Making Dreams Real

We’re doing the Hello Day Journal Practice together, every day for 30 days.

I’ll share the prompts on my blog (you can subscribe to get my blog posts by email right here) and also on Instagram – where you can join in with pictures of your Hello Day journal, using the hastag #hellodayjournal 

I’m using my Hello Day Guided Journal + Coloring Book for this – it has a “Hello Day” doodle to colour and a different prompt for each day.

You can get your own copy on Amazon:

USA: Amazon.com | Canada: Amazon.ca | Great Britain: Amazon.uk | Europe: Amazon.de

Or you can play along in your own journal.

Day2 30 day journal challenge

Day 2 – Today I am Grateful for:

Well first I guess I need to share how mortified I was when I saw that I had mis-spelled grateful (gratful!).

Once I saw it I fixed it and uploaded the new file but Amazon can take some time to start drawing from the new data so I don’t know how many people  have the mis-spelled version.

Though if you do – thank you for being one of the first people to buy!

I hoping we can use it as a reminder that it’s ok to not be perfect in our journals, which is a really good thing to bring with us on this journey.

Permission to be where we are. Knowing that we are enough exactly as we are.

The Hello Day practice is not about creating a perfect product! It’s about greeting the day from where you are.

So let’s extend this idea of “you don’t have to be perfect” to include “it’s ok to miss some days” “it’s ok if you don’t do your Hello Day until right before bedtime”… whatever.

PS: On May 23 I’m doing a Group Coaching Call on: What if my dream is to find a relationship? Maybe you want to be a part of it?

in Making Dreams Real

Finding my way back to a daily practice

There was a time when I did yin yoga every day, without fail.

Sometimes for an hour, sometimes for twenty minutes but daily yin yoga was non-negotiable.

Yin yoga is the kind where you hold poses for 5 minutes. You can use pillows, bolsters and supports to be able to stay in the pose – you want to keep your muscles soft to stretch the fascia.

I mean that is the very short over-simplified description of course, just trying to paint a picture here. If you want to try it this free one hour yin yoga class is really good for beginners.

Since I was doing each pose for 5 minutes (I use the timer on my phone) this counted as my daily meditation as well. So I would end my yoga feeling amazing in my body (which only becomes more important as I get older!) and my mind quiet and my soul happy.

I mean there is nothing I don’t love about yin yoga.

But these days I’m doing it very sporadically.

This morning I was journaling about that – what would it take to make daily yin yoga non-negotiable?

Because when I look back to the time in my life when it was non-negotiable… well I did it because I really needed it.

Now – I don’t neeeeeed it, exactly.

Like life is better/easier for me right now so some of the self-care stuff I used to do, like daily yin yoga, just stopped being non-negotiable.

But I want it.  And at 43 I am starting to have the kinds of creaks and aches that yin yoga is really good for.

And as I adjust (it’s a happy adjustment but an adjustment nonetheless) to being married and sharing my life with someone – well I feel like I do need it.

But I have been struggling to actually, like, do it.

As I was journaling about that, this is what I came to: I need to share this struggle.

At first I thought about printing out one of the calendars from the Year of Dreams Dream Plan Kit and filling in each day that I do it – like a place to keep track. Or maybe keeping that calendar on the fridge so I see it every day.

But I didn’t feel any “juice” about that.

Then I felt a spark – share it! Write this blog post about it then post progress on Instagram with pictures of that calendar and stories of either the delight of coming back to daily practice or the frustration of resistance.

I feel some “juice” for that – creative inspiration and a “YES energy” with a heavy dose of fear and uncertainty. That’s what tells me this is the right thing to do.

So I’m doing it. I’ll print out the calendar today and see where this goes…

PS: There is lots happening in the Creative Dream Incubator right now! Come play:

May 16: Journal Party with me and Effy Wild

May 17: 30 Day Journal Challenge starts

May 23: Group Coaching Call – What if my dream is to find a relationship?

in Journaling, Making Dreams Real

I got a shitty Amazon review

A few weeks ago I was doing a group coaching call on Launching Your Creative Projects Out Into The World and I remembered this one question that someone asked:

What if you do put yourself out there but then your work is criticized?” The question felt heavy like it carried some fear that I would say that this means there is something wrong, that if your work is criticized it means you don’t get to be an artist.

And the first thing I said was:

“Well – that’s just inevitable.”

And I could feel this sigh of relief.

I mean – the only way to make sure your work is never criticized is to never share it with anyone. That’s not a reasonable path for a lot of artists to take, so we have to learn how to dance with criticism.

