Category Archives: Uncategorized

It’s All Going To Be Maginificent

My 2023 Mantra, from a song introduced to me on a Christine D’Ercole (Peloton playlist) – Maginificent (She Says). However, I knew it was my 2023 mantra after taking part in a recent Passionate Ease workshop. I had a profound openning in the weekend. I knew IT IS ALL GOING TO BE MAGIFICENT and with my arms open to the world I was ready to live that forward.

This isn’t about perfection or super wonderful, awesome and positive. It’s about embracing and having complete experiences. Sometimes that is finding or living the exquiste in grief, pain, rage, conflict.

Ultimately it is about trusting in the universe and in being as fully in whatever is unfolding.

As I move into 2023, I find myself wanting to be much more present, openhearted and at ease with myself and the world.

Some 2022 Highlights

Last year was an amazing year. I finally got my book out into the world. Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep got it’s wings and legs.

We had some incrediable work experiences and loved being able to get back out to work in person with teams. We had some great times in Austin, San Franisco, Chiacgo, Seattle, DC (well actually the team was together in DC, I was on the screen in our office and CMC had Covid), San Diego and Boulder. Even did some rowing!

Getting some team tips from The Olympian!

We also found we could do some great work right here in Montana. Lots of coaching, working with Glacier National Park, Leadership Flathead and enjoying the mountains, the trails, the lakes, the theater, music, dancing and much, much more.

There were magical moments with family. My sister calls and book club with my mom. Celebrating Bill and Julia Campbell’s 70 wedding aniversary.

We had a couple weeks up at The Haven, I was eading a Come Alive with Carole (it’s been a couple years) and another great Couples Alive. followed with CrisMarie.

We did some solid podcsting and the best part was producing our brain series. It was so fun interviewing Dr Jill Bolte Taylor (twice), Annie Hopper, Annie Thoe, Irene Lyon and Jenifer Fraser and Dr Lawrence Conlon. That was special and I do hope you got to enjoy their wisdom. (You can use the link if you want to give it listen now)

There was much to be grateful for in 2022.

Now moving into 2023, I want to continue to embrace the moments.

I’ll be kicking things off this week with a webinar for Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep. On Jan 5, a one hour introduction to how you can live and apply Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep to your life. If you are interested let me know.

We’ll both speakers at a great event outside of Calgary, New Year, New You. This is an amazing day of inspiring women speakers – available in person or online. Shifting from people pleaser to cowboy confident!

We’ll be doing an in-person event for 24 women on day two. Want more information here’s a link and share!

We have a few other public events lined up. I am scheduled for a Come Alive in April and both of us will be up at Haven just after that for Couples Alive.

Out biggest launch for 2023 will be coming later as we work with Rali to release our journey on The Beauty of Conflict for teams. Right now we are in the script writing process and will be filming in late March with a release hopefully by June. It’s exciting. This is an amazing group to be joining and partnering with as we continue to work to get the message out that there is BEAUTY in conflict.

So much is in the works and on this first day of the year, I wanted to reach out. I could have gone to the mountain but it seemed more important write and share.

A Little Gift for You

I’m sharing a link to my year end Spotify playlist: 2022 Favorite Tunes. These tunes were the ones I listened to most and not all new releases mostly ongoing favorites.

I do hope this finds you embracing life as we start 2023. I encourage you wake up each more with some breathing and if you don’t have a mantra – try mine: It’s All Going To Be Maginificent!

Swimming In The Paradox

Photo by Virgil Cayasa on Unsplash

I love to stack up books and when an opportunity presents itself; read.  Recently, I found myself reading two different books.  One, The Myth of Normal the other, Scaling Up 

For a taste of the former,  here’s paragraph in the opening chapter:

Much of what passes for normal is neither healthy or natural… to meet the criteria of society is to conform to requirements that are profoundly abnormal for our natural needs – which means unhealthy and harmful on a physiological mental and even spiritually level.

This is a physician speaking, Gabor Mate,  who has spent years in a medical model that paradoxically advances our ability to eliminate illness while doing it in a way that is compartmentalized and  potentially causes more harm than good.

Then there’s Scaling Up which is a book about how companies must manage the four major decision areas every company must get right: People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash. 

I sort of feel as a jump back and forth in these books I am swimming in the paradox that Gabor Mate is referring to in the The Myth of Normal.

