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Big Changes

YES! Creative Tidal Wave lives and is taking some might big turns and swirls. I have been raising the bar in life coaching the past few months. Creative Tidal Wave is all about you, bringing creative and life altering techniques from a wide variety of successful sources. As we all know, one size does not fit all. Lots of great new innovative resources from global sources.

I am very excited about adding Points of You to my business. It is unexpected but precise… don’t you just love that? I bring to the table games that will challenge the way you think about everything, including yourself. You know it is good if GOOGLE, INTEL, Cirque, IKEA, and L’Oreal are using it in their business. Some innovative companies are using it as an interview tool as well. Yes, a game can be a tool to explore team building, problem solving, leadership skills… the possibilities are endless. So what kind of game can be used in businesses, life coaching, counseling, schools, and at home? It is a game based up photo therapy with intriguing words, questions, quotes, and stories. You will laugh, ponder, explore, and learn more about yourself and others playing with you. More on the Coaching Game and Punctum in another blog moment.

Due to seeing common trends in clients and disturbing events happening in the US almost weekly, I decided to branch out to provide for veterans, first responders, and government workers who have PTSD and other trauma related challenges. The Green Cross and the Mental Health groups have created Mental Health First Aid. This provides responders to come in and help during crisis, work with people you may know and  suspect have a suicidal risks, and other mental health issues. A First Responder for Mental Health First Aid can refer clients and families to supports and other community groups to help. By September I will be a certified Trauma Professional.

Now for some really great events. I will present a workshop for the 25th  Georgia Mental Health Consumers Conference in St. Simons Island, GA on using photo therapy with clients to encourage communication. Earlier in August, I will present a creative workshop at the Burson Center in Carrollton, GA on stress management. Lots of great things to come as well.

Creative Tidal Wave is a positive forward moving life coaching service. Whatever it takes, it will happen to move you from the deepest oubliette to the dream castle in the sky. Do not let stinking thinking and trauma stop you from living the life you desire. Catch the wave, and ride it to new heights and wonders you dream of. CTW makes life flow.facebook_May_2015f

 

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What are YOU waiting on?

I am a known Nickelback fan. The song, What Are You Waiting For? spoke to me. A good friend sent it to me during a trying time in my life. I find I refer this song to many of my clients and friends. Here are the powerful lyrics:

What are you waiting for?
What are you Waiting for?

Are you waiting on a lightning strike?
Are you waiting for the perfect night?
Are you waiting ’til the time is right?
What are you waiting for?
Don’t you wanna learn to deal with fear?
Don’t you wanna take the wheel and steer?
Don’t you wait another minute here.
What are you waiting for?

What are you waiting for?

You gotta go and reach for the top
Believe in every dream that you got
You’re only living once so tell me
What are you, what are you waiting for?
You know you gotta give it your all
And don’t you be afraid if you fall
You’re only living once so tell me
What are you, what are you waiting for?

Are you waiting for the right excuse?
Are you waiting for a sign to choose?
While you’re waiting it’s the time you lose.
What are you waiting for?
Don’t you really wanna live your life?
Don’t you wanna love before you die?
What are you waiting for?

….

Everybody’s gonna make mistakes
But everybody’s got a chance to make
Everybody needs a leap of faith
When are you taking yours?

What are you waiting for?

For the complete lyrics, please check various favorite sites and download a copy of this inspiring song. I listen to each morning to inspire me to not drag my feet to get stuff done.  I am in the business of creating and living dreams. Once I found myself in a very dark place unable to believe dreams could come true. Life likes to toss you in dungeons or oubliettesfacebook_july-7 with the false notion we can never find our way out. We find ourselves waiting with thousands of excuses. But why? False realities and excuses leave us in a dark place. Life can change if you ask yourself, what am I waiting on? What am I waiting for? The answer… you are waiting on you to decide to move forward on the path to your dreams. Make them happen, only YOU can. 

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Do You See What I See?

December is Emotional Abuse Awareness Month for Creative Tidal Wave. I feel many are not well-educated in identifying and finding help. The song, “Do You Hear What I Hear?,” spoke to me as a good theme for the series. In the first part of the lyrics, “Said the night wind to the little lamb, do you see what I see?,” triggered within me, do we really see the outward signs of emotional abuse?

