¨When we consciously adventure into the landscape of birth, we learn to be present and we discover more about our role on this planet.¨ -Laurien Baart
Come, and adventure with me; Welcome to ‘Labour land’. This map is an invitation to explore the journey of giving birth and figuring out how you want to bring your baby into this world. A drawing for a journey of exploration which helps you to prepare, and become more conscious about the choices you make. A guide to give birth in a way that is aligned with your values and your heart. A free and loving birth.
Bringing ‘Labour Land’ into form happened while I was doing the visualisation practice ‘explore the landscape of your business’ of the course Become Your Own Business Advisor of Hiro Boga. The landscape of ‘the Wild and Free Society’ by Lou Niestadt also inspired me to create this map.
May the ‘Map of Labour Land’ remind you that you carry this awesome natural creative power of your female body. It’s my deepest wish that it empowers you to reclaim your inner knowing and wisdom of your body. So that you can bring your love, creativity and power into the world, to form it with your presence, your heART and your stories. More than anything, I want this for myself and my children; I want it for all of you; I want it for mother Earth.
P.S. If you feel that the ‘Map of Labour Land’ would serve your sisters, daughters, mothers, cousins, friends, community, midwives, doulas, (yoga) teachers, nurses and doctors, please share it with them.
Nazaré is a place in Portugal world famous for its giant waves. The waves are bigger than 20m (!) and there are big waves surfing competition being held every year. This week the Nazaré challenge world surf league took place.
I find it so fascinating that people surf those massive waves. Even though the surfers are very experienced I cannot imagine how they’re able to overcome the fear. I’ve been out in the ocean in waves that were too big or me to surf and I could feel my heart pounding in my chest. The fear kept me save and told me my limit had been reached. Go big or go home? Home please!
Fear is natural. We all know that voice that’s telling us that it isn’t comfortable with something or simply that it’s just not ready for what’s coming. Whether it’s surfing big waves or putting your creative work out in the world.
I surfed on the internet and I found three tips from the famous surf writer Nick Carroll to ‘reset the system’. These three things will get you out of the ‘fear loop’ and give yourself a chance to see the situation clearly again. I think that these tips are also relevant for creative processes.
Three things you can try to overcome fear:
Share your fear and talk to others about what spooks you.
Concentrate on your breathing. Take 10 deep breaths and feel what it does to you.
Try it, do it anyway! Catch that wave! This is the fastest way to freedom. Enjoy whatever it is with a fearless and open heart. Consider this: A wipe out is even better than a frozen and stuck position as it makes you feel alive.
What’d happen if we freestyled a bit more in life and let go of our expectations?
Here’s a little surf inspired story: One day while I was getting out of the water I found a surfboard on the shore with a broken leash. I looked around for its owner and just when I started to worry I spotted someone waving at me. Apart from the broken leash there was something else about the surfboard that caught my eye: it didn’t have fins.
Fins allow you to control your board in the water. Without them it’s way harder to manoeuvre the surfboard. Curiously, I asked the owner what’d happened. He told me that he’d been surfing for years and that one time by accident the fins of his board broke. Instead of fixing the fins he paddled out again and discovered, against all odds, that surfing finless was loads of fun!
I think this is such a great example to illustrate that it’s important to let go of the expectations that we have. You might already (think that you) know that something’s impossible. That it won’t work… But. What if you knew that you’d be fine no matter what the outcome would be? Would you try?
With this message I hope you’ll give one of your (creative) ideas a try: Failure is an experience, it won’t make you less worthy as a person.
Feeling blocked, stressed or uninspired? Take a break! When you do something fun, BAM, inspiration will hit. Always. So give that beautiful brain of yours a break. You’ll see that a healthy and rested brain takes your creative ideas to the next level!
Here are 5 suggestions for relaxation that’ll boost your creativity:
Take a bath. Don’t forget to light a candle and add some sea-salt or essential oils!
2. Listen to your favourite music and sing out loud. Music lifts your soul!
3. Make yourself a nice cup of tea and read a book. There’s nothing like it!
4. Immerse yourself in nature and its colours. Simply go outside, take a walk and soak up the sunlight.
5. Do some exercise like running, dancing, walking, yoga or swimming. Movement helps you to get out of your head and stimulate new thoughts.
Honestly, do you ever complain about your body? I know…
Being pregnant makes me realize that OUR BODIES ARE A WONDERLAND. Instead of blaming and complaining I LET THE SHI(FT) HIT THE FAN and wrote an ode to my body:
Yep, drawing body parts isn’t my strongest point but I did it anyway. Are you going to write or draw too? I found creating these pages empowering; they made me help to embrace the things that make me… ME!
Isn’t it frustrating to wait? Well, not if you bring something to draw! Over a month I turned daily moments of waiting into something meaningful and captured them in this tiny book. It was also shown at the art-exhibition 12cm in Pasaia (Spain) and Hendaya (France).
This is my favourite page of the book; waiting for waves. When you’re surfing you spend time in the ocean looking at the horizon for the waves to come. They come and go and it’s a matter of waiting for the right one. The thing is though, how do you know if it’s the one? Well, until you’ve tried!
Working on this project made me realise that we spend so much time of our lives waiting; waiting to create, waiting to make, waiting to do, waiting to know, waiting to start, waiting for the right moment… But hey, this is it!
What are YOU waiting for? Is there something that you really want to do, make or have? What’s holding you back?
PS. I’ve also created a Spotify Playlist “What are you waiting for?” with songs about… Yes you’ve guessed it; waiting!
Oh and if you have a friend, colleague or someone close to you that is waiting. Please share this blogpost. It might be the tiny spark that they need to start chasing their dream!