Blog

Oct 10

One Word I Offer

HOPE. If there’s one word I would like to offer you and breathe into the depths of your being for World Mental Health Day 2018, it would be hope. Those four letters contain within them, powerful seeds; the awareness that we all have the innate ability to continue to carry on through each and every day.

Read more
Sep 12

How to Climb a Mountain

I climbed a mountain yesterday... or did I? I started at the bottom. I couldn’t even see the mountain top when I started. The day was overcast. Then it rained. I put one foot in front of the other, sometimes slipping and sliding on the path.

Read more
May 21

Authenticity is Birthed From Struggle

Do you ever feel like an imposter and worry that any day now someone will expose you? Do you feel not as smart as people say? That all your success has been just luck? Is there a little voice within that whispers you’re not worthy?

Read more
May 15

Butterfly Heart

During one of my ‘I have been to the edge’ pivot points, our family took a sabbatical year and travelled Australia with our 3 young children in a camping trailer.  While in Cairns QLD, we went to a Butterfly Sanctuary.  As soon as we walked into the enclosure, the butterflies flitted so close you felt drawn to reaching out your fingers in the hope that one of these seemingly fragile, winged creatures will alight on your hand.

Read more
May 10

When Mother's Day Hurts

Watching Mother’s Day approach can hurt at the deepest levels.  The mother wound is the pain and difficulties experienced between mothers and daughters. Though it is not often spoken about, the disconnected hearts of mothers and daughters is widespread. The silence of daughters is held due to shame

Read more
May 8

I Have Been to The Edge

I have been to the edge. I have stood on tippy toes looking over the edge on a very windy, winters day. I was not standing on the tips of my toes because I wanted a better view, nor was I dancing. I was precariously wobbling, being pulled by some seemingly invisible force towards a crevasse called despair.

Read more
Apr 30

Worrying About Worrying

Does your child constantly worry? Do they worry about worrying? One in 10 children aged six to 11 now meet the criteria for diagnosable anxiety. Eight year olds are vomiting with Naplan stress. Children as young as 10 are self harming. Aussie kids are increasingly not attending birthday parties, class excursions or participating in after school activities

Read more
Apr 27

I woke up this morning with my mind in a tangle

I woke up this morning with my mind in a tangle, and my emotions in a storm.

I lay there in bed for a long time, wrestling with my thoughts and fighting hard against my feelings. But I was losing ground. No matter how hard I used my powerful THOUGHTS to try to extract myself from my other powerful THOUGHTS, it didn’t work.

Read more
Apr 19

Intentional Art Journaling

I began painting and doodling, writing out song lyrics and creating collages in a notebook long before I had even heard the term art journal. It was mostly just playful meaning making, recording a thought and venting frustrations. It wasn’t very artistic (aka pleasing to the eye 

Read more
Apr 9

Expanding Your Child's Creativity - Part 1

I vividly remember an experience I had while in year one at school. I was colouring in a picture that included mountains and I coloured my mountains purple. I distinctly remember my teacher (whom I adored) correcting me gently saying “mountains aren’t purple.”

Read more
Apr 3

Nurturing Your Child's Creativity

My mother nurtured my childhood creativity by investing in a constant stream of art and craft materials. The cupboards were loaded with candle wax, plaster of paris, hobby tex (remember those), shrinky plastic, paint, felt pens and drawers full of fabric, ribbon and buttons. As a child I was constantly creating;

Read more
Mar 21

I've Failed Miserably in my Self Care Routine

I’m embarrassed. Its been several weeks since I created something; since I painted, played with clay, journaled or drew squiggles on a blank page for self care. I haven’t taken a leisurely walk, nor sat in a coffee shop for a slow cappuccino nor paused and smelt rose petals lately. 

Read more
Mar 13

Travel Art Journal Kit Basics

Art journaling keeps me sane and is a great way to de-stress.  I keep a mini art journal kit near my bedside table, at my front door or in the car so that I can art journal when I am out and about.  I often stop at a park or in a cafe for lunch and use 15 minutes of art journaling

Read more
Feb 20

Just Showing Up Makes You a Success

Woody Allen famously said that ‘Eighty percent of success is showing up.’ By showing up for that gym class we’re already 80% successful in caring for our physical health. We’re already 80% successful in making friends by showing up to things we are invited to.

Read more
Feb 13

1% Brave is Enough

For my 40th birthday my family took me on a picnic in the city and were so excited to reveal they’d bought tickets for the family to ride the Wheel of Brisbane, a 60 metre tall observational wheel comprised of glass gondolas.  I feigned excitement

Read more
Jan 22

Three Myths About Authentic Living

Oprah’s Golden Globes speech brought the room to its feet and may just be a defining moment of 2018. Oprah’s voice rang out clear “What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have.” That statement resonates deeply within my spirit.

Read more
Jan 15

Making Art For Back to School Fears and Tears

Every child and teenager feels an amount of tension during transitions such as changing schools, having a new teacher, losing friendships or transitioning to high school. Experiencing emotions going back to school is normal and should be expected and anticipated.

