Life Is Art


Life is art. It’s not a painting, a sculpture, a novel, or a piece of music, but it has a lot in common with these things because living is a creative undertaking. Each new day presents us with a blank canvas, and it is up to us to fill it with shapes, colors, work, play, and joy. External forces and events beyond our control also influence our days, and sometimes they bring with them hardship and sorrow. Even so, we remain the artists. In the end, how we live and how we respond to the challenges of life is up to us. Life is not only a creative enterprise – it’s also a learning process.



The quote above was taken from a small but very powerful booklet that was given to me by someone at work, entitled, Honor Yourself. It took many weeks to actually sit down and read it, however when I did, the wisdom within the pages deeply touched my heart and soul. What I found especially inspiring about this book is that it didn't sugarcoat the author's challenging experience. He was extremely honest about the fears he felt before he was able to see the gifts that the experience had given him.


I think the main reason this book touched me the way it did was because of my own experience back in October of 2015, when I was hospitalized for two weeks and struggled with my fear of the unknown, yet came out on the other side with a better understanding and "bigger picture" of why this experience was necessary and the lessons it taught me.

I seem to gain the most inspiration and strength from the personal and intimate stories of people who experience adversity by embracing it, viewing it as an integral part of their life journey and choose to grow from it.

I believe that each and every experience that comes into my life is there because it is needed. And that there is no such thing as an accidental experience, whether it be pleasant or challenging - neither are accidental.

Of course the pleasant experiences are easy, it's the challenging ones that seem to rock my world, causing uncertainty and disruption. Yet they are also the experiences I look back on and am so grateful for, because in their disruption they also caused me to expand.

Yes, life is a canvas of continual art. Some of that art is free-flowing and easy, other parts can be challenging and disruptive.

But as the quote above says, in the end, how I live and how I respond to the challenges of life is up to me. Because my life is not only a creative enterprise – it’s also a learning process.


Have a fantabulously creative weekend everyone!
X


30 comments

  1. Just seeing the cover of the book made me feel better about myself. With the various bouts of indecision and nervousness I experience lately I think this book would be good for me. Most of the time I can give myself a kick and a lecture but other days aren't so good. All understandable, they say, considering my current position but I have to admit I've entered a phase of life never experienced before. Two phases, actually, my new widowhood and another birthday!! I'm going to check on Amazon and see if the book is available in the UK. thank you so much for sharing.

    The weekend looms, enjoy it x

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  2. What an inspiring and beautifully written post, Ron! I'm intrigued to read the book. I also believe everything that happens in my life is not by accident, it happens for a reason.Thank you for sharing this today!

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  3. http://ladyfi.wordpress.comMay 26, 2016

    Yes, I agree! Thanks for the inspiration.

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  4. That top photo is incredible. I could see just sitting down, across the street, and spending an hour just absorbing every little nuance of the work. I'm so glad you have found meaning and inspiration through others! XO and have yourself a fabulous weekend!

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  5. Hello there Valerie!

    Thanks so much for sharing so honestly about what you're experiencing right now. Yes, it's totally understandable, I'm sure you must have good days and not-so good days. You've been through a huge life-transition; therefore, there is a lot to adjust to.

    You know, when I read the booklet and then decided to share about it on my blog, I actually thought of YOU because I had a feeling it would touch you the way it did me. What I love about the author's story is that he's honest about the struggles and difficulties he/we all experience when we go through something challenging. However, his story gives a positive outlook that we have the strength to move through challenges if we honor ourselves by feeling all our feelings along the way. And in doing so, we heal.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. And know that you are continually in my thoughts and prayers, sending you MUCH support....

    ((((((((((((((((( YOU )))))))))))))))

    Have a super weekend!
    X

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  6. Hey there Candice!

    It's funny how this booklet came into my life at the perfect time. It was giving to me by a product representative who works for the skincare company Murad, which is the company Dr. Murad created and who also wrote the book!

    Thanks so much for stopping by and have a fantabulous weekend!

    X

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  7. You are so welcome, Fiona! I was very touched by this little booklet, so I wanted to share it with others.

    Have a beautiful weekend, my friend!
    X

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  8. Thanks :) I took that picture of a wall mural, not too far from where I live. Isn't it beautiful? And I thought it went perfect for the topic of this post.

    "I'm so glad you have found meaning and inspiration through others."

    Thank you! I'm still learning from the experience I had last October, and this booklet really affirmed so much of what I learned from it.

    Have a terrific weekend, my friend. And thanks a bunch for stopping by!
    X

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  9. Ron, I thought the same thing as Bijoux, the top photograph (mural) is incredible! And you're right, it was perfect for this topic.

