Creative Sabbatical

It may have a ‘new age’ sort of tone to it, but there is necessity in taking rest after adding so much to a plate that you forget the balance of math is to subtract as much (if not more!) than add. 2017 was about a lot of adding and a lot of reflecting, but what I noticed was some of my passionate things were put to the side until a “better” time.

better time.

Don’t we all have that feeling now and again? Like there will be some mystical change that allows for one to dive into something they so deeply love without having to give up anything?

Surrender is important. It’s healthy. Letting go is just as powerful as manifesting. I know this to be true as I have created much of my work around teaching others how to make room for what they desire by surrendering and letting go to what no longer serves, or what has grown stagnant in your life.

I’m also a big proponent of knowing thyself, where we witness and notice our own personal patterns and rhythms, and with the noticing we are able to identify key blockages or stagnant periods that hold us back. It requires radical honesty with oneself, free of judgment, shame, blame, or guilt.

I noticed in my pattern that I put other things that were necessary in front of things that were personally important to me. My scales tipped, and what I wanted to do was put further and further behind, lingering on a thread of “someday” and “when things lighten up” or “when I have more time”, etc.

In particular I was witnessing when my personal creative time was, and how for years I was sort of “forcing” it to be at my beck and call during a time where I didn’t feel as creative, in particular the Summer months, when really, I am most creative now. Fall into Winter I am brewing deep in my centered cauldron. From this I decided I needed to plan a creative break to tend to my desires.

Plan?! Oh yes… P-L-A-N.

While I wanted to jump right on in, I knew things would have to be arranged for this time, such as:

  • Letting my family know of my plans to take time ‘off’.
  • Determining what “time off’ meant; how much; to what end?
  • Decide on the time frame to start where it wasn’t too far away to push off, but far enough away to make arrangements.
  • Decide what I could put on hold and what I couldn’t (due to established commitments).
  • Let friends know that my creative sabbatical would (likely) mean I would be unavailable for socialization during that time.
  • How would social media fit, or not fit, into this time off?

These were a lot of questions I had for someone who just wanted some creative time off! The questioning was helpful. I was able to narrow down these fundamentals into something that made sense for me. It’s not completely set in stone, there is some wiggle room as I need and desire, but the core message is clear: take a creative break. Emphasis on the word creative.

This doesn’t mean I am taking a break from creativity. No no! Far from it! I am taking a break from things which I feel have taken up time and space from my creativity, so when I emerge from my break I can be more skillful in balancing needs, desires, commitments, and responsibilities. I honestly don’t know how it will look, and I am open to being in the process of uncovering.

But what about social media?

I am removing the FB app from my phone and only tending to it when necessary for groups that I am in as teacher and/or student; quick “hey this event is coming up” reminder that serves to bring me to present moment awareness and to bring it into other’s radar; no Twitter during this time (I use it less as a professional tool and more of unleashing my sarcasm and utter silliness); however I do plan to leave Instagram available. Why? It is the one social media tool that I find nourishing. I follow what I want, there is always beauty in what I see, and it’s visually stimulating, which also can turn into creative prompts.

What is my plan during my creative sabbatical? In no particular order:

  1. Redevelop my daily practice. I was just gifted some gorgeous deity statues and malas from my brother who travels the world and will bring me wonderful gifts for my spiritual practice. These particular gifts were unplanned (as in I didn’t specifically say “Hey could you pick up such and such while you’re there?) and they are all rather aligned in a unique way that feels rather significant.
  2. Write. I have some writing projects that hit a plateau in the middle of this year because I pushed it back to tend to other things. This time I put the other things on hold to tend to the writing. There are two projects I am working on, and I’m honestly not sure (at the time of this writing) which is going to grab my attention more, or if I am meant to work with both.
  3. Read a book. I haven’t done as much reading this year as I normally do. Reading feeds me and it inspires me. I have a book in particular that I purchased over a year ago and haven’t touched it. Not even to smell it! *gasp* I believe this will take priority over any other book on my shelf.
  4. Don’t be a slave to my phone. Notifications go off and while I never run to my phone, I do find that nagging feeling of “it might be important” lingering in my mind until I eventually check it. I plan to have plenty of moments with it on silent and away from me.
  5. Paint. I also need my home to reflect these creative shifts for inspiration and energetic momentum. This means I get out the canvas, pull out some paints, and allow the paintbrush and myself to become one. I have a personal goal of completing three paintings during my creative sabbatical.

All manageable tasks. As I tell my students when stepping into a shift:

Set yourself up for success.