Physical abuse and neglect often have very visual signs which make them easier to report and recognize. Emotional abuse is not so easy to see the signs and symptoms plus victims learn to hide them. According to some studies, emotional abuse is more harmful than physical abuse. Physical abuse is not a daily event like emotional abuse. Belittling, bullying, shaming, intimidation, threatening, as well as constant criticism can cause outward behavior changes in those suffering from emotional abuse, both now or in their past.

Behavioral signs which send up red flags that someone has been abused:

Depression

Anxiety

Post Traumatic Disorder

Drastic behavior changes from outgoing to being quiet, withdrawn and shy

In some cases, victims will have a drastic shift to abusing others.

In children you might see these outward signs:

Lack of emotional attachment

Low cognitive or educational ability

Poor social skills

Depression

Trust issues

 

Doubt and fear move in. A victim often apologizes for everything because the emotional abuse has made the person feel as if they can do nothing right. Stripping a person of their pride and self-worth causes significant damage to their ego and ability to function in society. Victims often fall prey to other emotional abusers due to their behavior. Abusers seek out others which they can control and manipulate which causes people who have been past victims to often be re-victimized. Often victims become “super pleasers” to reduce the emotional pain abusers cause. This sets them up once again to fall prey to those who seek out pleasers to empower them and abuse their helpful nature.

Look around your office, classroom, Sunday School class, or among family and friends.  Has someone’s behavior changed? Do you see a significant other overpowering or constantly talking down to their partner or child? Do you see someone shying away from social contact where before they might have been the “life of the party?” It might feel awkward but approach someone you might suspect is being abused to offer help or at least acknowledge you are seeing some signs the person is in distress. The person will most likely deny or offer up an excuse but please know, you have planted a mental seed of awareness that others are noticing. Sometimes it is just as simple as someone asking if you are okay which causes more thoughts of getting help in the future. Be that one who changes a life. Caring matters.

Just a side note in regard to current events happening in

whispers in the wind collage2015:

With all the horrible events of late, I wonder how many of the violent people creating these acts were emotionally or physically abused as children or in relationships? Does their rage stem from past horrors done to them? If someone, anyone… a teacher, friend, coach, or even a family doctor noticed and said something to stop the abuse, would they have committed the acts we are seeing now, happen?  Can a random act of kindness or concern change the future of a killer? Not sure we could actually track the results but I feel sure one act can change a person. I would like to be that one who stopped someone from becoming a monster because they endured torment to create the hate and need to do such horrible acts. As a teacher, I have seen lives turned around due to someone confronting and helping a child seek help. Turn fear into compassion, do not allow it to continue to fester and grown into hatred and violence.

Next week, “Said the little lamb to the shepherd boy, do you hear what I hear?” What does emotional abuse sound like? Check back in next week to find out the answer.

 

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The Silent Killer

The month of December will focus on understanding and identifying emotional abuse. Many suicides and preventable health issues are manifested from people being abused. I see everyday, people who struggle with ADHD/ADD and/or dyslexia, being victims of emotional abuse.  Such challenges seem to be magnets for emotional abusers. I am not certain why but there is definitely a trend, or at least in my neck of the woods.

Some of the ways abusers use are guilt trips, shaming, and bullying. The main focus is to belittle and strip the abused of their empowerment and self worth. Many dyslexics and ADHD/ADD sorts are pleasers. They enjoy helping others out and keeping a balance in the world. This also keeps balance in their world of chaos. Emotional abusers take advantage of the opportunity for their own personal follies and gain.

Each week I will hopefully enlighten you on emotional abuse. Hopefully, you are not a victim. If so, I hope to offer information on how to get help. If you know of an emotional abuser, my wish is that you will learn ways to avoid being a victim as well as ways to rise above. Over the years I have witnessed many talented and brilliant people who’s spirit and self worth were devalued and crushed due to emotional abuse. Some took their relief seeking to an extreme while others are almost nonfunctional. This is preventable. We need to educate ourselves on recognizing and preventing this silent killer.

It just takes one person to stand up and fight. It takes just one person to save a life. Every life is valuable, none should suffer in silence. Be that one voice to speak out. Be that survivor. Be the one to come to someone’s rescue. Make a difference.

