SoulCollage: Making friends with my Monsters
SoulCollage®: Making friends with my Monsters
If you have been following my blog for a while, you will know that I am passionate about art, collage and personal development. I love using SoulCollage® and intuitive art practices to tame some gremlins and make friends with my personal monsters. SoulCollage® is a powerful tool for pulling all of my creative passions together and for making friends with my monsters.
As a SoulCollage facilitator, I love seeing the impact on others as well as learning about myself. I believe that we teach what we most need to learn. I am learning to accept and honor the many parts of myself. In SoulCollage®, Seena Frost teaches that we are all “the one and the many.” Sometimes my many isn’t so pretty but my work with my personal deck of cards is teaching me to appreciate all of who I am and to see the whole. If you are wondering “What is SoulCollage?” – you can read my post here.
Perhaps the reason why I love mandalas so much is that they are a beautiful visual example of the one and the many. Each circle is made up of many different designs, colors and symbols but it is the appeal of the whole image that pulls us in. SoulCollage® is like that, each card we create represents one small slice of our personal mandala. Lately, I have been focusing on making peace with my physical body. The one that I have created is currently overweight and out of shape. Yes, I acknowledge that I created this monster, no one is to blame. My biggest challenge is to stop seeing this “monster” as outside of me or other than me. I am learning to accept ALL of me. I am pretty darn pleased with the rest of my life and right now I have the luxury of time to focus on wellness, so what’s the issue. When I am feeling whole and healthy, life feels like the card above. In SoulCollage, we allow each card to speak to us using an “I am the one who” statement. For this card it might be, “I am one who loves and nurtures my physical and spiritual selves.” No monsters here…
I realized that in my personal deck of SoulCollage cards, I had images honoring the healthy me, the one who is good at self-care, the fit one who loves to exercise, the one who meditates and enjoys solitude, and the one who feels connected to others but I hadn’t created a card for the part of me: the monster over-indulges, stuffs my face and gets disgusted with myself. That card is as much a part of me as all the other parts. It’s a shadow side of the Minette who loves colorful salads, raw vegies and healthy meals. The shadow side is not bad, really it’s not a monster, it’s just another teacher, another part of me showing up to demonstrate where in my life I am out of alignment and need to get back on track. Here is my “piggy” card which says “I am one who stuffs my feelings with food. I am one who eats when I want to cry. I am one who uses food to feed my spirit when what I really crave is connection.”
Update from 2021: I originally wrote this post back in 2013 and I love re-reading it. I still have these cards. I still have remnants of this shadow aspect of myself but through this process not only am I healthier but I am, more importantly, more loving and gentle with all aspects of me. The beauty of this card was the owning that this is me too. I am not perfect. I don’t want to hide from this part of me. In owning her I was able to love and accept her.
I was listening to an audio from the library at Kaleidosoul.com, one of my absolute favorite resources for SoulCollage® and a woman was talking about different archetypes that we experience. One of the archetypes she mentioned was The Orphan. For me, feeling isolated and neglected is often at the root of my emotional eating issues. I hadn’t even realized that I created a card for The Orphan, but as soon as she started talking, I knew that card represented the orphan for me. Here is that card along with one that represents Community and Connection and might say, “I am one who feels connected to the world around me. I enjoy my community and spend time with people that I love and that love me.”
Through journaling, I am able to dialogue with these cards and their images. Through these interior dialogues, I learn more about myself, why I am here, where I am stuck and guidance for how to move forward. The cards never cease to amaze me with their teachings. All the learning and intuition experienced when working from these cards is within me already, but there is something powerful about creating the visual aspect and entering into dialogue with it that allows me to return to alignment more quickly than just my meditation or journaling practice on their own.
If you are interested in learning more about how to use SoulCollage® as part of your personal spiritual practice or as a tool for personal growth, you can schedule a free Breakthrough to Creative Courage session with me here. I use SoulCollage as part of my individual and group coaching programs.
I had never heard of SoulCollage before, I am currently exploring a meditation practice as well as journaling and finding it very enlightening. I can definitely see how this could be a great addition.
Even using collaged images in your journaling can bring that visual piece to your practice to add more depth and meaning. Sometimes words aren’t what we need.
I love this idea. I am currently facing down my own demons (or monsters) and I like the way you turn monsters into teachers.
Thanks, Jen. It’s true that each of them has something to teach us and we can look at them with this perspective, it’s easier to dialogue with them instead of trying to run away or hide from them.
Minette, I like your collages. You did a great job of explaining this to someone who knows nothing about this sort of thing. I can tell that you really love what you do.
Have a great day!
Thanks, Amy, great feedback.
Very interesting Minette! It reminds me of an exercise I did with a Coach not that long ago where you speak to your body to determine what it is trying to tell you with it’s physical pain…can be very enlightening!
Thanks Angela! It’s a very powerful process that allows us to honor our wholeness, I think that’s why I love it. I have done something similar to the process you mention and it’s so valuable to clear those stored energy centers. Sounds like we are on similar journeys 🙂