Friday, August 22, 2014

Stylish Space, Impossible Dreams and More With August Moon

The following prompts are brought to you by Kat McNally, lovely hostess of August Moon 2014 and writer at the blog 'I Saw You Dancing'. You can still sign up to receive daily prompts in your email to 'write your way to an amazing life' HERE and you can also request the prompts that you are most interested in - you can journal them publicly or privately, it's your choice!

With that said, my interest was piqued when this prompt came to my inbox:
Outer Space

Then I was pleasantly surprised by this prompt, when I read the full explanation behind it:

With Thanks

And then this prompt arrived in my email:

Dreaming The Impossible

There's lots of juicy stuff to explore here, so let me begin with my thoughts on the first of three prompts for this blog post...

I read those words for the August Moon prompt and for one wild moment I thought we would be pondering Extraterrestrial Life in the Universe, which would have been fun for me since I have a secret love of exploring the Universe beyond Earth...I've also expressed a keen desire to be a Storm Chaser, so maybe that's not much of a surprise to any of my long-time readers*...

But then I looked further into the prompt:
"What is the perfect space for you? We’re going to take a step back and look at the space around us...wherever our true work gets done and the magic happens...What would your perfect space look like?"

If you have been reading here lately, you will know that I am not happy with my lack of a decent studio space to work in and you might know what a challenge it has been to really make it happen...

Though I can say that I managed to add a 'work table' into my creative space since my last rumblings of dissatisfaction:

And it didn't take long before this table was covered with clutter, but that's another post for another day...

I'm still frustrated by having to squeeze my old 2-bedroom, living room-as-collage-studio home into one small space.

And I'm not much happier with the way the rest of this new home looks, since there is very little storage space and my dear boyfriend brought a LOT with him, especially since he has yet to grasp the fundamental principles of 'cleaning and clearing' to make space in ones life for BETTER THINGS.

But with the idea to muse on what my 'dream space' would look like, I realize it's time to stop grumbling and time to be kind to myself with each tiny step I accomplish toward making my studio a functioning one...and it's time to start dreaming a little and focus on what I DO have in place already.

Just today, before I sat to write this post, I stumbled on a list I printed from a blog a few years ago and I think focusing on this list will help me to appreciate the space I live in.

Now to list a few things that would make my heart sing for a wonderful creative studio and/or home:
  • Less clutter!
  • Lots of shelves/bookcases to keep books and art supplies organized 
  • A painted wall or two
  • A worktable that can accommodate 4-6 students for at-home workshops
  • Colorful curtains that can adjust to allow lots of light or block too much hot sun!
  • An altar space for my studio AND my home
  • Special storage space (that we don't have to pay for!) for our beloved Christmas decorations
  • Fresh cut flowers
  • Art on the walls
If I can keep this list firmly in mind, then it might get easier to take those small steps and turn them into bigger steps until my dream spaces come to fruition...I'll be sure to report back when it happens!

At first I thought this was a prompt on sharing gratitude, which I am always happy to do, but when I read the further explanation of this prompt, I became rather giddy:
"What do people thank you for? What do they like about you, compliment you on? How do you surprise and delight other people?"

It's rare for me to extoll my virtues, but over time I have become aware that I am/can be a potent force in the lives of others and I've been able to hear the compliments that come my way as a means to glean what my 'superpowers' might be. So here is a little list of how I bring happiness to people who cross my path:
  • I am CREATIVE (this comes as no surprise!)
  • I INSPIRE others with my creativity - the word "inspire" comes up around me A LOT...
  • I have a great sense of HUMOR
  • I am an AMAZING LISTENER (sometimes it baffles me just how much people will spill when they first meet me!)
  • I am a great ENCOURAGE-er, what's usually known as a 'cheerleader' or 'coach'
  • I am STYLISH, when I make the effort, something I don't have much opportunity for these days
Now if I could just parlay some of this into more teaching opportunities, then more people could be 'surprised and delighted' by me and I think we could use more pleasant surprises and delight in the world, don't you??!?

At first I thought this prompt was going to be about more manifesting, but then I continued reading:
"What are the stories that limit you? It seems that we all have these stories...Who would you be without that story?"

"I am a poor Hispanic, raised on the wrong side of the tracks, doomed to live in poverty for the rest of my life"

That is my limiting story in a nutshell...

Or maybe it's 140 characters?? ;)

There are a few limiting stories that plague me, but this pretty much sums them all up. And the sad thing is that I didn't have this story when I was a child (do any of us have such stories as children?!?), but it crept up on me as I grew up and observed the world, and the adults, around me.

The dominating portion of this story is not even being a person of color, but a person of NO WEALTH...

Living in the suburbs of Los Angeles, with Hollywood as your 'backyard', it's hard not to notice the 'conspicuous consumption' around you, which begins in high school and goes on and on and on.

Being in the presence of 'people with money' is hard for me - I find they whine about really petty things that I can't relate to and I am often in the presence of such people since they are the 'fringe dwellers' I've written about in recent blog posts.

I am someone who has learned to do a lot with less, to make-do, buy used cars, make my own clothes, be thrifty and frugal, use coupons, find bargains in thrift shops and flea markets and, recently, I've learned how to spend my money (and Time!) in ways that are meaningful to me - books, art supplies, art workshops, museums and art retreats.

But let's face it - being frugal, using coupons, learning to find bargains, learning where all the best thrift shops and flea markets are, learning to live 'within ones means' and learning how to spend money in ways that are meaningful to you, are just not cool things people are interested in...

But then again, maybe I've just been a trailblazer, WAY ahead of my time:

Yes, it does seem that this economic crisis is being felt by just about everyone and people are adjusting to this situation that will not be leaving us anytime soon.

This TED Talk really resonated for me as I watched it since it jibed so much with how I've always lived my life...I guess that makes me a PRE Post-Crisis Consumer!

So with this in mind, if I really am a trailblazer in this new world-view, then I can change my old story to this new story:

"I am a TRAIL BLAZER, a pioneer in living a frugal life of meaningful value which brings me satisfaction and JOY!"

And in keeping with my frugality, it's less than 140 characters! ;)

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Thanks for stopping by my blog and reading! Be sure to check out what other August Moon participants are writing back at "I Saw You Dancing" - there is a lot of wonderful, juicy and inspiring writing happening out there!

* - If I have any long-time readers left! It does seem that my blog world has changed dramatically in the past few years, but I think the blog world is undergoing many changes indeed...


Deborah Weber said...

What great ideas for reworking your studio space into something you love. And I definitely believe and support the idea that we all could use more pleasant surprises and delight in the world. Yes! I love your rewrite of your old story into your new one - brilliant. But I'm also going to hold for you that great and joyful financial abundance is part of your story as well.

Kat McNally said...

I love this reframe, Monica! And you're right, the zeitgeist is all about doing more with less... though maybe the news has been slow to reach the rest of Hollywood! ;)
A lovely book I think you'll like: Rhonda Hetzel's "Down to Earth". Really validates your approach. xx