SPREADING PEACE, LOVE AND CREATIVITY TO ALL MY WONDERFUL FELLOW BEINGS WHO ARE READY TO JUMP ON BOARD!
Most of us go through life without paying much attention-REAL attention-to what is going on around us. We don’t realize how much control we actually have over our lives. We have the POWER to make this life whatever we want it to be. We are all born with special gifts, and so much potential we can’t even imagine! Oh wait! Yes, we CAN imagine! We can imagine and dream and pretend and play…and the arts help us to do that! The best part is, the things we imagine-our deepest thoughts, wishes and dreams can very easily come true if we will them, and let them be.
When the world feels hopeless, all you have to do is reach inside to find the comfort and courage you seek to move on. You DO have the power to do that. My experience has been that the arts can help us to find that comfort and courage. How many of us turn to music, drawing, painting, writing, carving, cooking, baking, singing etc. to calm our nerves and heal the pain? It is our birthright to create-to shape our lives. It is the right the Creator gave us. It fulfills us and brings us inner peace; thus bringing peace and joy to those around us.
So be AWARE. Be aware of every thing you do; every word you speak; every breath you take-and suddenly you will find your world will come to life.
Please feel free to browse my blog, enjoy the ‘Free Hugs’, my art work, and the other links I have posted. May you find the words, colours, and images inspiring. May they add to your already meaningful life.
Monarch’s Approach: The ART of Spiritual Companioning
My approach is playful, enjoyable and effective. Essentially, I use The Arts to help people connect with and express their feelings, all the while being present with them, staying attentive and empathetic to their expressions and feelings, and validating those experiences and feelings through spiritual counseling.
Michele Johnston (a.k.a. Monarch) holds an Honours Degree in Psychology and Social Work. She has over 16 years experience working with children as an Educator and has trained in Expressive Arts Therapy. Michele chooses to focus on using The Arts as a tool for people to express themselves, and being a spiritual companion along with them on their journey. She is a guide-a mentor if you will, here to help those who are willing to transform their lives or state of well-being into something more positive.
In Monarch’s words:
In my many roles in life (parent, educator, colleague, friend, and healer, to name a few) counseling is a big part of who I am and what I do. I came across the concept of Spiritual Counseling in “The Family Virtues Guide” by Linda Kavelin Popov. The concept really resonated with my approach. Let me explain:
“To be a spiritual counselor is to offer more than your compassion. It is to support…people…when they are facing a moral dilemma. It is to ASSIST people to find resolution rather than doing their spiritual work for them…to help them find their own truth” (The Family Virtues Guide, pp. 45-46)
This approach uses the skills of Empathy-when you can feel someone’s feelings, and Companioning, which is “bringing compassion and detachment together so that you can walk intimately with others without taking on their feelings as your responsibility” (p. 46) Popov quotes Douglas Steen who says “To ‘listen’ to another’s soul into a condition of disclosure and discovery may be almost the greatest service that any human being ever performs for another.”
Using The Arts as a part of counseling, whether it be visual, dance, music, poetry, play, or hopefully a combination of both is one of the most effective ways to help people get in touch with the roots of their feelings, buried deep down inside, and also expressing those feelings in a safe, healthy manner.
Being Present, listening to a person’s feelings and helping them to express their feelings without judgment is one of the most empowering methods one can use when in the role of a ‘counselor or guide’ (I prefer to call myself a Mentor). It is an esteem builder, and one of the best ways to guide a person back to mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. -Monarch Mariposa
Pouring Out Love,