”Sometimes I’m weak, scared and vulnerable, nevertheless, more often I’m strong, confident and alive. At peace.”
July is for chasing dreams. Catching stars. Peaceful, dark summer nights. July is for late evening swims, enjoying the calmness of the sea. The calmness of the heart. July is for creativity, an imagination deeper than ever. The dark, dark sky filled with stars. Filled with hope. July is for believing in the power of nature. The power of humanity. Humid days and foggy nights. July is for beautiful souls searching for inner peace. Inner light. Loving kindness, curiosity and bravery.
Everything is temporarily; the dark night, the softness of a new dawn. Flow with the current. Flow with the speed of light. Darling, be the light. Be the love this beautiful world so desperately needs. Find comfort within. Turn inwards, speak to your soul – let it out, let it dance.
July darling, we discovered something lately. Something serene, spacious and still. To carry with us. Wherever we go. Whenever we fall. We rise up. It’s our full moon, deep ocean. Our clear blue sky. The air we’re exhaling, inhaling. And we carry it, within our hearts.
I welcome you. Let’s get lost in this dark, deep, devoted night, brimmed with seduction, soul and sparkling light. Dance with me under the moonlit sky. The nightfall won’t last forever, however, expect miracles when nature’s filled with work of art, true beauty in every heart. And lastly, kiss me gently on my cheek, and know, you’ll always be the one I seek.
A still, simple life, is created from within. However chaotic and stressful the outside world may seem, you’re always guided back to the serene comfort floating above, within and beyond. You sense it, at times you can even touch it, feel it. You’re aware of it. You are it.
It is you.
You don’t have to move to the countryside, declutter your entire home or spend time in solitude 24/7 in order to embrace a slower and simpler kind of living. You can of course, if that is what you want. However, simple living is more about incorporating a more meaningful way of living. In other words, it’s something that is highly connected with your mindset, hence how you spend your everyday life. How you are interacting with others, and the words you’re using when talking to and about yourself.
What kind of intentions are you setting for the day ahead? How do you wish to communicate, and interact with the people in your life? Do you dedicate time to yourself?
Set some time aside to reflect upon these things.
Make yourself a comforting cup of tea, or brew yourself a nice cup of coffee and grab a piece of paper and pen.
What does it mean to live a more meaningful life? What is important to me? Am I focusing on the right things?
Worth mentioning – slow living has nothing in common with being lazy, and not accomplishing things. Rather, it’s the notion of not having to do it all, but to cut things out that doesn’t serve you, and leaving room for the things you love, the things that are necessary and above all – the things that make your heart shine.
There are many suggestions on how to live a slow, simple life, however, how would you describe it? Find your own pace of living, whether it’s moving to a smaller town, embracing a more minimalistic living, spending less, working more effectively, cooking meals with your kids, having deep face-to-face conversations with loved ones, setting time aside for creative endeavors, or simply by spending precious time in nature each and every day.
You don’t have to do it all, some days simply existing is enough. Listen to your breath, step out of your head, and live a little.
”Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”
– Lao Tzu
Slow, simple living can in a way be seen as living in accordance with the seasons. Just as every season – each and every moment you experience in life, every feeling you’re feeling – serves a deeper purpose. When we take time to slow down and grasp the meaning behind an event we gain a better understanding on who we are, and what we want out of life.
Know that it’s completely okay, and necessary, to be winter when you’re winter, and summer when you’re summer. Trust the seasons changing, trust your inner voice; it knows.
”Creativity thrives in stillness, arises from the no-thingness.”
When you allow yourself to simply sit, with yourself, and let the thoughts wander freely – no holding on, no grasping, simply observing; insights, and new solutions to your challenges might arise.
One of our biggest dilemmas, I believe, is that we think about life more than we are actually living life. And isn’t it precisely because of that, that we need to remember to appreciate the moments in between. Life is to be found in the smallest of details; the morning sun gently caressing the ground, the taste of ocean air, your lovers facial expression when she’s talking about something important to her, a strangers helping hand, the sound of your sleeping child.
