The doodle that gets it done

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art therapy, employee wellness, mindfulness, self help, self leadership, wellbeing, wellness

I managed to lure a co-worker over to my house so she could lay on my kitchen floor for two hours and create this unbelievably beautiful piece of artwork called a mandala. (The funny thing about this arrangement was that Jen Boothroyd, the artist of this masterpiece and a Compensation Specialist for Northern Light, refused payment so I was forced to fall back on the ancient bartering system to compensate her. In the end, I acquired this gallery-worthy piece of art for the price of some local brew and fancy tomatoes, two of her favorites. Five and a half years too late for me, I’m now wondering if perhaps it’s possible to negotiate original artwork in the NLH compensation package.)

But there’s a reason I’m telling you this: not only did I get a masterpiece painted on my kitchen floor for the price of some groceries, but once Jen let me in on the stress-relieving powers of creating mandalas, I knew there was Wellness Wednesday* potential here. It just took a minimal period of begging and pleading to break her down and get her agree to create a step-by-step set of mandala-making instructions to turn us all into blissed out mandalists. This patterned, roundish work of art is a win-win endeavor: not only is it just beautiful to behold and inspiring to contemplate, it is meditative to create.

This is your invitation to venture into the relaxing and empowering experience of creating mandalas, which Jen insists is a lot easier than it looks. According to Jen, anyone can create a mandala, with any type of art supply. There is no right or wrong way, with each creation being a journey resulting in a thing of beauty and a peaceful state of mind. If you want to give it a try, just follow these step-by-step instructions. It all starts with a very simple shape at the center, which you just keep stacking on. Though it looks like it has been mapped out mathematically, there is absolutely no pre-thought involved – it’s simply an unfolding wonder of free, organic growth.

red mandala   green mandala

Making a mandala

*Note: This story was originally published in Wellness Wednesday, a column I write for the employee wellness program I run for a healthcare system. 

One thought on “The doodle that gets it done”

  1. Pingback: Leaving our mark | Be cool.

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