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Surviving Blonde Moments

Disclaimer on the topic: I can say this because back in the day before grey hair and this weird dark shade that crept in around the age of 40, I was legally blonde. Some folks who knew me might totally agree on multiple levels about my blonde behavior as well. No insult to those who are blonde but we all know the altar meaning I am referring to.

It wasn’t a pretty morning. Actually, outside it was the most beautiful fall morning ever, but inside life was not so much fun. The dog, bless her cute little heart, needed a bio break at 4AM. Somehow between the back door and her “favorite spot,” she lost her collar. I swear I was watching her the entire time, still cannot figure how it disappeared.  Ever put clothes in the wash the night before that you needed in the morning and forget to put them in the dryer? Yep, change of plans on the outfit of the day. My breakfast of champions, morning PB & J (peanut butter and jelly sandwich) was not to be, no bread. I forgot to get it on the list the night before that I lost on the way to the store. Keys? Where are my keys? I was certain I put them… oh, heck. On the way to work I made a stop at Wally World. Walked inside to totally forget why I was there. Took the tour to trigger what it was I needed which took way too long. Got to work. Unloaded my techie stuff to find I left all the power plugs at home. Right now, I am feeling a few of those grey hairs sprouting. My brain totally shut down from about 9PM last night until about 11AM this morning. At 10:50, I decided I had had enough.

How to  survived those ditsy, brain fog days? Well, I should have applied these things at first notice of the blonde invasion but I am only normal and let those days sometimes get the best of me far too long.

Blonde Invasion Defense:

  1. MUSIC!! Turn on your favorite upbeat tunes to get your brain moving out of slow elevator music mode. Today’s menu for me: Pompeii by Bad Blood, Breathe of Life by Florence + the Machine, Dark Horse by Katy Perry, for starters.
  2. Hand Fidgets: Stress balls and flying frogs! Squeezing those squishy stress releasers really helps. Flying frogs, well, those are these rubbery creatures which are for shooting like rubber bands but do not go as far. I wrap them around my finger and sometimes shoot them at various things in the office when no one is looking.
  3. Fiber optics lamp toy. Best $1 find ever! This small lamp has hundreds of tiny fibers with green lights shining out. It is fun to twirl it to see if I can make it look like shapes. With my office fan going it dances about my desk which makes me happy.

These were my choices today but I have quite the list to choose from. Within about 10 minutes my mind was back out of the fog zone. I was busy cranking out meaningful work with fewer mistakes and mishaps due to the black hole of nothingness that had invaded earlier. Sometimes, it is just that simple. Playing with odd things and music helps kick-start the brain. If you bosses out there are reading this, please know employees need access to such things when stressed and out-of-sorts. You will find employees far more productive if they have go-to things to help gather their senses back. Parents, kids need these things while doing homework, too. And for anyone out there having a blonde zone day, put that phone to good use, crank up some tunes! Find a paperclip or anything you can move around in your hands until you can raid the store for hand fidgets. Oh by the way, the birthday party trinket kits are the best. Small plastic Slinkys are wonderful! Check out that section for a huge wonderland of hand fidgets.

Find your focus, get out of the fog, and get your creative productive groove back on!

 

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Let’s PLAY!!

Promoting Lively Adventure for Yourself!! Isn’t that what kids do? Play is active. It is adventuresome in nature because the results are often a surprise and challenging. Negative life experiences have often caused us as adults to lose the wild abandonment of wonder and curiosity to escape us. Best of all, play is all about you!

Okay, I am hearing some humbugs out there. No, you are never too old to play. No, it doesn’t require fancy toys or a playground. No, you won’t break bones or have an ER visit if you remember safety rules. No… well, yeah, you might look silly, so what? Is being silly bad? Is laughing until your sides ache harmful? Oh, there are health benefits for play such as cardio and core strengthening, if you laugh long and hard enough.

