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Your body of work: the greatest gift for transition to a bright new life

February 22, 2018

Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

George Bernard Shaw

Leaving an organisation where I have worked for over 30 years, I reflect on this transition and the gift of learning from my body of work over time.


body of work

Leaving a long-term job role

Today marks an auspicious day when I leave an organisation where I have worked for over 30 years. It’s not without sadness. And it’s been a strange conclusion in many ways. I’ve been on leave for some time caring for my mother who recently passed away after a long battle with terminal cancer. So not being in the workplace as I leave, the usual farewells have not been part of the process. It’s as if I have disappeared off into the sunset on another journey.

This is in part very true. I realised about two years ago that I no longer enjoyed my job or working in the organisation. The organisation had changed and so had I. It was time to get back to my long-harboured creative loves and pursuits that lingered in the margins of my days. The books and creative inspiration I craved and hung onto as I made a long commute to work by car and train became key. This liminal time became a passage of transition as I sowed the seeds of my leaving into the stitches and seams of my days. I realised my heart was no longer in it as I applied for jobs I didn’t really want.

In truth, this leaving had been a long time coming and at this stage, I had already started to move on and transition to another life. The one I really wanted to be living. You may know that feeling – your heart has left the building, or relationship or place. And you walk in the door each day feeling so empty dragging yourself through the day until it’s time to leave. So you make a plan to leave for good to create a new life.

transition

The greatest gift

My time in the organisation – a large government department focused on adult vocational education, TAFE NSW – was not without great joy and opportunity. The greatest gift of this transition has been to reflect on my body of work over time to plan a vision for a new life.

It’s so easy when we feel the sadness of moving on to devalue the past, all that we are and all that the organisation and its people have given us. The opportunities, the connections, the people, the learning, the vision, the strategy, the excitement – it can all get snowed over in a narrative of loss. There’s a tendency to risk losing the good and the valuable continuing threads with all of these feelings.

Pain is a player in this scenario too as we may feel undervalued. In my situation, I’ve been made ‘redundant’, my job ‘deleted’ in a restructure I am no longer a part of. The language itself is a challenge to deal with, not exactly creating the best of feelings. We can tie our self-image to this boatload of emotions and feel ourselves being towed behind it, awash with anger. In this, we can risk losing focus on the valuable gift of the resources of such timing.

But the greatest gift hidden in all of these experiences is what Pamela Slim calls our ‘body of work’ – the thread that ties our story together. This is the story we have been crafting and creating from our desires, our dreams, the opportunities, the interactions, the people we worked with, the projects envisaged, the products created and the services delivered. Therein lies the seeds of so much wisdom.

transition

Your body of work

It took a painful experience for me to realise all of this and to start to move on. A chance gut-wrenching workplace experience one day was the catalyst that made me realise I could no longer stay. I had to make changes. The next day I reached out to my friend, Victoria Smith, a life-coach and inspiration, someone who’s been down this road before me, to help me track a new path.

I’d reached a low point and I knew I could no longer navigate this time by myself. My coaching series with Victoria became the blueprint for a new life. A conversation about Pamela Slim’s ‘Body of Work’ in that coaching series was a pivotal piece that helped to tie my transition journey together.

The trick with a wise transition is to reflect on the driving force and heart of your work over time. What really drives you? Across all the job roles you have done, what are the recurring passions? What makes you come alive? Which themes occur in various ways again and again?

Pamela Slim says that her motivation in writing the book was to:

find a set of “new” skills for the world of work in the twenty-first century that would provide options, flexibility and freedom to workers across every mode, in every industry.

Her work enables us to do just that by identifying these core elements:

  • defining your roots
  • naming your ingredients
  • choosing your work mode
  • creating and innovating
  • surfing the fear
  • collaborating
  • knowing your definition of success
  • sharing your story

transition

My body of work in transition

As I’ve moved through this time of transition, I have worked through all these areas. You will see these themes woven through my blog posts, as I’ve shared my story along the way. I have realised that the key threads that tie my story together are:

  • making a difference (always a motivator for me, sharing skills and knowledge to help others);
  • teaching, coaching, mentoring, blogging (different forms of empowering others and sharing knowledge, skills and experience);
  • creativity (innovating, leading it, fostering it, writing);
  • leadership and self-leadership (leading others means leading yourself first);
  • being a reflective practitioner and knowing myself (a constant search for self-understanding, professional development and reflecting on experiences in work and other life roles);
  • writing (the authentic heart of it all, being a writer, becoming a teacher of writing and weaving it as a strategic and professional superpower in my life);
  • introversion and intuition as key strengths and gifts as an INTJ, the captains of my personality ship I needed to learn to work with; and,
  • in all of this, being wholehearted in how we live and work, not bringing parts of ourselves to the door of any workplace or relationship.

Bringing all this together in a new way into a new life and business is exciting but challenging work. It’s taken consistent work towards my vision sustained over time. And it is about hard work and not luck as Kerstin Pilz reminds us in this beautiful piece, ‘Why luck had nothing to do with my self-directed life.’

Making a path for my transition

So finding myself feeling half-hearted, experiencing a ‘loss of heart’ as Lynn Hanford-Day describes it, a kind of burnout, I shifted to a job-share arrangement 18 months ago to plan a new future. Coaching with Victoria helped me shape this new path and I knew the ingredients for the future, based on the key threads of my past and taking them forward.

I set my goals of:

  • becoming a Beautiful You Coaching Academy life coach (achieved July 2017)
  • becoming a certified Jung/Myers-Briggs personality type practitioner (achieved December 2016)
  • working with my Introverted Intuition preference as a key compass especially via tarot and oracle card tools (achieved via courses, personality work and ongoing practice in 2017)

Setting and achieving these goals has been the backbone of my transition journey, with key learning milestones stepping the way.

authentic heart

Core desired feelings as guides to transition

My core desired feelings are at the heart of everything I do. I want to feel and convey being:

creative, connected, flowing, intuitive, poetic.

Connection especially has been a theme now and finding new kinds of networks. Not being in a traditional workplace can mean a loss of connection. At a time of leaving the workplace, I’ve developed rich connections with a beautiful community of fellow life coaches. We support and inspire each other. I’ve also had the chance to develop deep connections with valued coaching clients who have honoured me through sharing their journey.

Via social media, especially Instagram, I have found the most amazing kindred creative souls. Through Quiet Writing, women have shared wholehearted stories of transition inspiring me and others as we reflect on and initiate change. The hallmarks are startlingly similar across the stories, though they play out in different ways. I am meeting more and more online friends in real life in the most incredible encounters where we share our stories. The personality type community is another tribe of people where I feel a strong connection and source of learning and growth. And I know I will reconnect in different ways over time with many special people from the workplace.

Creating your story

As we move through times of transition, we can create our story, as George Bernard Shaw reminds us. The special ingredients of our body of work, our drivers and passions, are the greatest gifts and teachers on the journey of change. Painful as it might be at times to feel redundant, rejected or no longer belonging to the team, it’s an opportunity to create ourselves anew.

This time can be an opportunity to interrogate what Steven Pressfield calls our ‘shadow careers’, where our lives are an imitation of the real thing we want. He suggests in ‘Turning Pro’:

If you’re dissatisfied with your current life, ask yourself what your current life is a metaphor for.

That metaphor will point you toward you true calling.

So now I move full steam into a new career focused on being a writer and a personality and life coach supporting women to create their wholehearted story at times of transition. I know the ingredients of my body of work. Writing, creativity, making a difference, coaching, teaching, reflecting, sharing knowledge, leadership, self-leadership, introversion and intuition are the threads taking my story forward in support of others.

Distilling all of this brings me to the focus of this transition and new phase of life:

choosing to journey deeper into your wholehearted story

This is the theme of my journey and body of work. And it is what I offer to you through my writing, this blog, my coaching and personality type work and my intuitive tarot work. My deepest threads weaving together into a new story to inspire yours.

Thank you for your support on this journey. May you find your true calling, bringing together all the elements of your body of work forward into a new life. I look forward to sharing my newly formed self-sustaining creative life with you in all its guises in support of your own.