    "I seem to gain the most inspiration and strength from the personal and intimate stories of people who experience adversity by embracing it, viewing it as an integral part of their life journey and choose to grow from it." So do I, so thank you for sharing your experience(s) because I always learn something from you. You've inspired me a great deal.

    Great post, dude!

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  10. Hiya Matt!

    Isn't the mural gorgeous? We have MANY wall murals here in Philly - they're everywhere!

    Thanks so much for your kind words, buddy. I enjoy sharing about inspirational people and their stories because it may help and inspire others. Inspiration is contagious; therefore it should be spread around.

    Thank you for stopping by and have a most excellent weekend!
    X

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  11. Ron, this post couldn't have come at a better time because a family member of ours is going through an extremely challenging time in her life, so I will be sending her this post, along with trying to purchase the book online so I can give it to her when we meet next weekend.

    What a beautiful post! I love what you said about how you believe there is no such thing as an accidental experience and that things come into your life because they need to be there. I think it's a great outlook because it makes you realize there is something positive about every experience, if you choose to find it.

    Thank you for sharing this today, Ron. Have a Happy Memorial Day weekend!

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  12. I haven't read this book, Ron, but it sounds like something I'd enjoy. Thank you for recommending it, and I'm glad it was another avenue of inspiration and encouragement for you.

    You know, the photo you've included is something I could stare at for a LONG time -- so much to see there, so many ways of looking at it. You're right, of course -- it's up to each of us to respond to the challenges LIFE hands out. We can become bitter...or better!

    Happy almost Friday, my dear! x

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  13. Rob LenihanMay 26, 2016

    Wow, Ron, I've got to get this booklet! This post really lifted my spirits and I'm so grateful to you for sharing your insights and experiences with us. That was indeed a terrible time for you in October and if you can get something positive out that challenging period of your life, well, that's just great! And it also inspires me to look at my challenges in the same way. Thanks so much, buddy!

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  14. Hey there Rob!

    Often when we go though challenging experiences, the memories of what we learned start to fade and we take for granted how blessed we were/are.

    This little booklet came at the perfect time because It was an affirmation that said, "Don't forget what you learned, Ron."

    Thanks so much for stopping by and for your kind words, buddy. Have a faaaaaaaabulous weekend. And Happy Memorial Day!

    X

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  15. Hello there Debbie!

    This little booklet came at the perfect time because it reminded me of what I had learned back in October. I was very humbling.

    I took that photograph of a mural not too far from where I live. Isn't it amazing? Philly has a lot of murals scattered throughout the city.

    "it's up to each of us to respond to the challenges LIFE hands out. We can become bitter...or better!"

    LOVED that, and you are so right!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a grrrreat Memorial Day weekend!

    X to you and Dallas

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  16. Hey there Elaine!

    For being such a little book, it's filled with so much wisdom. As I shared, it took me a weeks to finally sit down and read it, but when I did...I was deeply touched in many ways. And not only is the book about the author's challenging experience, it is also about honoring and trusting yourself, and knowing that even with our imperfections we are perfect.

    It's such an awesome book!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, neighbor. Have a terrific Memorial Day weekend!
    X

    Gosh, can you believe it's already Memorial Day?!?

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  17. "Of course the pleasant experiences are easy, it's the challenging ones that seem to rock my world, causing uncertainty and disruption."

    Ron, that is profound and very true. I too can embrace the pleasant experiences but have a difficult time with the challenging ones. I tend to wallow wondering why? why? why? I even ask why me? I know in my rational brain it's wrong to think that way, but sometimes I just can't help it. Then I have to get hold of myself and push through. It's painful. But once through, I can then appreciate what I've learned and how I've grown.

    "...how I live and how I respond to the challenges of life is up to me. Because my life is not only a creative enterprise – it’s also a learning process."
    I've always told my sons that a thought causes an emotion so change the thought and it will change their emotion. I try to follow that myself, but again, it's a challenge. It's easier to just keep the thought and feel rather than change it. And I always say "I'm a work in progress". And I am. I find myself learning still and hope it never ends.
    I'm going to check out that book. I will let you know what I think.
    ((YOU))
    ((YOU))
    ((YOU))

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  18. Hey there Pam!

    " I know in my rational brain it's wrong to think that way, but sometimes I just can't help it. Then I have to get hold of myself and push through. It's painful. But once through, I can then appreciate what I've learned and how I've grown."

    Yes, and thank you for being so honesty because I think that's how ALL of us are when it comes to life's challenges, I think we all struggle by questioning, "Why is this happening to me?" I did the same thing when I was in the hospital last October and riddled with fear. However, I could sense that everything would be okay and that I was being taken care of. But I also could sense that I had a lot to learn from this experience. So it's only in the looking back and seeing that everything DID work out and that I DID learn things, that gives me the strength and faith for future challenges.