Why play? let me count the ways…

  • It reduces stress. As adults, excessive stress is deadly. Why not find a fun way to kill stress not you?
  • Brain stimulation is the result of play. Ever get stuck on a problem at work? Try playing to kick-start it up again. Nothing wrong with pulling out the old yo-yo or the hidden stash of Lego’s for a few minutes of fun.
  • Boosting creativity leads to success in business and life. If you keep doing the same thing you will get the same results. Get your play on and discover new ways to tackle old boring habits. Scoring baskets with all the old memos in the corner trash can could lead to a serious break though you have struggled with. Oh, it s important not to hit the boss in the head while doing so. That could be counter productive if he doesn’t have a sense of humor.
  • Improves relationships. Group play can bring a team together on work projects. Playing with friends or family can open blocked communication pathways.  This will date me a bit but taking all the video cases from various classrooms and the.. library (no, you really did not read that) creating a domino trail takes team work. Watching the fruits of our labor travel round the classroom and down the hallway was inspiring as well as bonding. Just like when I was a kid, we had to have a lookout. During my early days of teaching, school administrators were not so versed in the act of play among teaching staff as a good thing.
  • Promotes youthful feelings and energy. It is true, one is only as old as they feel. Well, at 51 years old, I have days I am feeling 100+. The old wives tale about joints aching on rainy days is no longer a wives tale but a fact for me. On those cold rainy days it is helpful to explore the crayons and color pages to escape reality. I revisited playing jacks the other day. I really suck at it but was once quite good. After a few moments chasing the ball and grabbing air, I managed to get my grab and go reflex back into the swing. I forgot the aches and pains because I was laughing so much.
  • Heals emotional wounds. As adults, we carry lots of emotional baggage with us. Playing helps unpack those emotions with laughter and fun in some cases. Jumping in rain puddles is one of my healing childlike past times. Got those yellow rain shoes splashing in some of the biggest puddles I can find. Do I get messy and wet?  Yes, I do. Sometimes messy and wet is fun. I loved it as a child, why can’t I love it as an adult? I can jump in bigger and deeper puddles now that I am taller.

Time to get my play on! Where are those bubbles? Yes, I think it is a bubble blowing kind of day today.

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To INFINITY and beyond!!

Got to love Buzz Lightyear. But this time I am not talking Toy Story, I am talking focus. I know your mind races on an infinite journey to nowhere yet everywhere. Tapping back into my Shark Like Focus work again to give solutions for those moments when you cannot find your focus. Here is a simple solution to help you get your thoughts collected from the vast chaos flowing in your mind. It can be done in a variety of ways. You can even get creative after a while developing your own personal methods, the possibilities are endless or should I say… infinite. So, what is this magic which can help you focus?

Infinity sign      Yes, it is just that simple lazy 8 looking symbol. Ok, so I see puzzled faces. Drawing the infinity sign or a lazy 8 helps trigger balance in the brain by engaging both the left and right brain. There actually is a lot of information and scientific stuff on this but you can “Google that” if you want to know the in-depth details. You can air draw this sign. You can be extra creative and get your whole body in motion to do figure 8s. The best is when you are in a boring meeting and need a focus brain boost. You can use your fingers to draw it on the table top or you can get your pen and paper out and doodle them everywhere. Retracing the sign over and over has a meditative like effect on the brain. It is rather magic.

There is a certain path you need to follow to enhance the power of the 8. in the diagram below you see an X, that is the starting point. Move your pen, finger or whatever you choice to use, up towards the left to complete the first loop. Follow the arrow pattern to complete your first ….TO INFINITY AND BEYOND!!!

infinity how to

 

 

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Sunny In Seattle and Definitely Not Sleepless

WOW, just WOW! My first visit to Seattle was one of the most amazing ever. First off, it is hilly, looking a bit like San Francisco. I’ve never been there but movies gave me a good idea about street cars and monster hills. And stairs, and more stairs, and more stairs and some I was certain were leading me to a heaven visit after 48 hours of stairs. OH, there is this awesome place called Pike’s Place Market. Was it named after Pike’s Peak? I was thinking after all the stairs on all the levels I had reached Pike’s Peak but discovered even more stairs and more market venders. I truly believe there is no peak to Pike Place Market. What a wondrous goldmine of a place!  There is nothing you cannot find in the market except the mammoth cashew nuts I heard legend of. I must have come at the wrong season. But there are miles of fruits, veggies, fish, places to eat, superhero everything one can imagine a super hero to be on, and stuff, lots and lots of stuff. In speaking of the market, there is one across from Pike’s, the Sanitary Public Market. Not sure I want to know the reason for the naming of that market.