If you’d like to find out how to work with me, you can find out more here. I’d love to work with you!

transition

Image of me by Lauren of Sol + Co

Thank you

With gratitude and love to my family and all my key influences, special friends, life coaches, teachers, coaching clients and fellow travellers on the journey this past year or so, especially my dear friend Victoria Smith.

Thanks to TAFE NSW and all my colleagues for our time together. It is a time I treasure and one from which the deepest friendships and connections have come. I’ve been blessed with inspiring leaders and mentors who have taught me so much about leadership and self-leadership.

Much love too to my beautiful mum, Shirley, who supported my journey transition generously and with the greatest enthusiasm even as her journey was coming to a close. This truly is the greatest of gifts for which I am forever grateful, her body of work being the deepest love of family.

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on the 36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Joy – 18 inspiring quotes on enjoying what you do and love

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inspiration & influence planning & productivity

Blossoming on your own terms for long-term success

February 19, 2018

You are just getting started, so have patience with yourself and the process, and do not give up.

Aeracura, Blossoming

Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards – Doreen Virtue

___________________________________

A Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday to share intuitive guidance, wisdom and insights from aligned books – for the week and anytime…

This week: blossoming on your own terms + patience for long-term success 

blossoming

Theme for the week beginning 19 February

The theme for this week to guide our overall focus is from Doreen Virtue’s Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards – Aeracura – Blossoming.

Blossoming

Anyone else feeling they want to burst out there with your work but knowing you need to be patient right now? This is a great week for realising those tensions and being patient, remembering where you are in your process. Advice from the Guidebook is:

In many ways, you are like a flower bud who is ripe and ready to open and grow. Don’t try to rush this process, as it’s part of your beautiful path.

This theme is key to Quiet Writing generally with a focus on process, not just product. The steps in getting there are just as important as the point of arrival. But it’s hard to remember this sometimes as we struggle to create all that is in our mind or vision. We need to be gentle with ourselves; keep focused, yes, but not overwhelm ourselves with action. Sometimes we need to integrate what we are learning, taking things in and working with them internally before the blossoming stage. To represent the energy of this phase, working with flowers in any way including with flower essences is highlighted for this time.

So the guidance this week is around moving forward but with gentleness and self-compassion, with an eye on the long-term creative blossoming process. And in this, understanding the true nature of any fears and working intuitively is a powerful help.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 19 February

blossoming

Tarot Narrative: On your own terms

You’re standing strong, clear and analytical with plans you can work with. You are gathering yourself, researching the options and content. You’re poised on the threshold of a time of self-sufficiency when it all culminates into joy and satisfaction. Have patience with the tenderness of it all and look to see what is real and what is masquerading as fear. You are blossoming and on your own terms now.

Reading notes

Cards: Father (King) of Swords and Nine of Cups from The Wild Unknown Tarot and #36 Come to the Edge in protection (reversed position) from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

When we turn to face our fears, we discover that our fear is False Evidence Appearing Real – an illusion manufactured by our egos.

Debrena Jackson Gandy, All The Joy You Can Stand (p. 332)

This reading and narrative sends strong messages about being analytically clear and organised as we head towards blossoming and experiencing the fruit of our labours. The seeds of joy are real and we are so close to tasting them as they come to fruition. But we are encouraged to take time: to research, be patient, and to work with fear.

How we marshall our resources is key. This is a theme that popped up recently here (29 January reading) also with the King of Swords. This King is all about gathering, marshalling, making workable plans, putting emotion aside and getting on with it. He encourages us to put our knowledge into practice with swordy clarity and analytical skills. Conquering fear practically is also a way to move through these times.

Managing a sense of urgency

The Nine of Cups reminds us in this blossoming process that we are heading towards creative self-sufficiency. We are learning to be more self-sustaining, knowing when to listen to others and when to trust our own judgement. As Jessa Crispin reminds us in ‘The Creative Tarot’, this card is about “finding satisfaction all on your own.”

This rings so true for me as I head into the threshold of a new life. This week I will be finishing up in my work role of 30 plus years. I’ve been planning and working for this transition for the longest time. My goal is to establish a ‘self-sustaining creative life’. This means not working for someone else, working for myself, with creativity as the heart of what I do. Getting to this pivotal time, I feel a sense of urgency. I’ve been struggling with a feeling of pressure to get everything I have planned out into the world perfectly formed – and now!

I’ve had to learn that, though this time feels urgent like I want to burst out into full flower, I need to move steadily and take my time. I need to realise much is in the process of blossoming already. Taking a moment to get perspective and see how far I have come helps with feeling more joyful about my progress. I am still integrating everything I am learning and it’s a process to enjoy, not one to rush through. I’m reflecting too on my body of work over my life so far and how I am taking it forward into this new time.

Fear management + blossoming

Fear can be part of this wanting to rush forward too. As both the ‘Come to the Edge’ card and the quote above from ‘All the Joy you can Stand’ remind us,  Fear can be ‘False Evidence Appearing Real’. Our job at these sensitive times of change is to work out what really is to be feared and what we have ourselves may have manufactured into fear. Facing our fears and identifying what is lowering our energy is important as we are working on blossoming into new times.

This week when you think about your plans, think of how any fear or impatience is manifesting. Sometimes it can be fear of being left behind, a kind of comparisonitis, as we see others write books, start businesses and come out of the blocks in places where we too want to shine. We can feel like we are never going to get our act together as we compare ourselves to others perhaps much further down the road than us. And in a way that will never be kind to ourselves.

Being creatively self-sufficient, knowing what you need to do in your own time and on your own terms, is powerful work this week. It might be rest, revisioning, stepping up, recasting, finishing a draft, starting a project, knowing what to do first. Perhaps it’s taking on board other’s feedback but knowing what to do with that feedback.

Sometimes fear can be a sign we are stepping up into a new phase as Tara Mohr reminds us in ‘Playing Big’. Tara explains that there are two kinds of fear concepts in biblical Hebrew: ‘pachad’, projected or illusory fear and ‘yirah’ – “the fear that overcomes us when we suddenly find ourselves in possession of considerably more energy than we are used to.” Both are useful concepts to work with as we come to the edge of our blossoming – and learn which fear to play down and which to embrace.

blossoming

On your own terms

The Art of Life Tarot deck has a beautiful way of coalescing messages in art and quotes. For the  Nine of Cups, we are reminded via Marcus Amnaeous Seneca that:

A happy life is one in accordance with its own nature.

That is a key theme this week weaving through all of the cards. If we are to truly blossom as ourselves, we need to follow our own path. Creative influence is a wonderful thing but we need to take it on board and coalesce it our own way, finding our own path on our own terms. This week provides energies for doing just that, working with wisdom on our fears and frustrations.

This can show up in so many ways for us: Where are we feeling impatient? What plan have we put in place to make the work happen? Is the plan actually workable? How do we know? What research is there to help us define our creative way in the world? How can we use it?

This is a great week for blossoming on our own terms in our own time.

Look to see where you might be undercutting your own process with fear or comparisonitis. It’s not a race; it’s bringing ourselves wholeheartedly into the world and that takes time, patience and discovering our own unique ways of working.

Blossoming

 

Love to hear your thoughts!

I’d love to hear if you are feeling these energies around blossoming on your own terms, patience and fear now.

  • How might you bring blossoming forth more gently?
  • Where might you support growth with planning and action?
  • Which fears are helpful and which ones are not?
  • Where is there a valid reason for fear and what can you do about it?
  • What will help you create workable plans?
  • Where can you value and enjoy the process more?
  • How can you be more self-compassionate?
  • Where can analytical clarity help you make decisions and move through any blocks?

All best wishes for this week of being patient with blossoming and long-term plans and getting there on our own terms. It’s powerful work and not always easy, but I look forward to a week of moving through some threshold days in my own life.

May Aeracura also guide you with blossoming, with patience, and on your own terms. And let me know what you think of this post and this weekly Tarot Narrative!

blossoming

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Joy – 18 inspiring quotes on enjoying what you do and love

Secret superpowers for creative energy and inspiration

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Joy – 18 inspiring quotes on enjoying what you do and love

February 16, 2018

Joy

Joy is my word for the year for 2018. Here are 18 quotes about joy, spirit and soulful work sparking my year. I hope they inspire you too.