    "I've always told my sons that a thought causes an emotion so change the thought and it will change their emotion."

    I love that!

    And as you said, we are ALL a work in progress; therefore we progress and learn with each new challenge.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a grrrreat weekend and Happy Memorial Day!

    ((((((((( YOU ))))))))
    X

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  19. Happy Memorial Day to you too, Ron!

    Summer is here, can you believe how HOT it's been for the past two days? We've already had to turn our air conditioner on.

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  20. OH MY GOD, Elaine....the heat these past few days has been HORRENDOUS! Like you, I may have to turn on my A/C tonight because it's too hot to sleep without it. I knew this was going to happen, that it would suddenly skyrocket to high temps overnight.

    Stay cool!

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  21. Oh Ron, what a wonderful post! And this is the kind of book I know that I would greatly benefit from because I tend to focus on the challenge instead of looking for what I should be learning from it. I'm a worry wart, so it's hard for me to see past the challenge. What you said is so true, "I seem to gain the most inspiration and strength from the personal and intimate stories of people who experience adversity by embracing it, viewing it as an integral part of their life journey and choose to grow from it." I do too.

    And that YOU for inspiring me to see things differently and giving me affirmation that everything, whether good or bad, happens for the GOOD.

    Have a wonderful weekend, Ron. And Happy Memorial Day x

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  22. Hola Denise!

    I think we all tend to focus on the challenge while going through it, that's only natural. It's only through my past experience with challenging experiences that I can say that I know they all happened for a reason and that I grew from them in a very positive way. I've always been someone who refuses to believe that things happen to me randomly and without a purpose. And please know that I STILL experience fear and worry when something happens to me and my life is disrupted, yet I have faith that it's their for a reason and my goal is to discover what that reason is.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, girl. Have a wonderful weekend and a Happy Memorial Day!

    X

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  23. Great and thought provoking post Ron. Yep, and we never know exactly where "the canvas of life" is going to lead us. Being positive and giving ourselves some kudos and credit is a great thing to do. Of course, it isn't always easy...

    My granny used to tell us, "It doesn't matter which fork in the road you take, because happiness lies down both of them." I've learned that life is what you make, and she was totally right.

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  24. Pat, I can't thank you enough for sharing the brilliant wisdom of what your granny used to tell you because it's something I have learned myself (as I've aged) and TOTALLY agree with. Happiness is a state of mind.

    She's right, life is what we make of it.

    Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts on this post topic, you've added much! Have a great weekend and a Happy Memorial Day!

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  25. I've always believed that everything happens for a reason, my friend. And though that reason might not be apparent while it's happening, usually in retrospect it all becomes clear. I'm not surprised you share the same attitude.

    Hope you're enjoying a loooong weekend!

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  26. Outstanding post topic, Ron! Like you, I believe that everything happens for a reason. It may not be clear what that reason is at first, but as time passes it is revealed to us. I've gone through several difficult times in my life where it seemed that I would never come through it, but I did. And when I did, I felt a stronger and more enlightened person because of the difficulty.

    " Some of that art is free-flowing and easy, other parts can be challenging and disruptive." I like how you said that. I see life driving a car. Sometimes it's smooth and straight ahead, but other times the road gets bumpy and we're forced to take a detour. And it's usually the detours that teach me the most.

    Happy Memorial Day, Ron!

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  27. Hey there Mark!

    "And though that reason might not be apparent while it's happening, usually in retrospect it all becomes clear."

    You are absolutely right. And I believe the same thing.

    "I'm not surprised you share the same attitude."

    Ha! And me you!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a faaaaaaaaaabulous Memorial Day tomorrow!

    X to you and Tara

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  28. Hey ho Robert!

    "I've gone through several difficult times in my life where it seemed that I would never come through it, but I did. And when I did, I felt a stronger and more enlightened person because of the difficulty."

    Yes, same here. Isn't it something how even though while going through a challenging experience; feeling frightened and confused, we end up seeing the "why" eventually and gain strength and wisdom for next challenge.

    "I see life as driving a car. Sometimes it's smooth and straight ahead, but other times the road gets bumpy and we're forced to take a detour. And it's usually the detours that teach me the most."

    I freaking LOVE your perspective and analogy. That is AWESOME!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a Happy Memorial Day tomorrow!

    X

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  29. Ron, that's wonderful! Isn't it ironic how things come into our lives when we need them? Synchronicity!

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  30. Yes, synchronicity indeed!
    X

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