What coloring in my mid 30s has taught me…

Originally posted at ThirdSpaceWellness.com

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, I’m sure you’ve noticed the coloring books for adults trend. (Note: My husband would like to point out that he’s been coloring way before “the craze.”) Anyway… I’m glad it’s caught on. It’s an incredibly soothing activity. You can either clear your mind as you color or observe your thoughts as they come in. It has provided so much clarity during stressful times.

Coloring has taught me a few things over the years:

  • That coloring between the lines is harder than it sounds
  • That you can live with your mistakes – moving forward rather than scrapping everything and starting over
  • That you can scrap everything and start over
  • That you have to look at a picture up close and then look at it from afar to see it completely
  • That you can plan your approach but you better be ready for some spontaneity
  • That the right tools will make all the difference
  • That creativity lies in all of us
  • That genius ideas can come when you’re busy doing something else

Whether you decide to work on a coloring book or paint a canvas or take up origami, find an activity that allows you to create and focus. You might be surprised about what you’ll learn about yourself or for yourself. And if you’ve tried it, how did you do?

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What I learned from the D.C. storm power outage

On Friday, June 29th, a weather phenomenon called a Derecho, slammed into Washington, DC and left more than a million people without electricity. I was lucky enough to have been away for a few days and only had to suffer through the power outage from Sunday evening to Tuesday evening. But, boy, did those few days test my mettle! It left me cranky and sweaty but with some incredibly powerful lessons…

  1. Eat the ice cream. Right away. Don’t save it for an emergency. When there is ice cream in the fridge, every single day is an emergency.
  2. Hanging out in the outdoor patio furniture section of Target is totally acceptable.
  3. Trees are lovely things… Lovely, deadly things that like to take down power lines. You will never look at a tree the same way again.
  4. You will re-evaluate your friendships based on their location on the power grid.
  5. Complaining won’t get you anywhere, but it’s going to feel damn good.
  6. When you don’t have power, you will actually look forward to going into the office. It’s possible.
  7. You will invent new ways to stay cool – like naked brushing your teeth or naked sweeping the floor.

I know I sound like a Baz Luhrmann song telling you to wear sunscreen but if you take anything away from this post it’s that you should never let ice cream go to waste.

What did YOU learn from the power outage?

P.S. A HUGE thanks to the men and women who worked tirelessly in the blazing heat to get power back on as soon as possible.

Photo via Flickr (Creative Commons) by Brittany Herbert.