Flourishing in February

Dear Friends,

Wow. Time is passing by quickly isn’t it? With further arts education training and the commencement of my work as a Mentor-Artist for Royal Conservatory’s Digital Media Arts program, January was busier than I had expected. I was also lucky enough to be featured in the Globe and Mail for ‘Hogtown Stories”. I was interviewed about my love for the Aga Khan Museum and my philosophy as a poet.

Sheniz AKM

Read the Globe article here and see more photos here. 

And now, February is upon us. 

How are you feeling? Be sure to check in with yourself and take stock of how the first month of 2016 has gone for you. Have there been unexpected challenges? opportunities? realizations?

For me, January was a month to commit to my intentions for 2016.

I accepted/declined opportunities based on my guiding questions for 2016. I found that this practice was exceptionally helpful for me– sometimes I have a habit of saying ‘yes’ before understanding the consequences of saying ‘yes’. To have questions that help facilitate my growth and protect me from things that are not in my best interest has been invaluable for me.

My guiding questions are:

 “Does this expand my career horizons?”

“Does this feel grounding for myself and others?”

“Does this deepen my practice?”

If you haven’t developed guiding questions for 2016, I encourage you to do so. My questions arose during the process of completing Susannah Conway’s “Unravelling the Year Ahead” workbook. I highly recommend it!

Now that January is over, I’m feeling less anxious and more accepting of the uncertainties that lie ahead. I’ve tried to stop resisting what I can’t control, and have begun to settle into the joy and excitement of not knowing what lies ahead. I think that this acceptance stems from establishing a strong foundation for myself (with my guiding questions) because I am aware of what I am no longer willing to accept, and opening myself up to new possibilities and connections. This is why I chose the word “flourishing” for February. I know it’s an odd word to choose because it’s associated with blooming (in fact, the etymology of the word is closely related to “flower”), but I do believe we are turning the corner of winter and preparing ourselves for spring.

So let’s take this month to settle in and begin to flourish. This way, when spring comes around, our ideas and projects will be in full bloom.

This month, I invite you to respond to this writing/art-making prompt, in the hopes that it’ll help solidify what fills your heart with meaning and joy:

3 things I love about myself

May you flourish in February,

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