Women’s Circle Spring Retreat

I am incredibly passionate about women’s work. My background and training has been centered around the Wise Women Ways, and I endeavor to share that same wisdom and passion with other women to assist in their personal evolution home.

For the last several years I have been facilitating Women’s Circle to open the way for women to rediscover their personal power, to be seen and heard in a sacred and safe container, and to show up in their fullness and allow themselves the opportunity to build sisterhood with other women.

As we have seen in our world, and more specifically in our current political climate, women are still without fundamental rights, and our daughters are growing up being taught that we’re not valued or honored in the world. It is essential that women have a safe space to share their feelings, deepen their spirituality, and find solidarity with other women in a time where our voices may be silenced. There’s such a richness of women gathering together and sharing in the beauty of the Divine Feminine, and I hope that my small part lends itself to the collective so we may return to Matriarchal source.

I love holding this space, and sometimes we hit depth in our workings only to find our time at Women’s Circle is complete for the month. I’ll have conversations with women after Circle, or I’ll receive emails days later of women wishing to share more of their story and process. I love witnessing this, and wish there were more time for us to delve deeply without having to turn on and off the processing.

It is from this desire that a Women’s Circle retreat was born.

We will gather for three days and two nights in the White Mountains of northern New Hampshire. This will be a sacred intensive weekend for women who are regular participants to monthly Women’s Circles. We will have daily workshops, evening rituals, and free time to explore the grounds and tend to self-nourishment and bonding with our sisters.

In order to maintain the sacred container already established within Women’s Circle, the prerequisite for attending this retreat is that women must have attended a minimum of three Women’s Circles.

What happens if you haven’t attended Women’s Circle but want to go on the retreat?

There is still time!

Check out my Events page to see when our next scheduled Women’s Circle is happening. Registration closes at the end of February, so this gives you five months to choose which three speaks to you!

If you have already attended three Women’s Circle and want to join us, registration is OPEN!

Details of the Women’s Circle Spring Retreat:

When:          Friday May 18, 2018 to Sunday May 20, 2018
Where:         The White Mountains of New Hampshire
Cost:             $350; $175 non-refundable deposit to hold your spot.

Feel free to contact me for more details or if you have any questions.

Don’t miss this opportunity to deepen relationships with other women who honor the Goddess, and allow yourself to restore with support of your sisters AND make magick!

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Mala Manifestation

One of my favorite tools to work with is a set of malas, a string of beads or garland used in prayer and meditation. They can be as ornate or as simple as you choose (or as it chooses you), but the more you work with it, the more you awaken its spiritually medicinal qualities, as well as continue to build in the mindfulness of being present in the moment, present with the Universe, and most importantly, present within yourself. Malas can aid us in waking up into ourselves.

There are a number of ways to use them, many schools of thoughts of which to get (wood, bone, or gemstone), to wear or not wear, one for each prayer, or use one for all your prayers, etc. Some students who study with a particular guru or spiritual teacher may take on the rhythm of how they were taught and work with their malas in these sacred ways. Others may look online (YouTube has great tutorials for those really new to malas), and others are guided by the mala itself as the teacher.

The point is, whether you hold the bead, rub the bead, use your index finger, never let it touch the index, in the end it is all personal, like any part of our spiritual practice, isn’t it? I have seen more shame in mala use than I have an acceptance, which is incredibly sad. People seek spiritual tools to aid them in their journey of healing and awakening. The most compassionate thing we can do is embrace another and offer a light if they ask, but to say “you’re doing this wrong” is one of the most harmful things I have witnessed time and again on the path to transcendence.

Last year I taught a “Mala Manifestation” class as part of a ritual working with my Women’s Circle. It was wonderful to hear these sacred voices coming together and sharing in the mantra of abundance and prosperity. It is a workshop of supporting one another and being supported in return. I am looking forward to offering it at a new location in a couple of weeks. Does this speak to you? Join me and fellow seekers in opening ourselves to our manifestations!

Mala Manifestation

A journey through abundance and prosperity as a source of natural wisdom from manifesting through the Divine Feminine. Here we learn that in order to manifest and invite abundance into our world, it is never a solitary act, but one that invites the blessings of community, in many forms, to assist us. Here we will explore the challenges of not only being willing to receive what we are asking for, but to also open ourselves to receiving help from another as a form of generosity and accepting abundance from the Universe. This ritual encourages and emphasizes a devotional practice for 40-days following this experience. Please bring a set of malas for this ritual working.

Tuesday July 25th, 7-9:30p, $30
Moth and Moon Studios
173 South River Road, Suite #4
Bedford, NH 03110
(603) 782-3674

mala manifestation