Monday, 31 August 2015

September 2015 - Distilling

Welcome to the Dare to Blossom Newsletter

In this Issue: 
Reflections: Distilling
Autumn Magic Carpet Ride
Dare to Blossom Art
Special coaching package offer for readers - advance notice
Inspirational links

Reflections: Distilling

To distil: "to get or show only the most important part of something:"

This feels like the process I have been following recently, getting to the most important parts. Reflecting on a wet August day, taking a pause to breathe. Thinking about all  the books I have read (and those on my shelves to read in the future); the workshops I have attended; the courses that led to qualifications; the on-line groups that I sign up for and sometimes participate in, and sometimes not; the discussion groups where we share valuable insights.

Thinking about all these resources, all providing valuable information. When do I stop? Or at least pause a little longer than the time it takes to breathe a few deep breaths. What is it that turns information into knowledge? Is it being able to apply it, use it?

And then, how do we define wisdom? For me, it is becoming apparent that true wisdom may be when a person has taken time: time to evaluate, to distil the goodness, the strength, the power, out of all they have learned. Whether through formal education, or in the school of life and 'hard knocks', this can take time. Paradoxically perhaps, very young people often have the ability to see wisely. To truly see as they have not yet acquired all those filters of experience, conditioning, prejudice (meaning to pre-judge, make assumptions).

Part of the urge, the quest to keep on learning is positive, inquisitive and enterprising. For me a big part of my learning over recent years has been remembering to come back to my own inner wisdom, to rediscover my own power within - a unique mix that only I have. Each of us has that unique inner knowledge that we too often dismiss and ignore, preferring to look outside ourselves and not to share the talents we can offer to others. Allowing that knowledge to deepen and mature into wisdom, and then daring to share it with others may bring unforeseen gifts back to you.

Do you have a longing to step back and distil, to focus and reflect? To somehow arrive at those most important parts that may be concealed within?

I chose this photograph of one of my paintings as the pure blue seems to draw the eye into the picture. At the same time there is an outward energy too, an exuberant sharing of a deep joy. The reason I love this medium, the jewel colours of the wax, is that it is a little like seeing pictures in the fire or castles in the clouds - everyone sees something different. And the same picture will reveal different aspects each time you return to it anew. (more on my recent return to creative art later).

Blue deep

For you, to reflect in your journal or meditations:

Pause and centre yourself with some deep, deep breaths, in and out
Pick up your pen and write, or close your eyes and see:
- focus in on the one thing, the one thing that is important now
- if this does not come to you (it often doesn't for me), just start writing: a list; complaints of 'I don't know what to write'; about how your body is feeling right now; the sounds, sights, smells around you. Let your words flow freely onto the paper with no reasoning.
- after ten minutes stop, read what you have written and see if anything stands out.

Whatever has occurred for you, some 'distillation' will have gone on: if you now have an idea, follow that, if not, put it aside, go on with your day, and see what surfaces later.

Autumn Magic Carpet Ride
Some of you took part in the "Midsummer Magic Carpet Ride", and the feedback I have received has been positive. I have just opened up a new group on-line on FaceBook for anyone who is interested in participating again there.

As before, if you prefer to take part in an email group, please send me an email via this link (or just 'reply' to this newsletter email) and I will add your name. We start on 21 September, again the plan is for four weeks together, and maybe that will extend as it did last time. Thank you to everyone who responded to the survey I sent out. This time I will be suggesting a financial contribution, how much will be up to you. There is so much so freely ad generously offered out there on-line that this feels a hard thing to do for me. However, I know through my own experience that we tend not to value what is freely given - rightly or wrongly this is a fact of human nature. There will be plenty of time to think about this before the Magic Carpet Ride begins.

There is also a workshop in Cornwall on Saturday 19th September, in the countryside between Lostwithiel and Bodmin. I have already sent out a bulletin to you about this. There are still some places left so please contact me as soon as possible to book. There are more details here on the Rediscovery Process Page  Another date has been booked, in West Cornwall, on 21 November, again 10 - 1 on a Saturday morning. More details to follow next month.

The feel to these events for autumn is, to me, very different. I don't think this is simply due to the season, maybe it is the experience of having now run one event like this. I am not sure - I will be doing my own journalling on this to explore before we begin.

Dare to Blossom Art
I have recently set up a new Facebook page for "Dare to Blossom Art" (I think you will be able to view it even if you are not a Facebook 'native'). I will work out how to share more on my new website that is coming soon (as with all these things my developer seems to be taking longer than I had hoped).

