Challenge #16: Making Personal Space

We all need a bit of personal space – a place that is just for us – a place that we can call our own. It might be a lavish studio or a cabin in the woods. It might be the kitchen table or a big, comfy chair. It might be the backyard or a place in our bag for a journal or book. Whether it is a space with walls or not, whether it is large or small, it is ours – our own little corner of the world.

How do you carve out a chunk of personal space? Where do you go to find space for yourself and your thoughts? How do you recharge and re-energize? What gets in your way of being there? How do you make your personal space? If you haven’t, why not?

Challenge #15: My Sanctuary

We all need a place to go when the world seems to be too much where we can get away for a while and reconnect with ourselves. We need a cave, an island getaway, or a mountaintop retreat where we can go, be by ourselves, and gain some perspective. Sometimes these are literal caves, islands, and mountains, but very often they are closer than that – the studio, the gym, the garage, or the library – ordinary places where we can get away and be with ourselves.

What is your sanctuary? Where do you go when the world becomes too much or when you just need to be by yourself? Where is that place of solace and comfort or that place where you can reconnect with yourself? What gets in your way of being there? How does it feel when you are kept from your sanctuary? If you do not have an actual sanctuary, where would it be? Where would you like to go?

I've been away for a while with the ending of the school year and traveling to North Carolina, so I'll be posting  Challenge #16 later this week.

Challenge #14: Wants and Needs

We all have our wants and our needs. To many, they seem to be the same thing, but what we want is not always what we need. We often want things that are not good for us and that are sometimes outright harmful. Those wants can be influenced by so many factors. Friends, family, and the media all can put direct and indirect pressure on us to buy the latest gizmos, gadgets and stuff, to make unhealthy eating choices, and to zone out in front of TVs and computer screens.

Reflect on what you want and what you need. See where you want and need the same thing. See where you want much more than you need. See where you deprive yourself of things that you desperately need.

What do you want? Why do you want those things? What do you need? Why do you need those things? Do you want more than you need? Why or why not? What are things that you need, but do not give yourself? What if you only wanted what you needed? How would your life be different?

Challenge #13: Solitude

As humans we tend to be social creatures, but there are times when we need to be by ourselves – to be alone, but not lonely. For some solitude equates to isolation and despair and to others it equates to reflection and time to be with our thoughts.

Reflect on how you are when you are alone. Try to determine if you are comfortable or uncomfortable with being on your own.

What does solitude mean to you? Is it isolation or is it reflection? How do you react when you are by yourself? Do you distract yourself with email, housework, text messaging, or TV? Do you surround yourself with noise? Do you sit and reflect on all that has been going on mulling it over in your head? Do you surround yourself with quiet?

In what ways do you embrace solitude or push it away?