So everybody gets criticized at some point but most tend to NOT share it, for obvious reasons.

I mean I received some criticism this week and I can tell you I definitely do not want to share it with you! I’d rather try to hide it than shine a light on it.

But when everyone is only sharing the praise they get and not the criticism they receive – well it sets us up to think that everyone else is just getting praised.

And since my work is about helping people make their dreams real and how to move through all of the icky and tricky things you have to deal with on that path – it would be disingenuous of me to not share this particular step on my path.

Art is vulnerable. All artists are putting their hearts out there.

To put your heart out there and have someone not get it or not appreciate it – well of course that’s going to sting.

But – I mean – no one is going to produce work that everyone in the world loves!

Some people won’t like your work. That’s fine.

And how the people who don’t like your work respond has nothing to do with you. They can be rude and belittling or polite and encouraging – how they respond is really more about them than it is about you.

That’s why I don’t want to talk about the criticizers.

I want to talk about what happens when your work is criticized – because it’s an opportunity for your inner critics to throw a big, stupid party.

See? I told you. You shouldn’t have bothered. 

Just take all those ideas and pack them up and put them away.

No one cares.

This is shit.

You are shit.

And you know what? The world becomes a shittier place when we listen to that shit.

Because art is a light.  All art.

And the world is a brighter place when you share it.

So my new book, the Hello Day Guided Journal + Coloring Book, has just one 1-star review on Amazon right now.

Now, most people don’t leave reviews until they have finished a book or at least got through enough of it to have developed an opinion. So other people who have bought the book are not likely to leave reviews for a while (if at all!) and it’s just going to stay like this.

Except that I know that my story doesn’t end here.

I share this for three reasons:

  1. I know I should share this in service to other artists. My mission includes shining a light on the actual path you take to get to a dream and it definitely includes some of this stuff so if I hide this part of the story from you then I’m just making you feel shittier when it happens to you.
  2. Because we can look back later and see that this didn’t stop me. It didn’t even slow me down. It’s nothing.
  3. Because shining a light on this part of the story helps it stand out in my own memory (and maybe yours too).  So then next time this happens to me or to you we can remember this post, remember that this is just a thing that happens, and not let it slow us down.

But I do have to say one thing to the woman who left me the shitty 1-star Amazon review, if you are reading this.

I know that you didn’t even try the journal. You didn’t understand it and you didn’t like what you saw, so you didn’t even try it.

And I’m sorry for that.

Mindfulness is hard. Mindfulness practices aren’t really things that you “get” before you do them.  You understand only after you’ve had the experience.

And that’s a frustrating place to be and I am truly sorry for that.

After I read your review, I looked over the first page in the book and saw that I could make it more clear how to begin so I added something there – it’s on the Hello Day page if you want to check that out.

And yes I could have done more to explain the practice in the book.  But I decided to instead do the 30 Day Journal Challenge to lead you through this book because learning mindfulness practices are hard so I am doing everything I can to show you how to use it.

(Or people who don’t buy the book can still play along in their journals – no purchase necessary)

So I am sorry that I didn’t make that more clear – while you were complaining about not learning how to do this practice you seemed to miss out on the fact that I am doing this whole thing to lead you through how to do the practice.

Partly I think you could have slowed down and read more carefully (I know you had the email where I explained this because you hit reply to it to send me a pretty rude response) and partly I should have been more clear and I have done what I can to fix that.

I believe that the 30 Day Journal Challenge is going to be magical. I mean Hello Day is a magical practice.  People are going to love it.

And some of them may even leave positive reviews on Amazon to balance out this shitty one.

For the artists: How to handle negative reviews.

First: you get to have feelings about it! Give yourself space to feel those feelings (by yourself or with your trusted people – don’t do this publicly!).

But: don’t take on the inner critic messages.  One person not liking your thing doesn’t mean there is something wrong with it. Do the inner work (if you’re in the Creative Dream Circle – take your feelings into the Un-Sticking Station to un-tangle it all)

Then: Do take a look to see if there is a kernel of truth in the review. Is there something you missed in your work? Does something need adjusting? Or is it just that this person is not the right audience for this work?

(It’s easier to be objective about that part after you’ve given yourself space to feel your feelings)

Then: Let it go. You’re bigger than the review. Your work matters. The world benefits when artists share their work. Keep going.

Feedback can help us grow and can make our work better.

