22 Ekim 2007 Pazartesi
Sail with Your Inner Child
Maybe some of you know, there is a sailing club for kids that is sponsored by the Municipality of Fethiye. I do not have a kid, but most of my friends do and some of their kids have been learning how to sail for years in Fethiye. Sailing is an expensive sport that is impossible for many people to do in Turkey. Yet, in Fethiye, thanks to the sincere efforts of Mayor Behçet Saatcı and the whole team of the Municipality, kids from all backgrounds are able to take part in this sport.
Sailing is an interesting sport that is done against and using the forces of nature of water and the wind. Kids from the age of 6 and older are learning to sail on their own with optimists and lasers. It is amazing how fast they learn. They learn to be at the sea for hours without a break. And they return to the shore happy and victorious. I am always amazed at how these kids seem so happy after being at the sea for 3-4 hours in a boat and never complain. They seem to complain more when there is no wind or when the there is a storm and they are not able to sail.
Through sailing they seem to learn a lot more than just sailing a boat. I find sailing to be a metaphor for life. In life we are faced with events and circumstances that we are not able to alter. What are we going to do? When we are at sea and we need to move forward, we need to look at the situation objectively and clearly and make best use of what we have in hand to move forward in the most smooth and easy way possible. If only we could steer our path as if we are sailing in a boat.
Sports teach a very positive approach to life to kids. I recommend that you look into sailing as an option for yourself and for your kids if you have any. There is a sailing club for kids in Göcek as well. Both the club in Fethiye and the one in Göcek have great teachers. There is a very famous book by Byron Katie that has also been translated to Turkish called “Loving What Is.” She claims that if and when we are able to look at events and people openly and accept our current situations, we are able to heal all difficulties. Just like in sailing…
Creativity Feeds Our Inner Child
So you say you are not a kid anymore and maybe sailing is not for you. Yet, your inner child, the child that you were and you thought you have outgrown always stays with you. Did you think that your inner child leaves just because you have aged a little? That child wants to you to listen, and to play and to remember that him or her exits. And I would like to offer some methods to help you do that.
This week, I would like to give you some of the exercises that I make my students at the creativity classes in Istanbul do. I use a lot of materials from the books of Julia Cameron. Both she and her associate Mark Bryan allow their material to be used to teach creativity. I love them both even more for their approach. I remember the time that I was in contact with Mark Bryan, the author of the book “Codes of Love” to ask them to come to Istanbul to give courses. He had replied that I could use their material as long as I mentioned the source and they would be more than willing to offer assistance if I needed any. J
Creativity is trying what has not been tried before
You do not need to aim at being a professional artist or open up an art studio like me to open up a little more to creativity. Creativity is needed at every point in our lives, at work, when you are with your kids, when you are cooking, when you are gardening, whenever you need a solution to a problem. Creativity in a way means trying what has not been tried before. Creativity means looking at events from a wider perspective. Creativity means to remember the child that we used to be who has questions about anything and everything.
Now, are you ready? Here are some exercises I recommend to reconnect with our inner child and stretch our thinking. Let’s get started:
Open up a new notebook or a new page in your computer. I would like you to write down the questions and your answers in as much detail as you can. Keep this notebook to write down your questions that come to your mind and to record related material. You may continue to use it in the coming weeks when we continue with new questions and tasks. Write your impressions, emotions, anything that comes to your mind. The aim is to bring what has been hidden into the light.
1. Describe you childhood room. If you wish, you may sketch this room. What was you favourite thing about it? What’s your favourite thing about your room right now? Nothing? Well, get something you like in there – maybe something from that old childhood room.
2. Describe five traits you like in yourself as a child.
3. List five childhood accomplishments. (Good grades you got in a certain grade, that time you helped an elderly person, or helping an animal, etc.)
4. List five favourite childhood foods. Buy yourself one of them this week. Anything that you like is ok.
5. Make a list of friends who nurture you – that’s nurture (give you a sense of your own competency and possibility), not enable (give you the message that you will never get it straight without their help). There is a big difference between being helped and being treated as though we are helpless. List three nurturing friends. Which of their traits, particularly, serve you well?
6. Call a friend who treats you like you are a really good and bright person who can accomplish things. Part of your creative recovery is reaching out for support. This support will be critical as you undertake new risks.
I realize that many people believe that creativity is something we use as a child, or if we are in the arts as professionals. When we are not fed with that playfulness as an adult, we dry up without realizing. We need to paint, listen to music, dance, play with clay and dirt, and play an instrument, at every age. Our inner child is always a child and will always stay to be. Be aware of that.
Close your eyes now and give that child a strong and big hug. Now and every day. If you would like a hug, so would he or she. See that big smile on the face of that child, because you acknowledge the existence of that child.
And as my teacher Moshe says: “Love yourself for you are a perfect child of this universe, forever and always.”
I wish you joy and happiness.
May all your days be filled with love and laughter.
Affirmation of the Week:
“I create only peace and harmony within myself and in my environment. I deserve to feel good.”
By Louise L. Hay
Quote of the Week:
“The happiness or unhappiness of a man does not depend upon the amount of property or gold he wins. Happiness or misery is in one’s soul. A wise man feels at home in every country. The whole universe is the home of a noble soul.”
Book of the Week:
“Meditations to Heal Your Life” By Louise L. Hay
You may find the Turkish translation of this book under the name “Güzel Yaşamın Sırları.”