A Life Without Colour – Isn’t Life!


One of the things they encourage you do in order keep your blogging alive is to find various ways to inspire your thoughts – prompts! Some people have a jar filled with pieces of paper with words, single sentences, themes, etc., to act as triggers for their writing.

I came across this photo and totally loved it! It evoked so many thoughts for me, as my eyes danced from one feather to the other. Studying, comparing and examining each one.  It was like a long, cool drink for my eyes, because I absolutely adore colour:-)

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No feather is perfect.  They are all damaged in some way simply because they are by nature fragile and delicate.  A bit like people.

They reminded me of a very special day in my life when I had gone to a retreat in support of a dear friend of mine who was having a very difficult time in her life. It was a Christian Retreat, and one of the ministries they ran there was in Arts & Crafts. They had an art room that contained various types of paints, pastels, crayons, charcoal, etc.  It was very cluttered and aged with years of use, with splashes of paint all over the place – far from being a pristine space. There were props of many types and exhibits of artwork people had completed and left behind, was now pinned, in no particular order on the walls.

As I looked on the table I saw a sea shell that caught my eye, so I sat down and got my self some paper and started to draw its outline using charcoal.  I had not sat down and drawn anything for years, since Secondary school in fact.  Art was one of my best subjects but I didn’t focus on it and when I left school I left my art world behind me.

The room was quiet and cold because it was winter time.  I was the only one in there, well that’s what you would think. But spiritually I was far from being on my own. I came to the retreat as I said, to support my friend.  As far as I was concerned, I was fine and life was in a good enough space at that time.

I paid a lot of attention to the shell, ensuring I captured its shape, any shading shadows or elements of light, its swirling patterns, etc.  Parts of the shell were complex, but I focused on doing my best.  Then I heard a question clearly arise in me. ‘Why are you only using black charcoal? “ Does it have no colour? So I looked at the shell again and clearly it had colour, beautiful pastel colours of pinks and white. So I started to add colour to my drawing.  As I worked on it I then heard a voice inside once again saying ‘that is you’. The Holy Spirit adds colour to your life.  I then thought about me and at that time I lived in clothes that were predominantly, black and dark.  Rarely, would I buy something that was pink, red, orange or yellow.  I knew why.  it was because I wasn’t happy with me.  I wanted to blend in and colour drew attention, and I so did not want that.

‘Why are you only using black charcoal? “ Does it have no colour?

It was a very profound moment for me, and I must admit the tears fell at that moment of realisation. I was not living my life true to me.  You see I loved colour and I always loved creativity from I was a child, but I stopped acknowledging it.  However, from that day, my life changed and colour is now always in my day, because I wear it! In fact, I actively seek it in my clothes and in things for my home.

You see God cares about all of you and I believe he is very practical in how he relates to you. Who knew I was also in need of healing?  There was another ‘ahah!! moment for me on that retreat but that’s another story 🙂

Who knew I was also in need of healing?

I know many women hide in one way or the other behind their clothes. But I would like to encourage anyone who has reduced or eliminated colour from their life to seek a way to bring it back.  I have always shunned the limit light and being center stage.  Comfort was to be the one at the back or the one lost in the crowd.

But not anymore.  Now its just about a focus and determined mind and doing what needs to be done.  Its funny, by recognising the importance of colour in my life that day I recovered a part of me. A part I was hiding and no longer acknowledging.

It’s funny how we try to strip colour from our life, as nature is the greatest display of colour. In nature colour is important, it shares a language that is not spoken but displayed.   Life isn’t life without vibrant colour reflecting through it.

It’s important to be true to yourself always.

Be the change you want to be, until next time.

 

Aquene7 – Peace

The Masquerade Of Life


Sometimes I just do random and today’s post is a prime example of that, thoughts in my head captured on a page. So I considered:-

Life could be described as a ‘Big Masquerade!’ couldn’t it? I have heard this said before at some point in my life, so it’s neither a personal light bulb moment nor a unique thought by myself.

But, how honest are we as people with our lives and how we portray it each day? We here it in companies today and it’s all part of the accepted corporate and political buzz words bantered around, ‘We must be transparent.’ But what does that truly mean? My perception of transparent –  isn’t necessarily in the same place as yours? Another goody is, ‘being authentic.’ At what point does ‘authentic’ and ‘transparent’ become too much? Over said and with no meaning anymore?

 How real are we to be as we spin, twirl, dance and walk our way through life?

Some of us are elaborately dressed in our masks and costumes.   They are stunning in their design and formidable as a defense. While others are more simple, plain and subdued. Perfected in the art of camouflage, the goal of being unnoticeable in the affray of colour and action that goes on around us.

