Friday, May 8, 2009

A Cheats Mothers Day Blog.

I found this from Writer Dad - a mothers day poem.
For all the Mum's out there, enjoy your day.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Mind mapping-Get your Head around it

I was recently reminded of the process called Mind Mapping. I had done one or two mind maps in the past, specifically related to my business, but not since. It was pointed out that the mind map can be used for all sorts of problems, situations and dilemmas, not just business.
The mind map is an alternative to the list, and allows a greater free flow of ideas without classifying them in any good or bad groups.

How it works is: take a piece of paper, and in the middle of the page you put your situation (eg. Wedding, divorce, kids education, hate my job, holiday, writing a book), with a little cloud drawn around it. From there you put down all the thoughts that come to you about your topic. Some will be about the practical implications, and some may be about the emotional, people effected, possible problems. You will find that they take on a certain order, as your thoughts run in a line, which link ideas together, or in a different area.

The mind map allows you to release a jumble of ideas, and see them before you. You should be able to see a trend, what areas of the situation are most pressing, or help you to set a plan of action. It is very cathartic, and totally helpful.
Having just been reminded about the mind map, my ex husband had an accident. The implications were a bit scary. Also my son quickly accused me of not caring, as he looked to me to discover how to respond to the news, how to feel. I really wasn't sure how I felt. So I did a mind map of the situation. Wow. I had nearly fifty entries of possible outcomes, effects, fears, worries and sympathy. It really helped to see how much there was to be concerned over, and I felt justified in feeling a bit frightened. I also could tell my son exactly what I felt, having got my head around it, and was able to help him with his feelings, too, since he didn't have the benefit of the mind map!

There wasn't anything too positive I had written on the
page, which is unusual for me. But after 45 entries I suddenly realised something reassuring. We would be alright, whatever happened, or how things changed, we would work it out. And that is what I told my son.

Sunday, May 3, 2009


Does our own image taint the way we see the world? Artist Sarah Smuts Kennedy's work, Manifestation and Revelation (2003) suggests it does.
A picture of large, open, cupped hands are the feature of this work. Placed deliberately behind reflective glass, when you approach the picture your own image is reflected there. It is a reminder that our self image often gets in the way of seeing what actually exists. You are forced by the picture to make an effort to see the hands unimpeded by our own self image.

In the same way our thoughts and opinions often inhibit our view of the world. Objects and people are labelled good or bad, ugly or beautiful, like or dislike. When we see the world only reflected through our opinions we fail to see what just IS. The reality, and its innate beauty of being, obscured.
Looking at the world through our labelling system also leads to a series of emotional ups and downs, and dissatisfaction. If we can stop ourselves from generating a constant stream of opinions, we can see our world as it exists, and live with a sense of general contentment.
Eckhart Tolle has some ideas that help to see how this works. Ultimately our ego, and maintaining our strong sense of self, is behind the need to see the world reflected through our opinions of it (that is, how we relate everything back to us). By overcoming the ego, and gaining control of it, we also gain the ability to see the world as it exists, and find satisfaction .
A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle expands on these concepts. This link takes you to his website.
Sarah will be exhibited at John Paynter Gallery in Newcastle NSW 15th-31st of May 2009. You can find some of Sarah's other work at this link, although I couldn't find the hand picture I mention above, which I had seen on the Sunday Arts program dated 29/03/09.