Your Story. Your Legacy.

Our stories, our words, our openings to others say a lot about our lives. It is interesting to begin a conversation with a complete stranger (grocery clerk, massage therapist, hair stylist, etc) and stories just seem to flow. People like to connect with one another. The trick is…what are you telling? What are you saying about your life? What message are you leaving with those you come in contact?

Another step further—What if you could not “say” anything.

img_0387img_3605We recently took a trip to Southern Utah and hiked among petroglyphs of the Anasazi people. It was fascinating to think about walking through handwriting of people thousands and thousands of years old. To see what was important to them—food, feet, animals, people with horn hats, stars, labyrinth patterns…fascinating! Again. No words, just symbols.

 

112246My cute daughter is doing a report on the Northwest Coast Indians and found out they were tribes of people with no specific written language and shared their history and stories through Totems. A Totem is kind of like a book you could read, but instead of using words it used symbols. Totem poles were used as a way of passing down stories.

I thought this was a very interesting idea that could bring up various feelings for people. Think about it!! If you were to create a “Totem” of your life, what would it look like? What would be the main images that you would include. What words (now that we have them) would you include? What message of your life? What symbols would you use?

I think this could be a very fun personal activity you could do to see what comes up from your soul. Think about it. Draw something out. If you like to carve wood–carve away! Maybe make a collage of visual images. Create something. I think a visual of your life’s journey may say something to you. Try it!!

MAKE YOUR OWN CREATIVE TOTEM.  Here are some ideas I came up with…

SONY DSCMaybe make a simple totem for your yard. Pick glass or ceramic beads and make a decorative story line that you know the meaning and symbolism behind.

 

img_0433This made me think of making a personal beaded bracelet that you could create that will symbolize different things within your life. Each bead represents something personal.

 

tumblr_o19gthtumm1v5h6m1o1_1280Maybe make a collage of highlights or things that remind you of your life. [example–pulled off google. Not sure of the source]

 

afb84d4942a1abb2bf4befed1785594dThis made me think of a crafty idea–if you know or enjoy quilting. Quilt symbols of your life and put them together.

 

2044Make symbols that mean something to you personally. Put them together to create a story.

 

 

d4239633957aced98ed266250f0942b1fd4adfbe71b055ee92pimgpsh_fullsize_distrIf you don’t feel too artistic you could always find various mandalas and color them to your own style and put meaning into them with specific colors meaning emotion, certain shapes to symbolize parts of your life, etc. Then you could stack and frame them or take a pic to always have close.   Mandala’s are a symbol, representing the search for completeness and self-unity.

 

Hope this post has given you some ideas to finding your deeper stories and unique ways to share them with yourself and those you love.

 

Happy creating!!  -H

 

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The Legacy of your Life

IMG_0617Over this past weekend I ventured down to southern Utah to an area with more than 500 petroglyphs dated as far as 8,000 years ago. Wow! As my little family walked the gravel paths and found large rocks over 10 feet wide etched with what seemed to be life time lines, we were in ah. The primitive images of birds, animals, people walking, circles and circles that looked like labyrinths, it made us wonder about the people who drew the images. You wondered about their life out in the middle of nowhere, the heat, the rock ledges, the solitude, what their life was like, what they dreamed of, what they did day in and day out, what their family was like, the things they held precious…

IMG_0639I then thought about my own life and the legacy I will leave. Will it be a legacy of faith, goodness, light, love? Will I be remembered as someone who was a good mother, a supportive, loving wife. Will I be remembered as someone who tried things, who was brave and adventurous, or someone who didn’t risk, who stayed safe. For some reason lately I have been needing to step out of my usual, to try new things, to venture beyond my limitations, so I have been risking more, I have been trying to venture more. This year has brought discomfort with having to go to dinner parties (not my favorite past time), putting my work out where people can reject it (entered some visual work into a contest & gala–that was a couple of tough situations), but I have also tried playing more, having more adventure—hence my idea of finding indian ruins in the desert.

There is only so much life you can live if you stay within the lines, if you walk in only comfortable shoes, if you don’t go beyond and find more within yourself. So, the last couple of weeks I have been writing down things I have tried, things I have done, things I have accomplished, things I am proud of within the years of my life…small things, big things, adventurous things. Things that define who I am and the life I have led so far. It is fun to see the details, the wins, the growth, the learning. It is also fun to create new lists of things you want to do, to accomplish, to dream.

So, with that in mind, I challenge you to read other people’s life lists, bucket lists, to do’s of the year & create your own wish lists, life lists & begin one by one. Step by step, to see yourself go beyond, one little step at a time. Life is good. Life is NOW. Your legacy is written with what you do every single day. You are writing the pages of your life, so make them great!!

Good luck. Best Wishes.

wishlistHere are some Wish list ideas: Enjoy your children, Spend more quality time with those you love, Start a blog, Write every single day, Do something creative, Have an article published, Write a book, Create a business, Feed animals in the wild, Try a different sport of some kind (snowboarding, paddle boarding, skiing, fishing, hiking, canoeing, climbing), Try gardening, Take # of pictures this year, Read # of books this year, Go see the olympics, Learn a language, Stay in a tree house, Meet a celebrity and have your pic with them, Pet/feed a wild animal, Write a fan letter to someone you admire, Drive a convertible, Try something extreme like skydiving or scuba diving, List out places you would like to visit, Ride a motorcycle, Go sailing, Take a class, See a cirq show in Las Vegas, Visit # of National Parks, Ride Horseback, Go dogsledding, Attend a floating lantern celebration, Try sorbing (giant bubble ball walking on water), Send a message in a bottle, Take a dance lesson, Learn to play a musical instrument, Take # road trips, Own a hammock, Sell something, Find a good service project once a month, Make one new recipe a month, Go on # of dates with husband, Buy a city pass and do all the activities…there are so many ideas to bring to life—make them your own.

Here are some quotes I liked on the subject..enjoy!

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