Tag Archives: Creative

Fast Company Announces the 100 Most Creative in Business 2015

There are lists for everything.
Most Beautiful.
FBI’s Most Wanted.

But we are truly excited to see Fast Company’s list of the 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2015 where even the “bottom” of the list includes amazing innovators in science, technology, family and global health. It is a beautiful diverse group of men and women alike who have lived lives of intent, followed their passion, and in turn, are currently impacting the world for the better. Continue reading

5 Inspirations to Have a Creative Weekend!

Artsy FartsyHave you ever had the experience of working on something you’re so immersed in that you completely forget the million other things you “should” be doing in that moment? Maybe it’s a song you’re figuring out on guitar, or a homemade birthday card, or even an elaborate doodle. And then the thought creeps in… “I really should be doing homework,” or “I really should be folding that laundry.”

Well you know what? That is precisely the time when you should keep doing what you’re doing. It’s called flow, and it is the most critical aspect of the creative process.

The development of creativity and engagement with creative practices is a major aspect of occupational therapy – a field which aims to support clients in whole-person wellness goals. The practice is incredibly effective especially for treating clients with physical or developmental conditions, but it is often also used to support individuals in the daily pursuits of success and happiness in their careers, relationships, health, and life goals.

Creativity in this space is viewed as one of the most essential factors to building confidence and self-esteem, so essential to realizing the success we aspire toward. Even beyond that, the act of creating is so different from the activities most of us engage with most regularly. And this allows us to transcend our “box”, push our comfort zones, and leap into a field of possibility!

Here are 5 ways to inspire your creativity this weekend:

36 Surprising Ways to Boost Creativity for Free (Greatist)

How to Master Both Sides of Creativity (Positively Positive)

How Seizing Your Limitations Can Be the Key to Creativity (Upworthy)

Deepak Chopra On Maintaining Creativity As You Age (Blisstree)

5 Rainbow Color Tricks to Jumpstart Creativity (Mind Body Green)


What creative projects are you looking forward to this weekend? Let us know in the comments section!

Do you want to become a Buddhist – or the Buddha?


 Do not become the Buddhist – become the Buddha.

There. It is right there. I searched for it, chased it, tried to catch it and pin-point it since last night. Since the conversation about following a path.

I couldn’t see why. I couldn’t see why I would need to follow a path to myself. I am here after all, already here. Everything that I am — me, God, Buddha, everything. What path? What path is needed to take me to what I am?

But then, I thought, to realize it, to feel oneself, to find oneself among the noise, among the constant, overwhelming, imposing and dizzying hubbub of the mind — maybe there is a path there. Maybe there is something that has to be done, worked on, achieved, to see clearly. So what would I do? What did I do? What was the first step on my path? It was looking for someone who could help. It was to look outside. To look to others.

That was my first step on the path, on the journey to becoming a Buddhist, a student, a spiritual seeker.

Ceasing to look to others for help was the first step on the path to becoming myself.

Because it was myself I wanted to find. Not the Buddha. Not the enlightenment experienced, envisioned and described by others — but myself. I did not want to become a Buddhist. I did not want to become the follower of Buddha, or Christ or anyone else at all. I wanted to become myself and, to become myself, I had to follow myself.

And it was in that moment, in that very first moment of making the choice to follow myself, my own path, my own way, that my journey was finished for I reached my destination.

It did not require esoteric practices, twenty years of meditation, chanting, praying. All it took was the choice to be me. All it took for me to be me, was for me to listen to myself, to look into myself, to follow myself. Because I was already there.

All I needed to do

was to trust myself.

You exist outside of rules.


 Do you know what happens when I say: “God is love. Love for everyone and everything”?

Someone immediately asks: “Including murderers and terrorists?” Sometime they add rapists, too.

And I say yes, including murderers and terrorists. And rapists too.

But of course that is not an answer that would satisfy anyone so I elaborate, like so:

“God might know, you see, that you, yourself, are God. That you are love, that you are the boundless, limitless and timeless existence . God likely knows that nothing wrong can ever happen to you because you are what God is, and there is no “wrong” in God. God knows that you did not appear at birth, nor will you disappear at death, but you will simply change, shift, transition. God might know that death is as wonderful an experience as birth is — a grand adventure, a graduation.