All you see are the eyes, often described as the ‘window to the soul.’ But even here the art is to reveal nothing. Flirt and smize but be sure to move on, never give too much away.

Even before our loved ones the dance continues. At what point do we really lay bare? Rest on our laurels?  Even before God we hide 🙂

Where do our masks appear? Where would you say they become evident? At a guess I would say in our feelings, emotions and attitudes. So I asked myself a few things to see and try to gauge my own internal reaction.  Is it a positive response or one of negative agreement?

Q. Trust – Do I trust like that of a child, easily and happily? hmm err?……… (got that right!:-)

Q. Do I wear my heart on my sleeve? err?…… what do you think?

Q. Do I like being in control? How  & When do I use it?  

Q. Being openly vulnerable am I comfortable with that?

Q. Love, is that gauged and measured or am I a free spirit?

Am I being too cynical or is there an uncomfortable truth in all of this?

Masks…… who is truly without one of some shape or form? Who can say they truly know someone inside out 100% That they face everything and that they hide nothing of them self?

I think there is always meant to be an element of the unknown about us. After all what’s left of interest when a book is read? Question is, what percentage of us is the unknown and the hidden? 90%, 80%, 50% maybe just 20%? Where does balance find itself in any of us?  Guaranteed if it could be measured it wouldn’t be in the same place for all.

Well that’s my random moment of thought over… until next time:-)

 

Be the change you want to be.

 

Aquene7 = Peace

Story Of The Two Wolves


I love nature. There is so much in nature to be fascinated by and wolves are a prime example.  I feel they often get misrepresented as blood thirsty, wild and ruthless creatures but the truth is they are far from that.

I always appreciate wisdom shared via quotes, stories, poems or proverbs, so I really liked this story my cousin shared which is a Cherokee Story.  Its well known, but I only discovered it this year:-)

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One evening an Old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.  He said:-

My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.  One is Evil – It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-petty, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego.

The other is Good – It is joy, peace, love hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather “which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Native American Cherokee Story

A Promise To Myself – 1 Month On


Well time certainly flies, and it has been 4 weeks since I began working on my promise to myself – of finding a healthier me!

It has been small steps, because what I had not mentioned before in my first post was the fact that I have also been contending with lower back pain. It’s a long story so I won’t go into it, but it meant I had to do things a lot differently this time round and extensive HIT exercises had to be shelved for now.  Wisdom dictates a slow and steady pace right now and as someone said to me ‘You only have one back,’ and its amazing how much of your life and day is affected once you become limited/restrained in movement.

I have learnt a lot about myself over these past weeks, one thing being, I did not realise how much I thought about food.  Seriously!

I can’t tell you how often I hear these intense open questions in my thoughts:-

How about……?

What about a……?

Wouldn’t it be nice to have….?

I realised that these questions would come along even when I have eaten and the truth be told I wasn’t hungry.  However, for what ever reason, my stomach wasn’t registering it was full either.  These questions would then be followed by my imagination, eating something sweet, having crisps, or cake, etc.  I recognised, this was the undisciplined side of me. To eat just for the sake of eating, not because I was hungry.  So this is one pattern I need to change if I am to be successful.  At the end of the day, I want a changed lifestyle. I want a weight that I sustain in a healthy way for the rest of my life, not fluctuating one.

I know enough to understand that weight-loss is 80% about what I eat and how I eat, so that is the greatest challenge.

I have been exercising too. I had to start at the basics, and slow and basic steps were not easy for me, as I love high intensity training, spinning and boxing, but for now these things were out of the question.  So where do you start? I found some basic Yoga sessions on YouTube, that’s what I did.  As simple as the moves were, I found them far from easy but it was a start and helped in strengthening my back and me generally.  Its funny, but I did not realise how out of line I was until I started Yoga, nor how much my posture was out just in standing and walking.  I have added some other basic exercise now to my routine and I am feeling the benefits of exercising for just 30-40 minutes about 4 times each week.  I make sure I have rest days in between which helps too.

To weigh myself I use body composition scales.  These take other factors into account other than weight. It looks at  muscle mass, bone mass, hydration levels, visceral fat, body age indication, ( so you may in reality be 25 but your body indicates that of 32 year old), BMI.   So far I have lost 3 inches from my waist which I am really pleased about:-) as well as an inch from my hips.  I have lost 1% in body fat and gained some more muscle and improved my hydration percentage. I have a long way to go on journey, but I have been encouraged by seeing some degree of change and improvement in my stats each week.

