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Who can empathise with me? I’m a thinker… I’m often in my head and don’t say too much as I feel like I need to figure things out myself. As a business owner, my mind chatter can keep me awake at night, and can be distracting during the day. The chatter varies from, “did I make the correct decision?”, to “how many times do I need to repeat myself?”, to “am I good enough?”.

Over the years I’ve explored different ways of quieting the mind chatter, from walking and exercising to meditation and doodling. When I introduced drawing mandala’s into a full moon meditation practice, I discovered that the act of drawing the mandala helped me to push pause on the silent yakking.

I also discovered that drawing mandalas re-ignited my creative interests, along with my fascination of circles, sacred geometry, and all things associated… crop circles; women circling; the full moon, the Goddess symbol; the pentacle and mandalas {traditional and non-traditional}.  The circle is universal, sacred and divine. It represents the infinite nature of energy, and the inclusivity of the universe.

The mandala can be seen, in some shape or form across many cultures – Tibetan monks create intricate sand mandala, Navajo Indians create medicine wheels, and Taoists created the yin and yang symbol. The word ‘Mandala’ is Sanskrit and translated means centre and circle, however it is far more than a simple shape. Some say a mandala represents wholeness, others an essence, and for me, its a sacred space connecting me to my soul.

As much as I’m in awe of the beautiful, intricate, traditional mandalas, not everyone is drawn to creating such mandala styles. I like that I can use the philosophy and shape of the mandala to create similar imagery that aligns to who I am and where I am, at that moment in time.

Types of Non-Traditional Mandalas

I get a great deal of pleasure drawing (and colouring) mandalas because the non-traditional forms don’t need to be perfect. Some of the non-traditional forms of mandalas:

  • a circular vision board applicable for the month
  • colour in a printable mandala design that resonates with you
  • hand draw or paint a mandala yourself
  • use what’s in your garden, such as pebbles and flowers
  • use digital photographs
  • use sand and colouring
  • a mosaic mandala using things around the home such as glass, tiny pieces of paper, buttons.

A Form of Meditation

Creating or colouring a mandala is a powerful form of meditation, relaxation and creative expression, allowing me to focus in on what I’m doing and letting go of the chatter in my head. The beauty of drawing or colouring a mandala is that I can stop and start the process based on my time, my need to quieten my thoughts. I never feel I need to finish it in one go. I see it as a slow organic evolution based on how I’m feeling at the time.

I love that I don’t have to force things… and I can ‘go with the flow’. There are no wrong or right choices.  It’s never about deciding what’s next. It’s about… asking and accepting what comes… letting go of thinking and allowing your design to flow from within.

Another form of meditation, which has evolved from my mandala drawing is doodling. Doodling is a little more “anything goes” and it pushes me to be more adventurous with my creativity. I discovered that doodling also helps me let go of my thoughts. I find myself totally absorbed in the processes, and I can thank Katie Flowers for that. Katie’s lunch time ‘Destress Doodling’ classes have been fabulous, and you can either join her in her studio or online (which is my preference as it saves me 2 hours of travel).

While I don’t get to all Katie’s classes, when I do, having had the creative space in the middle of the day re-invigorates me, and I feel much more productive in the afternoon. During the class time, I’ve pushed pause on the chatter, and fully absorb myself in the moment. While I’m not in the room with other participants, I still feel part of the environment. Being allowed to participate online gives me the permission {and I know, I shouldn’t need permission} to take that time out without the stresses of travelling.

What do you do to quieten your mind?

Nicole x