After receiving some very good advice about selling my original pieces too cheaply I am now experimenting with having greetings cards printed. The first image I have chosen to be reproduced is a landscape, which many of you will have already seen. They arrived last week and I am very pleased with the quality, here is one I was about to write and send to a friend. I have ordered cellophane bags for them and will then be selling them individually and in packs - along with some other designs I have ordered.

Special coaching package offer for readers - advance notice
Many of you have been loyal subscribers to this newsletter for years, and I truly appreciate that. I would like to repay you with the opportunity to try out for yourself how a series of on-going coaching sessions can work for you. Of course, many of you are coaches yourselves, or work in similar fields and need no convincing of the value of consistent work of whatever kind.

However, how often do you allow yourself to experience this? Money is often an issue, but what message that does send out to your clients or customers? What message - most importantly - are you giving to yourself? Is it one of valuing yourself, of giving yourself time and space, and yes - investment? Or just the opposite? When I am working with the various coaches I connect with for my own growth and support, I so often find myself saying, usually while laughing rather ruefully: "Yes, I know that, and I say it to people all the time, but how hard it is to put into practise for myself!" This applies here: I am often very 'stingy', mean,  with things that could help me move forward, in my business or personal life (often both). 

Over the last few weeks, during my 'distilling' process, I have come back to my core self; been able to step back and see where all the life experiences of the sixty two years I have been on this particular path have brought me. The wisdom and insight; the ability to deeply listen, to provide a quiet safe place for you to hear yourself, really hear your own voice. To be heard and be witnessed.

A question for you, how are you feeling, right now?

Let your first answer go. It may well have been 'fine' or 'OK'.

How are you feeling? Do you feel in a tight place? Restricted somehow? Is something in your life not sitting quite right for you?

Are you feeling 'tight in a bud' and ready to blossom into your full glory? The quote that inspired 'Dare to Blossom' (as many of you will know) is this from Anais Nin:

".. and then the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."

Yesterday I spent all day outdoors in the gorgeous countryside of Cornwall. Walking on the ancient hill fort of Castle an Dinas, connecting with the land. There was no one there except me, just the wind and the sheep. Coming home and sitting in my garden, reading, writing, distilling. Beside me was the Glory Bush (Tibouchina) which is covered in buds, about to burst into flower - big purple, stunning blooms. For now the buds are sitting, waiting, beautiful in themselves.

If things truly are fine or OK, how would it be if they were 'tremendous' or 'amazing'? This is where coaching can work magic: it is not a process to fix anything or provide therapy (that is for counselling and other treatments).

Coaching works to expand and explore; to enable you to grow into the bigger you; to reconnect with the amazing person you really are. Every coach has a particular style, grown - distilled - out of their experience, their training and their core self. Would you like to experience 'Dare to Blossom Rediscovery Coaching', developed over many years?

I am working on a new package, an evolution of the original 'Rediscovery Process'. Still using the tried and tested tools of the Rediscovery Cards, with an added sense of focus to ensure progress and development. I had intended to launch a special offer for you in this newsletter, but it seems that there is more distilling and refining required before it is totally polished and ready to do the very best for you. So look out for a special bulletin in your mail box early in September. The offer will not be available generally until after you have had a chance to ask any questions if you wish.

Inspirational Links

Favourite music: Lucinda Drayton
Writing this I have been listening to one of Lucinda's CDs. Like many of you, I find her music touches me so deeply. One particular track is Pale Green Angel, and begins with the words:

In your heart you know the right thing to do
In your heart you know the right way to go
And if you don’t have the courage ask for it
If you don’t have the power, pray for it."

NB The lyrics of this song are of course copyright, here is the direct link to Lucinda's FB page and here is the main website too.

I remember the first time I heard this, sitting in the front row of one of Lucinda's musical workshop/concerts at the Olive Grove Bistro at Perranarworthal. Those words, and her extraordinary voice struck right to the core of what was going on for me right then. And continues to do that every time I listen to the CD 'You' that is comes from.

New Book: Conscious Writing by Julia McCutchen
Back in May last year I attended Julia's first 'Conscious Writing' retreat, and have followed her progress ever since in writing the book based on the material she shared with the group of us there. The retreat had a big impact on me and I learnt some ways of working, and being, that have stayed with me ever since. So I was delighted to see the other day that the book is being published on 8 September. I have already ordered my copy. There are some bonus videos if you order before the publication date so you may like to look at this link soon. 

As always, please feel free to comment below with your thoughts and comments. 

If you would like to own a set of cards to explore their power for yourself please visit the dedicated page.

Thank you dear friends for visiting with me again this month and sharing my musings.

Until next time,

with love,

* find 'Dare to Blossom Life Coaching' on Facebook.