It’s true as a therapist and business consultant I often feel like I am torn between worlds and caught in a paradox within both.

As a therapist, I have gathered a deep understanding of the impact of stress, trauma, neglect, pressure, perfectionism, absent parenting, bullying, abuse and systemic ‘isms’ on us humans trying to survive.

As a business consultant and executive coach, I also have a deep appreciation for people who focus their lives on rising their family, acquiring wealth, keeping thousands of employees paid during challenging times and coming up with new gadgets, widgets,  and toys of all sorts. Some that thrill, some that save, some that connect and bring people moments of joy.

I have seen the best and worse in both systems: healthcare and business.  I may have been the best and worse at times over the years in both worlds.

Sometimes I feel crazy and I admit I rarely feel ‘normal’ these days.  I’m okay with that. 

Yet it is hard.

In business, I often find the drive and need for cash, execution, and market share exhausting.  If I am honest that rarely motivates me.  However, I know these people are impacting the lives of so many and often are motivated by success, market share as well as the people that are doing the work that makes that possible. 

I want their conversation to be relational and real.  I want them to see themselves and others as humans that are messy, vulnerable and make mistakes.  That part of my work is rewarding.

Of course, there times when I lose it with a client and we may choose to go our separate ways.

When I am working with individuals, couples, or teams I am deeply motivated to stop the blame and shame and move people towards experiencing their agency, compassion, and kindness for others, which generally has to start with oneself.

That is not always easy. 

Truth be told my own journey from victim to human (being) took years (decades) and frankly I am still on that journey.

I sometimes act like I think people should get it at one team off site or on personal/professional development program.

It’s not really that I expect that of them or me.  It’s that I feel helpless when that doesn’t happen and blame and shame runs the room.

It’s a capacity issue.

I don’t like feeling helpless. 

However, sometimes it’s just the way it is.

Reading and gaining new tools and perspective does help.  However, the bigger challenge for me is how to take the lesson and live them day-to-day.

How to build my capacity for feeling helpless AND still carrying and loving on.

That’s where breathing, moving, and dropping the words for sounds and music comes in handy.

I do enjoy and am grateful for my mind AND I know it’s my body, breath and energy that truly connects me to the wonder of the world around me.

I prefer to live in wonder than just in knowledge or answers. What about you?

Cathy’s Living Forward Ernie’s Final Gift

https://haven.ca/programs-index/11830/lunch-with-luminaries-ernies-final-gift/

Ernie McNally was a wonderful human being. He was friend, a colleague, an amazing musician, a great Haven facilitator and much, much more. He left the planet too soon and had a remarkable final year in how he decided to live knowing that he was dying.

I know Cathy McNally, has for years wanted to share more of the message and wisdom that Ernie continued to offer right up until he died.

That’s not easy to do. Pulling together those words, messages, and wisdom after losing your soul mate and partner.

But what I think was even more amazing was being alongside Cathy’s journey to not just keep Ernie’s loving alive but to also live fully in the new journey she was taking.

At one point, she had plans to put all this wisdom together shortly after Ernie left. A book of sorts. Well, that might have made living just too damn hard.

I know her desire in sharing Ernie’s Final Gift is to highlight the spirit and thirst he had for life, connection and loving and how he embraced all that through his final 17 months. I have no doubt that storyline will be powerful and profound for anyone facing uncertainty (or in his case terminal certainty).

I know Ernie and enough about his journey that he did what is so very hard to do – lived fully and lovingly through each moment. I also know Haven was the foundation on which that journey was possible. He knew it too. He loved the Haven and lived the Haven. I do believe his Final Gift is a wonderful invitation to anyone who hasn’t heard of the Haven or hasn’t made it a priority yet to go.

I’d say to any of you reading this, join Cathy McNally, Jane Geesman (Another amazing human). and the spirit of Ernie’s passion for life and loving. Listen and then sign up for your own Haven experience.

Life is way to short not to. I’d also say don’t wait for a crisis to make that happen.

I’d also encourage you to join on November 1 to listen to Cathy’s journey for another reason. Of course, it’s not easy to live fully knowing you are dying AND it is also not easy to be the one who is tasked with living fully well after you are gone.

That too is a journey with loads of wisdom.

