(With a tangent to reflect how different subjects connect, which fits the theme of the entry)
I always look for ways to use time most efficiently. At the gym, I am not one of those who rest between poses. I let one muscle group rest while I work another group, or stretch that group. The HeartMark Yogalates that I developed is a healthy workout that really respects the body. It also respects the fact that none of us has time to waste. You can find relaxation and focus without just sitting there doing nothing, and I know many of you would go nuts from that. Beyond the physical benefits, the relaxation comes about in large part because the brain manipulates the movements of the body. I choose movements that balance out the hemispheres of the brain. Between the patterns of motion and the aesthetics of the movement, we find the bliss that leaves the students asking where else do I teach…
How can a mom of three find time to create so many brands for licensing? I just assembled the new portfolios for the SURTEX trade show. In addition to about 20 portfolios of inventions, art brands, character based properties, stories, poems, games, room décor, jewelry, and two types of fitness classes, I just added repeat patterns. How do I find the time to do it? I work the hemispheres! I’ll explain.
The brain has natural rhythms. If you’re ever not in the mood to do something, it means that the hemisphere responsible for that activity is less active than another hemisphere. If you can afford to pay attention to which hemisphere is more active and do “what you feel like,” then do so! I am not saying that students should drop their homework and watch television. Or that adults should drop their responsibilities and “veg” out. Instead, switch from one productive activity to another.
Specifically for students, if your mind is not in the mood for math, do your reading. If you are not in the mood for reading, try memorizing facts. If you are not in the mood for memorizing facts, try research. The best way to be efficient is to find the right time to do the right responsibility. You cannot always do that. But when you can, your mind will be most efficient. And the quality of the work will be at its best.
People don’t usually listen to what goes on in their hemispheres as much as I do. I listen all the time. And I pay attention. If my writing side is active, then I write. If the drawing side is active, I draw. I try to seize onto those cycles. And like the muscles of the body, if I have used one side for a long time, I don’t just stop and walk away from my work. Instead, I do something work related that simply uses another side of the brain. It doesn’t have to be on the right or left specifically. It just has to feel right. It’s usually a different area. But one area then feeds and complements another.
For this reason, I have never had a dry spell, a creative block, or whatever some people think they have. You cannot force creativity. You can stimulate the mind and the areas less active by working in the areas that are active. This keeps you productive, like an oiled machine in motion.
[ To use the physical body as an example again, I compare this to how the body feels when it’s not in the mood for one physical activity but does another instead. When you’re at the gym, if you are not in the mood to jog, typically because you are tired or in pain, you should stretch. Eventually, your body will just want to get up. If you are more in the mood to walk, then walk. Eventually, this activity will give you more and more energy until you will have the desire to run. If all this activity does not lead to more energy, then you probably need to rest. The idea that you should force yourself is contrary to what’s good for you. All the HeartMark Yogalates classes use this approach to listening to the body and building energy.
I could make the above physical analogy more related to the brain hemispheres if I compare physical exercises that involve counting, keeping patterns, and keeping track of directions, versus activities that permit more free expression. However, I would like to keep this subject for another entry. ]
My art wants to burst out no matter what obstacles may get in the way. [This includes skill!] I get around computer troubles, children’s needs, and time constraints by using the hemispheres to the max. So if the computer does not work, I build from Fimo the Heartlings that connect with the HeartMark. If my children need attention, I find an activity that benefits my work and them at the same time like drawing. If they insist on using my computer, I file.
I am especially grateful that these “obstacles” are there to force me to change my activities and perspectives. Sometimes the baby wants to nurse just when I think I am on a roll. A particular “hemisphere” is active and I am riding it, getting a lot done. But as I am pulled away, nursing gives me time to reflect and make progress, too. Sometimes I write masterpieces while nursing. Sometimes these get lost. But that’s really not as relevant as the benefits from coming back after a break, with a new perspective. Three children, over 6 years of nursing total, and enough articles, recipes, new inventions, artwork, products, tradeshows, published books,…to show these “obstacles” are quite helpful!
The key to being efficient is to exercise as many sides of our brain as possible. However, part of what makes this so beneficial is that the sides end up forming better connections. Even if you don’t have as many brain cells, you end up connecting the ones you do a lot better. (Connecting is the key to everything that I do. I connect objects to make hearts like my HeartMark patent. And I connect hearts.) I believe connecting ideas and thoughts is the key to innovation, solutions, and even personal fulfillment.
Exercising every part of the brain is also the best way to bring balance. Every side gets to express itself and mature. It’s very gratifying. I have written about this in more detail in other entries.
I would love for everyone to learn to listen to their body and their hemispheres. Please do not push yourselves contrary to your needs. Please make a HeartMark, take a deep breath, and think about what you should do next that will meet your needs best.
I HeartMark You,
*. Even when you are required to do a task that does not fit your “mood,” you can still navigate the hemispheres. I recently worked on my taxes. I found the perfect moments for searching through bags for receipts that weren’t filed yet, vs. photocopying, vs. logging in tables, vs. adding up numbers. I found the whole process very satisfying. You can always listen to yourself to find the right time for each part of a project.