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“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.”

Happy New Year! (Are you ready?)


How will you create your 2016?

As we approach the first day of 2017,  I wish you  joy, health, community and deep breaths of gratitude – you’re here, you’re awesome and you’ve made it this far!

Creativity is a mindset... (3)

So what now?  Check out my some past posts I’ve done on manifesting joy.  But to get your started…

Five Experiences to Welcome in NYD (New Years Day!)

1.) Practice Compassion.

Do a random act of kindness today by wishing Happy New Year to one Facebook Friend you wouldn’t regularly chat with.  Tell someone in your life how grateful you are for them that you might not go out of your way to thank.

Here, My Heart

Check out my mixed media gallery…

Need some help understanding compassion? This TED Talk by Krista Tippet explains it beautifully!  You can also read a piece I wrote for her On Being blog about finding faith in the ICU.  Or heck, watch my TEDx Talk – the best way we can find compassion for others is knowing that we’re ALL traveling detours together. 

2.) Start a vision board.

Dreams Incomplete

This was my first vision board. You can see some others I’ve created and some tips here.

A vision board is just a visual manifestation of whatever you want for yourself this year.  You can paint it, cut out pictures from magazines and just tape them together, draw it, make a cartoon, a collage – really anything goes.  This help you visualize what you long for, what your goals are, and where you see yourself in 2016.  Sometimes it helps to have that image literally in front of you to look at, as a visual reminder to help you work from the outside in.

3.) Do an easy, three-step meditation.

Break Free Amy Oestreicher

This will help you focus your 2016 intentions on your vision board.

Step one: Focus on your breath, don’t change it, but notice it.  If it were a color, what would it be?

Step Two: Notice any sensations that accompany your breath.  What do you physically feel in your body?

Step Three: notice the rhythm, texture, temperature of your breath. How does your breath resonate in your body?

4.) Eat something spectacular.

Or bake it!

Do you need an excuse to bring out your inner foodie?  Think about the very first nourishment you’ll give your body in 2016 – this is a big deal!  Remember, you are what you eat.  So think about what you’d like to be this year, and then think about what food would really make your body smile from the inside out.

P.S. Food can help us cope with anything…did you know when I couldn’t eat, I started a chocolate business just so I could play with candy?

Check out some of my “just for fun” art

5.) Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude.


You know me with my gratitude.  But why not?  When we know what we’re grateful for, we know what we’re about.  We bring out the best in ourselves, in our world, and in each other.  Go on, practice your ABC’s…Letter that piece of paper from A to Z and think something from 2015 you’re grateful for for each letter.

Grateful List

My list from the hospital

Stare at that list and relish how much good there already is in your life.


Now look at your vision board and savor how much more you have to strive for and look forward to.

It is a wonder to be alive on this earth.  In 2015, 2016, any year, day, time, place moment.

You are here.  And that is why you are incredible.  Never forget it, even when times are tough.  No one, no detour, no nothing can ever take away how very capable you are.


I hope that 2016 is filled with so many detours, twists and turns in your life, you get completely lost, completely sidetracked, lose yourself unexpectedly and find yourself on that beautiful, twisty turny journey.  Remember  – you’re a DETOURIST.  You got this!

If life's taken you down an unexpected path, you're a Detourist

Remember, there are a whole bunch of Detourists traveling along with you – and you can share your journey too!

Safe, beautiful New Year travels, Detourists!  

me in studio

I’ll be in my studio…


Amy, your Detourist Field Guide

Oh, and if you need more inspiration, check out 7 Amazingly Inspirational Websites That You Forgot To Bookmark

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”

(You can always check out where my detour is headed this’s around the country, so odds are, it could be near you…)

Subscribe for a detour-loving, creativity-overloading 2016!

Refer your school-organization (1)

Wanna score some art, some detour-navigating, some resiliency building and some musical theater? Check this out!

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