Choosing a word for the year is like deciding on a destination for how you want to feel but not knowing how it will play out. It’s like setting an intention for feeling the tone of the year with no plan for the details. Inviting the energy of a word into your life, you wait to see how it unfolds and manifests.

PASSION was my word for the year for 2017. It was such an inspiring way to get back to what I love as a guiding force in my life. I shared 17 quotes about passion about the driving energy of doing what you love. Last year was a challenging journey which took me back to the heart of what I love as the map and soul of its next steps.

I discovered passion was about feeling your authentic heart, in my case writing, and getting it into its rightful place in your life. It was about following my intuition more deeply and finding a vision that went beyond the everyday. Moreover, it was a guide for transition in a year of crossing over to a new place, sensing potential, seeing opportunity and knowing how to combine my skills in new ways. It was about learning to play bigger and weave all that has happened to me into a book, a new way of living, a new career, a creative life. In there also was an understanding of my uniqueness, the elements that combine as passions within me. As Meryl Streep reminds us:

What makes you different and weird, that’s your strength. 

Finding joy

So in turning the corner into 2018 after a challenging time, joy was beckoning me. Sometimes you can take a while to work through your word for the year; other times it arrives, more obviously and insistently. And then there are synchronicities also, like the card my daughter gave me for Christmas. It was a beautifully crafted message of JOY made from handpainted Egyptian papyrus. This sealed the deal perfectly.

As often happens with your word of the year, you have a sense of its meaning but a deeper dive yields surprises and connections. And there is serendipity and further synchronicity too.

This week via an inspiring webinar on Energy Matters in Coaching with Meg Mann I was introduced to the work of David R Hawkins. In particular, we were shown his map of the scale of consciousness as we progress through achieving greater levels of consciousness. And my eye zeroed in on JOY sitting right up near the top described by way of self-view as “complete” and emotion as “serenity”.

David R Hawkins says of the energy of this phase:

As we move up towards this level, inner joy, quiet, and inner knowingness begin to take place. Within this energy field, we connect with something that is rocklike and ever present.

So this year’s focus is no lightweight endeavour but one that has enormous potential to calm and ground me. I knew choosing joy this year was always going to be a challenging task and this scale just helped highlight this.

Being unapologetically joyful

As part of a Goddess Roadtrip Sydney workshop recently on ‘being seen’, we were asked by Jade McKenzie to stand up and say to the group what we were unapologetically going to be this year. Given my focus for the year, I chose “joyful”, but when I stood up to say the words “This year I will be unapologetically joyful…”, I couldn’t get the words out of my mouth. I was so mired in grief after the very recent loss of my mother. Eventually, I did say the words with the support of a room of beautiful women who held space for me, quietly, as I got there. But in this moment, I realised the intensity and depth of exploration in this journey of learning about joy this year. In part, it’s about allowing the juxtaposition of grief and joy in my life, something that can seem an uncomfortable fit just now.

Joy

Quotes about joy

I love quotes. The distilled wisdom of others in the form of words we can hold, repeat, learn from and reflect on is a balm and portal for me.

I found the 17 quotes on PASSION last year were a place to start from, a way to begin to explore the terrain of what it meant. Frequently, I returned to those words as I did to the Pinterest page I created on PASSION. Both are great ways to unravel the multiple meanings and nuances of words as we seek to explore them in our lives.

So to commence my exploration of JOY in 2018, here are 18 quotes about JOY to begin to tease out its contours and character for this year’s journey. I hope you find some inspiration for your journey this year.

“We cannot cure the world of sorrows but we can choose to live in joy.” – Joseph Campbell

“If all you did was just look for things to appreciate, you would live a joyous, spectacular life.” – Abraham-Hicks

“Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” – Lao Tzu 

“The body heals with play, the mind heals with laughter and the spirit heals with joy.” – Proverb

“Feelings are just visitors. Let them come and go.” – Mooji

“Joy comes to us in ordinary moments. We risk missing out when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.” – Brene Brown

“Joy is the best makeup. But a little lipstick is a close runner-up.” – Anne Lamott

“Strive not to get more done, but to have less to do.” – Francine Jay

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” – Theodore Roosevelt

“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” – Maya Angelou 

“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” – Rumi

“Your joy is where you locate your white hot Truth – your pure-burning is-ness, from where you have the creative power to turn thought into matter.” – Danielle LaPorte

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” – Marianne Williamson

“You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.” – C. S. Lewis

“You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page.” – Annie Proulx

“Don’t wait for everything to be perfect before you decide to enjoy your life.” – Joyce Meyer

“Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.” – Oscar Wilde

“JOY is a meeting place, of deep intentionality and self forgetting, the bodily alchemy of what lies inside us in communion with what formally seemed outside, but is now neither, but become a living frontier, a voice speaking between us and the world: dance, laughter, affection, skin touching skin, singing in the car, music in the street, the quiet irreplaceable and companionable presence of a daughter: the sheer intoxicating beauty of the world inhabited as an edge between what we previously thought was us and what we thought was other than us.” – David Whyte

Do read the whole David Whyte’s beautiful meditation on JOY from which these words come. It is pure magic. They are such a balm for the soul. It seems like much of this work on joy is about spirit, inner stillness and soul, quiet writing perhaps. I welcome joy in as we venture forward together getting to know each other in a deeper way this year.

Share your thoughts

Which is your favourite quote from these ones? Or do you have another quote or thought on joy that inspires you? What does joy mean to you? Would love to hear – share your thoughts in the comments!

Keep in touch

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Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on tarot, intuition, influence, passion, creativity, productivity, writing, voice, introversion and personality type assessment.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

How I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year

The unique voice of what we love

Exploring magic as the heart of creative inspiration

Joy

Image of me above by David Kennedy photography with thanks.

personality and story planning & productivity

How to align priorities with your directions and make a mark

February 12, 2018

Keep your unwavering thoughts, feelings, and actions focused on your target, and you will make your mark.

Diana, Focused Intention

Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards – Doreen Virtue

___________________________________

A Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday to share intuitive guidance, wisdom and insights from aligned books – for the week and anytime…

This week: focused intention + restructuring to align priorities

align priorities

Theme for the week beginning 12 February

The theme for this week to guide our overall focus is from Doreen Virtue’s Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards – Diana – Focused Intention.

As the steely image in the card suggests, this is a great week to get clear about your targets and align your priorities with where you want to go. Advice from the Guidebook is:

Know what your priorities are and take action on them.

It is a theme that also came up for me in daily angel card readings, including this beautiful card from Kyle Gray’s Angel Prayers deck:

align priorities

So the guidance this week is around tackling any scattered and overwhelmed feelings with focus. We need to work out our intentions and the desired mark we want to make. Then we need to align priorities through actions to move towards this. “Unwavering” is a word that speaks strongly to me now as we work out how to move steadily towards our target.

It’s not about speed or time; it’s about persistence, focus and effort. I know my learning around last week’s message of Determine what’s going to help was realising what I need to do now. And surprise – it’s not everything! Determining what’s going to help includes identifying actions to do first to align priorities and this week’s guidance continues this theme.

This week’s focus is on making decisions, knowing our intentions and keeping focused. Strategic action is key. It’s about stepping away from indecision, lack of clarity and trying to attempt everything at once. In there also is a piece around taking our own road and making our own mark as we align our priorities.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 12 February

align priorities

Tarot Narrative: Realigning priorities

Restructure your priorities to focus clearly on your target direction now. You might be wavering and indecisive. Watch that this is not a form of resistance or procrastination. Make decisions on the path that is right for you. And align your actions, straight as an arrow towards that mark. Keep persevering and aiming, shaking off distractions with refinement, choice and focus as allies.

Reading notes

Cards: Two of Swords and Five of Rods (Wands) from the Sakki Sakki Tarot and #10 Unfinished Symphony in protection (reversed position) from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

No words can be said, no teaching can be taught that will relieve spiritual travellers from the necessity of picking their own ways, working out with effort and anxiety their own paths through the unique circumstances of their own lives toward the identification of their individual selves with God.

