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Archive for the 'New Work' Category

The Science of Happiness and Powerful Creativity

Tuesday, December 8th, 2020

Neurobiologists have found that creating and viewing art results in the release of dopamine—your happy feel-good chemical. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that controls the brain’s pleasure and reward centres.

Isolation and stress caused by coronavirus have made many of us feel depressed, fatigued and despondent. Others feel overwhelmed. and lethargic, painting can calm the body to help you feel more grounded and clear in this confusing and overwhelming time.

Happily, scientists have found that creating and observing art can reduce cortisol, known as the ‘stress hormone.’ Creativity, whether you are the creator or the appreciator, releases uplifting endorphins and can even increase hopefulness and heighten your ability to problem solve!

If I’m to label myself it is as an abstract expressionist – expressing often feelings I wish to take away, or rather transcend, like sadness or grief or overwhelm. Replacing them instead with beauty, compassion and transcendence. I hope that people who look at my works will feel the same sense of beauty that I have infused into them as they were created.

Here are a few examples, to illustrate.

 

“True love” True love is complicated, multi-textured, layered. So it seems appropriate that my current work in progress is taking on multiple dimensions. I never know where or how the painting is going to end, I just work intuitively and try to put my feelings on the canvas. The definition of abstraction, I’ve come to learn, means to take away.


“Te Ataroa” Named after the beautiful baby born to a very proud young couple. They had lost a little girl earlier who passed before she could be held in their arms. Te Ataroa is an added blessing. Translated her name means “the long morning”.

I enjoyed transcending the feeling of sadness into those of spiritual protection, empowerment and joy. “When our mother saw that painting she cried,” the couple told me.

“Serene and beautiful and makes me feel like I’m in a spring garden. Love it!” Another lady wrote.

“A fine work of art—music, dance, painting, story—has the power to silence the chatter and lift us to another world.” ~ Robert McKee Painting, writing and creating, is an opiate for me. Even when I feel sad, when I create I feel transported to a happier realm. My wish is that people who hang my paintings in their home or office will feel happy too.

Commissions are welcome – especially for large scale work. I love BIG!

P.S. Join me for Play Dates—you never know, you may just discover a talent you never knew you had

ONLY ONE SPACE REMAINING.

ENROL HERE:

You can feel like Beth, “I feel excited about my journey so far.”

Too ‘Pooped” to begin Play Dates. I get it! Other clients felt the same when it came to taking time out to nurture their playful selves…

until they found that by doing this they gained more energy, felt less depressed and more excited. Like Beth, who after completing one module shared that as a result, she was making the following changes:

What are you going to stop doing?

Procrastinating.
Putting other things first which aren’t as important.
Feel less guilty spending time on my work.

What are you going to do more of?

Invest more time in personal growth.
Play at my colour combinations
Set aside more time to play
Explore more techniques in my printmaking.

What are you going to do less of?

Putting my work last on my daily to-do list
Negative self talk
Using my energy in a non-productive manner.

 

Here is a sneak peek of something I created yesterday in just under 30 minutes….it’s a draft…but I can’t begin to tell you how less stressed I felt after stepping away from my computer

 

 

Work in progress “Ode to Georgia O’Keeffe”

 

I recall reading Georgia saying that she felt that people are so busy …too busy to stop and look at a flower up close and that is what she wanted to give people in her paintings the joy of the beauty of a flower

 

I hope you enjoy this beautiful orchid which is sitting in my studio and inspired this painting

 

350mm x 460mm 40mm

 

DON’T MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY TO PLAY

ENROL HERE or drop me an email – cassandra@cassandragaisford.com

I did a Trump last night…

Monday, November 9th, 2020

There is something we can all control…our attitude

(Sneak peek in the studio. Did you know that limes, yellows, and pinks some of the many colours of joy? That’s why I love painting with them.)

Dear friends,

I did a Trump last night. Something was on my mind, something I was frustrated by, something I wanted to fix. Immediately. Right then. On the spot. At 2:15 am.

Unlike the President, I didn’t summon others to witness my frustration. I didn’t spread any conspiracy theories. I didn’t blame others. I simply lifted the canvas that wasn’t working and started repainting.

Big mistake! Instead of creating a legacy piece, I ended up with a big mud puddle. The light was poor. The paint wouldn’t dry. The conditions were less than optimal. But I couldn’t let go. I couldn’t quit. And things went from bad to worse.

Is there something in your life right now that’s frustrating you? Does an impulsive drive to fix things make things worse?

Definitions of frustration include:

“the feeling of being upset or annoyed as a result of being unable to change or achieve something.”

