings to whoever was nearby, feeling like mine were inadequate. Because of this, I would go into any art project with the mindset that it would not turn out well. My inner voice would repeat, “art isn’t my thing” or “I am not good enough to make something like that,” when eyeing another person’s work. I would rarely be satisfied with my finished product.
This mindset shifted in Spring of 2020. I was with my best friend Emma and we decided to paint on a couple of mini canvases that we found. As I began, I pushed away any negative thoughts and questioned myself less. I focused on enjoying the process with each brush stroke, wishing I had embraced art this way in elementary school. The final product was a dark night sky with stars and a pier leading to the moon. I ended up loving the painting, not worried about anything other than my own work. This was the first stepping stone to my love for painting. The miniature night sky now sits next to my mom’s desk!
When I let go of telling myself that I couldn't be an artist, I became one. You have the power to shift your inner voice to say whatever you want it to say.
Wisdom comes from experience and curious exploration. There is an openness you need to have in order to learn from different perspectives, remain open to changing your beliefs, and seeing every moment as an opportunity to add to your knowledge or understanding.
We have high school interns spending 5 weeks at a time with us throughout the winter and spring and I can’t wait to be challenged and questioned by them! They will be posting personal reflections and thought on the blog, so I hope you have a chance to read them and see some of the world of Water & Stone and psychology from the vantage point of “Beginner’s Mind”. A wonderful opportunity!
The idea that self care is occasional massages and pampering makes it very difficult to understand how to affordably and regularly access what should be daily wellness practices. Of course, if you enjoy it and can safely and financially do it, get the massage!
So, what is self care?
How you, on a regular basis, support yourself mentally, physically, and energetically. It doesn't have to be doing something big or for hours at a time. Think of it more as small practices and daily rituals that make you feel grounded, present, and able to take a breath.
Have a cup of tea in the morning before picking up your phone for the day.
Take a walk midday around the block or in a park.
Move! - yoga, lifting weights, or getting your body moving in a way that feels good.
Set a time at the end of the day to stop working and take a break from screens.
Take time each day to do something fun (art, reading, listening to music, meditating, juggling, ...)
What is self care during a pandemic?
Safe practices that fulfill your community/social needs.
Taking a walk with a friend (masks and social distancing work!)
Doing an activity with someone (like AcroYoga pictured above!) wear contact happens, but is controlled or limited, then using hand sanitizer and washing hands regularly.
Checking in with a friend everyday
Finding an online group - can be therapy or something like a book club, art making group, etc.
Pick one thing and aim to do it for 5 min each day!
Stay safe and let us know how it goes!
Emery started Water & Stone in 2015 to bring a more contemplative approach to health and wellness in NYC. She is inspired to combine her love of meditation, creative arts, and psychology to support others in bravely healing or daring to reach for dreams with the goal of living a fully engaged and fulfilling life. Since starting her company, she has gathered a diverse group of women with similar dreams to support people locally, nationally and internationally.