Many people are asking the question, How are we going to survive all of this?

And it’s not famine, homelessness or direct threats to our survival. The madness is simply what’s coming out every day in the news.

How do we make it through the day in the face of so much negativity streaming at us day and night?

Author Jessica Morrell asked this question on Facebook and my answer was: “Deciding to rise above it one drama at a time. Appreciating the little things. Calmly standing up to negativity.”

If you are struggling with staying positive, and it’s affecting your creative confidence, here are some resources that may work for you.

Tap into daily doses of good news

How Positive Media Can Make Us Better People from Greater Good

Greater Good Home Page

Subscribe to Small Victories for a weekly dose of good news

Have happy hobbies

Journaling

Collage

Writing

Seek More Joy Now

Be the good you want to see

Doing Good Together

Remember random acts of kindness

This Spiritual Life

Project Happiness

Random Acts Of Kindness

Understand the psychology of bullies

Understand bullying

Understand non-violence

Teach kids assertiveness

Get frustrations out

Stepping

Practice resiliency

Walk more

Find support groups

Fill your inbox with irreverent inspiration

Rob Brezsny

Austin Kleon

Tiny Buddha

Fill your social media feeds with mad creativity

Flora Forager

Jill Badonsky

Flatlayforever

Connect meaningfully with self and others

Meditate

Practice mindfulness

Hug loved ones more

 

I am a veteran journalist, author and coach with over a decade and a half of experience and a wealth of techniques to share. I am focused on making the world a saner, more expressive place. I help folks become more creative for personal enjoyment, professional development and transformational growth. Whether you are a professional creative or hope to become one some day, I can help you embrace your personal strengths, explore your creative possibilities, and evolve incrementally into your most inspiring self. If you are ready to achieve creative consistency in your life and career, email me about monthly coaching calls. To learn more about increasing your creative confidence, please check out my online school. Stay tuned for ways to save money by becoming a Beta User for my next new course by subscribing to The Prosperous Creative. And don’t forget to get these blog posts delivered to your inbox, so you never miss a post. If you appreciate my work—school, products, blog and social media posts—you are welcome to make a contribution of any size at any time. Thank you for your support!

~ Photo by Brooke Lark

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How can we expect the world we see around us to evolve, if we won’t evolve?

The world won’t change until we change. And if we refuse to change, then the world is stuck.

We can do our part by turning within and digging deep to uncover the strengths we bring to the global table.

I say global table because we need to recognize that our lives have a ripple effect.

All the love and care I pour into raising my daughter has an impact on the future. When I raise her to be a thoughtful, brave and expressive individual, I am making an impact on the future.

And I mean in both the near future and in the future when I am no longer here.

I am cool with leaving behind a more evolved person than I was at her age. In fact, I am totally down with it, because let me tell you, if you think the world is not evolved right now, it was quite it bit worse when I was a kid.

When I write an article that makes the world even a slightly better place, I know I have made a difference. I really value all the skills I have developed and share with others that allow me to do this.

When I pour my best ideas and efforts into an online course that will positively transform a person’s life, I feel good about myself. I know that my work has impacted many and will continue to touch more lives thanks to all of my painstaking effort.

In order to be a healthy person in a pretty crazy world, I need to take good care of me, keep growing as a person, and look for ways to become wiser and more conscious — because this is what the world is desperate for right now.

Continuing education can play a part in all of this because our personal growth translates into evolution for all. We will know we are on the right track by how good we feel while we are learning and growing.

Self-awareness is a process, not a destination. That’s why I’m always asking my students, How do you feel now? How are you different than you used to be? What is new for you? What do you need to let go of and prioritize now?

I am interested in working with deep, thoughtful, self-aware people, who want to express more of themselves in the world. Because these are the people the world needs most right now — the people who want to heal, serve and contribute to an evolving world.

I hope you value your joy over pleasing others. I hope you recognize that time spent understanding what you believe matters. I hope you will know that you deserve a beautiful home that reflects your most expressive self.

When you care about yourself, you get ready to change the world. That’s how taking care of yourself becomes transformational. Take care of you first and then watch how much easier it is to express yourself in the world in a constructive manner.

What you love and who you are inextricably linked. When you dig deep, you know what the single next most important thing to do is, and doing that next thing feels satisfying.

Your truth is living in you. It’s up to you to dive deep inside yourself and bring it up to the surface one glimmer at a time. Your best self living your highest truth IS what the world needs now. Thanks for being here. And thanks for being you.

