Sunday, 2 August 2020

Let Me Tell You A Little Bit About SoulCollage

Since May, I have started a new creating, exploring and journaling practice called SoulCollage (no typo, that's the correct way to spell it).

The practice consists of creating cards (all of the same size) using images (magazines, catalogues, leaflets, books, printed, your own), cut out and collaged. Your cards will then become a collection, or a deck.
These cards will be created using your intuition. As you go through your collection of images, you will take, at this particular moment, the ones that speak to you. It can be because you like them or even because they scare you or repulse you. One of the principles behind this practice is that whatever images you feel you want to choose or attract your attention, first, they are the right ones to choose - there are no wrong choices, no wrong cutting, no wrong glueing, no wrong layouts in SoulCollage, and accidents that happen in the process are meant to happen so let it be - and they are speaking as a part of you. As your cards reveal personal parts of you, making the cards is a personal use practice.

SoulCollage was created in the late 1980s by American psychotherapist Seena B. Frost, who established the practice and principles on theories inspired by the works of many famous psychotherapists and psychiatrists such as the legendary Carl G. Jung, as well as her own experience with her patients on a path of self-discovery.
And this is what this practice is really all about at the core - self-discovery.

Our SoulCollage cards are an expression of the many parts of ourselves, the good the bad and the ugly, the light and the shadows.
This is why it is so important that images are chosen intuitively in the collage and card creating phase. Although on occasions SoulCollage cards can also be created with intention. But in any case, very little thought, and definitely no analysing or judgement, should take place when choosing images.

Your SoulCollage cards can be as simple a collage or as complex as you wish (or feel, rather) but it is strongly advised that each card only reflects one energy - this gives you permission to create even more cards to cover all energies you want to express or uncover.

These 2 cards were made from single images from magazines. Easy ones :-)


Whereas the following cards were created with multiple images collaged together on the blank card (I personally use A5 greyboards, cheap and easy to get).






Another aspect of SoulCollage cards creating is that no words are used. Indeed, when seeing a word, our brain automatically identifies it with a very specific meaning. What you want in this process is for the images to speak to you. You know that expression "A picture tells a thousand words"? Well that's the whole point of it. Depending on what you feel or what you need at that particular moment, images can represent/say different things to you. Classic symbolism has many meanings and personal symbolism add to it. For instance, the image of a fox can feel threatening (it certainly did to me as I used to look after chickens, and a fox once attacked them) but this animal also symbolises, amongst other things, cunning, intelligence, mental responsiveness, instinct and discernment. An image will always tell different stories. The story it will tell you today may be different to the one it will tell you next week, but whatever story is revealed to you, this is the one you need right now, at this very specific moment. A word, on the other hand, will only have a specific meaning at all times, whatever your mood or your needs.

Since May, I have created over 50 SoulCollage cards - thank you lockdown for the extra free time. It is indeed a very addictive practice and a lot of fun, while at the same time a very meditative and calming process.



While creating the SoulCollage cards is fun and easy - it is truly accessible to everyone, including children - when you end up with your cards, what the heck do you do with them?
And this is where the soul work starts - the SoulCollage readings. There are many kinds of readings but the easiest one is single card reading, where you ask your card some questions. For some "down-to-earth" practical people it will seem quite wacky, and to be honest when I started making my cards, I wasn't doing this as I felt uncomfortable with the exercise, but it is actually quite a powerful experience. This reading can be done while creating - or just after creating - the card, and this will help identify the card's energy and name it, but it can also be done when you pick a card of the day. 
The cards give you guidance, inner guidance as they originated directly from your inner wisdom, your intuition. However they have no divinatory properties. They do not predict the future. Which is why SoulCollage cards are for personal use and readings are only done by yourself for yourself.

So what happens in a reading?
First, you will always ask the card Who are you? and, like in role play, you observe the card and let it speak to you (or you speak from it) with I am (the) one who... This is what will reveal the energy of the card to you so this first step is extremely important to understand your card. Then, you can also ask What do you bring me?/What is your job in my life?/What do you want from me? or for daily readings What message do you have for me today? There are obviously many other questions you can ask your SoulCollage cards but they all need to be open-ended questions (What? Who? Where? When? Why? How?)
One thing you might ask yourself when you do a reading is "Is the card "speaking" to me or am I making it up?" And this is a very valid question. The answer is, as long as you're "making it up" intuitively, it will be your inner wisdom, your card speaking to you. Told you, you just cannot do this wrong.

Here is an example of readings I did on the card at the top of the photo below (the black and white floral/mandala doodled background is my own drawing on a piece of copier paper):


Name of the card: This Is A New Day, created on 02/07/2020
I am the one who wakes up happy. I am the one who opens the windows wide open to feel the fresh air, smell the beautiful flowers and see all the beauty outside my personal space. I am the one who says goodbye to the night and am grateful for its resourcing benefits, but welcomes all its benefits for the day to come. I am the one looking forward to each new day and what gifts it will bring. I am the one who is in her happy space. (reading straight after creating the card).
Reading on 22/07/2020 when I picked this card as my card of the day -
I am the one who wakes up happy and full of energy. I am the one who cannot wait to see what this new day has in store. I am the one who cannot wait to stretch and move. I am the one who cannot wait to leave the night behind and embrace the light. (Answering the question "what message do you have for me today?) The message I have for you today is to embrace your light, enjoy the little and big things in your life, feel the gratitude in your heart, enjoy your life to the fullest.

