Creative Care: Make a Simple Altar to Support with a Loss or Transition 

Life is in a constant state of flux. We are continually being asked to adapt to ‘new norms’ and are still adjusting to the effects of the pandemic. Instability in governments, war, climate insecurity, losing loved ones, and facing mental health crises are front and center for so many of us. I see first hand in my own life, and through my work with others how easy it is to get caught up putting out metaphorical ‘fires’, i.e. reacting to life rather than taking time to tend to what needs attention and care.

If we can find pauses in our days to honor loss and the transitions/changes that are present for us, we have the opportunity to accept reality as it is and respond with thoughtfulness and creative resilience.

The second exercise in my series of ‘Art Cures’ exercises to tap into the healing properties of creativity is as follows:

Make a Simple Altar to Support with a Loss or Transition

  • Find a place in your home to carve out some space for a simple altar. It can be a windowsill, a small table, or a place on an altar that you already use for meditation/prayer, etc.
  • Gather a few soulful objects that you own (photos, magazine images, tchotchkes) and/or take a walk and find a few objects (a leaf, rock, etc.) that remind you of or feel associated with the loss or transition that you are facing.
  • Creatively place your objects on your altar space. You can also add a candle or a vase of flowers.
  • Spend a few reflective minutes each day in front of the altar for a week (or longer) honoring the loss or transition.
  • You may want to journal or doodle in response to the altar as well to see if there is any thoughts that arise which are inspired by the space you have created.

You can follow the full series on Facebook and Instagram.

Please feel free to send me an email to share any images and reflections that arise from the exercise.