Want to learn and discover what I believe Haven offers best: – Relational tools for loving and living through uncertainty. This lunch time talk will be a great window into that magic. Don’t miss it: Ernie’s Final Gift – November 1, 2022 Noon PT.

Let Nature Take Care of Your Soul

Imagine this…

Your boots sink into the rich, moist soil as you walk through the trees. 
The spongy feel is uplifting as it supports your movement.
You can smell that fresh hay, grass and the earthy, healing smell of horses.
Overhead, the big, blue, cloudless Montana sky stretches. 
Far away, the whinny of a horse punctuates the beauty of the moment. 

Every ounce of tension and stress slips away as the horse next to you sighs deeply. The feel of their soft, fuzzy nose on the back of your hand is grounding. The crisp, clear October breeze caresses Montana’s vast land and brushes against your cheek. 

Tonight, you’ll sit by the firepit, surrounded by the women who have been part of your reconnection experience. The air might have a chill, but you’ll be warm as you enjoy the smoky smell and crackling of fire. 

This. Here in nature.
This is good for your soul. 
This is Find Your Mojo in Montana.
This is where you belong. 

Science has proven dirt and fresh air :

  • increase serotonin levels
  • helps the digestive system
  • improves blood pressure
  • strengths the immune system
  • clears the lungs and makes for a sharper mind.

Sometimes the best medicine comes in a very natural package.

Join us in the heart of Big Sky Montana.

Let nature take care of your soul so you can take care of those who depend on you! 

Time Between Trains

A Little Taste of Haven

I’m here on Gabriola.

Yesterday finished Come Alive and tonight head into a Couples Alive.

Right now I’m between programs. Between trains so to speak. Between people.

CrisMarie is in route. Carole (Ames, my Come Alive leading partner) is heading home.

One group of faces will be replaced by a new group. Mostly individuals to people in pairs.

It’s been a while since I have lead a Come Alive. It wasn’t just a Covid break. I did step away from leading before that disruption.

When I stepped away there were different things happening and a need for me to step into more of my Montana boots.

I am grateful for the shift and the time to walk more in my own stride, pace and purpose.

As I stepped into this Come Alive, I did feel more solid and comfortable in ME.

As a result, I enjoyed finding the WE – with Carole, with the team and with some wonderful people on their own journey.

For me, Come Alive is rooted in discovering what it means to be self-responsible AND relational in life.

Couples Alive has a similar thread. Though, for me, more about being a ME in a WE.

It can be so easy to get comfortable in a WE and sometimes let go of the ME.

I know there’s more to write and to share. Yet, there also is this space between trains that seems harder to put into words.

I’ll wrap up for now. Go sit by the water. Tidy my room so that there’s a space and place for CrisMarie to land.

Enjoy this time between trains.

Last Call 📣 Couples Alive @The Haven

This is happening:  The Haven is for sale. 😳

What does it mean?  I know many are sad, dishearten, and see this as an ending.  I don’t actually know. 

Check out this listing
The Haven is For Sale

What came up strongly for me, when I saw the reality of The Haven being on the market, was a desire to make the experiences I do have at Haven as meaningful as possible.

With that in mind, I am calling ALL COUPLES who’ve benefited from the rich, enlivening Couples Alive, (and/or any relationship program at the Haven) to come back this summer to have what might be a last blast!

My dream for this August Couples Alive is a room filled with couples who love and have benefited in their relationship from all their time at The Haven.  We once thought that was going to be the 4th segment of the Couples Alive Series.  It didn’t happen.

So why not create that experience now? This summer. Maybe the last summer of Haven.

Our August Couples Alive brings together two things I just love about Haven. 

  1. The opportunity to engage in revitalizing my relationship
  2. Being on beautiful Gabriola Island in the summer!

CrisMarie and I both plan to bring all our deep loving and joy to this program.  It may be a last one we lead at The Haven.  We want to make it extra special.

I am calling out to all you people who want to join us in for a special summer run of Couples Alive.  I know every time CrisMarie and I have taken, or lead, one of these programs it has a transformational impact both my ME and in our WE.

  • Maybe you are in a relationship that has become flat or transactional.
  • Maybe you want to relive the resonance that the Haven property brings forth in you and your honey.
  • Maybe you want to apply the Couples Alive tools to revitalize where you two are now.
  • Maybe you want to just come out and hang with us and others who deeply value intimacy and relating.
  • Maybe you want to say goodbye to the Haven property.