I am a veteran journalist, author and coach with over a decade and a half of experience and a wealth of techniques to share. I am focused on making the world a saner, more expressive place. I help folks become more creative for personal enjoyment, professional development and transformational growth. Whether you are a professional creative or hope to become one some day, I can help you embrace your personal strengths, explore your creative possibilities, and evolve incrementally into your most inspiring self. If you are ready to achieve creative consistency in your life and career, email me about monthly coaching calls. To learn more about increasing your creative confidence, please check out my online school. Stay tuned for ways to save money by becoming a Beta User for my next new course by subscribing to The Prosperous Creative. And don’t forget to get these blog posts delivered to your inbox, so you never miss a post. If you appreciate my work—school, products, blog and social media posts—you are welcome to make a contribution of any size at any time. Thank you for your support!

~ Photo by Nick Hillier On Unsplash

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Welcome to my new series #creativetothecore — meant to help you cultivate more creative joy in your life.

Let me know if you can relate to this post by commenting.

If you would like to share or respond, please use the social media tag #creativetothecore and/or link back to this post.

I’ve been wanting to start this series for while and now seems like a good time. So let’s begin.

What The Heck?

I was verbally attacked in a parking lot out of the blue the other day. A few minutes into the verbal assault, it hit me. Why am I sitting here taking this? I don’t have to, and I’m not going to.

So I got out of my car and I stood up for myself. I used my phone to capture photos of the vehicle and license plate and let the abusive driver know I was taking the evidence to the police. Because I stood up for myself, the man stopped dumping on me and high-tailed it out of there. There were a couple more attempts at intimidation but I wasn’t backing down because I was not willing to accept mistreatment as something I deserved.

I could feel a sense of personal power the moment I thought, No. I am not putting up with this. I don’t have to, and I’m not going to.

If I had just sat there and taken his verbal abuse, he would have won, and I would have felt ashamed afterwards for not standing up for myself. By confronting the abuser and reporting him to the authorities, I won. It was a personal victory, not one that was focused on a particular outcome.

In a million different ways from the time we are born, women are programmed to take abuse that is dished out on us by men. But we don’t have to take it. We all have personal power, and sometimes we get into a habit of not using it. But if you want to bring more creativity and joy into your life, you need to be able to say no to shamers with your words and your actions.

The world is full of shamers. Shamers set a trickle down effect into motion in which those who have been shamed in the past become shamers in the present and in the future.

You may have shamers in your family, at work, in your community, in your church, in your mom’s group—you may even have a shamer as the leader of your country.

A shamer is a person who makes it their mission to try to make others feel ashamed. To shame means to reproach, scold or disgrace another. Sometimes humiliation is involved in shaming. But whether overt or subtle, shaming always feels terrible for the person targeted.

You know you are being shamed if the scorn of another causes you to feel pain in your body—especially in your heart or gut areas. Our bodies are barometers and we can use them to help us steer through life in a constructive manner including how we interact with others.

You can learn to recognize shaming behavior for what it is—another person’s rejected pain coming at you because that person refuses to own it and heal it. And then, like Wonder Woman with her indestructible bracelets, you can learn to deflect shame, so you do not have to carry it for others any longer.

Cut Through The Confusion Of Shaming

People who are shameless shame others while acting as though their behavior is completely justifiable. But shaming is never constructive. You may even feel judged on an energetic level without any words being spoken. Body language often speaks volumes and can make a sensitive soul uncomfortable without a word being uttered.

Shamers are often masters at manipulation. If you feel hostility coming from another person, you are likely not imagining it. Just remember, there is no such thing as healthy shame. The word itself implies harm.

Think of phrases such as “Shame on you!” “For shame!” and “You ought to be ashamed of yourself,” and you will swiftly remember what shame feels like.

Shamers come by their scolding and disapproving because of woundedness. But don’t take it upon yourself to try to fix or help a shamer. Don’t even to try to show a shamer the error of her ways.

Whenever an adult tries to fix or change another adult, the fixer gets burned. This ricochet effect is to remind you to stay in your lane and not try to become the arbiter of another person’s healing. There are plenty of folks in the world offering services to those who genuinely want healing. Until a person wants to heal, nothing is going to change.

You may think a shamer deserves retaliation, a putting in her place, but try being gentle with yourself instead. Correcting someone after they shame you will only create a tit-for-tat volley that can be challenging to stop once it starts.

Ask yourself if you are trying to care-take feelings of a shamer. Do you notice you never win them over and, worse, you always end up feeling like a doormat? If you feel full of dread and like you have no choice but to comply with a shamer, check yourself, you may be people-pleasing shamers. If you walk in the door as a happy, well-adjusted equal and walk out the door feeling confused, sad and hurt, you probably have legitimate reasons for feeling that way.

The bottom line is: you never do a shamer a favor by letting them dump on you. You never help when you let yourself be treated poorly to avoid conflict. Shamers know how to bring the drama and place the blame and they will keep bringing it and blaming you if you do nothing to inoculate yourself against their behavior.

