Some Morongo Basin Basic Good Thoughts

Thank you to Morongo Basin Original Janis Commentz for sharing this message of positivity for 2021.

How can we create a better 2021? This has been one of the toughest times I remember—and what stands out is relationships.

We must recognize that we process things differently. During my three decade teaching career at an alternative high school, we focused on students’ unique needs and finding ways to individualize instruction. Now, I try to recognize the rare and valuable qualities of those people who, for whatever reason, are in my path.

When we disagree, I want to remember kindness. Sometimes, I just have to step back and wait.

I spend much of my time nurturing the creative spirit, in myself and others. I suggest you begin by being kind to yourself. Pat yourself on the back when you make small progress. Keep creating. Work small. Create several times a week rather than forcing a huge project! Kindle new interests. Learn new skills. Teach-share what you know. Reach out, locally and globally. Care for your health. Follow Covid guidance!

We are not only missing hugs and contact with others. Artists miss the tactile elements. It is not easy to see the depth of brushstrokes or the characteristics of a medium in a photograph. Ask questions! Interact with others online or with old fashioned devices, a note or phone call. Even a Zoom connection – if planned over a meal or snack – contains the element of breaking bread with another. If spirituality is part of your life, cultivate those connections. Encourage others. Keep a journal or diary which includes gratitude. The meditative process of hands-on activities such as sewing, gardening, refinishing, and cooking can nurture your reason for existence and connect you to your ancestors who functioned in simpler times.

As we move into the unknown, how do we inspire others and remain motivated? We need patience, resilience, and openness, especially to the unexpected.

Create home comfort centers where you can reach pencils, sketchpads, journals, inspirational books, Kleenex…and sometimes it’s best to leave the phone in another room!

Savor the seasons. Study changing light and its effect on your mood or art. Find ways to help others. Give back!

I hope we, as creative thinkers, can turn problems into opportunity, peace of mind, satisfaction, and contentment during 2021! And I pray that God will respond to our prayers for guidance as our nation begins to heal and restore relationships around the world.

Janis Commentz was named Morongo Basin Original for November 2020.