This way of thinking helps me in my daily life with work, friends and my own self. When I travel long distances, as I am doing right now, it helps me to stay grounded. When I am under pressure it helps me to centre, and when I am elated it reminds me to breathe.
As an artist I feel the highs and lows of the environment around me very deeply. I have learned over the years that by accepting rather than fighting this, I can add depth to my being and gain opportunities to expand.
After every low time, I discover I have access to wonderful growth which was not available to me before.
We all know the saying, 'what does not kill me makes me stronger'. This kind of strength is resilience, which aids in the process of growth. How does it help us grow? Well, would you like someone to feel and experience the struggles you have gone through on your own? Most likely the answer is no. After times of pain, we come to relate to people in a more connected and compassionate way.
We all have certain character strengths, and we can train ourselves to build on them. Of course, I believe there are plenty of possibilities to build strengths through hat making.
Character strengths have a great effect on our life satisfaction, and practising them triggers an increase in our sense of well-being. So how do I practise them in my life?
Curiosity - what can I do with this material?Gratitude - oh, how lucky I am I to make hats!Optimism - this hat will become something beautiful even though I am not yet sure howHumour - every hat turns me into an actor!Enthusiasm -let's make hats, let's wear them, let's have fun. Let's make one NOW!
And so my daily practise continues. Well-being is just like any other muscle - it needs to be exercised to be strong.
Every day I let myself be touched - by colour and texture, by the scenery flying past me as I drive, by savouring the conversations and connections I make on the road, and by lying down in my Hatmobile at the end of a long day of hat making with a cup of coffee and a piece of dark chocolate, listening to the beautiful sounds of nature outside, feeling utterly grateful for the blessings in my life.
Warm thoughts from the Northern Territory,