M Scott Peck, The Road Less Travelled (p. 332)

In our various ways of expressing ourselves in the world, our spiritual and creative growth is about something greater than ourselves. Whether you call it God or something else, in this week’s guidance there is also a key message of finding our own path. Making decisions can be about taking a road that is less travelled or picking our own way. Though hard, in this, we carve out a strategy and choose what we want to do, how we want to be, the work we do, what we create, how we live, what is important.

How we allocate our time and align our priorities is key.

Sometimes we find we are not making choices, wavering and unsure of what to do first. When we have this mindset, we often try and do everything and do it now. This results in overwhelm and can become a subtle form of procrastination and self-sabotage.

Another strategy is to focus the mind, ask for help from spiritual guides and supporters, open ourselves up and identify where we are heading. Even if we are not ready now to do all we aspire to, working towards that target will keep us on track, unwavering and focused.

An example for me has been getting my book draft written. It has been a goal for some years and I’ve had a few different options – fiction and non-fiction – in mind. Once I became clear on my target: to write my non-fiction book, “Wholehearted” first, it was much easier to be in action. I chose coaches to help me get there and I brainstormed, outlined and started drafting. Finding the right support, strategies and actually starting (yes!) made it easier to do NaNoWriMo in November last year. Now I have a nearly finished 72,000-word first draft.

Align priorities

As the Two of Swords reminds us, indecision can have its own form of anguish. There might be competing priorities and everything looks good and doable. Sometimes too we can see things as purely one way or another, blind to innovative options or a third way. Jessa Crispin reminds us about the power of two’s in ‘The Creative Tarot’:

A two card can show you how two different influences or demands can be brought together to form something completely new.

This week when you think about your target or plan, think about how you might bring two seemingly opposed options together. Restrategise, align priorities differently to get clear on your target and see how you can step through any blindness or procrastination.

Just making a key decision will help immensely this week. Think too about what’s been flummoxing you and whether you are making it more complicated than it needs to be.

The Sakki Sakki Five of Rods (Wands) card echoes this by showing a chaotic scene with lots of action. The Rider-Waite version of this card (below) is so good too. Anyone else’s mind, priority list or desk feeling a bit like this now, like a team with all the players moving in different directions? Any unfinished business weaving its shadow through everything so you can’t find a clear way?

align priorities

Making your mark

Another beautiful version of the Five of Wands from the Art of Life Tarot deck reminds us via Euripides that:

The wisest men follow their own direction.

One of the challenges in making decisions and aligning priorities is to know your own path.

This can show up in so many ways for us: What is the essence of our brand? Where do we want to focus our creative energies? What do we stand for? Where do we want to be at the end of the year? What do we want to produce?

I’ve just worked through Susannah Conway’s Unravel Your Year 2018 workbook. This is an annual practice I have done since 2014. It’s helped me to know where I want to make my mark in 2018. Knowing this, I can align priorities and actions accordingly.

This is a great week for stepping back to align priorities with our path in life. Working out our mark, road, unique offering or brand and how we want to make a difference is key.

Looking to see where we can focus our unwavering attention and effort over time in line with our direction is highlighted. 

align priorities

 

Love to hear your thoughts!

I’d love to hear if you are feeling these energies around competing priorities, making decisions, aligning priorities, setting direction, making choices and being in action over time.

  • How might you identify what your mark or target is this year?
  • What actions will help you get there?
  • Which strategic choices are you holding off for whatever reason?
  • How can you review the choices to see if there is another way?
  • What will help you focus your attention on your goals?
  • Where are you feeling warring internal factions and how can you get them aligned?
  • How can you set a steady course over time and stop rushing now?

All best wishes for this week of realigning priorities and getting clear on our targets. I look forward to a week of gaining clarity on where I want to make a mark and how I can get there with these energies. May Diana also guide you with focused intention. And let me know what you think of this post and this weekly Tarot Narrative!

align priorities

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Secret superpowers for creative energy and inspiration

Creating essential intent and making the right choices

Self-leadership, feedback and marshalling resources for the best week

Creative practices in my tool-kit to make the most of this year’s energies

How I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

personality and story planning & productivity

Creating essential intent and making the right choices

February 5, 2018

Creating an essential intent is hard. It takes courage, insight, and foresight to see which activities and efforts will add up to your single highest point of contribution.

Greg McKeown, in Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

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A Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday to share intuitive guidance, wisdom and insights from aligned books – for the week and anytime…

This week: creating essential intent + determining what will help

essential intent

Theme for the week beginning 5 February

The theme for this week to guide our overall focus is from Lisa McLoughlin’s Life Design Cards – 2. Determine what’s going to help.

essential intent

As the image in the card suggests, this is a great week to focus on what will be the ladder and support to help you step up. It’s worthwhile, always and especially this week, to think about the essential intent or purpose of your work. And in this, to decide what’s the best support, tool, use of time or person to work with you to help further that intent.

I have a huge list of actions as I start this week and focus on my new business and way of living as a life coach and writer. It’s exciting but easily overwhelming. Stepping back to see my ‘essential intent’, as Greg McKeown calls it in ‘Essentialism’ is a really valuable step we often forget as we dive into the minutiae of it all.

It’s a good time this week to take that step back and get clear on the big picture of where you are going so you can take the action that will help most.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 5 February

Tarot Narrative: Discernment, seeing differently

You might be feeling overwhelmed at this time of transition with an enormous list of tasks and not knowing what to do first. See what will make the biggest difference and help to get you where you want to go. What will move you on the most? Who can help you see differently or lighten the load? How can it be easier? Small adjustments, reaching out, going back to what works for you, simplifying – will all help you move on and through now.

Reading notes: Cards: Ten of Rods (Wands) and Eight of Swords from the Sakki Sakki Tarot and #3 Between Worlds in protection (reversed position) from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

An essential intent…is both inspirational and concrete, both meaningful and measurable. Done right, an essential intent is one decision that settles one thousand later decisions.

Greg McKeown, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less (p. 126)

I had heard about the book ‘Essentialism’ by Greg McKeown from both a coach I worked with and a client I worked with as a life coach. Both amazing women who found this book inspiring, I was intrigued and so purchased it and there it sat, waiting for me. Until December last year, when I spent most of the month in a palliative care ward with my mother in her final days. I chose this book to listen to as an audiobook as I went back and forward from the hospital, day after day.

There’s nothing like being in a palliative care hospital heading into Christmas time to focus the mind and heart on what is essential in life. It was as if everything was stripped back to love and family and all the trappings of Christmas shopping and events all fell away. A time for reflecting on essential intent in life generally, Greg McKeown’s book was a piece of crystal clear thinking to help me as I navigated this time.

I recommend it however you listen to it for getting to clarity and focus – but it worked well as an audiobook first up. And I know there is much to be gleaned and applied from a further closer reading of the text with more active highlighting and noting.

Creating essential intent and making it harder 

As the Ten of Rods (Wands) reminds us, we can get very busy carrying heavy loads. We can forget why we are choosing to do so much. Caught in the detail of action, we can neglect the need to step back and reflect on why we are doing all of these things. We can focus on small aspects, like the right wording, when we really need to work out is what the message is in the first place.

The Eight of Swords suggests that we might be self-imposing limitations or blinding ourselves in some way. We might reflect on how we have it made it harder than it could be. Or which old limiting beliefs we’ve picked up along the way that we might be still carrying around with us as extra baggage.

The ‘Between Worlds’ card in protection position backs this up by reminding us to be aware of expectations including of ourselves. I am focusing on “done is better than perfect” at the minute as a way of breaking through and being in action. It doesn’t all have to be perfect; progress is better. There’s an Instagram challenge on this for the month of February that I am doing and finding is a great focus at this time.

essential intent

Creating essential intent and strategic choices

Greg McKeown reminds us in ‘Essentialism’ that:

One strategic choice eliminates a universe of other options and maps a course for the next five, ten, or even twenty years of your life. Once the big decision is made, all subsequent decisions come into better focus.

As an example, on my big list of actions this week is work on the Quiet Writing brand essence in partnership with Stephey Baker at Marked by the Muse. We are working together on clearly defining my brand essence through the words and images that sum up Quiet Writing’s heart.

