Creativity for the Rest of Us
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Release, Receive, Return

Initiation is the ancient term for what today we call transitions. In ancient times initiations were ritualized and we would be mentored through them by elders and wisdom keepers. Today, unfortunately, we are mostly on our own. Initiations often come on suddenly – through an accident, diagnosis, outside circumstance, death, or as the result of the initiation of a loved one that has a direct impact on us. Other...

When Transitions Intersect

Back around 2012 I had been asking the universe for a big change in my life. My sense was it would be in the area of work and creativity where I was feeling stagnant and had become restless. I even went so far as to say: “Surprise me!” No one was more surprised than me when I was diagnosed a year later with Stage 4 throat cancer. Lesson #1 – be specific about what you ask for. Little did I know then that this very...

Self-fullness

One of the barriers we can bump up against in committing ourselves to inner work is the feeling that time to focus on ourselves is selfish. “Who do you think you are,” “why can’t you just be grateful for what you have,” and other familiar refrains are echoes from our past that keep us locked into old patterns that do not serve who we are becoming. It seems we often have to come to a crisis point before we...

Me first. You second. With love.

In a talk I heard recently, the speaker referenced the often-used biblical quote: Love your neighbor as yourself. It struck me in a way it hadn’t before that this principle starts with the fundamental assumption that you love yourself. From my observation, we have work to do. Many of us are quick to rush in to advise, fix, and rescue our neighbors (partners, friends, children) all in the name of loving them. We...

Into the Well

The words Women at the Well came to me as a whisper. I accepted gratefully as they danced their way into the title of a new program I was noodling on. Re-entering the world of work from cancer treatment, I was following an inner call to create a nurturing experience for women away from the demands and pressures of their lives – an opportunity to remember the good, true, and beautiful in our nature. Sometimes we get...

The Great Silence

  She’s 4, almost 5, years old. Dirty face and uncombed hair, she sits in the shadows – arms cradling knees held tightly to her chest. She doesn’t make much eye contact. She was slow to communicate. We got acquainted by drawing together. She likes to draw with colors and play outside. Robin Hood is her favorite because he lives in a forest, shoots a bow and arrows, and fights mean people. She’d like to live in...

Make More Art

In the darkest days when I was going through the grueling regimen of radiation treatment for throat cancer, I kept hearing a phrase in my mind: “Make more art. Make more art.” Even when I was feeling at my lowest, it kept repeating. As I, ever so slowly, began the trek back into the land of the living, it was still there: “Make more art. Make more art.” An invitation from the Mystery that became a mantra. As much...

3 Practices for Compassionate Self Care

The past year and a half has been a healing journey for me. Last spring I was diagnosed with throat cancer. After the initial shock of the news — which despite my extensive experience of working with change and uncertainty, there is no way to prepare for — I moved into my default response. Planning. I had plans within plans based on the proposed six-week course of treatment: how long my recovery would...

Listening In

Listen Not as a stranger Listen Belong to solitudes Green Wisdom Remember me?...

Something’s Workin’ Me

Something’s workin’ me Silent Subtle Deep Elusive or unfolding? Be still and know … Trust… That more will be revealed in its own time and in its own way That I am fully equipped to meet whatever comes That Creator did not bring me this far to drop me on my ass Patience… With the pace of medium to slow With the tender that is incubating This is not the time to force or hurry Courage… To...

The Enchanted Forest

Practicing the homework that I had just assigned to the students in my Creativity in Business class, I took an alternate route on my morning hike.  I entered the park from a different direction and walked my regular trail in reverse.  I felt slightly off balance doing this and discovered something unexpected. As much as I thrive on and enjoy my morning hikes, I usually have an agenda – combine aerobic exercise in...

In a Snit with my Creativity

I’m in a snit.  I was intrigued by an idea I’ve seen floating around the blogosphere that suggests choosing one word to work with for the year.  It’s the same principle I wrote about last week – choose a great question and have an adventure with it for the next year – only this is with a single word. The idea stuck.  It stuck like gum to the bottom of my shoe. The way an idea I’m meant to pay attention to sticks. ...

Let it Flow, Let it Flow, Let it Flow

Recently I accepted an assignment from my mentor.  She suggested that for a month I give up striving, driving, initiating, or instigating; all the active, dynamic energies that are my natural first impulse and without which I don’t always trust that I’ll get what I want. The invitation was to explore living in receptivity, the state of allowing – a dance with the magnetic energies.  In other words: stop...

Standing Still

Lost Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here, And you must treat it as a powerful stranger, Must ask permission to know it and be known. The forest breathes. Listen. It answers, I have made this place around you. If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here. No two trees are the same to Raven. No two branches are the same to Wren. If what a tree or a...

Taming Your Gremlin

I discovered a new voice in the choir of inner critics that serenade me on a regular basis.  In Taming the Gremlin – A Surprisingly Simple Method for Getting Out of Your Own Way, Rick Carson suggests we name those unhelpful voices of judgment– a.k.a. gremlins – when we become aware of them.  Give them a personality, a nickname.  Makes them more manageable is the theory. This one is called ST – the Sullen...
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The Mystical Wells of Ireland 2017 COME TO THE WELL