“the prevention of the progress, success, or fulfilment of something.”

I was getting frustrated because what I was trying to do was important to me. I wanted to create something beautiful. The action I took made me question whether I wanted to continue to be an artist. I felt like throwing away my paints.

What I needed to do was change my attitude. Here are a few things I’ll do next time frustration creeps in:

  • Remind myself that something beautiful can come from mistakes
  • Work with energy—2:15 am is not my optimum time
  • Step away. I don’t have a golf course to retreat to, but I did have a nice warm bed.
  • Be playful. In the total scheme of life, even a bad day at the easel is better than the worst jobs I’ve ever had
  • Be grateful for the successes I have achieved
  • Remember to balance work and life. Painting is part of my career-combo. Sometimes I need to paint just for me
  • Share my feelings with others who can help me recalibrate
  • Set some rules—like not painting after midnight!

And last, but not least, remind myself that I am the Joyful Painter. Always, always, always work with joy. I’ve set up an Instagram page. If you’d love to see my work as it evolves please follow me here>>https://www.instagram.com/joyful.painter/

 

Whatever life gives you, you can respond with joy. Joy is the happiness that does not depend on what happens. It is the grateful response to the opportunity that life offers in this moment.”

Brother Steindl-Rast

We spend too much time at work to give up on joy and purpose, but some people think that you save the things you love for a hobby or for when you retire.

The truth is you are unlikely to find real fulfilment or meaning in your work unless it engages you as a person and delivers some kind of buzz.

Joy-filled employees are good for business too. People who love their work are productive, happy, engaged and inspired.

If you can’t find joy in salaried employment, embrace a side hustle, volunteer, elsewhere or spark excitement by considering the freedom and fulfilment of being your own boss.

Numerous people have found tremendous joy in the most unexpected places and very often it has been born from a place of great pain.

Here are just a few examples:

• Novelists Danielle Steel, Isabel Allende, and many others—who overcame difficult childhoods

• Drew Barrymore, especially in her new business, Flower Beauty—who overcame addiction

• Trauma Therapist Dr. Edith Eger—who survived Auschwitz concentration camp

• Neuroscientist Dr. Joe Dispenza—who overcame paralysis

• Motivational author Gabby Bernstein—who overcame alcohol addiction

• Comedian Billy Connelly—who overcame sexual abuse

How will you handle frustration? What role could joy play in your working life? By avoiding reacting during times of annoyance you’ll avoid derailing your career.

I share more about how to find your joy—even in the worst circumstances in the book I co-wrote with my daughter

To grab your eBook or Print copy from Amazon, click here>>getbook.at/FindYourJoy

To grab your copy from iBooks, Barnes & Noble and other great bookstores, click here>> https://books2read.com/u/bzoawZ

To grab your copy from Kobo, click here>>www.kobo.com/ebook/how-to-find-your-joy-and-purpose-1

Audiobook

Also available in audiobook and hardback

 

 

What I’m working on now…

I’m loving my coaching calls and training sessions with clients all over the world—including the UK, Canada, South Africa and here in New Zealand. The fab thing about being a life and career coach is the variety and all the ways my clients inspire me.

Like Shirley, 78 years young who scheduled an oracle card reading with me to help her find her true essence and guide her during times of change.

And Mary who contacted me to help beat her creative blocks and fears and is now up and flying with her children’s book career. I helped her set up her own publishing company.

And all the men and woman who have reached out to me for mentoring and support to achieve a lifestyle career as career and life coaches.

“That’s not work,” I tell them, when I finish a call, “that’s fun!”

(names changed for privacy)

Discover more

 

Enter & WIN!

Schedule a coaching call today and go in the draw to win three sessions—free

Enter now!

 

Featured reader of the month: Shirley

I was so thrilled when Shirley reached out for an oracle card reading. I love working with these cards. The word oracle comes from the latin ‘Orare’ which means ‘to pray’ or ‘to speak,’ and refers to communication from the divine. Oracle cards are a more modern interpretation of tarot cards. They vary greatly from deck to deck, but their purpose is to help us have a direct dialogue with your soul and the soul of the Universe.

Over the years I always dreamed about creating an oracle deck of my own. So far the closest I have ever come is the creation of The Passion Pack, a set of cards designed to help people discover their passion and purpose. These cards are the foundation of my most popular book, How To Find Your Passion And Purpose: Four Easy Steps to Discover A Job You Want and Live the Life You Love. The pack of cards is out of print now. It was so popular and I hope to create another oracle pack using my paintings.

Shirley, 78 years young was facing a big move and was feeling apprehensive. She wanted clarity about what she needed for her wellbeing, her relationship, and her art.

