Becoming a Curator of Beauty

It had been a quiet, lovely morning, the kind of start to the day where everything came together with ease. I woke early, worked out, and then went to sit in my cold tub for a few minutes. As I slipped into the freezing water, I intentionally focused on my surroundings as a way to stay present and out of my head. I do this to counteract my mind because it always tries to convince me to get out. As I took several deep breaths, I began to settle down and I felt strangely at peace. 

On this particular morning, I had the good fortune of eavesdropping on a conversation between two crows sitting in a nearby tree so I was pleasantly distracted. Eyes closed, the sun warming my face, I smiled at their incessant caw, caw, cawing to one another. In spite of the frigid water temps, it was heaven.

Later in the day, I ran a few errands and on my way home, I had another special encounter with nature. Driving toward a small bridge that crosses a nearby reservoir, I saw an adult mute swan taking her own cold bath. She was positioned prominently in a column of sunlight cast across the surface of the water. It was a breathtaking sight! 

I immediately pulled the car over and got out to have a closer look. When I approached the edge of the road, the swan, who had been facing away from me, slowly turned full circle and stared in my direction. I held her gaze until, like grace in motion, she floated toward the bridge and slipped under the overpass. 

When I got back in my car I felt a rush of energy move through my body – a blend of gratitude, joy, and deep peace. Ah the life force, I thought to myself, the stream of power we connect to when we arrive in the present moment. Beauty is a channel for this power.

Now that my life is more present-moment-focused, I’m learning to understand and value what it means to be a curator of beauty. Each day, I make a point to search for its enchantment – the way sunlight streams through cloud cover, a late-day shadow cast on a wall, leaves that seem to twinkle in a breeze, or the endearing sight of our cats cuddled together during an afternoon nap. 

Cultivating a connection to beauty has become a priority, a way of engaging the higher energies that animate our existence. This life force is a source of joy, healing, strength, and love. It’s no longer a luxury to stumble upon something beautiful, it’s a necessity, something I search for, value, and enjoy sharing with others. 

To that end, here’s a look at the swan in motion… she’s a sight to behold! While life can feel overwhelming and harsh, there is great strength and power to be had in becoming a curator of beauty. I hope you’ll join me.

You can see the swan here.




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Author Information

Cheryl Richardson

Cheryl Richardson is the New York Times bestselling author of several books including, Take Time for Your LifeLife MakeoversStand Up for Your LifeThe Unmistakable Touch of GraceThe Art of Extreme Self Care, You Can Create an Exceptional Life with Louise Hay, and her new book, Waking Up in Winter: In Search of What Really Matters at Midlife.

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