“Attention energizes and intention transforms… Whatever you put your attention on will grow stronger in your life. Whatever you take your attention away from will wither, disintegrate and disappear,” Deepak Chopra
By Kimberly Gerry-Tucker
We are probably all aware of what we wish our futures to look like. Some so-called ‘dreams’ may be truly unattainable, (my time is long passed to be a true ballerina for example) and some of these wishes may be buried so deep it’s purely subconscious and we aren’t truly aware of them. I found this out when I realized I’d been painting and collaging red houses a lot. Next to bubbling streams and forests of course. One day, I went into my closet and saw a canvas I’d forgotten about that was five years old. It had !voila! 1) Red house. 2) Bubbling brook. 3) Trees. Imagine my awareness that this is where I’ve perceived myself living one day, and it has been subconsciously there for more years than I thought. Here are some of the paintings I’ve done on the topic; with the exception of the one found in the closet. I painted over that canvas:
About Wish Boards. A “vision” or “wish” board is a visual representation of wishes, life goals, interests, really anything that represents what you want to do, where you want to go, what you want to be and who you are on the inside… Can Wish Boards clarify the focus? Well, sure. Make a digital wish board/collage on your iPad or laptop and save it as your PC or FB or Twitter ‘wallpaper,’ or you can make a tangible 3-D wish board ‘poster’ and hang it somewhere you see every day. The thing about it is, it’s very open. Cut out slogans that speak to you, magazine clippings of locales you wish to visit, etc. They’re fun to create and can be added to as often as you like. Mine would look something like this:
Some of the things on my personal “wish board are:” Taking training courses, Writing more (in particular some work I promised Donna Williams I’d do), Going to concerts over the summer, Raising insects, Thinking like a ballerina (lithe, focused, graceful and strong), Getting better quality sleep (redecorating my bedroom with blackout curtains to block the streetlight, for starters and overall making it a more pleasing room to be in), Exercising more, Building more faery villages, Planting more seeds, Building a few Rock Gardens, Eating well, Traveling, Doing more art shows and book readings and presentations, and Making more art with children…
In my particular Wish Board there is digital art of my present self; nurturing my child self and also of Myself at the goal weight I want to be at. You will see me miming as well, as a reminder I want to do this again at some point soon, as well as start up mosaics again-I’ve got suitcases and jars full of broken pieces, so why not put them together!
So I encourage you to make a board like this. Add a feather, a found bauble, a texture you love- anything that feels like positive energy to you, because after all, these types of things are all about the positive energies that go into making it, and the energies one hopes to manifest. You’ve heard the saying that what you focus on most, is what grows. Take two identical plants, ignore one (that’s negative) and nurture the other one with enough sun, water and attention-and see what happens. Intention is powerful.
Deepak Chopra states, “attention energizes and intention transforms… Whatever you put your attention on will grow stronger in your life. Whatever you take your attention away from will wither, disintegrate and disappear.” (Chopra, 1994)
Personally, and I think many people agree with me, I think it’s important never to attach a perseveration to the outcome when thinking about what you want. Have fun with this project and let it flow wherever it goes without focusing on the outcome. We are all of us in a connection with energy all the time, and I believe when we are not afraid to dream, there is great power in manifestation, in shaping our world how we’d like it to be.
I remember when I was going through a rough time, and the lovely Keri (Bowers) told me to write “You are enough!” on my bathroom mirror and leave it there awhile. I highly recommend this- as looking into a mirror and seeing this written across your face really has a satisfying, empowering and nurturing effect. Another thing she told me to do, is to tack up a little note beside my bed, about writing at least a little bit every day, so that it would be the first thing I see every morning.
With the new year upon us now, many people reexamine what the old year was, and what they want to manifest for the year ahead, so this is a prime time to make a wish board, right? Years ago, when I was in my 20s, it came time for me to examine how I felt about my weight gain after having a child. I found a picture of a tall, lean woman in a clothing catalog. She was wearing leggings, a T-shirt and cardigan, and her body type was a lot like mine-pre-pregnancy. I printed out a picture of me on my printer and carefully cut out my head. Then I cut the model’s head off and glued my head to her body! I did reach my weight goal. I’m not saying it’s because of this picture, which I laminated and kept on my refrigerator for a year, but subliminally I think I gave it a lot of side-eye, even subconsciously, whenever I opened the refrigerator!
I really don’t know why I continually paint red houses next to forests and streams, but I’ll go with it. I like the idea of ballerinas and what they stand for and that is why it is on my board as well. In an interview with me years ago, Donna Williams addressed the ballerina subject. Here is what she said:
“I didn’t want to be a ballerina but I was trained for it. I did love the netting and satin though and those shoes smell great, and I loved the music and movement and the regimental army thang of training was probably majorly good for me given my brain and body weren’t on speaking terms, I had very little receptive language and could learn best through physical patterning, and had no attention span or impulse control. Hats off to the boss of that decision. I’ve no regrets. But being on stage wasn’t for me… yet learning TO DO IT probably is behind why I can hack lecturing and presenting as a ‘pragmatic exercise’… wild what things teach you, it’s often never what others might imagine. And I really support music, art and dance therapy with some auties.”
I am continually reinventing myself-like stones in a stream, where water flow, over time, changes the shape, rounds the edges. My goals and wishes for this year are health and being present. Wrapping up this Wish board blog, I hope I encouraged you to make a board, or try this: Make a Wish Board poster with a child for their room and send it along to Art of Autism. March is “Youth Art Month” and we will be seeking youth art. You can send them to PODSartofautism@gmail.com.
Kimberly Gerry-Tucker resides in Connecticut with her significant other Al and with her beloved pets, where she works in QA, at finding bugs in software.
Cover art selected for Samantha Craft’s 2nd printing of “Everyday Aspergers!”
A story published in Belo Cipriani’s “Firsts- Coming of age stories by people with disabilities.”
And upcoming artwork on display in Woonsocket Rhode Island’s “Museum of Work and Culture (March 16 through April 28).” Theme: animals.