Having checked through my list this morning, I exercised essential intent by making this the #1 activity for today and this week (after sharing this reading and post!) Everything else flows from that. Once I can get my brand essence right and really crystal clear, in words and visually via my logo and other imagery, I know that the other pieces and tasks can easily align. Even if they feel more insistent or urgent right now.

Creating essential intent and what will help

Another theme that popped up for this week, alongside strategic choice, is determining what is actually going to help. It’s a valuable time to think about where we have taken on too much, where things can wait, who can help and where we can delegate or get support in line with our essential intent.

If, for example, one of our goals is to set up a website or blog or refresh the current one, who can we ask to help us and how can we get support? Is life coaching an option to help us focus and be in action, set goals and frameworks to have the job done? Or is it finding a professional we can work with and brief and to whom we can hand over the majority of this task? Or is it working in strategic partnership where we can share the work based on our mutual skills and strengths?

Whatever it is in our life, this is a great week for stepping back to recognise our strategy and essential intent and then seeing how we can carry it through into action.

Looking to see where we can lighten our load in line with our essential intent is also highlighted. 

Love to hear your thoughts!

I’d love to hear if you are feeling these energies around creating essential intent, making strategic choices, working out what will help and then asking for that help.

  • How might you practice creating essential intent?
  • What is going to help you achieve that?
  • Which strategic choices can you make that will help the other parts come into focus?
  • Who could you ask to help you?
  • What shape might that support take?
  • What will lighten your load and reduce overwhelm?
  • Where are you carrying extra baggage such as self-limiting beliefs weighing you down?

All best wishes for this week of creating essential intent and getting clear on your purpose as well as lightening your load. Hooray for that possibility! I look forward to a week of easing creative overwhelm with these energies. And let me know what you think of this post and this weekly Tarot Narrative!

essential intent

📷 of me above by Lauren, Sol + Co

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Self-leadership, feedback and marshalling resources for the best week

Creative practices in my tool-kit to make the most of this year’s energies

How I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

The Empress: vision, creativity and patience

personality and story planning & productivity

Self-leadership, feedback and marshalling resources for the best week

January 29, 2018

Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

Reverend Howard Thurman, in Dario Nardi’s ‘8 Keys to Self-Leadership’

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A Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday to share intuitive guidance, wisdom and insights from aligned books – for the week and anytime…

This week: self-leadership + marshalling resources

self-leadership

Theme for the week beginning 29 January

The theme for this week to guide our overall focus is from Lisa McLoughlin’s Life Design Cards – 16Apply self-regulation and accept feedback

self-leadership

This is a lovely self-leadership card and reminds us to practice listening to our bodies, intuition and others. And then to input that into the cycle of what we are doing. Especially when negotiating challenging times, it’s important to notice when our body is telling us to rest or letting us know what it needs more or less of. It’s also about the wider environment and people in our world and what they are telling us.

When I read ‘feedback’, I immediately thought of negative feedback and listening to where I need to improve or change. This is valuable but as Lisa McLoughlin reminds us via the Life Designs Cards Guidebook for this card:

Consider that feedback is also about appreciation as well as what needs changing.

Keeping open and modulating, adjusting our sails, taking on board new perceptions and realising when we have it right or our ideas resonate – all are supportive ways to move through this week as positively and productively as we can.

It’s a good time for self-leadership and self-regulation, tuning in with our bodies and personality. Being aware of what others are saying can help to feed into the loop of our growth at this time.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 29 January

self-leadership

Tarot Narrative: Marshalling your resources

It’s a time for marshalling your resources and taking action. You’ve gathered skills, knowledge and resources over time. You’ve worked at pulling together the golden threads of you. Value this resource, this currency, this way of being and working. Make it work for you now, but also for others. Share generously, choose your focus, listen to feedback, make a difference.

Reading notes: Cards: King of Swords and Six of Coins from the Sakki Sakki Tarot and #38 To Be Fair in protection (reversed position) from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

Our lead process remains the captain of our ship no matter how much developing we do. We use it in the background even when using other processes. Lead and supporting processes develop first, and each experience we have of nonpreferred process is cause for celebration and a doorway to change.

Dario Nardi, 8 Keys to Self-Leadership (p22)

As part of my personality type work, I had the pleasure of attending two training workshops with neuroscientist Dr Dario Nardi last year. Using EEG technology, his work shows how Jungian insights about personality type and cognitive functions are supported by physical evidence.

You can actually observe the brain lighting up as it works on something that it loves (or doesn’t like) in line with patterns identified in Jungian/Myers-Briggs personality type preferences. Here is a picture of me in a workshop with Dario Nardi with the activity of my brain being mapped and regions lighting up as I do various cognitive activities.

Self-leadership

Self-leadership and personality

This work reminds us that the self-leadership journey begins with knowing ourselves and the lead cognitive functions that are our natural way of being. From this, we can extend into less natural preferences to open our potential. Each time we venture into our weaker or less preferred domains, we open the doorways of change and potential. And we should acknowledge this in our self-leadership and cheer ourselves along!

Our lead cognitive preference is always directing traffic as we use it in the background. So marshalling our resources is about knowing our personality and our best ways of working. The King of Swords is a card that reminds us about being the master of our thought, knowledge and logic, achieving success through plans that can move us ahead. Our ability to marshal our own resources and loves is highlighted so we can act to create and put thoughts into action.

As an example, as an INTJ personality type, my preferred cognitive function is introverted Intuiting. I’ve learnt over time to value this as the lead to bring the pieces together – via work such as envisioning, strategising, tarot and oracle and intuitive writing. I can use these preferences as the lead and marshall the resources I have to help bring the pieces together across the gamut of my personality. Everyone can do this – although the lead will differ depending on personality type preference – and awareness is key.

self-leadership

Self-leadership and giving back

Another theme that popped up in this reading alongside self-leadership and knowing ourselves is generosity and giving back. When we are experiencing the harvest from our work and others, we often focus on our value and what we bring forth. We need to learn from that feedback, but we also need to be generous in how we share this work.

In our self-regulation and self-leadership, it’s a good time for thinking about how we are giving back. It might be to causes or others, making a difference for the highest good of all and not just for ourselves. This is especially the case if we have experienced good fortune or are receiving from others. It’s a time to think about how can we accept this and turn it back into the world in new ways.

So for this week, it’s a great time for recognising your strengths, knowing yourself and exercising self-leadership as you marshal your resources.

Listening to feedback – both positive and instructive – is highlighted. As is recognising when we are benefiting from a time of fruition, so we can put back to benefit others.

Notice when people say good things about the work that you do and see where it can take you! What clues does this provide you?

Love to hear your thoughts!

I’d love to hear if you are feeling these energies around self-leadership, feedback, marshalling resources and generosity.

  • How might you practice self-leadership and self-regulation?
  • What resources are you marshalling?
  • What are the good things people are saying about you and the work that you do?
  • What does this tell you? Where could you take it further?
  • What are you feeling or hearing about what is not working for you?
  • What can you do step up your self-leadership in the coming week?

All best wishes for this week of exercising self-leadership and marshalling resources including giving back. And let me know what you think of this post and the idea of weekly Tarot Narratives!

self-leadership

📷 of me (top + bottom) by Lauren, Sol + Co

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

On the special value of self-leadership

Creative practices in my tool-kit to make the most of this year’s energies

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creativity inspiration & influence planning & productivity

Creative practices in my toolkit to make the most of this year’s energies

January 26, 2018

creative tool-kit

The creative practices in my tool-kit I plan to use to manifest energy and intention to make the most of this year – part 2.

We all need a magic tool-kit of practical tools, workbooks, teachers, coaches, connections and community. This helps us make the most of our desires, plans and intentions.

First, we need to reflect on where we’ve been and what we’ve learnt. Then we need to plan and set intentions. And then we need to make them happen with practical action steps.

And the magic web that surrounds all of this is the company we keep, the books we read and the tools we choose to help manifest energy and intention in the best way possible.

So here’s part 2 of my tool-kit for how I plan to manifest energy and intention to make the most of this year. This focuses on the creative practices in my tool-kit. I hope it inspires you to better recognise or build your own creative resources for this year. You can read part 1 here.