God will likely know that the pain and fear you experience, the suffering that plagues you, is caused by you forgetting who you are, and that it will pass eventually and you will remember yourself again. Because, you must remember, God knows that you are God, even if you do not know at times. Knowing that, God might see your pain and hardships as something you created yourself as an opportunity to outgrow it.

From God’s perspective, from that place, murderers and terrorists would appear very differently than they do to a human, don’t you think?”

And then, of course, the inevitable response always comes: ”Um, this doesn’t make any sense.”

Which is when I say:

“Of course it doesn’t make sense. Its God we are talking about. In order for God to make sense to a human it would have to be a human invention. In order for God to make sense, God would have to be subject to the rules that are human inventions.

But God exists outside of those rules.

And so do you.

5 Essential Questions to Lead You to Your Calling

o-FIND-YOUR-CALLING-570I was talking to a son of a friend of mine who is 16 years old and rather evolved for his age, and I asked him, “Michael, why do you think we are here?” and he said to me, “To wake up.” He proceeded to elaborate on that thought by saying: “I think most people are asleep — they don’t know who they are. I think we need to wake up to who we are.” He then asked me, “Agapi, why do you think we are here?” I had no hesitation replying, “I think we are here to evolve and transform, and I think that everything that happens in our lives, and everything that doesn’t happen is the journey to our transformation… I think fundamentally I totally agree with you, that we are here to wake up.”

This conversation prompted this blog.

There is an underlying and maybe sometimes not so underlying question, which is in all of us: What is the purpose of my life and what am I here to do? Obviously, each one of us has to find our own unique and personal answer to these questions.

“How can I find my purpose?” That’s a question I get asked a lot from people who are successful to unemployed, happily married to single, etc. “I don’t feel connected to a purpose,” they say.

I like to think of our purpose as our individual calling. It does not have to do with our accomplishments or our resume; it is a deeper thing that connects us to our heart’s pulse. When we find it, it adds meaning to whatever we do and helps us feel the true sense of what success is.

Either way, when we connect to our heart’s calling, everything starts to have meaning. So I have come up with five questions that as you answer can bring your calling closer to you.

What am I here to learn?
What am I here to teach?
What am I here to overcome?
What am I here to complete?
What am I here to express?

If you take a moment to answer these questions from an authentic, truthful place, the answers may be very different from what you had previously thought. These questions are meant to break down self-imposed standards we have bound ourselves with.

The answers to these questions are ongoing and evolving. At different stages in our lives, we are here to teach and learn different things. Nothing is set in stone. As you answer these questions, you may find that there is a blueprint that emerges that can guide you to what calls you, and as you follow that thread you start to experience more of an inner fulfillment. Going through life knowing that we are all teachers and we are all students, and we all have something to contribute, alleviates a sense of separation we often feel.

That knowing can bring a solace and comfort to the basic question: “Why am I here?” It helps us create a bigger arena where we can explore the dimensions of our lives. It adds tremendous creativity in our existence and makes us welcome the unknown instead of fearing it. It also puts us in the driver’s seat where we become the creator of our lives. Seeing that everything that happens in our lives, the good, the bad and the ugly, becomes part of life’s tapestry. Our life’s experiences are the alchemy that helps us transform and awaken to who we are. My mother used to say, “We are all born an original, and it is a challenge to stay an original in a world that tries to mold us to fit in.”

I personally started my life thinking that I was here to become a successful actress. I went to a prestigious drama school and was acknowledged and validated as a very talented actress, moving on to Hollywood to do a movie. When the movie did not work out I went through a soul-searching journey only to discover years later that my calling was not to become a successful actress and perform others’ scripts, but to write my own script, create my own life, and design my own set. I found my calling in a NY bus, performing for a stranger, realizing that I had to share my gift of expression unconditionally. I had restricted myself with expectations of what life should bring me until that moment.

Learning to become resourceful within myself was and is an extraordinary process, and the joy it brought me is invaluable. So often when I feel stuck about something the question I ask is, “How can I create a desirable outcome?” I return to the basics: “What do I need to overcome here?” It always leads me to taking a positive action. Sometimes it’s overcoming a misconception of inadequacy, or fearing to even try in case I don’t achieve the outcome I was hoping for. Overcoming that in itself creates a huge amount of space for all sorts of possibilities that you may not have even thought of to surface.

