October 2009

For whatever reason, I’m moved to integrate Today’s Photos and Self-Reflecting Queries as one unit in this issue. Your feedback on the format would be appreciated.

When I downloaded and looked at my photos from a recent walk along the boardwalk in Green Cay Wetlands, I realized that it has been a while since I featured water photographs here in Picture to Ponder. Given the healing power of water, I wanted to bring some back.

So I started a search in my computer. Rather than spend an extensive amount of time on it, I decided to go with the first couple that appealed to me in the moment. (Be sure to scroll down to see all three photos.)

In line with my generally striving for perfectionism, I invite you to reflect on your life for a moment or two. Do you find yourself often spending an extensive amount of time looking for the “perfect” person, food, solution, picture….?

Alligator and Wood Stork in Green Cay Wetlands

Both are seemingly at peace. Although not a particularly great composition, this photo, for me, is symbollic of the heavy concentration of a lot of different things in one area of my life, with paths wandering into the unknown just beyond.

Where is your focus when you look at this photo? When you look at your life? Weighted in one area? Meandering? Balanced?

I wish I could share with you the photos I took of the little boy, ultimately on his father’s shoulders, excitedly pointing to and talking about the activities that had been in the scene in front of us with this alligator and the tri-colored heron “taunting” him.

I did not think to get permission to make the photos public, so I will be content with the reinforcement I got, as I experienced progressively “better” photographs as Tyler became engaged in conversation and forgot the camera and posing for it. It is treasured moments like this, along with memorable photos, that are one of the things that will be available for Moms in the upcoming Point and Shoot Photo Telecourse for Moms. (If you are a mom with young children, or know one who is, please check out the link and forward the page information.)

Turtle on a Spatterdock Root in Wakodahatchee Wetlands

When I looked closely at this photo, I noticed that the turtle is looking away from us. Are you maintaining eye contact with people with whom you’re interacting? Or, are your eyes wandering, seemingly not paying attention, even if you are? And, back to projects, as mentioned above – Are you focused or distracted?

Those of you into NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), I’m sure, can expand on an answer based on the direction in which the turtle is looking.

Spatterdock Root and Leaves in Wakodahatchee Weltands

This root, with its strong angular direction, in this picture seems to want to move off the page. Yet the smaller green parts of it are freely flowing back. The vertical part and its reflection provide an anchor.

I like the overall flow and movement in the scene. Are you in tune with the flow and direction of your life? The rhythms? The anchors?

As I inserted the final photograph for today, I noticed that each of the images is moving on a diagonal from lower right, toward the upper left. I’m wondering if any of our readers have any thoughts on that… “meanings” you would like to add. If so, please post on the blog.

Upcoming Programs that Will Enhance Your Life

1 – In addition to my Telecourse for Moms:

2 – For those in business, I invite you to check out my friend Adela Rubio’s upcoming Conscious Business Telesummit, a gathering of Conscious Business Leaders eager to share the models and methods of Conscious Business, including –

  • Make a 6-Figure Income with a 3-Figure List
  • Charge What you Deserve Now
  • Create Your Conscious Business Story and more…

Adela will be interviewing well-known, successful, conscious business owners ready to share their profitable business models and their expertise.

If you are one who attends teleseminars and have not been to any where Adela is the facilitator, I highly recommend you check out this program now. The first call is Monday, November 2nd. Adela is one of the best interviewers that I experienced. And, there is no charge for attending any of the sessions.

3 – Lastly, my friend and mentor Julie Jordan Scott has resumed her very powerful, empowering Passion Activator Fridays – no fee – where the act of commiting to an action or actions and calling in every hour and reporting makes a huge difference in accomplishing desired goals throughout the day.

Julie also has launched a three option series – Dreams Do Come True. As I have stated in many issues of Picture to Ponder, much of what I am accomplishing today is a result of various courses and programs I’ve participated in under Julie’s leadership. As a matter of fact, the name “Picture to Ponder” for this ezine was suggested by Julie, whom I’ve known virtually now for at least 8 or 9 years. I am sure you will find value in anything you might choose to do with her.

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– NEW –  4 – Week Telecourse Starts November 9th or 11th
Click on image above for details

I am excited. As you can see from the very top image, the header for the new Point and Shoot Photo Course for Moms, I am launching a new program. My earlier Photo/Creativity, then Through and From the Lens courses, will now be delivered under the umbrella of Point and Shoot Photo Courses. The material and philosophy is similar. Working with specific groups will further solidify the community experiences participants love, while enhancing learning and bonding with subject matter.

In terms of today’s Picture to Ponder, for whatever reason, I felt the need to feature autumn one more time. Though the fall season stays with us until December 21st, the visual aspect of it will soon be gone. When I speak of the visual, I refer to the assumed colors of autumn.