Join us for possibly the last Haven property Couples Alive August 18-22! There’s still time to sign up, but don’t wait too long…Sign up NOW!

Come Play!

Crazy Cracked Warm and Deep Is About To Launch

Leading up to Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep launch day is an interesting mix of excitement, fear, doubt, excitement, fear, doubt….. excitement, joy, doubt…. I’m sure you are getting the idea.

I am not great at getting all the pieces ready early. Maybe it’s my MyersBriggs. I prefer to wait to the last minute. Now add to that all the undercurrent of publishing a memoir about my Crazy and what that brings up. You can imagine.

I have been making steps and I do have a launch party set – both virtual and in-person.

One of my favorite moments over the holidays was getting to share some stories with family. It was real. We laughed and I cried. Not because I was sad but because my sisters and mom listened and we connected.

I’m not looking for a best seller here. What I want is the book to be one people relate to and resonates with their own less than perfect process of showing up out in the world.

I know how writing and sharing stories has been the way I have journeyed on my path to becoming whole.

My writing has gotten better over the years I think. But ‘better’ isn’t really the point. The writing is how I crack my armor. Some stories are very, very old and have been held tightly. Mostly out of fear or uncertainty.

There was a time when sharing my story was about being validated or proving something. That has long since passed.

The fractures from trying to find facts was incrediably painful and creating a lot of suffering – for me and for others.

However sharing stories, listening and not getting caught in right or wrong – but listening and feeling. That is healing. That is the reason I want to share Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep.

I have a vision of people sharing the book in their book club. Using the book to talk about their own crazy and cracked, warm and deep.

Right now it is just getting it’s wings.

If you want to join in the launch here’s a link to register for the virtual event. If you use in your book club – please reach out and let me know how it goes.

Stepping Out & Letting My Stories Fly

Six months ago I got invited to speak at Ignite Your Life. The invite came at the perfect time. I was wrestling with my chapters and had another calling to get the stories out into the world AND I was spinning.

So I said yes to speaking and decided my book launch would be a part of the event.

Today I am stepping out on the stage. The book is close behind. Not launched but out of my hands and in the hands of a proofreader and my publisher.

Today I’ll be standing and sharing some of the pieces. This talk is deeply personal and if I am honest has me anxious, excited and terrified.

It’s an hour talk and yes, I’d love to just have it be interactive and more of a workshop. But I also now I want to use this opportunity to share the stories – my story.

I hope these stories will inspire.
I want the women listening to be able to relate.
I want them to use my frame to support living their fractal forward.
I want to connect

Maybe I want to be Crazy, Cracked, Warm and Deep on the stage. (Well let’s be clear I’m in a Zoom box so stage isn’t quite the right word) )

I noticed as I was preparing and using some of the stories in the talk. I found myself not liking the way the story was written. My internal dialogue was something like this:

“This book sucks. Really? This is Velcro Shoes – I really could have done more editing”
“Maybe I should stop the press and rethink this – this is crazy – this isn’t a book”

I could feel the grip of what I call – my crazy.

It’s ever present. Holding me back from being me.

I sure can feel the pull. These stories can still suck me in. I keep wanting so desperately to rewrite them so they sound okay, not crazy, even good. As though some form of editing or grammar will make them easier, relatable, likeable…. Worth existing in the world.

I take a breath and settle into my mantra – “I’m not crazy”.

I have invited friends, readers, editors to help put the book together. The feedback was valuable. People encouraged me to keep going. So the book isn’t a best seller – that’s not my intent.

I won’t stop the press – it’s a tiny book and it is me.

So today, even though the book is not yet in my hands, I’ll be sharing my stories.

I’ll be giving the book it’s wings and letting it fly. I’ll also be setting me free. I think we both are worth fully existing out in the world.

A Trip to the Top of The world

So maybe not the only top of the world- but damn close!

Our dear friend, garden mentor and awesome playmate, Robin Kelson invited us to two nights at Sperry Chalet in Glacier National Park. I admit I mostly said yes because Robin was going and how could that be anything but fun.

When Robin busted her knee cap and had to stay home I was ready to cancel. I am so glad I didn’t!

