Journal Seasons: How my writing changes as I change


Getting back to writing in my journal each day!  Re-creating the ritual of writing that has been missing as my life has shifted and changed.  I spent a few weeks with some serious resistance!  And now, I am settling back into the routine of writing.

Here are some thoughts on my work with journaling. I want to set the intention of bringing morning pages back into my daily practice.  I am ready to capture the thoughts, feelings, dreams and ideas that are swirling around as the season changes again.

In my younger years, I used to write sporadically in my journals.  At that time, I was keeping track of my emotions, where life was taking me, relationships, poetry…a real hodge-podge of thoughts.  Then, that switched to journals about my children, day-to-day ups and downs of motherhood, and my relationship with my husband.  It is now shifting again to thoughts of art and music, how things are integrated in the world and what is important to me in this next phase of my life.

I read Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way a few years ago. This book totally changed my way of journal writing.  I began to write 3 pages (stream of consciousness, Morning Pages) each morning and watched the journals begin to fill and fill and fill with so many thoughts, ideas and images.  This writing was a simpler flow.  Get- up in the morning and just write 3 pages.  Since it was just upon awakening, the words poured out and still do.  No pressure to put “perfect” ideas on the paper, just words that flowed out of my pen.

When I finished each journal, I would leave the last page blank.   I would then reflect back on my writings.  I would go back through each journal and “star” certain ideas that stood out to me as important.  All of those starred ideas were written out on the very last page of each journal.

Wow!  I now had topics from my life! 

I began to use those starred ideas from the end of each journal to create blog posts, which then became the articles that you see in these e-newsletters.

The tool of Morning Pages keeps my journaling “light” when I need just a flow of words.  It is motivating to me to just sit and write with no pressure to “produce” anything other than thoughts on a page.

Are there days I do not want to journal?  Yep….lots of them.  I honor that in my life.  However, I can always go back and re-read what I have written.

 I put journal writing into my morning routine daily.  Do you? 

Here are the steps so that you can try-out this process:

  1.  Get a few blank journals, pens/pencils.  Keep them in the spot you will go to, to write each morning.
  2. Upon waking up, open your journal and write 3 pages-stream of consciousness, no judging.
  3. Just before your journal is filled, leave the last page empty
  4. Re-read all of your entries and “star” the ideas and phrases that stand out to you
  5. Write all of those ideas and phrases in the back of your journal
  6. What do you notice?

Be prepared for thoughts and ideas to emerge that might be difficult and/or upsetting.  This DOES happen and can make us uncomfortable.  This is your journal, so no need for anyone but you to see it.  However, these powerful insights will give you “clues” to your life.  How will you interpret them?

You may want to use your “starred” ideas for articles and blog entries. You may learn new things about yourself that you had buried for a long time.  You might discover beautiful connections that you had not noticed before.  Whatever you discover, it will be connecting you to your own creative journey.


Mini-Mastermind: 21 Days of Questions and Collaboration



  • What if you had a group of like-minded people to collaborate with for 21 days?
  • What if you had time to ponder and focus on your own creative work/job/business?
  • What if you took the time to begin to set your intention to share your work?
  • What if you could ask questions of others in order to grow in your work/job/life?

These are the constant questions that I ask myself on a daily basis.  I have discovered that I enjoy working in collaboration with others to help me to answer questions that come up as I grow my business and work a day-job.  I take time each day to write and answer the questions that arise.  However, sharing these questions and my possible answers with others allows me to get a bigger perspective and clarification.  How about you?

I have had such fun facilitating accountability groups for the past few years.  As these groups have progressed, I have noticed a pattern of questions that arise as individuals begin to look at their own work.   I have compiled these questions into this new venture.  Spending time working through those questions with others allows for expansion.  We discover answers to questions that we may not have otherwise figured out on our own.  Connecting with others and their genius work allows us to deepen our own.

Whether you work full-time, stay at home with your kids, work part-time or are retired, I’ll bet there is something inside of you yearning to share your creative work with others.  Perhaps a side-line business, a blog, a website, a class, a creative endeavor…you are a “maker”; a creative that wants to share with others and bring your creative-self into the forefront!

