JUNE 26-JULY 16


Finding Your Voice:

Rising Up While Staying Grounded

In These Challenging Times

“May you live in interesting times.” –Chinese curse

 “You must be the change you want to see in the world.” –Mahatman Gandhi

We all have a purpose.

Do you feel a calling to your greater purpose? Have you been searching for that purpose?

Maybe….with all that is happening in the world now, you have felt called in a way you never have been before.

I am a social worker, by trade. And I’ve been doing activism and advocacy as part of my job for many years.  There are two things that have become front and center in my life lately:

  1. it’s not enough, anymore. I feel called to do more. I don’t always know what that is.
  2. I must, absolutely MUST, take care of myself first. Even more than I was before, because if I’m going to DO more–send more energy OUT–I need more energy to be coming IN. And that can only be done by putting ourselves first.What you will get in this online offering:
  • A completely secret Facebook group so that you have group support-you are not only not doing this alone, but creating a larger movement of others finding their voices as well.
  • 21 days of prompts or practices, via both email and the Facebook group
  • Writing prompts, discussion prompts, self-care practices, and mindfulness exercises
  • Videos, for me to offer encouragement, answer questions, and other fun things

The first five automatic responses I get:

“I am overwhelmed-I don’t know where to start.”

“I don’t know what to do.”

“I know what I want to do….but I don’t think I can do it.”

“This sounds awesome-I DON’T HAVE TIME.”

“I’m scared.”

I GET THIS.   I feel these a lot of the time as well. (that’s why I’m offering this.)

NOW IS THE TIME TO RISE UP.

And anyone can rise up. Anyone can stay grounded. Now, doing it at the same time? That takes some practice. And a HELL of a lot of self-care. EPIC self-care.   We can all navigate these challenging times. It is infinitely easier to do this in community. A sacred space to explore, to locate our “voice”, our place in the world, and to LIVE from that place, while feeling supported and safe.

And the thing is: those reasons up there? They are quite real. But they do not have to dictate your behavior.  Here’s why:

  1. we, the empathic and the helpers and the people who see what is going on and want to have an impact-we are all feeling overwhelmed right now. Every single one of us.
  2. None of us really know what to do. This is an unprecedented situation, not only in the US, but all over the planet.
  3. You can do whatever you set your mind to. Seriously. You may not be able to do it exactly as you envision it, but you *can* be that change that you want to see. And it’s far more likely with some guidance, structure, support, and connection with kindred spirits who are working towards the same goals: Finding your voice. Rising up. Staying grounded.
  4. Ah, time. This one is so common, but false for TWO reasons: firstly, we make time for what we deem important. Yes, you may have to give up some time in other activities in order to just be with yourself, to quite the noise in your head. To hone in on what it is you want to offer, and how to do that. Yes, I’m talking priorities.
    AND: things that don’t take a lot of time, small things can make a huge impact. Look at what’s happened since the election: I got on Twitter solely because I often cannot REACH my members of Congress. I tweet them, or look to Twitter to see what their positions are. That’s 5 minutes a day, and millions of others are doing the same, and: VIOLA. We are a movement. Our elected officials know our positions, because we take a minute or two to call or write or tweet.
  5. Fear, shmear. Newsflash: we’re all afraid. This is totally human. In this group, we take very small baby steps, to break down things that are otherwise overwhelming. And, we hold each other up. Man, that makes scary things so much more doable, doesn’t it? Knowing that others have your back-supported, and safe!

Why am I offering this class?

Because….even as a practiced activist and advocate, I feel the need to do more. I feel as if my own purpose is shifting. I feel like the world NEEDS every single one of our voices right now.  And so many of us are struggling, feeling overwhelmed a lot of the time, and pouring a lot of energy into self-care, and sometimes still feeling depleted.

Because I’ve worked for years as an advocate and activist, and I believe that not only does everything make *A* difference, anything can make *THE* difference.  It is not elections or big events that change the world. Those are the results of all of the tiny changes we all make every day, all of the decisions that every one of us makes all the time.