Becoming a life coach

Becoming a life coach through the fabulous Beautiful You Coaching Academy was a big focus in 2017 as I moved through a major life transition. I’m shifting from a 30+ year career in the government sector to a more self-driven creative business focus. It’s been an exciting shift, moving little by little in a challenging couple of years. But I’m ready now to launch more fully into my life coaching business focused on creativity and career coaching. And I can’t wait.

Becoming a life coach builds on my body of work over many years as a teacher, adult educator, leader in vocational education, online learning specialist and strategic policy adviser. In all of these roles, I focused on making a difference, creativity, innovation, mentoring others, leadership and self-leadership. I bring all of this experience into my coaching work to help women create a more fully-rounded, whole-hearted story and life, just as I have done.

You can work with me in 2018 – just send me an email at terri@quietwriting.com and I’ll send you further information.

Being coached yourself

Becoming a life coach also means working on yourself and your own development in an ongoing way. I’ve experienced the value of coaching myself over the past two years as I’ve made this transition. I realised I could no longer stay where I was. It was no longer serving me and my creative heart was calling me. Life coaching helped me make the plan for a new creative path.

creative tool-kit

Learning the value of being coached and putting it into practice has been a key platform of my creative living toolkit in the past few years. It helps keep the focus on your authentic desires, front and centre.

So to help me in this year, I’ve joined up with Caroline Donahue’s group coaching program, the Coffee Shop Writers Group, to make sure my writing gets done as the authentic heart of Quiet Writing. I can talk about writing all day but unless I am doing it, it’s all pretty hollow! Working with fellow writers in the context of an online, international support team and with an inspiring writing coach as our lead is a perfect way to get my priority work done. Sometimes we need to carve out the time and prioritise support for ourselves in this way. And life coaching in some way shape or form is always a fabulous investment in yourself, with an excellent return on that investment in so many ways.

Writing, writing, writing

Did I mention writing? Linked to the above, writing is the heart of Quiet Writing – my creative practice. It’s how I start my days via Morning Pages, writing to settle into the day, reflect and make plans. Then there’s blogging here regularly, guest blogging including at WorkSearch and Life Reaction, as well as drafting books, with one well on the way at 70K words at this point. I am so looking forward to taking my writing into the editing and self-publishing phase this year.

Personality type work

A key part of Quiet Writing is understanding yourself and your personality type and how it works as a guide to wholehearted self-leadership. Understanding my Jung/Myers-Briggs INTJ personality was a critical step for me in my life. Working through this with a certified personality type practitioner and coach enabled me to proceed with fuller self-knowledge. I embraced my strengths instead of seeing them as weaknesses and learnt to work them. It also helped me understand where I can be more well-rounded by working on my less preferred cognitive functions.

Because all of this made such a difference for me, I’ve skilled up in the area of personality type to become a certified practitioner and share this insight with others.

This knowledge of personality type as part of my creative practices tool-kit weaves its way into everything I do. I will be offering personality type assessment in a standalone offering with one hour’s intensive 1:1 coaching, as well as the option to work through personality type as a lead into a 6 session coaching series for a deeper dive. As with coaching, personality work is an ongoing journey of understanding yourself. I look forward to sharing my knowledge in this exciting area in creative and new ways this year.

Energy healing, channelling and spirituality

Activating my energy, healing and spirituality was a priority last year and continues into this year – and let’s face it, why not forever! I’ve been working with Amber Adrian, storyteller, writer, channeller and energy healer for nearly two years now. It’s the quiet backbone of my life as I seek a deeper spirituality and engage with guides, the sacred creative and energy healing.

It’s hard to describe the power of this connection in supporting me and unleashing magic and creativity. As Amber says in recent communication about magic:

Magic simply flows in, once you’ve given spirit (god, the universe, your angels, your higher self) a doorway. A window. Even a crack. Give them a bit of room and they’re on it.

Open up a new highway for them and they’ll work astonishing miracles with you and your life and your dreams. Because they want you to have everything you desire – everything you want to do, be, create, have, and experience in your life here.

You just need to give magic room to step in.

So part of my creative practices tool-kit is making space for magic. Because as I said in my last post via Roald Dahl:

Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.

creative practices

Being in rhythm and working with lunar cycles

Another key part of my creative practices tool-kit is working with the cycles of the moon. Dr Ezzie Spencer’s fabulous Lunar Abundance website and book ‘An Abundant Life’ provided rich input last year. It helped me be more aware of the cycles of the moon as part of my creative practices. I also worked with Ezzie as part of her group coaching Book Whispering project in 2017 to better connect with rhythms and cycles for creativity. This helped me get my book draft well underway as a lead into NaNoWriMo where I eventually wrote 50K words in one month.

Working with lunar cycles and the yin and yang phases is now a central part of my creative practices helping me to set and realise powerful intentions. I connect it with tarot for a fabulous intuitive deep dive at key times like the New Moon and Full Moon.

Working with intuition via tarot and oracle

Working with tarot and oracle cards as an intuitive tool for tapping into wisdom and insight is one of Quiet Writing’s core creative practices. I learnt about these areas more, developed my daily practice and then shared it publicly from June to December last year on Instagram. This was an excellent support and intuitive learning process that people valued. I learnt so much from it including about visual elements of my creative practices and social media work, but it was very time-consuming. And if I am going to get my business up, life-coaching sessions happening regularly, and write my book and see it published, I needed to work out a more sustainable way to approach this.

So I am sharing weekly Tarot Narrative readings on Quiet Writing here and also via Instagram and Facebook. This creative practice helps me focus my intentions and work with manifesting energies. And as with my daily readings, it’s a way of sharing intuitive guidance with others including key books, quotes and thoughts to support your creative practices. This week’s reading is about exploring magic.

I’m planning to gather up all my Tarot Narrative readings from 2017 into an ebook for each month for reference for readers. Even though they are an intuitive reading at a point in time, the thoughts and references are timeless and given the work and hours spent, it makes sense to share in this form. They will be part of the soon to come Wholehearted Inspiration Library and free to Quiet Writing subscribers. So do sign up to Quiet Writing (pop your email in the box to the right or below) so you will know when the free library is live – as well as other opportunities. Plus you’ll get my free 95-page ebook on the 36 Books that Shaped my Story – so lots of inspiration for your creative practices tool-kit.

 

creative practices

 

So that’s part 2 of my creative practices tool-kit and how I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention this year. Next week, I’ll tell you about three special superpowers I’ll be tapping into this year for extra focus and input.

I’d love to hear what’s in your creative practices tool-kit! Share your tips and plans in the comments or via social media.

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

How I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year’s energies

Practical tools to increase writing productivity

The courage to show up

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

Intuition, writing and work – eight ways intuition can guide your creativity

Images by me except for:

Feature image of me by the fabulous Lauren at Sol + Co

inspiration & influence introversion intuition

Exploring magic as the heart of creative inspiration

January 22, 2018

And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.

Roald Dahl

A Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday to share intuitive guidance, wisdom and insights from aligned books – for the week and anytime…

This week: exploring magic!

Exploring magic

Theme for the week beginning 15 January

The theme for this week to guide our overall focus is from Lisa McLoughlin’s Life Design Cards. With their emphasis on ‘weave a different story’, these cards align so well with Quiet Writing’s focus on ‘creating your story’.

The theme and card for this week is 48Stay bewitched by your own consciousness

Exploring magic

This card immediately made me think of ‘introverted Intuiting’ – a cognitive function that tends to be the primary way of working for INTJ and INFJ Jung/Myers-Briggs personality types, but one that we all can access for perspective and meaning-making.

As neuroscientist, Dario Nardi, describes it in his book, ‘8 Keys to Self-Leadership’:

At the core of introverted Intuiting is a metaperspective – the highest level or the most flexible frame of mind or form of behaviour that each of us currently has access to. One metaperspective is our own mind’s workings: we can shut out the world, quiet our minds, and ask our unconscious to take us to a new level of awareness. (p73)

Key to introverted Intuiting is focusing on and working in the language of “symbols, archetypes, totems, and their abstractions, such as visual models.” (p 73).

This week calls us to work from inside ourselves, go deeply, find our own language and symbolism and play with creative inspiration, exploring magic.