That is why I am opening this e-course, Mini-Mastermind: 21 Days of Questions and Collaboration on November 11, 2015.  This e-course invites you to ponder questions about your creative work and will allow you to collaborate with others to support your journey.  This course will last 21 days and will have a private Facebook group, so that we can connect with one another to see what we discover as we ponder questions and connect with one another around a common topic.

What you will receive:

1.  Daily emails for 21 days inviting you ponder questions to dig deeper into your creative work/life/business
2.  An invitation to a private Facebook group to share what you discover and to share your ideas with others
3.  Intentional focus on common questions, answers and ideas to grow in our business/work/life (facilitated by Susan Loughrin)

Simple.  Clear.  Mini-Mastermind.
21 Days for $21.00. 
Click the button below to register:

Mastermind Group: What I am noticing

IMG_0119Working with a mastermind group continues to be a wonderful learning experience for me.

The group I currently work in has been set up with the understanding that we will post our top 3 weekly goals and each of us can ask a question of the group.  The group runs for 3 months at a time and then we can all evaluate to see what value we received and if we wish to continue.

Since the members are from all around the world, we are using a Facebook “secret” group.  This allows us to have a safe environment in which to share ideas…and important requirement when much of this information is private…vulnerable…sharing thoughts with a small group to get more focused answers.

For the past few months following this plan I have noticed these main themes, or ideas coming up our three goals:

  1.  Self-care
  2. De-cluttering
  3. Marketing ideas and strategies

While there are many more, these are the three that have caught my immediate attention.

Reflecting on self-care first, I notice that having a goal or a daily “to do” that involves meditation, walking, being in nature, resting…anything where the soul is nurtured is an important weekly reminder.  Scheduling in time for self-care, noticing the need to nurture ourselves for the rest of the week to run smoothly is essential to honoring ourselves.

Next, de-cluttering!  Taking time to search out our physical world for places where too much “stuff” has accumulated.  Having time each week to focus on a small area of our homes and/or offices to “de-clutter” creates a sense of peace.   We can see in the closet, notice the counter top is clear, and appreciate the work it took to clear a space.  Placing focus on “clearing stuff” from our physical environment and clears it from our “psychic” environment.  Peace of mind.  Clarity of thought and breathing space are being created as we build new dreams in an uncluttered environment.  Noticing that clearing a space is an essential part of our weekly goals.

Marketing for our businesses and planning self-promotion and clear goals to move forward in our work, businesses and home lives.

While not everyone in our mastermind group has her own business, we each can support one-another with marketing ideas whether we are the ones creating the business or may be the participants in others’ businesses or potential “clients” who would benefit from clear marketing goals and systems.

This 3rd focus is gently unfolding in our group.  We are there to lead, guide and support one another as we journey forward on our creative paths.  We congratulate one another for weekly tasks the have been accomplished; notice certain nuances of “titles for presentations, or wordings that sound just right.  We share books on various topics that might enhance learning in certain areas of focus and ask questions of one another.

In our mastermind group we have created a safe and nurturing environment where each of us grows and is challenged to create a “to do” list each week.  I wonder how things will progress…looking forward to the continued journey with these amazing women!

Now, I am taking the “marketing” topic and have begun work on an e-course to support others in reflecting on their own creative work.  What is it you wish to share with the world?  Who is your audience?  How much time do you devote to sharing your work?  What goals/intentions have you set for yourself in your work/business.

Look for this e-course in the coming days!

Creating Tribes

wabi sabi

As my life changes, I find that my “tribes” change.  Sometimes I need to be alone and reflect.   Other times, I need a group of like-minded people to bounce my ideas off of.  Sometimes I like to connect in face-to-face settings and with the world as connected as it is now, I find I enjoy the freedom of on-line tribes.

Tribes change and need to be re-built as we grow and change.  Core-values and friends, I find, remain constant, but there are different group “needs” at different times in my life.

Do you find this to be true?

I have discovered that I can go through my past and see the different “tribes” I have been a part of through my early years as revolving around school and neighborhood.  As I grew older, different work environments and social activities defined my tribes.  Now, as I have a family of my own, I find myself pulled into tribes revolving around their social lives.

