Archive for August, 2010

Voluntary Simplicity- Creating More Of Our Most Valuable Commodity- Time

Posted in Thinking Patterns on August 28th, 2010 by Sandy – 3 Comments

A reframe

As the economic news worsens it creates an opportunity to really evaluate what matters the most. Am I right side up or upside down in my thinking?

I find that the more I focus on the feelings I want the happier I am no matter where that is. The desire to accumulate more stuff seems to have been replaced with having luxuries that are light, well-made and portable. Mobility and  flexibility  seem to be the new prizes. There is a certain freedom in beginning to strip down and realize that stuff has a price, and too much stuff has too high a price.  I think that once we get in touch with the idea that we can have whatever we want if we want it badly enough, then the idea is to  examine what experiences we truly want without having to justify them.

I am in Ventura, California at the moment and listening to the street talk. There is a sense of austerity in the air, but not necessarily one of bad feelings. Just that it is time to focus.  There is a sense that time is the most valuable commodity we have and shedding things we don’t really need to support them, is no longer very smart.

It caused me to think about the movement called “voluntary simplicity.” The idea here is not to deny oneself as much as to decide what the price of certain material possessions are and do you really want to pay that price. My dad had a second home on ten acres in the mountains which he used to spend summers in, basically fixing and maintaining it with time off for a little golf. Later he confessed to me that with what he had spent he could have stayed for thirty days a year in a five star hotel most anywhere in the world, and if he had had it to do all over again, he would have opted for the latter.

This kind of evaluation in light of economic stresses is both creatively smart and freeing at the same time. Living light but living seems to be the key.

I found this site to be helpful in getting more information.

Creative Decision Making-Dealing With Fear

Posted in Thinking Patterns on August 22nd, 2010 by Sandy – Be the first to comment

If this is not the number one challenge we deal with in our lives it is pretty close to it.  I don’t think we ever get completely passed it unless we are some kind of an enlightened guru similar to the one in the story of the knight who came upon the Zen monk in the middle of the road and said to the monk, “Out of my way or I’ll run my sword through your stomach. The Zen monk replied, “Out of my way or I’ll wrap my stomach around your sword.”

We have natural instincts to protect ourselves from physical harm and or discomfort. These seem to be hardwired to keep us from harm’s way, and for the most part they are there to stay.

It is the projection of negative outcomes from future imagined events that drives us up a wall with worry and stress. One technique that really helped and continue to do so  is referred to as “Peeling The Onion.” Here you are searching for the outcome to a projected outcome which you can live with. I’ll take a really difficult situation and you can see what I mean. read more »

Why Great Architecture Is So Important.

Posted in Architecture, Thinking Patterns, Uncategorized on August 18th, 2010 by Sandy – 1 Comment

Frank Lloyd Wright said that architecture was the highest form of art and perhaps it was from the point of view, that unlike the other arts, architecture was a permanent fixture on the landscape. If your are in its environs, like it or not, there it is.

A high form of art speaks to us at the archetypal level. It stops us: a sense of gratitude, appreciation and perhaps even wonder can ripple though us. We feel It. We don’t need to think about it. It  doesn’t matter what the art form is, if  it is great, it will touch us this way.  If it is a big building perhaps large numbers of  people feel its salubrious effect daily, and this in some way inspires them in their field of endeavor. We see this principle very much in industrial design now. Take Apple’s products for example. The hardware is simply exquisite both to look at and to feel.

Wright was a genius and a mystic. He would wait, so I have been told, until the design was complete in his mind as if being transmitted from a higher source in a complete package before it appeared on the drawing board.

The latest buildings of Frank Gehry seem to have this same quality, but perhaps for different reasons. I was in Bilbao, Spain not long ago. The Guggenheim Museum( pictured above) is an architectural wonder and has transformed the town.  In the museum there is a interview with Gehry on a continuous loop that provides an insight  Gehry co-creates with collaborating architects in his firm. In this regard the effort is a joint creation with Gehry assessing the contributions to the evolving design as either a yeah or nay. His role is to recognize the appropriateness of each design idea as it makes its contribution to the overall project. It seems like the ultimate expression of the group mind, as we move into the age of cooperation and away from the era of competion. It seems  that we are finding out that the “group mind, ” when available, can make better decisions than the individual and people like Gehry are showing the way.