The mistake we make as human beings is how we attach ourselves and our well-being to external circumstances for validation. The irony is that some of the greatest awakenings we often have are triggered after things don’t work out.

I have often heard statements such as, “Breaking up with this person and going through my divorce led me to find myself and who I really was.” “Leaving the job that I thought was it, lead me to find out what I really wanted to do,” etc.

I hope that these questions bring you a lightheartedness to what can be the serious quest for our life’s purpose because they are meant to bring clarity. I see these questions as a compass to our center, out of which we can enjoy our lives no matter what.

The funny thing is that I am writing this blog as I am sitting with my Greek friend Stavroula, who works with me, having a glass of wine, some mozzarella and tomatoes in NY’s Little Italy. I’m watching people in the summer evening walking about at a slow pace, licking ice creams, couples holding hands and kissing, children running around, men cruising and tons of people sitting on the pavement having dinner, stress-free, enjoying life in the moment. As I am witnessing these rich moments in others’ lives, I can’t help but think to myself that maybe the sixth and most important question is: “Are you enjoying your life, my dear?” and if the answer is no, ask yourself why not. If not now, when.


For more, visit my website: www.unbindingtheheart.com


Photo credit: Getty images

This 11-Year-Old Makes the Coolest Ties You’ve Ever Seen

grid-cell-4832-1375883264-50His name is Moziah Bridges, and on top of being an 11-year-old boy with an eye for bold prints, he’s an incredibly innovative businessman (businesschild?) on the up and up. Mo – as he is called for short – has been designing and sewing bow ties since he was 9 years old, when his grandmother taught him the art. His ties are beautiful and unique, but also brilliantly placed in a fashion world that until now has seen somewhat of a shortage of this particular accessory.

Explaining his attraction to the art of bow tie-making, Mo told Fox News,

I really was a young dapper man and I couldn’t find any other bow ties that I really like. So my grandma – my lovely grandma – she’s been sewing for over 80 years, or something crazy like that, so I wanted to start my own business making bow ties.

We love that he refers to himself as a “young dapper man” – he certainly is! But his talents don’t end there. Mo of course selects all his own fabrics and sews the ties himself, but he is also invested in giving back to the community. His “Go Mo! Scholarship Bow Tie” returns 100% of the proceeds to the community by helping kids attend summer camp. Mo is also interested in helping other fashion-inclined kids dress well by creating a children’s clothing line, complete with blazers, nice pants, and more.

Mo has already made over $30,000 through his Etsy store and is looking to expand. His recent mention in the Oprah Winfrey magazine is bound to be a major boon to his business, and we hope Mo realizes all the success he dreams of!

Here are our favorite picks from Mo’s Bows:











Images via Mo’s Bows Memphis

Thursday Morning Melody: Your Rocky Spine

Screen Shot 2013-07-31 at 6.13.13 PMPerhaps the most romantic song we’ve ever heard, “Your Rocky Spine” by Great Lake Swimmers is equal parts ballad and hymn. It’s a declaration of love from a man to his lover and a message of reverence from a human to vast and glorious nature. After all, what can rival the splendor of the natural world if not the depths and heights of feeling human beings experience in love?

Great Lake Swimmers is an indie folk band that hails from Ontario, Canada and is now based in Toronto. Their acoustic, finger-picking sound seems projected out of another time and another place wholly different from the urban, fast-paced world we’re so familiar with now. The Canadian music scene on the whole is rich with experimental styles and dynamic influences. Certainly worth looking into further if you’re generally more steeped in music from other parts of the world or other eras.

Enjoy “Your Rocky Spine” by Great Lake Swimmers!