I am a huge fan of The Fish! Philosophy and guess who I found in the market place? The home of this incredible book and way of doing business and life style. YES, huge fish fly across the place as well as smaller ones. It was an amazing site to see folks practicing what they preach. A bonus was that the workers take the time to talk with you all the while they are throwing fish orders and shouting out fun stuff. I felt I was apart of their business sans tossing grouper. I had all but forgotten this was their home place. I am a firm believer and practitioner of The Fish! A SHOUT OUT TO THE PIKE PLACE FISH MARKET guys!! A special hoorah to the guy from Kentucky!

Another great place was the Biscuit Bitch. Yes, I spelled it right. Those folks serve up the best biscuits ever. Don’t avoid it because of the name. Brave it and walk in to a true biscuit wonderland of YUM!! Not the traditional southern type I’m use to but, OMG!! delicious. It is a must go to!

My roots run southern to the core of the earth. Good old southern hospitality runs in the family. My Granny, her sisters and cousins were and are the essences of the old south southern belles. Sugar flowed from their mouths and actions towards others; so not talking about the, “Bless your heart,” negative sort. These ladies were the sweetest of sweet, like their tea. I must admit to y’all that the south has been replaced as the most hospitable place in the USA by Seattle, Washington. Those folks, no matter where we were or situation, those folks are friendly to the core. I hate my home state of Georgia has lost its southern charm. I do whole heartedly believe Seattle has sucked it all up and is truly living it. People were honestly just nice folk.

Ok, now for something else I wasn’t sure about and would not have believed it if I hadn’t experienced it. It was sunny while we were there. Twilight followers, it was certainly a time the Cullens would be nowhere to be found sort of sunny. I understand that was a rare time we experienced as well as the heat wave of high 80s to 90 temps. Was not too bad on us southern folk who were in heaven with the temperature range without the humidity. We even survived without out air conditioning during our stay, though the fan was a nice welcome. Back to my unbelievable part, the sun doesn’t set in Seattle. I was up at 11:45pm and it was just twilight. Yeah, even our long summer nights in the south are not that long. But guess what? I swear the sun was back up at 4am!! (Or there close in time.) I was shocked. Yes, blackout curtains are nice. I could see why people are sleepless in Seattle, there is very little official night-time in the summer.

Flying into Seattle I was gazing out the window to look at the clouds when I spied this unusual site of a mountain rising above the clouds. No, I didn’t drink those mini bottles of fun on the plane but I did a double-check on my cola. My first thought was it was Mount Olympus and Zeus would appear shortly walking among the clouds. My gosh, Mount Saint Helen is larger than huge. I was in awe of this mythical volcano sighting I had only seen in National Geographic. The pictures do not doMidnight in Seatlle this place justice in the massive formation which rises above the clouds. Someday I hope to venture to the foot of this marvel. It was in view everywhere in Seattle. I felt like it was watching over me. Glad it was pleased with my presence in Washington. I would hate to witness it grumble or blow.

Touring the city I felt I was viewing a place designed around IKEA. The buildings, interiors, and even street décor was an IKEA explosion of style. I think the locals were IKEA models if there are such. I now am thinking my southern abode needs a more modern touch.

I could write a novel on Seattle. It was a creative’s paradise of visual delights, unique street musicians, aromas from a market of more variety of eats and treats than imaginable, and wonderful textures. All I can say is if someone needs a creative restorative coach in Seattle, Washington, please give me a call. I think I found my soul’s home.

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Bullying promoted by Cutthroat Kitchen

Soap box warning!

It is a known fact I am not a fan of reality TV. Being a teacher and mother  of 2 young adults, I have seen the negative effects of such programs on the outlook and behavior of children who have grown up watching them. Children born in the late 80’s and early 90’s were raised on reality TV.  Despite all my parenting skills and lectures as a teacher, celebrities and TV shows still have a higher impact on children’s perception of acceptable behavior in the world. Reality shows are based upon putting others down, bullying, sabotage, rudeness, and countless other inappropriate behavior. Yes, I know, such antics sell and bring masses of money to these shows and advertisers. They also bring on behaviors  which cause great social problems and violence.