And one important lesson I’ve learned is this: When your actions come from your heart, when you find your voice and express it in its best form, things REALLY MOVE.

Because the other important lesson I’ve learned in my life is that we are STRONGER TOGETHER.  So let’s create a container for all of that good stuff, all of that soul searching and self-care and expressing whatever we find out in the world, in service of….well, whatever your passion is!

Let’s create a movement.

Class Fee: $63
sign up with someone else: 2 for $100

 

PAST CLASSES

Is Your Oxygen Mask On? 

14 Days of Self-Care

Just for you.

They tell you on a plane that if oxygen masks are needed, that you should always put yours on before assisting anyone else.  If you don’t, you might not be able to help anyone else. I’ve always thought this was a great metaphor for life.

As a social worker, I take care of others for a living.  I have to take care of myself in order to have anything to give to anyone else. If I don’t, my body, mind, a spirit stage a rebellion. I get sick, I get listless, I get anxious. I feel “off”, disconnected. I don’t have the energy to enjoy the life with which I’ve been blessed.  I am reminded that *I* am the one who needs to take of me-FIRST. Before I have anything to offer anyone else.

Who takes care of you?

Let me help YOU take care of you. In this class you will receive:

  • 14 days of daily emails with self-care tips and practices.
  • Guided relaxation meditations
  • Videos of me, offering encouragement and further explaining the self-care tips
  • Recommendations for books, videos, streaming meditations, essential oils….and more!
  • and a completely secret Facebook group so that you have group support-you are not doing this alone.

I know what you are thinking: this sounds great, but I DON’T HAVE TIME.

This is the most common excuse for neglecting our self care, and the worst part is that it’s TOTALLY FALSE. For two reasons:

  1. in just five minutes, you can considerably relax your nervous system. You can interrupt the stress cycle. Most of these “tips” are things that can be done in five minutes, give or take a few. (of course, you can do them for more than five minutes. But five minutes is sufficient for most of them to have an effect.)
  2. You likely feel like you don’t have time because you are DOING TOO MUCH, without recharging yourself. Without filling up our own tank, without putting ourselves first so that we can give more from a sense of balance, how can we feel like we have any time or energy to spare? BUT: when you make self-care a priority, even five minutes a day, you will be astounded at how much less stressed you feel. And not only will you feel you have the time for self-care, you’ll find you feel that your life is more spacious.

Why am I offering this class?

Because I have had a life-long struggle with this, and continue to struggle with it. I want to do it all, too. And I can’t, but sometimes I still try, and in the process I exhaust myself. I tap myself out.

Because I’ve worked for years at bettering my self-care and I’ve experienced firsthand how the smallest things can make a tremendous difference.

Because we ALL deserve self-care.  We all deserve to be our own #1 priority.

Won’t you join me?

class fee: $25.00                                                            SPECIAL: 2 for $40.00                                                           sign up with someone else, or gift a class to someone else.

 

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“What I love about this (getting writing prompts) is you have no idea what you’re going to be given and definitely no idea where it’s going to lead you.

It’s been a wonderful experience so far for me and has really renewed my love of journaling/writing.”
-SP, past class participant

 Connecting To Myself: Mindfulness and Journaling

                     (no experience required)

You want to write. Perhaps you’ve never written a word, perhaps you’re a closeted writer (as I was for many, many years), perhaps you write for a living.

You want to practice mindfulness. Perhaps you’ve dabbled in yoga, meditation, and the like. Perhaps you’ve been practicing for years. Or tried one, but not the other.

But what you really want is to connect to yourself.

 

It’s hard to find the time to write,so you just don’t.  You don’t know why you want to write, so you just don’t. You don’t have a topic on hand about which to write, so you don’t. OR: you spend so much time writing for others, you don’t make time to write just for you.