I was lost in the lakes
And the shapes that your body makes
That your body makes, that your body makes
That your body makes

The mountains said I could find you here
They whispered the snow and the leaves in my ear
I traced my finger along your trails
Your body was the map, I was lost in it

Floating over your rocky spine
The glaciers made you, and now youýre mine
Floating over your rocky spine
The glaciers made you, and now youýre mine

I was moving across your frozen veneer
The sky was dark but you were clear
Could you feel my footsteps
And would you shatter, would you shatter, would you

And with your soft fingers between my claws
Like purity against resolve
I could tell, then and there, that we were formed from the clay
And came from the rocks for the earth to display

They told me to be careful up there
Where the wind blows a venomous rage through your hair
They told me to be careful up there
Where the wind rages through your hair

* * *

This post is part of  our Thursday Morning Melody series. Every Thursday we feature the music video and lyrics to a song that touches us deeply. If there’s a melody you wish to share with the Intent community, please share it with us in the comments below! Click here to listen to past Thursday Morning Melodies.

Norwegian Musicians Rap to Save Their Native Language

Nils Rune Utsi is a rapper with an unusual story. He hails from Máze, a Norwegian town of roughly 250 people, and he is the founding member of Slincraze, a music group that raps entirely in a near-extinct language. In an interview with the BBC, Utsi recounts his “average” childhood, his love of music, and his reasons for rapping in “Sami,” a language spoken by less than 20,000 people worldwide.

Although Utsi might seem like an unusual case, he certainly isn’t the first to use the medium of rap as a way of proclaiming and maintaining indigenous identity. Australia has seen the rise in recent years of Aboriginal rappers and musicians, using music as a way of counteracting the disenfranchisement of their communities. Native American rappers like Supaman, Melle Mel, and King Just have also turned to rap as a way of both continuing an indigenous legacy of oral story telling and also connecting to larger musical counter culture.

The lesson here might be that, in addition to books, museums, and archives, a powerful way of preserving languages may be inspiring young people to celebrate their linguistic traditions through rap and other musical forms. This allows for the language to come alive and maintain relevance for future generations.

What do you think about the potential for rap to save dying languages? Tell us your thoughts!

Thursday Morning Melody: Vanessa

Claire Boucher, better known by her stage name “Grimes,” is the quintessential millennial artist. She hails from British Columbia and at 25 years of age has already become a prominent influencer in the indie electronic music scene. Her music is largely available for download by donation, a state of affairs almost unheard of in the conventional music industry. But for an alternative, eclectic “urban faery” like Grimes, she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Grimes’ music is at once ethereal and upbeat. There’s an eerie, glass-like quality to it that’s only counteracted by the playfulness of its beats. This song, “Vanessa,” is case in point. The lyrics make it seem like little more than a catchy love song, but the melody and video come together to create an atmosphere of morbidity, nostalgia, and revenge. Grimes directed the music video herself – check it out!

I’ve been

Oh, I’ve been waiting desperately
And my heart is here right next to me
And I’m caught waiting in the rain

Oh, I’ve been waiting desperately
And my heart is here right next to me
And I’m caught waiting in the rain

And I know and I need you in the storm
And I oh-oh-oh-I-I, oh-oh-oh-I-I-I-I

Hey, hey, you wanna play
But baby I can go and go
And every other day you’re running off with so and so
But baby I would throw you if I didn’t know you but I’m paying for it

Hey, hey, you wanna play
But baby I can go and go
And every other day you’re running off with so and so
But baby I would throw you if I didn’t know you but I’m paying for it

Baby I would throw you, if I didn’t know you, but I’m paying for it

I hold on and I don’t care what you say
But the way it goes it’s happening everyday
I can see space on my radio

I hold on and I don’t care what you say
‘Cos the way it goes it’s happening everyday

Hey hey, you wanna play
Well baby I can go and go
And every other day you’re running off with so and so
Baby I would throw you, if I didn’t know you, but I’m paying for it

* * *

This post is part of  our Thursday Morning Melody series. Every Thursday we feature the music video and lyrics to a song that touches us deeply. If there’s a melody you wish to share with the Intent community, please share it with us in the comments below! Click here to listen to past Thursday Morning Melodies.

Wordplay Wednesday: Broken Open

I want to fall in love so that
I can write a love song
Gain access to the words
Explaining feelings
Lost inside
I want to be broken open
Like a treasure chest
At the bottom of the ocean
Releasing all my fears so that
All that’s left is light

I just wrote this the other day, and liked it so thought I’d share with you all:)


Past Wordplay Wednesdays:





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