Lately, I’ve rarely given myself the time to sit down, and write. Writing has often been the thing that has provided me with the most comfort; to acknowledge the calmness, and just let whatever that wants to arise, arise. You see, the words, more often than not, surface out of the stillness. They don’t come when we’re busy chasing after goals and habitually moving through life. The answers you’re seeking come when you allow yourself to slow down. When you create space, and are open to receiving.
Why, then, is it, time and again, so difficult to sit with one’s thoughts? You don’t want to experience the quiet moments in between, simply cause you’re always running towards the next moment. And the next. Something greater, more grandeur might be awaiting around the corner. Or so you were taught to believe. What can this still moment actually provide me with, when I haven’t yet achieved all my desires. I need to move forward. I need to be doing something. I need to accomplish,I need to prove that I’m worthy of my existence. If I’m not doing something, I’m not existing.
But, what if, you’re actually evolving simply by being. By simply accepting and surrendering to the moment. Don’t resist the moment, whatever it contains. Sit with it, observe it, be aware of it – don’t label it. Be with it. Learn to see without the eyes, learn to know without the mind. Learn to be without becoming. Let go of what you know, and let yourself be open to the fresh, the new.
”Notice the things that are blocking peace from coming into your life.”
Give yourself time, daily, to sit with yourself. In absolute stillness. Within that quiet space you allow the sacred intuitive mind an opportunity to come forth.
… I swear, you got my feelings playing butterflies.
”April darling, nature must be head over heels for you, the way she blossoms when you arrive.”
Animals and humans awaken from the darkest of night. From the deep, deep slumber we all return to light. The bright golden sunrise, burning through our windows. Caressing our cheeks, awakening our hearts. Dreaming of doing everything in life, and nothing on rainy Sundays. Watching captivating sunsets, and counting countless numbers of stars. Happily having you, blooming in my arms.
April is for getting lost in translation. Being curious and bold. Breathing in lust, breathing out fear. Breathe me in like air. It’s about a new earth, hope, and letting go. Soft raindrops against the window, purifying dark winter souls. Touch me without the hand, with the mind, undress me with the eye, baby darling be aware, those feelings will be playing butterflies.
April is for being affectionate, playful and passionate. Confident, happy and alive. Stop looking for it on the outside, when it’s already resting within, patiently awaiting for you to come out of your coma. It’s about letting go of the idea that you always have to be the one you have been. It’s never too late to reinvent yourself, it’s never too late to flourish like an early spring day. Whatever flower you wish to be. Just bloom, darling, bloom.
Grow, expand your horizons, as the birth of this new, flourishing season.
The voice within, screaming for attention, eager to come out and play. Wishing for you to speak your truth, dive into creativity, and to blissfully watch life through the eyes of your inner child. Playful, excited and filled with compassion.
Now is the time to take a glimpse at nature, a glimpse at the stars, and believe, there’s no limit to what you can achieve.
Be still, yet alert. It’s time to give birth.
Dare to show your true colors. Dare to be the person you are. Let wisdom and experiences fill your day, let it guide you on your way. Open your heart and mind to all possibilities floating around. It’s within pain we find strength. The strength to be who we are.
Humans smiling the brightest are usually the ones crying the loudest.
Let. It. Out.
April darling, I welcome you. You move me with your blooming nature, cloudless sky. Your enchanting soul makes my entire being come alive. You bring me peace, you bring me hope. One look at you, and I know everything will come through.
”There is a thought, a vision, behind everything you do. Let’s make it a good one.”
I was talking to a very good friend of mine the other day about how I can’t re-create any of my paintings. They always happen in the moment. The moments when I’m the most still, and alert. Open to receiving. I’m just the tool, holding the brush, doing what I’m supposed to do.
When do you feel most alive?
Art in focus
[ mornings in june ]
– the most tranquil hours, when the world is still a sleep, and yet all dreams are possible.
[ … and my heart melted ]
– those precious moments in between.
[ i never promised you my rose garden ]
– you are yours, before you are anyone elses.