As the guidebook for Life Design Cards suggests for this card: “Through meditation, observe your mind observing the world. Play out creative inspiration with art, pure fantasy and dreams.

So in terms of themes for this week, it’s a good time for exploring magic via collage, poetry, looking at symbols in our lives and businesses, making art and seeing where our intuition takes us for creative inspiration.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 22 January

Exploring magic

Tarot Narrative: Exploring the magic of creativity

You’re at the end of one part of your journey, completing key steps, signing off, finishing up. You’re also at the portal of a new adventure with opportunities opening up. At this time, root and ground yourself in the stillness of creative inspiration and the flow of your inner mind and intuition. You’re broadening out with confidence, initiating projects, capturing ideas from the fertile soil of within. Work boldly with intuition and discipline as your guides now.

Reading notes: Cards: Knight of Swords and King of Cups from the Sakki Sakki Tarot and #45 Time To Go from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

…we do all this because it fulfills us and makes our hearts sing. But when we explore the deeper reasons behind this time and effort, there is something even more important than what these pursuits do for us, and that is our desire to shine a light in the world that others might need to take their own daring leaps.

Christine Mason Miller, Desire to Inspire: Using creative passion to transform the world (p10)

Are you finding ideas are coming to you easily lately like it’s a very fecund and fertile time? I  certainly am and the challenge is to catch these thoughts before they disappear or we forget them. It’s easy to think we will remember a key concept or intuitive connection, only to find we don’t later as our perspective shifts. So frustrating.

Only yesterday, I found myself capturing ideas for a Quiet Writing ecourse. This has been the plan for a while as a signature piece for Quiet Writing and it’s something I’ve worked on before over time. But it came together really clearly yesterday and I can see it as a whole. Importantly though, I had I had to stop and take the time to listen within and feel that ‘desire to inspire’.

Exploring magic

Exploring magic

I’ve had to realise too this is no longer just about me; it’s about how I can share my experience and help others shine. As I move on in my life to a new way of working as a career and creativity coach, I need to connect the dots of my experience and share what makes my heart sing to benefit others.

The word ‘magic’ keeps popping up too.

I need to be exploring magic in the heart of creative inspiration and believing in that magic, as Roald Dahl reminds us in the words above from his last story, ‘The Minpins’.

This is my favourite quote of all time because it captures the interplay between what we see and notice and connect. And then how we bring it to life in our quiet spaces and creative work to enrich the lives of others as well as ourselves. It is the heart of it all really, certainly the heart of Quiet Writing and the coaching and writing that sit within its focus.

So for this week, it’s a great time for digging deep into your introverted Intuiting perspective and seeing what surfaces in stillness or creative play. Taking that time to journal, work with visuals, mindmap, play with symbolism or write poetry can be a rich way to connect disparate themes into something new. And make sure you are balancing that internal, introspective work with a touch of Knight of Swords boldness and action!

I’d love to hear if you are feeling these introverted creative energies and possibilities too and what is coming up from within as magic you can share with others. What practices seem to be working for you for helping those pieces connect and shine in new forms?

All best wishes for this week for enjoying the pleasure of intuitive creativity and exploring magic. And let me know what you think of this post and the idea of weekly Tarot Narratives!

📷 by Lauren, Sol + Co

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

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If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

How knowing your authentic heart can make you shine

Practical tools to increase writing productivity

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

Intuition, writing and work – eight ways intuition can guide your creativity

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How I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year

January 19, 2018

manifest energy

This is part 1 of my toolkit for how I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention to make the most of this year!

We all need a magic tool-kit of practical tools, workbooks, teachers, coaches, connections and community. This helps us make the most of our desires, plans and intentions.

First, we need to reflect on where we’ve been and what we’ve learnt. Then we need to plan and set intentions. And then we need to make them happen with practical action steps.

And the magic web that surrounds all of this is the company we keep and the tools we choose to help manifest energy and intention in the best way possible.

I like to think of it as ‘the examined life’. Perhaps it’s my INTJ personality that loves this deep dive into both intuition and structure, but as Socrates wisely said,

The unexamined life is not worth living.

In contrast, I choose an examined life that helps me have creative courage to move in small steps within a plan and vision that gives me direction.

So here’s part 1 of my tool-kit for how I plan to manifest energy and intention to make the most of this year.

Practices I’ve engaged in over time to manifest energy

My manifesting tool-kit for negotiating the beginning of the year has evolved over time. There are some practices I’ve engaged in over a few years that have become key tools for reviewing and setting energies and intention. And making magic! These are all by powerful, creative women sharing their energy to help me manifest mine. I share them with you so we can all manifest our unique energy into the opportunities of this year or any cycle.

Unravel Your Year – with Susannah Conway

I’ve been unravelling with Susannah Conway for a long time and working through her free annual ‘Unravel Your Year‘ workbook for at least five years! The process and workbook take you through reflections on the previous year and works with awareness and intentions to set a magical path for the new year. One of the best aspects of doing this work on an annual basis is that you can see where previous years have taken you. Or where you keep setting the same intentions in line with your dreams but not being in action to achieve them.

As per the oft-repeated quote:

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results…

…I found over time that I was setting similar intentions year after year and not achieving them.

Work was the overwhelming priority. I found myself setting the same goals about a creative life and writing, expressing the same desires each year and not hitting them. It wasn’t until I made real change, making space and plans for shifting to part-time work in 2016, that I started to make traction towards my desires. The ‘Unravel Your Year’ workbook and process helps you identify over time how your plans and actions can align to best manifest energy.

Manifest energy

Goddess of the Year

For a few years now, I’ve worked with Amy Palko’s fabulous My Word Goddess Readings. Available until 31 January 2018 for this year, they are a deep and spiritual insight into guiding Goddess energies for the year. It’s a way of learning about Goddesses and their energy too. I’ve just engaged in two inspiring events as part of the amazing Goddess Roadtrip when it came to Sydney. So I am feeling so energised about how Goddesses energy and divine feminine guides can be pivotal in our lives, creativity and businesses.

Last year I worked with Pele, Goddess of Irrepressible Passion, and it was all about getting back to being wholehearted and what I love as the driving force for my life. And encouraging others to honour this same journey. This year, I’m working with the crone energy of Hecate, the Goddess of the Crossroads and Compassionate Witnessing. Goodness knows this is a year of crossroads as my I face redundancy and finally embark on the creative professional career I have been desiring and shaping for so long. My new creativity and career coaching business is fuelled by a spirit of compassionate witnessing. So I look forward to working with Hecate this year in my life coaching and writing work in the world and with you here.

manifest energy

Word of the Year

Setting a word for the year is another valuable practice that helps manifest energy and intention. Susannah Conway has a Find Your Word for 2018! workbook that can support you in this process. The practice is also included in Amy Palko’s Goddess work above, in line with the manifest energy of specific guiding goddesses. Or your word might be something that evolves naturally out of your experiences – something you are searching for or that is searching for you.

My word for 2018 is JOY. After the most challenging of years in 2017 supporting my mother in her tough battle with metastatic breast cancer and with her sad passing away on Christmas Day, joy has been so hard to come by. I just gave Christmas spirit generally a pretty wide berth last year. Balancing even the thought of joy with grief is hard to countenance at present. But I know that finding deeper joy, playfulness, fun, laughter and happiness again are all central to this year’s journey.

This wasn’t a hard choice this year despite the contradictions. I didn’t need to work through a workbook or think too much. My daughter gave me this gorgeous card, made from hand-painted Egyptian papyrus at Christmas so that sealed the deal in the most lovely of synchronous ways. This beautiful card sits above me as I write here at my desk as a reminder of my focus for this year in everything I do.

Manifest energy

So that’s part 1 of how I plan to manifest energy, joy and intention this year. I look forward to sharing more practical tips in my post next week about my toolkit and plan to manifest energy in 2018. This will include coaching, writing, intuitive tools, exercise and the planner I will use – and many other practical resources for making the most of this year’s potential.

I’d love to hear about your Word of the year, Goddess of the year or other supports for how you plan to manifest energy in 2018! Share your tips and plans in the comments or via social media.