There was one area of Reality TV which seemed immune to the negative behaviors, cooking shows. Yes, there are time limits and surprise last-minute ingredients but over all, these shows were wholesome and fun to watch. But, then came Cutthroat Kitchen.  I’m a Georgia girl so of course I am a huge fan of Alton Brown. I love his practical creative twists on cooking. But, Cutthroat Kitchen totally blew me away.  I watched as contestants bought their wins by sabotaging others. On the flip side, I saw others overcoming adversity despite the odds. I mean really, who can make pancakes or was it muffins, without a bowl? There are some MacGyver moments happening in the kitchen there. WHY? WHY? Must the last of the wholesome reality shows move into the dark world of bullying? Why do people love watching folks plot evil plans to try to secure a win? ALTON, WHY DID YOU STOOP TO SUCH?

What shows like Cutthroat Kitchen are teaching kids and young adults is that money can buy you wins and fame. Not always but it can really put a dent in your competition. This transfers in to the watchers reality. So a kid is in a school competition, he/she has the means to sabotage another competitor to win, why not? He/she sees it happen on the Bachelor, Survivor, and plenty of other shows. A child raised in the best of situations can and often still is  influenced by TV can impact decisions above most other influences. I see it daily. I also see it in the workplace.

Alton, I am disappointed. I know it is all about ratings and in some way teaching others to be creative but I am still disappointed. My greater disappointment is how our lives have been impacted by the sudden draw to negative behaviors being glorified on TV. What happened to promoting the positive and the good?

We all know TV is rarely monitored by parents. Youngsters the age of 4 are watching shows like the Kardashians, and Orange is the New Black. They are learning to laugh at others pain and misfortune on Tosh O., Rob & Big, and Jackass. They are also trying to recreate such stunts resulting in severe injuries or worse. They are also picking up the rude and very inappropriate behaviors at a very young age resulting in serious consequences.

The lyrics, “Children will Listen,” from Into the Woods, the Broadway Play and movie, could not say it any better.

Careful the things you say
Children will listen
Careful the things you do
Children will see and learn
Children may not obey, but children will listen
Children will look to you for which way to turn
To learn what to be
Careful before you say “Listen to me”
Children will listen
Read more: Into The Woods – Children Will Listen Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Sometimes it just has to be said.

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Fill the page… will you pass this challenge?

“Fill the page.” Those were the only words spoken by the professor in the first assignment in my first master’s class. In front of me was one of those manila drawing sheets of paper I remember so well from my elementary school years. Surrounding the paper were an assortment of creative goodies I was told I would need for the class. Of course being at artsy sort I went a wee bit over board. I had colored pencils, crayons, glue sticks and a bottle of glue, PostIt notes in assorted colors and patterns, a regular pencil. markers, and  my beloved gummed eraser. Oh. MY. GOSH. So many decisions and no clue what he wants!

If you asked a child back in 1968 to fill a manila sheet of paper, the child would not hesitate. In fact, the child might jump right to coloring and drawing before ever being told what to do. Creativity and excitement of the manila piece of paper and coloring tools was an invitation to indulge in a fantasy moment of wonder. Asking a child in 2015 to do the same assignment anxiety and an endless string of questions will flow. What happened over time?

It is a sad fact that individualism and creativity has been stifled. As adults we have become a society of pleasers, followers, and suck ups. Our ability to creative and dream without judgment or guidance is a thing of the past. And we wonder, why are so many people frustrated and cannot seem to make decisions.

Manila paper is a thing of the past. Very few adults and fewer children than in the past, have drawing tools such as crayons and markers. But you can draw  with anything, even a stick in the dirt if you must. I challenge you to “fill the page.” Discover what is hiding in that creative mind of yours that so wants to come out and play upon the paper. This is a wonderful exercise if you are at a roadblock in your job or life. It might help if you turn on some music to encourage your creativeness to flow upon the paper. You will never know until you try. Stop by the store and grab some crayons or markers. As an adult, there are no rules. You can even buy those scented ones if you want.

I would love to see your “fill the page” challenge results.

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