I wish you all a beautiful week. Be kind to each other.
”I just want to breathe in the ocean for a little while, forever.”
Can you hear spring whisper softly in the garden? Her warm caress melting frozen hearts. Time to be bold, take the leap and know, on cloudy days the sun is still there, underneath. Darling, I believe we’ll become dearest of friends. I wish to see you laugh. I hope you make me laugh. Oh how you melt my heart – come, dance with me. Darling, spin with me. And before I fall asleep, remember, gently kiss me on my cheek, and know, you’ll always be the one I seek.
March is for the sun so boldly shining. Coming alive. Quietly crying for the moon, and the stars. Time standing still, frozen, for us. Snow will be falling, flowers start blooming. A precious mix when nature can’t decide. 4 am, and my mind intense, the breath calm. Smelling hope, kissing the soft morning rain, moving with the waves. They say she loves too fast, thinks too fast, moves too fast. No such thing as too fast for her.
Seduce me; smoothly, harshly. Dear nature, in a way only you can.
Early spring darling, you’re one of a kind. One of a kind. Finally finding stillness, being free as the ocean, beautiful as the wildest flower. Inhaling confidence, exhaling doubt. Breathing in the lighter days, dark nights. Wide awake, by your side. Watching the golden sunrise gracefully transforming into pleasant daylight. I’ll be all there, wherever you’ll take me. Within and without, still and alert, precisely like you at 5 am. Lay with me, darling. Laugh with me, darling. Come with me, darling. Deep into the forest, into the blue. Breathe with me, darling. No such thing as too fast for me.
Speeding up my heartbeat, playing with the flames. Taking me to outer space. It’s always been you, early spring. Always been you.
Darling March, I welcome you. You’re soft, unpredictable, heart filled with kindness. I’m lost within your embrace, within your touch. My weakness for you, far too much.
”where does your mind wander when you allow it to travel freely?”
you see, the soul doesn’t usually scream out its desires; usually it’s a soft melody, unperceivable to the five senses, nevertheless, something to never be ignored.
… i find art to be one of the most beautiful forms of self-expression. the advantage of art is that it can be translated to everyone; you don’t have to be speaking a certain language, or being a certain age, or having a certain background, in order to understand and appreciate art. (he)ART is for everyone. the only thing required from the observer is a sense of curiosity, a willingness to see beyond the five senses, and a desire to tap into their imagination – and that is the moment when (he)ART becomes boundless, just like us humans.
allow (he)ART to transmit you joy, bliss, hope and possibilities. let deep feelings of self-love, trust, passion and optimism enter when you enjoy your (he)ART. whatever you seek, and long for, know that it’s already resting within you.
dear human, know that you’re worthy of all your desires.”
with (he)ART, Linda Maria Vestman
Contact me if you’re interested: firstname.lastname@example.org
… let’s be brave enough to speak up about the things important to us.
”It’s in the things that deeply inspires us that we find ourselves.”
During the darkest of hours, my first screaming breath, with you. Flawless, being one with your calmness. Like the coldest of winters you embrace our deepest desires, our deepest needs. Forcing us to step into our own power. Fearless, being one with the stillness. Guided by love, compassion and courage. Truthfully ever after.
February is for evolving, getting one year richer. One year wiser. Staying curious, and open-minded. Finding joy and laughter, everything we sought after. It’s about speaking up, being true to our own unique voices.
It’s time to stop being afraid of getting older – it’s time to show our deepest appreciation instead.
Becoming curious enough to want to know more about ourselves, and the ways in which we can expand. There’s much to discover and learn about life, about ourselves, as well as the people around us. Spending precious, slow-time alone, gaining a better understanding of who we are, and what we desire out of life. Connecting with one another, and embracing our uniquenesses. Together we are stronger.
Everything we’ve been through has taken us to this moment. All the decisions we’ve made, all the countries we’ve seen, all the hearts we’ve touched, all the jobs we’ve had, all the times we’ve struggled, and all the lessons we’ve learned – shaping us into the beings we are, into the beings we’re yet to become.
