about leah

Hi, I’m Leah. On this page, I share an overview of my life journey towards holistic health. Further, my blogs, pages, and book reviews are themed around vulnerable, whole-hearted living bringing balance to the art matrix. The reasons I share is two-fold.

Firstly, I write (publicly) because it is very important to me to be a positive part of our world community. I feel, what I write can benefit others. And, for the first time in my life I have a voice, confident enough, to say so and to take action through words and community.

Secondly, and hopefully, in a mutually beneficial way, writing and sharing, further empowers the shift from the unhealthy towards holistically healthy well-being.

the beginning

Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, my journey moved forward, with my family, across Canada. In time, we eventually arrived in the Toronto area where I have lived for many years. 

I graduated from the University of Toronto and Brock University with undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fields of education, psychology, sociology, and philosophy. While working on my masters degree, I began teaching full-time, raising my daughter and travelling widely.

misguided search for truths, identity, and meaning

In retrospect, I can see how the travel was largely part of a wider-scale, fear-induced, depression-driven, existential endeavour. I know now, that what I was looking for outside of me, really needed an identity unravelling and soul-searching within. I was so lost, slowly breaking down. I was like the proverbial frog in slowly heating water.

Adding to my depression, fear-of-the-world and anxiety was my first-hand experience, in the trauma-inducing family court system. There, I also erroneously looked for answers, hope, and truths. But, I found nothing but despair, loss, non-truths, and hurt.

From my early years, the rational mind was reinforced but I lost a birth-right connection with the essential ingredients of the heart, the soul and spirituality. Chaos ensued, and finally, I fell into the tail end of the domino decline that results from mentally imbalanced and unstable core values, identity, and world views.

my journey led me to rock-bottom

As Michael Ondaatje so aptly put, I speak to you here from rock bottom. Actually, my ‘rock-bottom’, which I can see now, in hindsight, was destined to happen, eventually, and it did, a dark day about 3-years-ago–an abyss. One, which I sincerely hope, you can avoid.

Yet, ironically, that brings me here, to this valuable, albeit-very-difficult-to-get-to, point of my life. So, I have a heart-felt desire to share what I have learned, so that others may benefit, in a positive way.

At that time, I knew I could not move forward, with life, without significant acceptance, reflection, and transformation. But, I also had no idea how to do that. With the medical system at my side, I numbly sat, talked, and walked in a repeated cycle. Ever so slowly, I also began writing and reintegrating creative expression (painting, drawing,…) back into my life.

And, in doing so, with a gradual increase of an intentional, growth mindset, I am learning to balance the rational mind with my inherently creative, compassionate mind. Building the Art of Being Authentic framework has created a more stable foundation for holistic health.

finding querencia

Querencia
~ the path through time and space
from which your strength is drawn
where you feel most at home
the place at which you are
your most authentic self

From there, or here, actually, I am learning how to be proactive, realize my potential, and shift from the chaotic to the orderly. I am not where I need to be (yet). That will be involve an active, healthy integration with the ‘real world’. But, from my perch, alone, I perceive hope, which I haven’t envisioned in a very, long time.

the seeds of personal growth

Writing, creativity, meditation, and research have been key components in my personal growth towards holistic health. Better late than never goes the adage.

Living this journey, in sum, has led to the construction of the 15-part Art Matrix Path integrating the 3-step-Art, the 5-part-Matrix and the 7-empowering-keys. Under the umbrella of a simple, solid, yet flexible ‘mantra’. it supports the fruition of an authentic identity, core values, world views, with a confident voice.

Time, space, creative arts, writing, music, running, yoga, and meditation have more recently brought me to better realize mental well-being My writing life is the core of this heartfelt, rational, cognitive, creative, and soulful journey to be a better person, overall.

Finding time to be ‘in nature’ is essential to a well-rounded existence. It continues to support the unearthing of a healthier, essential, inherent self — just breathing, listening, feeling and being with all of the senses engages mindful transformations.

empowered living through writing and art

1 ~ creative, intentional, giving attitude: ‘paying it forward’
2 ~ conscious, researched, reasoned set of core values/world views
3 ~ solid, authentic identity-narrative with a freedom to resist
4 ~ empowering empathy with a passionate, open, vulnerable sensibility
5 ~ holistic balancing of the matrix

I look forward to more writing explorations with you. Get in touch and let’s work on editing your books, essays, articles, and online writing, together!

~ namasté, Leah J. 🕊

🕊 the art of being authentic
embracing mindful, empowering transformations🕊

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