Creativity- Inner Sense Development-ESP

Posted in Thinking Patterns on August 14th, 2010 by Sandy – 11 Comments

We seem to be hard wired to do a lot more than we often give ourselves credit for. And has I have been blogging about I feel that developing our inner senses is going to be part of the new territory we will all explore as time appears to compress even more due to technology, not to mention the structural changes we are in the midst of.  Years ago I stumbled into a class on inner sense development taught by Patricia Hayes, who was in Honolulu. I was a partner in an advertising agency and was simply curious. So, I signed up. We were in an elegant home and that made the event even more enticing. The class was comprised of all women, except for myself and an undertaker from Arizona. In that short week, in a hands on way,  we explored psychometry, reading auras, automatic writing, how to open up our psychic channels-the works. At the end of the week, Patricia, who did have quite a sense of humor, told us to simply come back on Sunday morning, have coffee and pastries and say goodbye to everyone. To my amazement when I pulled up I noticed a large number of cars. Coming into the kitchen, I ran into Patricia and asked, “Whose cars are those lining the street?” She smiled and said, “Oh, those are people coming for free  psychic readings.” I said, “Who is going to be giving them,” I asked wide-eyed.  She said, “You are. Everyone in the class has two clients.” I was flabbergasted. “No way,” I said. She, taking my arm, said in a playful yet confidently encouraging manner, “What do you think you have been training for all week?” I stuttered, completely and mentally unprepared for this turn of events. I gathered my composure, embraced my vulnerability and  stumbled through the assignment amazing myself ( and I did falter badly with one of the lady clients when I lost my focus). But in the end I realized that just like going to the gym to build the muscles in our bodies, we can also build these other dimensions of our mind, brain, and connectivity with our unconscious.  I did not pursue this field in any professional capacity, but the exercise was empowering. I feel that while many people are “skeptical” of these endeavors, my suggestion is to always check things out for yourself.

Dr. Kerry Monick who has collaborated with me on a soon to be released guide book “Creative Thinking For The 21st Century: An Experiential Guidebook” has offered these comments on developing your extra sensory perception (ESP) read more »

The Need for Personal Creativity

Posted in Thinking Patterns on August 7th, 2010 by Sandy – 11 Comments

In the July-August edition of the Smithsonian Magazine, there is an article on “40 Things You Need To Know About The Next 40 Years. In the grouping of things under “arts and culture” is an article by Carl Hiaasen called “Slipping Backward.” As a Miami Herald Columnist he has authored over a dozen satirical novels populated, as he says,  “ by venal real estate developers, crooked politicians, environmental zealots, dead tourists, ambitious strippers and numbskull lowlifes. He makes the point that now America is becoming more like South Florida every day, which is terrifying.  You might think it to be gallows humor but his speech before audiences is entitled the “The Case Against Intelligent Design,” not from a zealous religious belief, but from what he is witnessing daily. He says that we appear to be de-evolving, that we are moving backwards on the evolutionary scale. read more »

May You Live In Interesting Times

Posted in Thinking Patterns, Uncategorized on August 3rd, 2010 by Sandy – 2 Comments

As I was reviewing several websites and blogs May You Live In Interesting Times popped into my head. It seems to have more than one meaning but the popular idea is that it is a Chinese curse suggesting that the coming times may not bode well for you, or at the least there will be a change bringing a certain amount of strife.

In looking through the daily news it is apparent that the problems being created in the world seem to be larger than the structures designed to contain them. For example the world financial systems have been manipulated to the point that nobody knows how it will all play out, but the excesses will eventually be paid for by some if not all of us. The political scenes have morphed into such polarization that the common good looks like the last garment in a Macy’s bargain basement sale being ripped apart by desperate shoppers. The relevance and or efficiency of higher education as offered through the university system at close to $200, 000 for a four year pop is seriously being questioned around dinner and breakfast tables. The environment is deteriorating at a bewildering pace. As one young lady whom I was having dinner with the other night said, “ My college graduate friends are just moving back home to “ride it out.”  These are indeed confusing and difficult times and yet because bad news sells, the brighter side of the ledger is all but masked.

How does one proceed?

I stumbled across “wikiHow” and the article, “How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci.” In it the very first point was made that Da Vinci had an insatiable curiosity. Great minds it is said possess one characteristic in common: they are in a state of perpetually asking questions.  Or you might say they are in a continuous state of demanding from the universe answers. That is they have engaged not only their conscious mind on the tasks but their unconscious mind also.  If you are in a state of relative unresourcefulness  begin by asking strongly or “demanding”  a state of peace of mind and calmness. Then see if this does not begin to happen. As it does other more immediate solutions can have a strong base on which to build.  Also the more intense one’s desire to gain a positive direction, the more likely you are to attract the synchronicities both positive and negative to guide you along. Your urgency will create more action. You might want to journal this exercise and note carefully what happens for and when.

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