Neither of today’s featured photos is a “striking” photo. Yet each kept popping out at me as I was searching photo file folders. They did “seed” some interesting thoughts, turned queries, and compositionally the pictures do hold together.

TODAY’S PHOTOS
The upper photo is of Fallen Autumn Leaves blanketing gravel at the edge of a parking lot in Syracuse, NY. Given the overall feeling of Nature, the gravel appears as if it could almost be blueberries. I like the array of colors, representing the full range of the life cycles of the leaves we see.

The lower photo is a close up of a dried up Queen Anne’s Lace flower which, I discovered when I googled it to check spelling, is edible. Given that the developing theme today seems to be “Life Cycles”, I especially like the circular shape of the full flower and those at the end of each of the “spokes” radiating out from the center.

SELF-REFLECTING QUERIES
Today’s photos are rich with contrasts and also represent the cycles of our seasons… both in the Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer, as well as our own life cycles… seen even in our individual projects and activities.

I invite you to consider the contrasts and cycles in your life. Are you able to easily be with the transitions? Or, are there challenges for you? Do you operate out of “being” with whatever stage you’re in at the moment?

If the latter is difficult at times, have you developed “coping” mechanisms? Are you aware of what they are so you can “call them in” on demand, when needed?

If “coping,” are you able to go beyond with “tools for transformation”?

Sometimes/oftentimes, it’s helpful to simply remember that whatever space we are in at any point of time, it is part of a cycle.

As you ponder and query today, be sure to identify the parts of the cycle that give you the most pleasure, provide the most fun.

CELEBRATION
Two of my friends, Marifran Korb and Tomar Levine**, are among 36 other authors who have chapters in the “OVERCOMERS INC: True Stories of Hope, Courage and Inspiration” book launched today, October 22nd.

Marifran and Tomar, having seen an advance copy say that it’s great. I trust them and what I’ve read about the book. I love people’s stories. If you do also, check it out at OVERCOMERS. If it is still the 22nd when you read this, there is time to take advantage of all the bonuses with purchase today.

** You also might be interested in checking out Tomar’s Creativity Support Group forming, first session November 3rd.

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The last issue of Picture to Ponder discussed autumn leaves and my “Missing Autumn” as I continue exploring my Florida environment. As I mentioned, I was excited about my trip to New York State, looking forward to autumn leaves.

What I found was that the leaves were not as colorful as I had hoped. Perhaps I was a week too early, or, I suspect, it was not the leaves I was missing when I did the collage, “Missing Autumn in New Jersey“. Rather it was the whole friends, family, neighborhood environments that had been part of my life for so many years.

After letting that go, I was able to enjoy the colors, pick leaves from the ground to bring back for a friend and make a unique discovery in one of them – an almost completely camouflaged moth on the underside of a brown leaf.

TODAY’S PHOTOS
Bark from a tree in Lake Bonaparte, NY.

As I was walking along a path, the peeling bark of the above tree caught my eye. When I got closer I immediately saw a face, which I photographed and share in the top photo. Then shifting my camera lens slightly around the loose bark, the “giraffe” head popped out at me – center photo. And, lo and behold, pulling back slightly I saw the full “giraffe” – bottom photo.

SELF-REFLECTING QUERIES

DISAPPOINTMENTS
At the start of this issue, I mention my disappointment in the color of the Fall leaves. I’m reminded of conversations in the Landmark Forum on “unfulfilled expectations.”

I invite you to look into your life to see if, and where, recently you may have had things not turn out the way you expected or wanted them to be. How did your respond?

Did you dwell on what was missing, or were you able to shift to the upside of whatever the experience was?

Are you aware of methods you use to make your transformations? If so, do you practice this regularly?

SHIFTING PERSPECTIVES

As suggested by today’s photographs, a wide variety of shifts can be experienced simply by, even slightly, shifting our viewpoints. Is there any place in your life now where you can benefit from looking at something from a slightly different perspective?

ROLES IN LIFE
In a totally different thread, as I was describing today’s “giraffe” photos, I was reminded of the blog comment one of our subscribers made to one of my onion photos. Maryanne wrote, “Sheila you are actually a ‘stand-up comic’ in photography.” I smile at this.

On the other hand, in the weekend in Jan Phillips’ wonderful Facilitator Training Workshop I was identified as the “Point and Shoot Photo Expert.” This became a “serious” label/role for me to consider owning as, “Yes, that’s me.”

What roles are you playing in life? Are they the same as the ones in which others see you in? With which is it easier for you to identify?

So often others see us as “bigger” than we see ourselves. Are there powerful roles out there waiting for you to step into them?

Lots of weekend queries coming out of what I thought was going to be a short issue.

Do remember to have fun with them.

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