Dear February, with you I’ve become to appreciate the beauty of aging. Awakening to the delicacy of a newborn day. Every new dawn, learning to flow with the breath of life. Surrounding myself with truth, with everything that resonates with my core. Building myself a little garden in the heart.
”normality glanced at curiosity, eyes filled with awe. – show me, dear. show me how to live.
– of course. but first things first, the walls you built around your heart, tear them down.”
Thoughts are a huge part of who we are. The human mind is a beautiful, yet complicated and sophisticated machine, and it’s estimated that an average person has between 40.000 to 60.000 thoughts per day (National Science Foundation). What is more, 80 % of these thoughts are negative, and 95 % are repetitive.
Nevertheless, one important aspect to bare in mind is that you’re not your thoughts, you’re simply having thoughts. Furthermore, you aren’t even conscious of most of the thoughts running through your mind. These so called subliminal messages go un-noticed since they aren’t perceived by the conscious mind. However, whether we notice these thoughts or not they will affect us to some extent.
Pay attention to your thoughts
According to the facts above it might seem that all we do is complain, whine or have thoughts that diminish our own or other people’s self worth, and mostly without even being aware of it. According to Eckhart Tolle one of the ego’s favourite strategies to strengthen itself is through complaining.
”Every complaint is a little story the mind makes up that you completely believe in. Whether you complain aloud or only in thought makes no difference. Some egos that perhaps don’t have much else to identify with easily survive on complaining alone. When you are in the grip of such an ego, complaining, especially about other people, is habitual and, of course, unconscious, which means you don’t know what you are doing.” (A New Earth, Eckhart Tolle)
The first step in order to change negative thought patterns or limiting beliefs is to become aware of them. Start listening to the voice inside your head. What does it tell you? Once you learn to recognise and identify these thought patterns you can make a choice about how to react, and with time consciously make a choice to let them go. Watch them pass by, like the clouds on a sunny day. Invite them in, but don’t let them build a nest within.
If something bad happened to you in the past it’s very easy to keep the negative emotion connected to that particular event alive by compulsive thinking. You start to see yourself as the victim. However, dwelling on the past won’t do you any good; it will only contaminate your present and affect your current state of being in a negative way. Most importantly, it will take you further away from appreciating the beauty and aliveness of the present moment.
One again Eckhart Tolle explains it perfectly:
”It requires honesty to see whether you still harbor grievances, whether there is someone in your life you have not completely forgiven. If you do, become aware of the grievance both on the level of thought as well as emotion, that is to say, be aware of the thoughts that keep it alive, and feel the emotion that is the body’s response to those thoughts…. The past has no power to stop you from being present now. Only your grievance about the past can do that. And what is a grievance? The baggage of old thought and emotion.” (A New Earth, Eckhart Tolle)
Change your thought patterns
Becoming a curious observer of what goes on inside your mind will eventually help you become free of toxic thinking. Firstly, don’t believe all of your thoughts, and don’t take them that seriously – most of the time it’s the never satisfied ego that’s talking. Once negative thoughts enter your mind the ego dives right in, and loves to dwell upon them. Instead, as soon as you become aware of this habit, make a conscious decision to bring more gratitude and positivity into your life, and notice how you, with time, eventually will heal from the negativity.
Secondly, changing negative thought patterns, however, is not about pushing away your true feelings, but rather choosing more realistic and helpful thoughts over harmful ones. This might be easier said than done, and like every other skill (or muscle) it requires practise, practise and more practise. Be patient with yourself and don’t punish yourself for having bad thoughts. Simply recognise them for what they are – simply thoughts.
The more mindful you strive to become, the less energy will be spent dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. Rather, start spending the time being more here, and less there. What do you see? What do you taste? Smell? Hear? Be thankful for the beauty that surrounds you. It’s useful to practise this mindset in moments you feel anxious and fearful (e.g. obsessing over negative outcomes in your future) -> to redirect your focus on something else, like your breath, a painting on the wall, the sensations in your body (where do you feel the anxiety?), or simply by watching nature; the trees dancing in the wind, or the waves crashing ashore. It can be anything, as long as it takes your mind off that thought that created the negative downward spiral.