Read more
Jan 8

Does an Art Therapist Interpret my Art Work?

The short answer is no, art therapists do not interpret the clients artwork. Art therapy provides a rich environment where the client and therapist work collaboratively. Together they reflectively explore the art, no judgements are made.

Read more
Jan 4

Dance of the New Year

It’s a new year, a new page, chapter, book or canvas is here. Many of us feel drawn to beginning something new, fresh and blank. We begin to focus on our ‘new you’ goals. Me too.

Then reality bites us like a hibernating bear woken from slumber.

Read more
Dec 12

Curiosity is a Life Hack

Curiosity is a life hack to wholeness. Part of healing is “getting curious about what happened, figuring out the truth, deciding whether we are self-protecting, and learning what needs to change to move forward,” says shame researcher Brené Brown. When we experience a big emotion Brown believes we should use the phrase ‘the story I am making up…’ By checking in with self we empower ourselves

Read more
Nov 28

Can I do Art Therapy if I’m No Good at Drawing?

Yes, absolutely! You can do art therapy even if you don’t consider yourself to be good at art. Art therapy is not just for people who already create or make art. Art therapy does not require any artistic ability because it’s all about expressing oneself (the art process), and not the final product. An art therapy process may manifest as scribbling, drawing shapes, putting down paint blobs, or kneading a lump of clay. We use colours and shapes as representations of our thoughts, feelings and situations. 

Read more
Nov 13

When Children Create Art Intentionally

Most children, when provided with art materials and when encouraged to create, will create exuberantly. When children are given a simple prompt such as ‘If you could create a planet, what might it be like?’ they allow their imagination to hint about their inside world. Sometimes there are no words

Read more
Nov 7

Is Your Child Struggling?

Parents, is your child struggling? When we have a child it's like a piece of our heart goes walking around outside of our body. When they struggle or hurt, we struggle or hurt along side them. Tung Pueblo wrote: "I cannot make you happy hut I can commit to supporting you in the creation of your own happiness.”

Read more
Oct 30

Setting Boundaries Reduces Anxiety in Children

We all have personal space called boundaries. The purpose of boundaries is to keep us safe and help us say yes and no. Boundaries also help us take responsibility for our actions, attitudes, and emotions. Children who grow up with boundaries in place within their family, learn that they can't always have their own way

Read more
Oct 10

If You Find Yourself in a Pile of Dung, Don’t Lie Down

If you find yourself in a pile of dung, don’t lie down. There are no experts at life, there is no such thing as an easy life, and dung-free living is a myth. Life is messy and unpredictable. Everyone, everywhere is just doing their best to get through life relatively unscathed (ie hosing the dung off as they go) and live in joy as often as possible.

Read more
Oct 3

What's Under My Anxiety?

There’s no one cause of anxiety, everyone is different and it's often a combination of factors that contribute to developing anxious feelings. Sometimes an emotion such as fear contributes to anxiety. For example, think about a pot of boiling water. Intense heat from the stove boils the water in the saucepan. Think of fear (or insert other emotion) as the stove

Read more
Sep 25

Art Therapy for Childhood Trauma

Under ideal circumstances, children learn to respond to the stressors of life, and recover from them, learning resilience. Unfortunately kids who have faced chronic stress undergo neurological and biological changes that cause the stress response to stay hyper activated. It’s a bit like if you were to encounter a wild animal in the bush, your body is immediately flooded with adrenaline and cortisol. These stress hormones help you respond. 

Read more
Sep 12

Managing Big Emotions

There are thought to be between four to six core emotions: anger, fear, sadness, disgust, joy and surprise. All emotions are useful, they are designed to get our attention, connect our subconscious with our conscious mind, and give us information. We cannot selectively feel some emotions but not others.

 

Read more
Sep 5

When Life is Busiest... Take a Break

When asked ‘How are you?’ how often do we answer ‘I’m busy!’ and there’s pride in our answer. We’d much rather have a busy persona (aka busy equals important) than be thought of as idle. Most of us view rest as a kind of divine madness; an unrelenting wrestle within ourselves between two conflicting voices. It’s like two parts of our soul stand

Read more
Aug 31

Art Journaling for Self Care

Art journaling is my number one go to for self care. I juggle a pretty busy schedule with hats of mother to teenagers, wife, partner in a small business and art therapist. Some days my mind (and body) feels chaotic as I flip between my many tasks. I thrive on meaningful work

Read more
Aug 24

Art Therapy: Beyond Colouring In

While colouring in, painting and other crafty activities all have a soothing and therefore therapeutic effect, they are not art therapy. A more correct definition should be the term art as therapy, rather than art therapy. Doing a creative activity is no substitute for experiential art making in a therapeutic setting

Read more
Aug 17

Who Can Benefit From Art Therapy?

Anyone. Anyone who is willing to engage in the art therapy process will benefit from art therapy.  Just doing art is not always therapeutic in itself, art can be created mechanically and critically and we can remain in the critical thinking part of our mind when we create. When a client engages an

Read more