As you can see, the energy of the card is similar on both readings, but my messages were slightly different on each reading, because I was different on each day. This is something that will frequently happen. It also depends on which element your attention is caught. On both readings, the woman waking up was my focus but on another reading, maybe the owl will be, which will change my reading and its message. All this is just fine. Your cards are here to give you whatever guidance and message you need when you need it.

This process has been extremely supportive to me these last few months. I now have a sacred space for my SoulCollage cards where I honour my card of the day and its energy (whether I have done a reading or not) -



If you feel intrigued by this practice, visit the official SoulCollage website where you can find loads of classes, materials, free info and videos at soulcollage.com.
I particularly like their Get Started section HERE and on their Youtube channel THIS VIDEO clearly explains the process of making cards.
I also love Anne Marie Bennett's SoulCollage website kaleidosoul.com. Anne Marie is a SoulCollage facilitator (that means she is certified by SoulCollage Inc. to teach this process) and a trainer, and she offers alternative classes to the ones on the official website, as well as a yearly subscription called Kindred Spirits (obviously, I am a member) where you have access to a gigantic audio and video library, discounts on classes, one Zoom class a month and many other SoulCollage goodies.

I absolutely love this practice and hope that you will give it a go. It will more than likely change your life for the better.

Sunday Journaling Prompt


Monday, 20 July 2020

Inspirational Quote Monday

Happy Monday my beautiful souls, and welcome to a brand new week.

 

The little girl in this photo is me, age 3, I think, dancing and twirling on The Bee Gees, totally embracing this amazing quote from Maya Angelou.
Being my true amazing self before trying to fit in to the mould and become “normal”.
I have learnt my lesson since then and now make it my life mission to return to the essence of this little girl, who laughs at everything, finds joy and wonder in everything and enjoys being alive ❤️

Wishing you the same beautiful destiny ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Saturday, 18 July 2020

Book Nuts - July Reads, So Far...


One of my passions is reading, fiction and non-fiction. I love learning new things, exploring, understanding, as well as being transported to imaginary worlds and stories that help me escape my reality while also discovering other possibilities and other ways.

Books I've read so far in July are:

The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron


This book is primarily meant as a 12-week course for creatives to enable them to evolve and truly produce soulful, truthful and purposeful creative work by honouring themselves, their work and embracing the sacred source of their inspiration. While I create quite sporadically, I read this book just as curiosity (however when I bought this book 2 years ago, I had a very different intent), but soon realised that all the concepts and exercises in this book can very easily relate to anything you'd like to achieve in your life. The book is also full of inspirational quotes, which is a bonus for me as I am addicted to quotes.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone, regardless of background, intention or motivation.
The biggest takeaway from this book for me is a process called "the morning pages" where you journal your thoughts in the form of stream of consciousness, first thing in the morning. So now, you can guess, I do morning journaling as well as evening journaling. I have only done my morning pages properly for about 3 days (the week before I was ending up writing them early afternoon as I would get distracted by my morning routine and Netflix!), so I cannot yet comment on its benefits, but I do enjoy it. I now keep my journal and a pen on my bedside table (it has helped tremendously on doing this process properly), and, when I wake up, grab them and write whatever comes to mind. Very satisfying.

Modern Witchcraft For Beginners by Rachel P. Green (on Amazon Kindle)


For the last 2/3 weeks, I have been binge-watching on the TV series Once Upon A Time, and the magic and witchcraft in it got hold of me and got me curious about witchcraft and spells. This little book took only a couple of days to read and was really interesting, explaining what witchcraft is and isn't, how it can be practised, learnt and organised, as well as rituals with nature. I very much enjoyed it, but haven't tried any spells - yet!

Song of the Dark Crystal by J.M. Lee


This book is volume 2 of The Dark Crystal Age of Resistance inspired novels. The story focuses on characters in the Netflix series not on centre stage, which gives a very interesting and complementary perspective to the story. This book, as was volume 1 Shadows of the Dark Crystal, is beautifully written, almost like prose poetry, but easy to understand, even for me for whom English is not their first language. I cannot wait to read volume 3. Love, love, LOVE this book series.

A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle (Audiobook)


No big surprise surely that on a wellness and self-care/self-help website like mine, one of Eckhart Tolle's books should be mentioned. In my sincere opinion, this book should be read or listened to by every single person on this planet to be awakened, and that would most definitely transform our world instantly for the better. I found that this book is expanding on his first book, The Power of Now, which I also enjoyed very much last year. If you have never read any of his books, I would highly suggest starting with The Power of Now first. 
The audio version is narrated by Eckhart Tolle himself and his voice is an instant de-stressor, which is an extra bonus. On days when I have a migraine and cannot stand any sound or light, his voice is always the only very welcome soother for me.

Currently reading: The Map by Colette Baron-Reid


Colette is an intuitive counsellor mostly renowned for creating quite a few popular oracle decks (3 of them I have and absolutely love). This book is a guide to help you draw your own map of your life with all its beings and environments to help you see and embrace the life lessons given to you, as well as move forward in your path with meaning, purpose and joy. So far - I'm on Chapter 1 - it is very well and clearly written, with real life examples from her own story, which makes it easier to understand. From a review of the book I watched on YouTube, the book also deals with Shadow work, which is something I have been keen to do. Soul work cannot just be about the light, after all, if you want to understand all parts of yourself.

*****

I hope these reads will inspire you to try one (or 2, or 3, or all!)
If you have any book suggestions, or want to share any insights from books you loved, please add a comment below. Book ideas are always welcomed very warmly...