The trip to Sperry could not have been more magical and perfectly timed.

The funny thing is that I was grumbly pretty much until we stepped on to the trail. From that moment on I was smiling.

For anyone who hasn’t heard of Sperry Chalet it is a favorite of many locals here in Whitefish. In 2017, the Chalet burned down in a wildfire. It got rebulit and that was quite an undertaking. I now get that this invite for two nights was pretty special and a hard reservation to get. The chalet is only open for two months!

First peek of Sperry Chalet on our way up

I loved hiking and being offline, with new friends and finding a our cadance. I had forgotten how much I enjoy being out in mountains!

The hike was steep but a great way to get to know each other. The lemonade that greeted us at The Chalet was perfect.

Each of the three days of hiking offered so many magical moments!

Going up the stairway to heaven. Another one of those pretentous names that is pretty impossible to live up to – but stepping out on that view – well it lived up to it’s name.

If that wasn’t enough, well diving into a glacier lake was super cold and inspiring! I have to say, Ivalu, was so clam and cool. Not me, I was making some sounds! So worth it!

Aside from the daily dose of lemonade, we also had amazing meals! The hotcakes were awesome and our bag lunches had more than enough to keep us hiking. Each

Plus, due to having a birthday girl with us, her amazing friend hiked up wine, special cheese, spread, crackers and great brownies (for all ten of us!)

The brownies!!

We made the decision to take the longer hike out. Another great -YES!

I learned I am not that great at goat whispering. Especially when Mommas are cuddled up to their little ones, smack in the middle of a trail without much room on either side. Glad Joe stepped in to take the lead! Here’s the link if you want to watch the goat drama: https://www.facebook.com/100000077222134/videos/552827056046942/

Towards the end of the hike we got graced with moose. Three separate sightings!

An Incrediable three days of being out in nature, with new friends, great food, offline and lots of stories to share.

Back home there have already been some challenges. I didn’t even get to finish this post before saying good bye to a family member who’s been fighting her batte with cancer for seven years.

Life goes on.

I am glad though that I took the time to hike and visit the top of world. I really did want to finish this post before getting too caught up in everything else.

Sometimes nature does call and it is important to listen.

Gratitude For Hearts & Hands

I have to say I am so grateful for the hearts and hands that have been helping me bring my writing together.

I am aiming to have Crazy, Cracked Warm and Deep released out into the world by November. That date was set to inspire me and keep me going. I was invited to speak at a cool workshop for women, Ignite Your Life. That seemed like a great point on the map for the book to make it’s release out into the world.

However, what has really kept me going has been the hearts and hands of people who have been there to hold gently this emerging manuscript.

Some literally holding the pages, reading and providing me feedback. Others listening or encouraging me to find my words and way.

There have been many.

Circles of people who have shared their stories and inspired some of my words. The writers along the way who have nudged me to find my style and voice. Experiment with showing not telling. Dropping so, just, really ,and all those extra words. The song writers who I use regularly in the background as I edit and rewrite.

This tiny book has been held so sweetly; as have I.

Not to long ago in a psychic reading the message to give this book it’s wings and legs was delivered. I set the image on my desk to remind me as I was editing. I complimented it with another special image of inspiration from a dear friend. That little girl has wanted her words shared and it seemed like the perfect combination.

This book has always been about connection. My path in finding a way out of separation, desolation, isolation and back into wholeness.

Some of these stories/fractals have been like riptides that can grab me and pull me back into the past or that place of separation. However, the hands and hearts holding the pages or the words have been gentle in bringing back to the present. Reminding me I am not alone and my why for this book

I do remember years and years ago, returning from my first Come Alive with a image of the closing circle. Those hands, hearts and the music an invitation to be relational and have faith. That circle was a place of awakening my own desire to live.

This book has a much larger circle holding for it’s flight and commitment to life and loving.

I received that loving long ago and now I hope this book will shine that loving out to others who may be caught in their riptide.

There are many hands strteched out and heartbeats calling and reminding each of us that we are not alone.

Maybe you are in your riptide and need to recieve. Maybe you are in a place to reach out with you hand and heart.

I know it’s not one or the other. We are all need a hand sometime. We all need to be the one holding out our hand sometimes as well.

Heart handprints art sign color. Vector illustration