BEading in the Now

by Kristal Wick, Author, Designer and Instructor, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and BeadsĀ®

I've often wondered why beading is so relaxing and I lose all track of time whether it's peyote, daisy chain, RAW (Right-Angle Weave) or brick stitch; seed beads size 11/0, 8/0 or 6/0, it doesn't seem to matter. Beading plops me right back into the present moment--here and now.

With our busy lives schlepping kids, working 10 hour days just to get to the bottom of the paper pile, paying the bills and stressing about health issues, it's more important than ever to stop the clock, take a few deep relaxing breaths and simply BE. It's no coincidence beading starts with BE ...

According to a recent study (Journal of Aging and Health, June 2012); open-minded, creative people live longer. "Openness is defined as curiosity, creativity, cognitive flexibility and a preference for novel ideas. But it is the creativity component of openness--not intelligence or overall openness--that's associated with living longer." Huzzzah for beaders and jewelry makers! When we dive into a new design figuring out how to make a clasp work or perfecting the simple loop--there's cognitive thinking going on in your noggin folks; finally, concrete proof and solid reasons to buy more beads (as if we needed it)!

When you're making metal clay trinkets, stringing, making a gorgeous multi-strand bracelet with seed beads and Crystal Passions crystals or engaged in any other type of creative act, there's no stress, no yesterday or tomorrow. Just now. I'm convinced this clears the mind, recharges energy and opens the flow for more creative ideas and a feeling of well being that spills into all areas of your life (just ask your spouse if you're happier after beading or doing the laundry!) LOL!

I, like some of you, can get caught up in that dreaded "spiral of doom." You know the one where you're exhausted from the busy day, finally able to drop into bed more than ready for sleep and the spiral begins with replaying your boss's criticism in your performance review or your coworker taking credit for your brilliant idea in the staff meeting that morning. It could start with wondering how it's possible you gained a half pound this week eating only celery or why your 6 year old wet the bed last night, you get the picture, right? And within moments you've got the worrying monkey-mind rehashing every troubling conversation that day preventing you from the big Zzzzzzzzzs for a couple of hours, sometimes even until dawn. Determined to break this cycle myself, I tried a new experiment. Instead of stewing in bed, I get up and go bead. I have a lap table with all the basics, beading thread, needles, seed beads and my beading project in process lying there ready to pick up and dive in anytime. I keep it a simple project so my mind doesn't have to completely engage and figure out a complex beading pattern, save those for the daylight hours. Before I pick up the needle, I take a few deep breaths and let my frustration go, embracing the moment. Now you may wonder if you'll be extra exhausted at the cube farm tomorrow but think of it this way, you would be awake in the spiral of doom anyway, you may as well chill and feed your soul instead of stressing out screaming for those little sheep to show up so you can count them!

You may need a reminder throughout the day to take a deep breath break and return to the present. Perhaps a keychain or necklace out of these peace charms or yin-yang would remind you to stop and be in the present moment. Or make a charm bracelet with these beady delights to remind you during stressful times what you have to look forward to at the end of the day.

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Item Number H203524FD
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