It’s hard to find the time to practice mindfulness-so you just don’t. You don’t know how, so you just don’t.  You don’t have anyone to do it with, or to guide you…so you just don’t.  Or you practice, but long for others to talk to about what it’s like for you.

Regardless of your situation, you have longings: to write. to be more present. To connect more deeply with yourself.

Then this class is for you.

This class is for anyone who simply wants write for themselves, regardless of experience or (perceived) skill. 

This class is for anyone who wants to slow down and learn to be more present.

This class is for anyone with a desire to connect (or re-connect) with their creative spirit.

This class is an opportunity…to write with some structure and guidance, in a safe atmosphere. To practice mindfulness (yes, you can, even if you never have before) with a bit of structure, and support.

 Just for you.

This class is an invitation….to connect to yourself.

Mindfulness practice is a way to bring yourself into the present moment, which can open the channel  of creativity. Writing and mindfulness can both be wonderful ways to connect to ourselves, find our true expression, and allow it to flow.  Bringing yourself into the moment before writing into a prompt also helps cultivate the ability to bring yourself into the present at other times.  Mindfulness–a thousands-year-old practice– has also more recently been found to reduce stress, and increase vitality.

Why I offer this class:

I have been  journaling since before I could write. My mom tells stories of me getting sent to my room and hearing me talking intensely, if quietly. She thought I was arguing my case; I think I was processing my feelings. When I was about 10, I got my first actual journal and have been journaling since: the notebook has evolved to my laptop-or the voice recorder on my phone if inspiration strikes elsewhere (in line at CVS, for example).  Writing–journaling–is HOW I process things. My thoughts. My feelings. The world I live in.   I used to keep it a secret. Now I share it widely, thanks to email, social media, and the honor of having work published.

My mindfulness practice started in 1993 in a high school gymnasium, with high ceilings and florescent light–a yoga class through the city parks and rec department. The winding path has led me to the library (for audio tapes of yoga!), to yoga studios, meditation centers, workshops, and retreats.  It’s also, I’m grateful to say, led me to offer the practices to others.  That is how practice expands: by sharing it.  My practice is in my offerings, and vice versa. No separation.

I didn’t choose to become a writer. Or a spiritualist. And yet, my life has become infinitely richer as I have embraced that they are how I connect to myself.  Any kind of offering I make, be it counseling or teaching police officers, offering meditation to homeless women, or yoga to 6-year-olds, all spring from the same passion: to offer people ways to connect with themselves. 

And that is my reason for offering this class. It concerns me not if you feel you can write, or if you’ve been told you can write, or how you write. It concerns me not if you have ever tried yoga or meditation-or if you are an advanced practitioner.

This is an offering, and you may use it however it best serves you.  It is my hope that it is somehow in service of expressing your own precious voice, and connecting to yourself.

What you will receive in this course:

  • Three journaling prompts a week, via email, for four weeks (total of twelve prompts).  The first prompt each week will be accompanied by an audio recording of a brief, guided mindfulness exercise. The exercise itself is an invitation to come into this moment, to meet yourself wherever you may be, before responding to the prompt.
  • One mindfulness prompt each week, via email, for four weeks (total of four prompts). They will be suggestions for small practices that you can try, that you can play with, that you can tailor to your own needs and lifestyle.

          The prompts will be simple early on, and get progressively more substantial. There               will be ample opportunity to just flex your writing muscles, as well as opportunity to            dig deeper into your own mind and heart, should you desire to. You may write into the               prompts as much (or as little) as you like, whenever you like. You may use the mindfulness               prompts in a manner that serves you, opt to try them all, or just one or two.  It is all up to                   you.

  • A completely private Facebook group for just the class, for sharing and offering support and feedback to one another, a space held by the instructor and monitored to ensure its sacredness.  The group will be open for the four weeks of the class. You may share as much (or as little) as you like, of your writing, your process, your experience with the mindfulness practices.
  • An opportunity to connect with yourself.

Class Fee: $60 for four weeks