Expressing Ourselves Can Be Exciting & Medicinal


Just as Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung knew so long ago, “…language was not always adequate to express what we’re feeling but often, our hands know how to solve a problem with which the intellect struggles in vain.”

When it comes to expressing ourselves creatively, there is nothing more exciting than repurposing old books, tools, egg cartons, bottles, light bulbs and clothespins into starting points for something new and artful. YouTube is filled with videos on the subjects of crafting and recycling objects into art and functional pieces. I have found little bits of inner truths and self-love embodied within every piece of art or collage I’ve managed to finish. Pictures of my artwork are available on my web or at Milliande Art for Women.

freud-and-jungTo save money, you can pick up books at a Good-Will store. Dress up the pages with dried flowers, pennies, or other symbols that pull at your heart. Tear pages out as needed. Each of us consciously or unconsciously is drawn to certain colors, shapes, forms, patterns, and textures. Pay attention to what stirs your wild side and let an altered book give you renewed pleasure for your family for years to come. Give your inner child a place to cherish you. Be selfish. Play word bingo by blacking our words on each page leaving a special message to the readers.

Our favorite things need to be wrapped in our human experience any way they can to give us peace of mind. They give us pleasure and joy just to see and touch them and remember their birthing. Even our favorite books want to be a useful part of our lives any way they can. If you have read them from cover to cover and are sentimentally attached to them, repurpose them.

For instance, tear the pages out of an unused book. Shred the pages. You can make diaries or a photo journal as they age. If you’re crafty, make yourself a handbag out of your favorite book as found here.  Use duct tape instead of cloth.  See my own daughter’s fine billfolds and purses made out of duct tape:

We all like to rehash what we want and what we do not want, who we like and who we do not like. Journaling our lives keep us thinking about where we’ve been and where we’re going. We all like to ponder love and life and its many mysteries and record them. Our thought messages mature as we do. Journal, prose, and poetry help us making meaning in powerful and dramatic ways; conveying our deepest feelings, giving voice to our spirit helping us transcend momentary suffering.

For women interested in finding their inner child, go to Milliande Art for Women, providing a safe and nurturing place to enjoy the female creative spirit. You can also check out my web where you will find my two books on Art and Poem Therapy, and other webs where you can enjoy music & videos, and tips on writing poetry, journaling and writing your memoirs.

I think all beings are most probably designed in God’s image, with a sense of spiritually, creativity and humor. Most of us use our imagination because it feels good and it brings us joy and healing to our hearts. We need humor and laughter to bumper the pain that comes from being an imperfect body living in an imperfect world. I know when I laugh, I am less afraid. How else than by laughing could we so enjoyably exercise our heart, relieve tensions and boost our mood at a moment’s notice?

Creative expression and laughter go hand-in-hand. What else but laughter can send us a social signal that all is well? Laughing is a great conversational lubricant bonding parents to children and siblings to one another.

Most of us need to chew on life’s experiences like puppies need to chew on anything around them. Painters need to paint. Cooks need to cook. We are happier people when we do what we feel we need to do. Those of us who do not yield to our natural desires will always be looking for something or someone to complete us.

“Laughing is mysterious and unpredictable”…says Dave Chappelle, the comedian, a lot of times the humor does not come from pain exactly, it comes from things that make you anxious or afraid. It just helps you put them in perspective if you laugh at them.”

If you have some extra time on your hands and maybe interested in writing, you do not have to change your life or write a book.  Dare to experiment. Write a letter to a friend on a rainy open day. If you do not know what to write about, write heartfelt remembrances to the elderly or our soldiers overseas. Scientists have discovered the instinct of giving is just as uplifting to our natures as spending money, taking drugs, alcohol or even having sex.

If you are like me, you may have an addictive personality and will find pleasing others more spiritually enlightening. Make your own greeting cards or wall hangings using your words and gift them to someone you love. Giving to others pads our soul with love and goodness. Consider the fact that all speech has rhythm. Writers provide the words, while readers provide the music. Poems and letters can be simple, humorous, sad, quizzical or beautiful to read. Much writing can be concerned with self-analysis, Mother Nature and/or some bejeweled with sensual longing, all favorite topics of mine.

With depression medicine, counseling and a lot of reading and writing, one can unload the paranoia and fear that comes along with the disease of depression. My lives are like a great work of art, a masterpiece that has little to do with fame and a lot to do with commitment, discipline, and intention. We make many wrong turns, but for each one there is another choice to make. It takes courage to relearn old habits.

Each of us in our subjective consciousness has a story of love and survival that is uniquely ours. Like fingerprints, every person, event, circumstance, and situation that affected us deeply traced itself into our soul where it waits to be turned into poetry, song or some other form of creative expression. Each of us has a unique and special talent, maybe, even writing poetry or sculpting clay. If you do not know your special interest or gift is, consider asking yourself the following questions:

What can you do all day without benefit of rest?
What gets your emotional circuits excited?
When you are most happily productive, what are you doing?
Are you present, mindful and authentic to your dreams, intuitions and other coincidences in your life?
What is your heart trying to tell you?

Sylvia Brown, the psychic says, in her book Phenomenon, “It is just a fact that every single one of us had a God-driven purpose and every life we experience is a building block toward fulfilling that purpose. Our spirit minds know what that purpose is, whether our conscious minds can define it or not.

Nikos Kazantzakis says, “You have your brush and colors, paint paradise, and in you go.” Who of us would not want to fall into paradise with the exact tools we needed to live the life we were always meant to live?

The infamous Waldo Emerson recommends us, “To laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to hear the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends to appreciate beauty. To find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition, to know everyone has breathed easier because you loved.” This is to have succeeded. Take charge of your future, and become the person you were always meant to be.

I was surprised to find a fresher less tormented self, as well as a newfound confidence I could not have prophesied once I began a decade of self-expression with Art Therapy. You can, too! Change your life by changing YOU.

It’s nice to think of tears…
like polliwogs swimming around excitedly
ready to evolve,
it’s nice to think of sorrow as water,
all those tears escaping where
swelling pain had been,
It’s nice to think our sorrow will soon
evaporate just like our tears,
It is nice to think we are like polliwogs
merely evolving into a higher form,
And someday, we’ll be up in the
clouds dreaming of the comfort
and safety of polliwogs
swimming in a mortal’s eyes.

1 Comment
  1. Avatar of
    Anonymous says

    My thanks to Angie and others for recycling my old work. Most of it works well in our present. Learning to forget, forgive and still be optimistic is a good self-sustai8ning way to live. Stress, anger and guilt can effect us in subtle ways. These emotions can also lead to tragedy, murder and suicide. Let’s be happyl

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