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Practical tools to increase writing productivity

The courage to show up

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

Intuition, writing and work – eight ways intuition can guide your creativity

Images by me except for:

Feature image of me planning by the fabulous Lauren at Sol + Co

Image of me at the Goddess Roadtrip initiatory sacred circle honouring the Goddess Isis by the wonderful Priestess and Beautiful You Coaching Academy founder, Julie Parker (so honoured)

inspiration & influence intuition love, loss & longing

Creative courage to move on in small steps – Tarot Narrative Monday 15 January 2018

January 15, 2018

You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage

to lose sight of the shore.

Christopher Columbus – via The Art of Life Tarot

This is the first of weekly Quiet Writing deep-dive Tarot Narratives each Monday to share intuitive guidance and the wisdom and insights from aligned books.

Eight of Swords

Reflections on 2017

Welcome to Quiet Writing for 2018! 2017 was a most challenging year for me. I spent the year focused on supporting my beautiful mother as she battled terminal illness in the form of metastatic breast cancer. She passed away peacefully on Christmas Day after the toughest time. It’s all so very raw still and in some ways, grief has yet to fully hit. My mum was very special to me and so many people. The time we spent together in 2017 was such a treasure and the memory of our time then and over the long term is helping to ease the sense of emptiness and loss now. But there’s a long way to go on this journey I know. More on this as I move through this time and reflect further on 2017.

At the same time, I was planning a new future knowing I needed to find a new career and life path focused on creativity. I trained as a Life Coach with the Beautiful You Coaching Academy to complement training I had already completed in Jung/Myers-Briggs personality type assessment. And I spent a lot of time diving deep into my intuition via tarot and oracle cards.

I worked on my spirituality and the sacred side of my creativity via work with Amber Adrian. I’ve learnt to listen within for guidance and seek help from spirit guides, angels and ancestors.

I wrote 50,000 words in November for NaNoWriMo, finally embracing writing every day and in challenging circumstances.

Also during the year, my job of 30 plus years as a leader in the government vocational education sector was ‘deleted’ and I am soon to be made ‘redundant’. Even though this is a change I desire as I already knew I needed to move on, it is not without its own pain and grief. Certainly, it’s a time of shifting identity, but it’s a shift I embrace wholeheartedly.

Overall, it was an incredibly transformative year, but one of chronic uncertainty with a deep underlying sadness.

Tarot and oracle work

One of the three key platforms in making this shift in life focus heading into 2017 was a deeper dive into tarot and oracle work as a way of honing my intuition. As an INTJ personality type, Introverted Intuition is my dominant gift and this was a time of really leaning into it to discover its mysteries. I studied tarot more deeply via Susannah Conway’s 78 Mirrors e-course and I began a daily practice of tarot and oracle reading and journaling.

In June, I began to share this practice publicly in the form of Tarot Narratives on Instagram and Facebook. Each day, I would do an intuitive reading of two tarot and one oracle card and write a narrative of the overall message. Then I’d link this intuitively to a book, quote or song and share it with others. There was such a positive response to this sharing of intuitive messages over time which I so appreciated.

I did this every day from June up until mid-December when it all became too much. Whilst it had been a supportive practice in a time of change until then, I was in the hospital with my mum day and night for long shifts and everything else simply had to stop.

Coming back to life generally and to tarot and oracle work following this time has been challenging and I’ve been rethinking so much. Sharing my Tarot Narrative each day was a great support in 2017 and a practice that helped shape my journey and sharpen my intuition. But it’s not a sustainable practice on a daily basis in 2018 as I work on crafting a new life and concurrently deal with grief and the impact of loss.

I’ve thought about how to balance Tarot Narrative work with my other priorities – writing, life coaching, personality type work. And I’ve decided to do a weekly deep-dive Tarot Narrative each Monday. It seems the best way to share intuitive guidance and book wisdom in a sustainable way. This means I can also provide more insights on the reading and especially exploring the aligned books, songs and quotes.

So here’s the first weekly Tarot and Oracle Narrative for 2018!

Theme for the week beginning 15 January

Firstly, I want to share a theme for each week to guide our overall focus. For this, I will work with Lisa McLoughlin’s Life Design Cards. With their emphasis on ‘weave a different story’, these cards align so well with Quiet Writing’s focus on ‘creating your story’.

The card for this week is 21. Use small and slow solutions.

Life Design Cards

I love this card with its spiral imagery centred around a snail making progress slowly against the backdrop of an ammonite fossil which seems to suggest a larger version of time. It’s true in one way, we have plenty of time. Time is an arbitrary man-made concept and something we can work with by making small steps and changes day by day.

I found a real sense of comfort in receiving this card. It made me reflect on how I have tried to work in 2017 in challenging times to just do something every day towards my overall goals. This is a practice that has served me well in this transition phase of life.

Making slow movements and small commitments will take you in the direction of your dreams incrementally. Even in the most challenging of times.

As the guidebook for Life Design Cards suggests for this card: “find a way to monitor progress so you can see how far you have come.” This is an excellent idea. Whether it be word count, books read, blog posts written, days writing, time spent on an activity of value, the number of clients or subscribers you have – find a metric or a few metrics that help measure your progress so you can notice it. It’s often easy to forget how far we have come. Take time to recognise the value of these small, slow solutions in your life so you feel inspired.

Tarot Narrative for the week beginning 15 January

Tarot Narrative

Embrace creative courage

You’re embracing creativity and leadership, the lessons of years evolving into now. Notice where you are holding yourself back, keeping yourself trapped or feeling safe, lacking in courage. See also where you might even be dulling the feelings, the excitement of opportunity, out of habit from times past. Embrace this creative time you’re crafting and the chance for mastery so you can cross the ocean into more prosperity and abundance.

Reading notes: Cards: Father (King) of Wands and Eight of Swords from The Wild Unknown Tarot and #51 Milk and Honey in protection (reversed) position from Wisdom of the Oracle.

Book notes:

Reading fiction as you commute to a job you don’t like will make you feel somewhat more fulfilled; being in the right job will make you feel incredible.

Laura Vanderkam, 168 Hours: You Have More Time than You Think

I’m reading Laura Vanderkam’s ‘168 Hours’ – listening as an audiobook as I drive. The book provides a fresh perspective on units of time, suggesting we focus on priorities and productivity over a week or 168 hours rather than the typical 24-hour unit focus.

Research based on logbook keeping suggests people over-estimate the time they spend on some tasks such as the hours they work. Laura Vanderkam suggests collecting your own data and having an evidence-based approach to decisions about how you spend your time.

In this, it’s valuable to look at the bigger picture of how we are choosing to live and whether we have the courage to make the changes we desire. Just as our theme for the week reminds us, using small, slow solutions to make change can be a valuable way of working.

For example, working on NaNoWriMo was a real opportunity to look at the metrics of how I use my time to write. The aim was to write 50,000 words in November. I achieved it by realising that this was 1667 words a day and learning that I could do this in under an hour. This realisation and metric made it doable and helped break through resistance. I could make practical strategies for finding an hour or 2 x 30-minute spots in the day to write even when life was super-challenging.

So for this week, maybe re-examine your weekly allocation of hours and see where your time goes. See if you can make some small, incremental changes in line with where you want to be, that job you wish to be in or that project you really want to tackle. Having the courage to lose sight of the shore, be in action and notice self-sabotaging behaviours can be powerful steps in moving into the career we desire or finally achieving our creative dreams. And in this we can also practice self-care as well.

Laura Vanderkam reminds us:

If you love what you do, you’ll have more energy for the rest of your life, too.

All best wishes for this week for moving on with courage in small steps closer to doing what you love. And let me know what you think of this post and the idea of weekly Tarot Narratives!

Keep in touch & free ebook on the ’36 Books that Shaped my Story’

You can download my free 95-page ebook on th36 Books that Shaped my Story – just sign up with your email address in the box to the right or below You will also receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions. This includes personality type, coaching, creativity, writing, tarot and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

Quiet Writing is on Facebook and Instagram – keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Practical tools to increase writing productivity

Creative and connected #12 – The courage to show up

20 practical ways of showing up and being brave (and helpful)

Intuition, writing and work – eight ways intuition can guide your creativity

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