Try making shaming less personal. Think of it as nasty weather. You would think twice before going out in a storm, right? You would take steps like grabbing a raincoat or an umbrella. If the weather was really severe, you might decide to stay home instead.

Shame is emotional bad weather and there are degrees of it. Make the best choices based on the severity of the shaming. Obviously if someone treats you consistently abusively, you need to say no to that and take better care of yourself by steering clear of that person.

For example, if you were getting married and a member of your fianceé’s family opposes your marriage vehemently and loudly, you probably would not want this person to spoil your special day, family member or not.

The idea that you should take care of the feelings of a person who is obviously hostile towards you is backwards. Healthy adults treat other adults respectfully. It’s not sensible to surround yourself with people who can’t stop shaming you. To sit back and take disrespect to keep the peace or show what a virtuous person you are is likely to backfire.

If people treat you with disrespect, why would you want to spend any time with them at all? I like the phrase, “Not my circus, not my monkeys,” because it’s a playful reminder that other people’s psychological dramas are not my business and I can steer clear of them without getting sucked in.

De-shame Your Life Exercise

What can you do to deal with shamers so they don’t squeeze all the juicy goodness out of your everyday life?

If you feel like someone is shaming you, write the things they say in little cartoon bubbles in your journal. Let these cartoon bubbles accumulate for a while until you have a good-sized collection of them. You can also put how the person makes you feel into words in little thinking cartoon bubbles to indicate things that were not said but were still felt by you.

Mark a date on the calendar in the near future to assess your bubbles. Examine the tone. Is it scornful? Dismissive? Harsh? Hostile?

Cross out any bubbles that do not feel like shaming to you upon second examination. In the bubbles that remain, do you notice a shaming tone?

If yes, then you are probably dealing with a shamer or shamers. Sit with this information for a bit without reacting to it. Just breathe. Don’t act yet. You can create a better life for yourself simply by acknowledging what is true.

Does it make you feel better to know there are people who try to control your behavior using shaming? Knowledge really is power in this regard. Shamers may behave as if they know what is best for you and are only trying to help you, but really you are the one who knows what is best for you and you are the one who can help yourself.

Quietly draw clear boundaries with shamers. This is a conversation between you and you. Or if you are married or have children and the shaming is coming at you as a couple or as a family, a discussion may need to happen with the members of your team. Remember that your goal is to be healthy and take healthy steps, not to react. Think of the Michele Obama line, “When they go low, we go high.” Going high is always a good goal and reminds you to do no harm.

Shaming can be confusing, especially if we are trying to shake off residual shame or serial shaming  from the past, but the shaming you tolerate today is hurting you. You never get used to it and you should not have to. So don’t be afraid to get help from a therapist or a coach to help you understand what is best for you on a day to day basis to recover from shaming.

Always Put Yourself First

If you chronically put other people’s needs before you own, you may struggle to confront shaming in your life. Notice I said confront the shaming not the shamer. Don’t confront shamers. You don’t want go down that rabbit hole. You are going to be busy working on yourself and learning why you allow others to treat you poorly so you can tap into your personal power in the future.

Just remember, if you are feeling shamed, you are likely being shamed. It won’t help to let shamers off the hook. Put yourself first. In your life, your well-being and happiness come first. Shaming is invisible and yet toxic. Tolerating mistreatment will catch up with you on the physical level eventually, if it hasn’t already. Perhaps this is the most urgent reason to start saying no to shaming today—so you can be safe and whole.

Shamers are people who wittingly or unwittingly harm others. We must stop paying so much attention to people who make a hobby of injuring others. We only give them more of our power when we focus on them too much.

Unplug your self-worth from shamers in your life gradually and freedom and joy will steadily take the place of sorrow. No, it is not always easy to distance yourself from shamers. But you are worthy. You have been worthy all along.

You never need to try and get approval from those who are never going to give it to you anyway. Stop trying to fill yourself up with negative attention and start filling yourself up with the gift of existing without censure.

We all deserve it. And we deserve it right now.

~ Photo by Abbie Bernet on Unsplash

 

Christina Katz, a veteran journalist, author and coach with over a decade and a half of experience and a wealth of techniques to share, is focused on making the world a saner, more expressive place. She helps folks become more creative for personal enjoyment, professional development and transformational growth. Whether you are a professional creative or hope to become one some day, Christina can help you embrace your personal strengths, explore your creative possibilities, and evolve incrementally into your most inspiring self. If you are ready to achieve creative consistency in your life and career, email her about monthly coaching calls. To learn more about increasing your creative confidence, please check out Christina’s online school and stay tuned for ways to become a Beta User for her next new course. Subscribe to The Prosperous Creative for the latest news and discounts and get these blog posts delivered to your inbox so you never miss a post.

