Writing Prompt: Inspiring Art

Reflect on art galleries or art festivals you’ve visited in your lifetime. Is there a particular piece of art that resonated deeply with you? Close your eyes and recall the experience. Then write about that work of art, describing the colors, the textures, the mood, and the subject matter, and how it inspired you. How does this piece of art make you feel? What does it inspire you to do?

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Meditation: Who Do You Want to Be?

Find a peaceful place and spend a few minutes meditating on your life. Let everyone’s opinions, expectations, and judgments fade away. Focus on your thoughts alone.

Who do you want to be? Picture that version of yourself.

What brings you joy? Envision yourself reaching your dreams.

What do you like about yourself as you are? Reflect on your positive qualities.

I invite you to finish with a prayer, thanking God for what you already have and what is to come, and asking God to guide your steps.

The Need for Validation

Like many other individuals out there, I care way too much about what people think. I’ve been known to define my self worth based on how others view me and what value they see in me, if any, rather than how I view myself. Sometimes my mind is so polluted by the opinions of others that I honestly don’t know how I think or feel about myself or any given topic, because I’m stuck people pleasing, worrying, overanalyzing, and trying to control how I’m perceived.

The fact is…we can’t control how we’re perceived. Some people will love us, some people will hate us, and some people won’t care either way. I saw a quote this week that shook me to my core because it rang so true:

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This quote is so wise. It forces me to think about the way I live my life. Why do I so desperately seek validation from others before I can see any of my own worth? Why do I ache to be loved by others before I can love myself? Why do I need to feel understood? Handled gently? The world, generally speaking, is not a loving, gentle place, but I’ve been blessed to cross paths with many kind-hearted, understanding people whom I love dearly and who love me back. Sometimes love comes in a brief connection with a stranger over a profound topic. Love builds us up.

But eventually, we crash and burn. A harsh word, a misinterpreted comment, an imagined slight, a moment of rudeness, an angry opinion, a mocking laugh…all these things can burn away the love that others give us, leaving us dark and empty.

So what are we to do? As a Christian, I first need to accept God’s unconditional love. But no matter what our beliefs, we need to learn to accept our own love. We need to be so filled with steadfast love that the ups and downs of the world won’t affect us. This is far easier said than done, and I’ve yet to achieve it, but I want to try. I hope you will try, too.

So before you go seeking validation for who you are and what you’re about, find it in yourself and in your faith. That is what will always remain, and that is all we truly need.

Peace be with you, dear friends. ❤

I think we all have blocks between us and the best version of ourselves, whether it’s shyness, insecurity, anxiety, whether it’s a physical block, and the story of a person overcoming that block to their best self. It’s truly inspiring because I think all of us are engaged in that every day.

Tom Hooper

We All Dance with Our Struggles

To all my lovely readers, friends, and fellow sensitive souls, I offer you my sincerest thanks. I never know where God is going to lead me, but I trust that it’s where I’m meant to go. You have been a big part of making this week one of the most joyful of my life.

The start of this week was very rough, and I won’t pretend that it’s not terrifying to share these details. Monday was an emotional day after a disappointing appointment with a psychiatrist. Like the majority of highly sensitive people, I struggle back and forth in a dance with anxiety and depression, mostly anxiety. That said, I am in a significantly healthier and happier place now than I was several years ago. I’m blessed to have the best therapist in the world. I’m blessed to have healed and grown. Walking into the new doctor’s office, I felt like I was past the labels. Or at least the label of depression, since I feel so much joy on a daily basis. I love God. I love my husband. I love my family. I love my dear, sweet cat. I love my friends. I love my job. I love writing. I love playing the harp. I love my life.

But the doctor didn’t see me for who I was. My therapist agreed. My amazing writer friends, who turned Monday around into a good day by nightfall, comforted and reassured me. Suddenly the labels didn’t seem so bad. After all, it’s just a dance. It doesn’t need to be a fight. There doesn’t need to be a stigma. There doesn’t need to be shame. If I didn’t have the depth of feeling and emotion I have, the good and the bad, I wouldn’t be able to produce any writing worth reading or music worth hearing.

So on Tuesday, I awoke with a new vision and purpose. Shelter for Sensitive Souls. My blog and Facebook author page, once barely breathing, lit up with life. Connections. Interactions. I realized that I know exactly who I am, who I want to be, and who I write for. I write for God, I write for myself, and I write for you. And I thank you, from the depths of my soul, for reminding me that there is worth in my existence. In my writing. In my soul. ❤