But as I continue to create my own business, create my own life amidst holding down a day job…I have begun to reach out to new people; to create a new tribe based on these new life changes.

Tribes…how do you find yours?

I have recently found that some “tribes” or groups work for a certain amount of time…a certain purpose.  But then I need to gracefully leave the group as I change and grow.  I find that I am sometimes called to lead groups, and sometimes to follow.

Sometimes, I notice that I have “friendships” that are not really a part of a specific group at all.  They are just that, friendships, with a different set of norms.

While some groups are created spontaneously through social or work engagement, the tribes I seek now I find I wish to “create” the rules and set a defined timeframe.  These are working tribes that grow and evolve based on a set of goals for a specific purpose.

My mastermind group sessions developed from this.  I set the rules based on what I needed for a particular time of growth.  I sent out requests to women whom I believed would resonate with this new “tribe” focus and invited them to join.

Here are the steps I have taken to support the type of “tribe” I am creating (and needing) now in my life.  Perhaps these steps might work for you, too?

1. List out the attributes that you would like support from others to achieve, to be held accountable, and to learn and to grow

2. Reflect on that list and get clear with 3 specific “group norms” or goals

3. Which 3 are calling out to be honored by a group setting?

4.  How do you wish to connect? (face-to-face, phone, social media, etc.)

5.  Form a  group based on those goals (either you facilitate and list out the rules or have the group decide on the rules together

6.  Create a finite amount of time for this group to meet (both in the “now” and the final closure)

What “tribe” is calling out to you right now in your life?  Are you happily ensconced in that tribe?  Or are you working on creating your next group to support your life right now…as it evolves?

See what you discover as you create a new tribe!


What if you could create and share with others as you discover new, simple beauty? I am opening Elemental Observations on October 15…I want to connect with you through walks and photos!  I have may people commenting on the photos I have posted on Facebook and they are signing up!  Want to join in?  Click here for more info and to register!

Reflecting on Summer’s Creative Fire

sun fire


Each summer I spend time creating.  I so enjoy the free time in Michigan summers.  The weather is usually delightful and encourages creative behavior in big, brash bold ways!

I set the intention to fill the summer with some form of artistic expression.  It might be painting or drawing.  It might be cooking organic meals from the weekly trips to the farmers market.  One summer it was drawing images that come to me from my morning tarot readings or dreams.

Many summers have been filled with photography!  I think dancing is in order for future summers…

But I digress…

I work from my own “creative fire” that energy that sparks in the spring and ignites in the long and drawn out days of summer.   Sometimes I work from my own inspiration. Sometimes I take an on-line class that sparks my interest.  And many times I combine the two!

Why am I writing about this now…in the fall?  Well, this is a time for “harvesting”.  Harvesting the crops and harvesting the beautiful “nuggets” of time spent in the sun and creating.  Now is my time to reflect on all of the abundant creating and set down the joy it has reaped in writing.  Into the fall months, I can have these thoughts and reflections to support me when the schedule kicks in and I feel overwhelmed.

What wonders occurred? What insights were gained from months of creative fire?  How will I use this created energy?

Here are the steps I take to set the intention for summer creating:

  1.  Ask myself…what creative desires are cropping up into my conscious mind?  What do I wish to explore?
  2. What supplies will I need?  Will I take an on-line class to support the journey?  Or will I create on my own?
  3.  Purchase supplies…set the tone for excitement!!!
  4. Organize supplies so that they fit smoothly into morning or creative ritual
  5. Ritual  set the intention Physically (time space) and mentally (intuitive linear spiral) into my day to create

These are the steps I set out for the summer…but I wonder if they can be used into the fall? (Elemental Observations E-course starts October 15!  Carrying the creative fire into the fall!)

From this summer’s adventures, I painted with watercolor and took lots of intentional photos on my walks.  I discovered MANY new insights and will share those into the coming months with you in a variety of ways.  So keep your eyes peeled!  I am developing an e-course based on these findings.  Maybe this will be something that will bring us together to create!

For now…what did you discover this summer?  Reflect back on your own “creative fire” and shoot me an email to let me know what lit you up!