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I alternate launching creativity and writing courses and now it’s time for a new creativity course!

Beta Users, who help me create the course by answering four rounds of questions, get 50% off courses launching soon.

I am currently seeking Beta Users for my next creativity course, Expressive Outdoors, Sprinkle More You All Around Your Home.

This course will help you refocus your urge to please on charming yourself and your immediate family first. Once you all enjoy the area outside your home, visitors will follow suit! Strangers may even start stopping by to let you know how much they enjoy passing your home. I would not have believed this until it started happening to me.

If your outdoor decor does not consistently lift you up, then this course is for you! Expressive Outdoors is a companion course to Expressive At Home, which I launched in May. Expressive Outdoors focuses on expressing yourself outside your home — on your porches, on your patios, and all around the immediate outside of your home. These are areas that are often neglected outright or simply decorated in a similar way to everyone else.

Putting your unique stamp on the area outside your home is a gradual process. Sure, there are a few things you can do right away but I will help you pace yourself and make transformational choices. This is a self-paced, online video class with the emphasis on tackling manageable assignments after each pep talk.

My goal is for you to say, “This course gave me the motivation to express myself outdoors while having fun doing it and without spending a fortune.”

Expressing yourself outdoors does not have to be expensive and I will explain how. And this is a great time of year to make plans. You do not have to take my Expressive At Home course first, although you may, if you wish. These online courses can be taken in any order.

Here’s the course outline in process:

Expressive Outdoors: Sprinkle More You All Around Your Home
Fun Is The Formula For A Happy Yard
Paint With Living Things
Claim Your Outdoor Inheritance
Upcycle Your Inspiration
Instant Gratification With Containers
Edible Gardening Made Easy
Create An Artful Yard
Finishing Touches Ignite Magic
Savor The Long Game
Enjoy Relaxing Outdoors

The future price of this course will be $99 but, for a limited time, the discounted Beta-user price is $49. Register now to become a Beta User. The Beta period begins on October 2nd and that’s when you can expect your first round of questions. Courses take 3-4 weeks to launch. Register here to become a Beta User — it’s fun and you will learn so much about yourself.




So much inspiration, so much time! Visit my online creative confidence school and start expressing yourself afresh right now. Join the creative confidence club: subscribe to the Christina Katz blog and sign up for The Prosperous Creative ezine for a free gift, the latest news and exclusive discounts you won’t find elsewhere. Need more encouraging words in your life? Check out my Etsy shop. And have you seen all of the helpful offerings in my online shop? Be sure to check them out before you click away. Thanks for reading and thanks for sharing my work with all of your creative friends!

~ Photo by Chloe Ridgway

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The Inspired Creative: September Muses

September 15, 2017

It’s harvest season, yay! I always feel creatively inspired as the season’s change. Don’t you? Here are just a few things I’m geeking out about lately. Thingamabobs A few weeks ago, a friend told me about her Roomba and I have been obsessing about having continually clean floors ever since. I remember when these gadgets […]

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Become A Beta User For My Next Essay Writing Course, All About You

September 13, 2017

My next course is called All About You and it contains five personal essay writing assignments that help you explore and understand your unique point of view. Individuality is an crucial quality in an essay writer. I often find that writers have a habit of striving to make their writing universal instead of striving to […]

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Total Eclipse Of The Hype: Writers Writing About Past Eclipse Experiences

August 19, 2017

Beyond all of the hype and product-hawking around the eclipse of 2017, I find the words of writers who have witnessed eclipses in the past to be deeply comforting. If you are feeling similarly distracted by all the media drama about the total eclipse, consider taking a trip back to simpler times by reading these […]

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Creative Confidence Is Always Available To You

August 7, 2017

Here’s a little pep talk about creative confidence that went out in my last newsletter. If you would like more reminders about how creatively powerful you always are, why not get on my email list or subscribe to this blog?   You have more abilities than you realize. You are an incredibly able person. And […]

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My Online Course Expressive Outdoors Follows The Success Of Expressive At Home

July 27, 2017

Learn More About Expressive At Home In my opinion, there is nothing better than becoming a bit more expressive every single day. And there is nothing worse than being creatively blocked. Ugh! As a writer, I am fortunate. I get to express myself all the time. Naturally, expressing creativity always feels great. But in recent […]

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Butterfly Wisdom: A Softer, Gentler Way To Succeed At Anything

July 5, 2017

While I was creating my latest course, Effortless Essay Writing, I received an important reminder from a butterfly that reminded me that creative confidence can be strong and gentle. Over the weeks I was working on the course, summer started in earnest, and while summer is not my favorite season, I love gardening, and I […]

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