With that said;
Darling human, your thoughts are powerful, therefore,choose them wisely. The power to control your thoughts, and thereby shape your reality, lies within you. Create your life. Create you.
I’m a firm believer in writing my intentions, goals and dreams down, preferably on a piece of paper. I guess I am more of a dreamer/planner than a doer. However, my intentions for the past years were all about taking action and believing in myself and my abilities. Now, looking back on these past months, I not only sense that a stronger confidence has slowly started to grow within me, but I have this strong feeling of being connected to something greater than my physical being.
When it comes to intentions, you can choose to write daily, weekly, monthly and/or yearly intentions. I prefer to write my intentions in the beginning of every month, as well as set one daily intention that helps guiding me throughout the day. Setting intentions not only makes it easier to stay focused, but it helps to keep the motivation up as well as staying more grounded and closer to one’s core self.
Below you’ll find some of the intentions I’ve written earlier, and these will still be the main ones I’ll keep focusing on for 2022. The past week I felt a bit tired and unmotivated (probably due to the fact that I’ve been suffering from the flue), therefore I thought what better way then to read through my earlier written intentions in order to find my core focus again. And actually, this has helped me a lot, to regain my motivation and find that inner spark again. You see, everything you need, seek and long for is already within.
Cultivating an abundance mindset – ”There’s an abundance flowing within and without; everything I need, seek and long for is already within me.” This is a mindset I encourage myself to adopt in every area of my life whether it’s love, career, health, money or opportunities.
Spreading kindness & compassion – I will strive my best to show loving kindness to all living beings; animals, humans and the planet. I’m inspired by random acts of kindness and compassionate people with big hearts filled with wisdom. There’s something special about humans who are caring and warm-hearted to everyone; it seems like they are carrying a sense of calmness within despite with whoever they interact.
Planting confidence – being confident without being cocky is very attractive. Cultivating a belief in myself is always on top of my to-do-list. We’re capable of achieving way more than we give ourselves permission to pursue. Persistence is key here, and a willingness to work hard for what you want in life.
Breathing mindfulness – bringing mindfulness into everything I do – whether it’s writing, studying, working, being in nature, meditating, speaking with friends and family – I can always choose to be a bit more here and a little less somewhere else.
Embracing my sensitivity – as a highly sensitive person I’m very sensitive to the people around me and their energies. I also feel a whole range of emotions, and it’s nothing wrong with that – as a matter of fact it’s completely normal and healthy to be able to tap into one’s feelings. Nonetheless, I’ve also become to realize the importance of not holding on to emotions for too long; I simply let them pass through me, and then peacefully let them go when they have done their job. Feelings like fear, worry and doubt don’t serve us in any way (if we clearly aren’t being threatened of course), and it’s about time we let go of them once and for all. While embracing my emotions I’ve become more self-aware, and more in tune with my inner state of being.
Nurturing my intuition – I’ve always had a strong intuition, and I would like to cultivate it even more. I’ve noticed that the more I meditate, taking time to really listen to my body and the stillness within, the more I feel connected to my inner voice; my inner guidance system so to speak. It gives a sense of power when you notice you can trust your intuition. I think all people have an inner voice waiting for them to listen carefully, however not everyone is ready to listen to what it has to say. I challenge you to pay attention to your intuition. Trust that you have all the answers within; you possess more power than you think, darling.
Tapping into my spiritual side – I’m an open-minded person and I love to explore different parts of myself. After cultivating my spiritual side a bit more I’ve become to understand how calm and peaceful it makes me feel. I’ve become more content and hopeful. I truly believe we’re spiritual beings having a human experience. I also believe that there’s so much more to life than the things we can experience through our five senses. Understanding that we’re all in this together, however, experiencing life in our own unique way, makes me feel more at peace, and content within my own being.