I was delighted to receive her feedback. It’s early days, as I have given her a lot to think and dream about and additional resources too—including an astrology report and an MP3 recording her oracle reading so she can listen again and again.

I love people like Shirley who are young at heart and always open for new ways to develop.

The reading did seem true for me

I feel that it is true that I am an intuitive person and am trying to listen to that part of myself even more.

I would love my art to speak for me, so I have to think how I could bring that about.

Schedule an oracle card reading

 

Need help finding your joy? Schedule a session with me today

For personalised help schedule a session here >>

 

Did you enjoy this post?

You might like:

Why training to be a life or career coach is the go-to-career change strategy

Point of Change. Rewriting his Career in His 60s and Beyond—Brett’s Reinvention Story

Would you love to be a life or career coach? Discover how to be your own boss the affordable, fun, purposeful way

 

If you like my work you can support me on Ko-fi>>ko-fi.com/youinspireme 

 

Here are three more things you might like:


Interesting interviews: Listen to my best interviews on topics like overcoming obstacles, finding joy in adversity, following your passion to prosperity.


Online Course: Find Your Passion and Purpose with my best-selling self-paced course made for busy people.


Keynote speaking: Hire me to speak to your organization or team about Resilience, wellbeing, innovation, and motivation.

You can get more of my thoughts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Did you enjoy this article? Subscribe to this blog and receive a free gift when you sign up for Cassandra’s newsletters and get more help to live your best life.

What do bees, art, happiness and healing have in common? New works: Custom art made with molten beeswax

Monday, April 20th, 2020

Peace, love, joy


Custom beeswax art made with molten beeswax applied on canvas board, fused with sultry flame, finished with love. Art that smells divine and soothes the soul

 

 

 

Wisdom of the golden snake

Another new work. Feeling inspired during COVID-19
beeswax and fire. Custom-made on hardboard

Colour field painting in my studio and outside

Available now. Shipping worldwide

 

I absolutely loved the honey bees flying all over the studio today when I was doing my beeswax painting and here is a lovely wee soul on the edge just looking and studying and absorbing. My father was a beekeeper, so this is even more special to me. It is to my father that I owe my love of research and a deep commitment to, and interest in, alternative forms of healing—now commonly known as (and increasingly accepted by those against ‘non-conventional’ medicine and forms of treatment) as holistic health.

My father dedicated his later years to helping others and was an early pioneer in the field of apitherapy. As Wikipedia so excellently sums up, “Apitherapy is a branch of alternative medicine that uses honey bee products, including honeypollenpropolisroyal jelly, and bee venom. Proponents of apitherapy make claims for its health benefits which remain unsupported by evidence-based medicine. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apitherapy.)”

The last line (“health benefits which remain unsupported by evidence-based medicine”) is especially pertinent to my father. He was a tireless campaigner who fought to have alternative approaches to healing accepted by the medical establishment. Many of the treatments that were then regarded as unconventional, ‘woo-woo’ cures —including acupuncture, are now widely accepted, and in many cases have been validated using evidence-based techniques. In large part, it is not that the cures did not work, it is the humankind lacked the technology to evidence or measure the results.

 I am proud to continue his tireless campaign today in my holistic, health and wellness-based approach to my work as a holistic therapist, energy healer, Reiki Master, artist and self-empowerment author who is not afraid to challenge the status quo. I believe, as Picasso does, that “art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life” and is healing for the soul.

 

 

 

Check out more of my work here>>https://www.cassandragaisford.com/gallery/

Commissions Welcome.

 

Did you enjoy this post? You may also like:

 

Feel the heat>>https://www.cassandragaisford.com/feel-the-heat-new-works/

What inspires me>> https://www.cassandragaisford.com/what-inspires-me/

Celebrating the life and legacy of an extraordinary man—Graeham William Gaisford>>http://www.cassandragaisford.com/celebrating-the-life-and-legacy-of-an-extraordinary-man-graeham-william-gaisford-2/

Here are three more things you might like:


Interesting interviews: Listen to my best interviews on topics like overcoming obstacles, finding joy in adversity, following your passion to prosperity.


Online Course: Find Your Passion and Purpose with my best-selling self-paced course made for busy people.


Keynote speaking: Hire me to speak to your organization or team about Resilience, wellbeing, innovation, and motivation.

You can get more of my thoughts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

For personalized help schedule a session with Cassandra here >>

 

Did you enjoy this article? Subscribe to this blog and receive a free gift when you sign up for Cassandra’s newsletters and get more help to live your best life.

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