Almost a year has passed since I began working full-time for myself, and it's be a real journey in creating rhythm of productivity. I am someone who has trouble relinquishing creative possibilities. I want to make and do everything in a variety of media and means and by every means of production. I really don't want to let any of them go. So I gave myself time to way-find-- to throw noodles on the wall and see what sticks. And as the year comes to an end, I realize I am getting closer at figuring out what is sticking. I'm trying my hardest to create in a genuine way as I search to determine what I can offer that also satiates a void in the world. It's starting to feel right and because everything in life is always ebbing and flowing, I'm taking this moment of this blog post to relish in this feeling of joy in finding my creative pathway. (I think.)
All of this long preamble to say that practicing mundane rituals has helped create structure within which I could throw those noodles. I live for mundane rituals. They are those small things that we do everyday that give us some sense of comfort and security. For many, myself included, coffee is a mundane morning ritual that I cherish. Everything from the process of brewing with a Bialetti coffee maker to choosing that day's mug brings me pure joy. (I'm sure the caffeine has something to with it, too!) In the afternoons, I drink tea and have started to brew tea from loose leaves harvested from garden grown herbs. Picking the garden is another ritual that I savor --especially when it's snipping blooms for a bouquet. It's only been in these last weeks of summer/early fall that I have really indulged this ritual. I sometimes have a hard time picking flowers because I love seeming them in their habitat, but nothing really beats a beautiful bouquet in the bedroom.
Another one I love is walking to the mailbox to retrieve the mail or leave a stamped envelope to be picked up -- not forgetting to raise the red flag. The animals demand lots of happy rituals of feeding, grooming, and petting. One of the reasons that I long for a dog is for the ritual of regular walks. There is something beautiful in practicing a ritual repeatedly that can ground you in life, give foundation for the creativity, and most serendipitous are the occasions when really paying attention to the moment, that I get to see or think something new that sparks a whole, fresh round of noodle throwing.
So, what sorts of rituals make your day?
Anna Lentz, artist and writer, blogs about making a creative life connected with nature at Spring Bird.