Posted by: Kelly Deeny | January 3, 2015

Day 83 of the Artistic Spirit Pledge

111 Day Artistic Spirit Pledge: Spiritual Growth Through Creative Expression

Day 83: A Healthier Me in Mind, Body, and Spirit

A few days ago (Day 80), I wrote about my rollercoaster year that was 2014. While there were moments of stress and frustration, I also made a great many positive changes – one of which involved cleaning up my eating habits. I made a conscious choice to cut back on carbonated beverages and not mindlessly snack while watching television after 8 p.m.; some days were better than others. When I got on the scale this morning, I was elated to discover what I already suspected – my healthier choices led to positive results!

I am officially down 19 lbs. from my heaviest weight. That doesn’t mean I’m at a healthy weight; I’m not. Given my height and age I am still roughly twenty-five pounds heavier than is healthy for my body. That being said, I am thrilled with the changes I’ve already noticed. I can see the difference in my face, in the fit of my pants, and around my mid-section.

Here’s a before and after:

 

2013

2013

December 2014

December 2014

What does this have to do with “Art” and “Spirit”? A lot actually! In making healthier choices for my body, I’m acknowledging its importance. As I stated before, I spent more time taking care of my mind and spirit, and less caring to the needs of my body. When I see the positive changes in my figure, I feel immense pride and confidence. I’m not only cleansing my body, but also my mind and spirit. The art I create and my desire to engage in artistic ventures reflects the newfound rejuvenation.

Whenever I get stuck in a rut or am unhappy with my current state of being, I think back to when I was most confident and fulfilled. When I was 19, I left college (after only a few weeks) and started a new life. I reinvented myself. As such, I met people who mentored me, supported me, and helped me believe in myself on many levels. I applied to the local community college when I felt ready to do so, and my life changed drastically. It was like opening a door inside and allowing my spirit to fly. I took an acting class (which I LOVED) and a Health & Wellness class where I learned to track my calories and use fitness equipment. While one exercise helped my spirit shine, the other gave me a healthier outlook and body.

For the first time in my young life I felt beautiful inside and out – most of my life I only felt the prior, not the latter. I traveled to places of my choosing, went out on dates without feeling overwhelmingly shy, and wore clothes that weren’t skimpy but also weren’t frumpy. I bought makeup and got my hair highlighted. I had my nails done and even tackled waxing. I loved the young lady reflected in the mirror and the spirit that shone through.

2004 in Ireland

2004 in Ireland

I look back for research purposes only. I don’t want to relive the past, simply learn from the good and the bad. What did I learn? That feeling beautiful and confident comes from within first. I have the power inside to make positive changes for my mind, body, and spirit, but I must see the value in each in order to take the necessary steps. When I do, I allow the Artist within to flourish!

 

**I am an Artistic Spirit! For most of my life I’ve used the creative arts as a source of spiritual exploration and healing, even though I didn’t always do so consciously. Sometimes I was the instrument creating the art and other times I was on the receiving end. The connection between art and spirituality is so significant in my life that it’s infused into everything I do. I love music, theatre, television drama series (daytime and primetime), and creative writing and find fulfillment in artistic expression of various sorts: singing, acting, and jewelry design. Throughout the next 28 days, I’ll delve into how all of the above strengthens my spirit and has saved my life on more than one occasion.**

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