Today's post was recently published in the Memphis Commercial Appeal--my first published piece. I was pretty excited. Hope you enjoy the article!
About 10 years ago I went on a retreat in an attempt to resolve the confusion in my life. Being in a constant state of stress was impacting my physical health and emotional wellbeing.
On day 14 of my respite, the most surprising and consequential event occurred. I was attending a music festival, and during a performance, one of the musicians asked the audience, “Who in your life has loved you unconditionally?” I thought of my two children.
He posed a second question. "Who in your life have you loved unconditionally?" Again, I thought of my children.
It occurred to me that my answers should perhaps not be the same, and that I should dig a little deeper, so I went back to the first question. Who had loved me unconditionally? With that thought, it was as if the woman who raised me descended from the ceiling of the auditorium, in the chair that she used to sit in, and all the grief and sadness that I held down since her passing when I was 16 came back. I was filled with sorrow.
Alongside the overwhelming grief there was also joy bubbling up inside me. It seemed contrary, but what I learned is that when we suppress our grief, anger, and fears, we also suppress our joy, sense of connection, and peace of mind. People don’t normally think of stress or worry as fear, but that is exactly what it is. And unchecked fear and stress affects our bodies, our thoughts and feelings, and our behavior and can contribute to many health problems.
intuition, and our hearts’ messages. Much of what causes tension inside of us is what we keep pinned up—what we don’t express. The goal of process art is to express freely and connect with ourselves in a way that invites deep peace and relaxation.
We are typically only aware of 5 percent of our cognitive activity directing our decision making, emotions, actions, and behaviors. Living in a non-conscious manner creates a disconnection within ourselves, which leaves us constantly tense, unable to find clarity. Healing modalities can help bridge the gap between the conscious and unconscious mind. I find the Dalian Method (DM), devised by Mada Dalian, to be an empowering tool for self-discovery. DM works directly with unconscious beliefs, rather than the conscious mind, to dismantle energetic blockages formed by repressed thoughts and emotions. The method simultaneously brings inner consciousness to light, which once seen can never be lost, creating permanent transformation.
I encourage everyone to de-stress, connect with themselves, and uncover their joy that’s just beneath the surface waiting to bubble up.
Madeleine Newkirk, Artist, Spiritual Junkie, Dalian Method and Art Process Facilitator.