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It’s still very much about changing my thinking, my random impulsive thoughts and poor habits including maintaining my healthy shopping. So here’s to the coming weeks:-)

If you are on a health and well-being journey, I wish you well and any tips or encouragement is welcomed:-)

Be the change you want to be and here’s to finding the better you.

 

Aquene7 = Peace

 

Popcorn Mentality!!


This post has received the most traffic out of all of my posts. I wrote it over a year ago and its one of my earlier writings. So I thought I would re-post it 🙂

Stepping2YourDreams

A ‘Popcorn Mentality’ seems to be woven into our society today. What is it? Its that instant gratification kick that our society seems to be built on today. 

One way or another we may feed into it, and to a certain extent live by it.  We want results straight away, no one wants to wait anymore.  Our response is ‘why do we have to?’ Just like with food and the changes to our eating habits, born out of changing life styles, we now have the Micro-wave, where we can heat something up or defrost it in a fraction of the time. Like Popcorn, we put our corn seeds into the  micro-wave with an expectation of instant popcorn, hot, sweet, salty or plain, but ready to go/eat in minutes.

The Kitchen Tigeris - Google Images The Kitchen Tigeris

Our patience, seems to be growing thinner and thinner day by day, as our world grows faster with technology and…

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A Promise To Myself – Changing My Health


Life is certainly a journey, fraught with its ups and downs and curve balls.

One aspect of this is our health.  The notion that you can eat badly and then compensate with burning it off via exercise is bad practice and definitely not the way to go.

Like many, I am far from being the correct weight for my height. I currently have the pleasure of being classed as ‘Morbidly Obese’ by my Wii:-) and elastic, loose-fitting clothes and layers are currently my best friends.

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Weight Loss Google Free Images

 

I need to lose 3.5 stones in order be where I need to be.  Now that is not an immense amount of weight but it has been my nemesis. Now, taking my health in hand is not a recent journey.  Truth be told I realised I needed to do something a few years ago and I started to bring exercise into my life and looked into healthier eating but for what ever reason I have not even been able to lose 1 stone.  I grew fitter but the weight loss has eluded me.

So what do you do, when what you want doesn’t seem to be happening?  Truth is I could find  lots of excuse, some may even be valid but the truth is at the end of the day I am the one suffering with aches and pains.

I thought about the amount of times I have made promises to myself of ‘loosing this’ and ‘loosing that’ and not attaining it.  I thought people let you down but what about when you let your own self down. What is my word worth to me?

It may seem like I am being hard on myself and maybe I am, but it has given me a new commitment to changing my health.  It has made me accountable to me in a very real and conscious way. I owe it to myself to be the best me I can be, so the least I can do is keep my own word and my own promise to myself.

People letting you down is out of your control and something you have to adapt to and grow from. But you letting yourself down is another thing especially when the goal is attainable. The battle is with my own taste and choices and being consistent with the right decisions.

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So, it’s about being committed to me and my health. It’s about being the change I want to see and be.

Here’s to a new day and me loosing my first stone and those all important inches:-)

Have a great day!

 

Aquene7 = Peace

2015 – Go Get Your Blessing!


Well I have been quiet for a while, busy doing other things and simply just enjoying the holiday season with family.

I entered this year with a clear focus in mind and have started to work positively towards making things happen in my life.  I started with a clear goal and plan in mind, which I knew from November last year. It’s not a New Year Resolution but a determined effort to change what I do on a month by month basis.

Time waits for no man, and this year I am expecting great things, starting with me.  So here’s to a brand New Year and a fresh start.

One of my new changes was to start a Devotional Journal in which I write all my inspirations I receive during my prayer time with God. I came across a sermon by Dr Tayo in which he suggested dividing your prayer time into small segments of different types of prayer, as the bible says we should pray all types of prayers.  The aim is to build yourself and increase your prayer time.  Not so that it becomes a process that is rigid and inflexible but a guide enabling you to grow. So it could 5 minutes per section or 10 minutes.  It could 10 minutes in one area, 5 in another and 20 in another. It’s completely up-to-you.  These are the areas I spend time in for around an 1 hr in total each morning:-

  • Worship
  • Confession
  • Intercession
  • Petition
  • Meditation
  • Praise

For as much as I have a vision for this year I recognised that it was also important to have an effective prayer life.  I have to be able to pray effectively for myself and understand my own direction for myself. So it was important to build my prayer life equally as much as the rest of my life for 2015. It’s all about my faith this year.  Determination will get you far in this world but when you want what God has planned for you it requires you to walk in ‘Faith’ and that is a totally different ball game:-)

So I am excited for the gift of another year and look forward to new inspirations!

Enjoy the video and go get your blessing:-)

Be the change you want to be, until my next post.

Aquene7 = Peace

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