Perpetually Stressed?

By Heidi Darr-Hope

Overwhelmed? Overloaded? Over-scheduled? Overstimulated? We are bombarded every single day with information from a multitude of sources, and our minds have been trained to absorb this onslaught, this rapid-fire of words and images and sounds. As if this isn’t enough to overwhelm, most of us also have an insane To-Do List. Much is expected and…

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Arts and Medicine. Do It.

By Heidi Darr-Hope

I came across this wonderful article from the Huffington Post by Iva Fattorini, Chair of the Global Arts and Medicine Institute at Cleveland Clinic, and had to share it. The following statements particularly resonate with me, as they reflect the Healing Icons mission and my personal passion: art as a vehicle for healing. “Due to the…

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Speaking from the Heart: On Mourning

By Heidi Darr-Hope

What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from. – T.S.  Eliot, “Four Quartets” No matter where you are in your cancer journey, life has changed. Overwhelmed by the resulting uncertainty, we often become metaphorically frozen in time, unable…

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Don’t be Afraid of Drawing

By Heidi Darr-Hope

  I stumbled upon this article on Buzzfeed about a graphic artist and her four-year-old daughter who draw together. It reminded me of the surrealist’s game exquisite corpse, which is a fantastic, playful way of drawing collaboratively. Try this when you are feeling down, stuck, or uncertain how you feel:  Gather a couple of pals or family members, and don’t…

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Mandalas for Restoring Balance

By Heidi Darr-Hope

Last month’s explorations took us into the complicated realm of Balance. We throw that word out a lot these days: “I need more balance in my life.” “Strive to maintain a balanced life.” Ruminating over the meaning of balance, our class came up with word associations like equilibrium, stable, controlled, static, rigidity, precise — none of which made us feel very…

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Gratitude in Difficult Times

By Heidi Darr-Hope

I recently found this passage about gratitude among Dana Jennings’s reflections in the New York Times on his cancer journey: When you have cancer, when you’re being cut open and radiated and who knows what else, it can take a great effort to be thankful for the gift of the one life that we have been blessed…

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Partnering with Center for Colon Cancer Research of USC

By Heidi Darr-Hope

Healing Icons® is partnering with Dr. Frank Berger and The Center for Colon Cancer Research of USC to provide a series of arts and healing workshops for colon cancer survivors this fall. There will be no cost for participants to take part in these workshops due to the generous underwriting of CCCR! A Holistic Approach to Healing Receiving a cancer…

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Mandalas for Harvesting Gratitude

By Heidi Darr-Hope

How can we remain grateful in turbulent times? How do we keep our hearts open when we are swallowed by fear and anger and chaos and doubt? During our July workshop, Mandalas for Harvesting Gratitude, we used our creative processes to dig into these difficult questions. Mark Nepo, one of my favorite thinkers and poets, provides one eloquent answer: How can we stay awake…

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Releasing Anxieties to Gather Inner Strength

By Heidi Darr-Hope

As we continue this summer to explore the art of the mandala – creating within a circle – our practices begin to intertwine. Our first workshop addressed how to release anxiety through the process of intuitive mandala drawing, which we featured in our “Mandalas for Centering Strength” post. During the workshop, we discussed the importance of recognizing…

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The Art of Survival: Insights into the Arts and Healing | 2013 Classes

By Heidi Darr-Hope

We Need More than Medicine to Heal Journey Through Cancer with Healing Icons I recommend Healing Icons to other cancer survivors as it has helped me reflect on my cancer journey… Having examined my feelings and fears, my hopes and dreams, I now stand strong in who I have become. – IS, 2012 In each…

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