If this feedback, and the change I made to the first page as a result, helps me help other people get more out of the book – then fantastic.

And I’m really hoping that in sharing my story of my poor book sitting there with the 1 star review sticks in your memory, so if you ever get a shitty review of something you can think back to this and remember that this didn’t stop me one bit and it won’t stop you either.

PS: There is lots happening in the Creative Dream Incubator right now! Come play:

May 16: Journal Party with me and Effy Wild

May 17: 30 Day Journal Challenge starts

May 23: Group Coaching Call – What if my dream is to find a relationship?

in Making Dreams Real

What if my dream is to find a relationship?

Often people think their dream of finding that right partner is not, like, a real dream.

Like a real dream is something concrete that you can work towards: a solo show in an art gallery, a novel written, a trip around the world.

A real dream is a thing where you can take steps, work hard, and get there eventually.

Finding the right person seems to be a lot more about luck and just waiting for the right time and maybe going on a lot of shitty first dates. 

Not to mention that sometimes wanting to find a partner can feel like an embarrassing thing to dream about.

But all dreams are valid. Your dreams are how your soul calls you towards your true self, your purpose and your most authentic life.

Your heart’s desires are to be taken seriously – following them is how you build your true, authentic life, it’s how you get into alignment with yourself.

JUDGING your dreams only leads to being disconnected from your own heart, which is an uncomfortable way to live.

But what do you actually DO when your dream is to find someone?

I mean you can’t actually control when or how or if you actually meet the right person. This is not the kind of dream you can really plan for…

But you CAN do things to make sure you are ready in case opportunity strikes, and of course being really truly ready can help make it easier for opportunity to find you.

You can work with it, just like you work with any dream.

You can sort through your own ambivalence and discomfort and fear and doubt. And in doing that you grow towards your true self, find more clarity and it dating does actually start to get easier.

The most common question I get about this is: should I go after my creative dream first, or my love dream first?

And the answer is that there is no answer.

It’s going to be different for everyone. But for most people – these dreams are linked. Remember: your dreams are how your soul calls you towards your true self, your purpose and your most authentic life.

You get to have a beautiful and fulfilling personal life and a beautiful and fulfilling professional life – in whatever way you want to define these for yourself.

I mean that can include loving the single life or enjoying dating different people or getting married or anything else.

No matter what your dream is – your dream will grow you.

In my case, pursuing my creative/professional dreams with gusto led me to grow into the person who could find her right partner. I had been single for over a decade and running the Creative Dream Incubator as my full time job for six and a half years when I got married to my soulmate in April 2017.

For others, finding their right partner gives them the support they need to go after their creative dreams.

For others, that love and support come from developing the right community around them and deepening their own self-love and self-care.

There is no one size fits all here.

The only rule is the same rule that applies to all dreams: follow your own heart.

Which is easier said that done, because it means you have to sort through the fears and limiting beliefs and grief piled up from love’s disappointments in your past so that you can hear your own heart clearly.

This is the challenge of having a dream and this is how your dream will grow you.

Let’s dive in and explore all of this together.

What If My Dream Is To Find A Relationship? Creative Dream Coaching Circle is happening live online on May 23.

I can’t guarantee to help you find your dream partner – no one can. But I can help you work through some of the “stuff” that comes up around this to make it easier for you to work with your dream of finding a partner.

And I’ll share my own story.  After over a decade of being single, there was a moment when I felt things shift inside of me, when I knew I was ready. I met my partner about a few months after that.

In hindsight I can see that I nurtured that shift into happening by doing a few things that I’ll talk about on this call.

Plus we’ll talk about all the hard stuff that comes up in the process of looking for someone and how complicated this can all get.

My hope is that you’ll leave the call feeling uplifted and nourished and inspired to keep walking along your unique dream path.

About Creative Dream Coaching Circles:

Community. Advice. Ideas. Healing. Support. Cheering. Creative Dream Super-Fuel.

You’ll gather with me, and a group of creative kindred spirits, and we’ll work on making our dreams real together. It’s the kind of supportive creative community we all wish we had in our everyday lives.

I know I over-use this word, but there isn’t another way to say it: Creative Dream Coaching Circles are *magic*

We meet online via live, streaming video. You can type your questions to me and I’ll answer right there on the spot or you can come on the line we can chat (you will need a webcam for that option).

Each coaching circle has a specific topic. I’ll start by sharing some thoughts and ideas and then we’ll have lots of time for coaching, questions and exploring together.

Can’t make it to the live event? No problem!

All coaching circles will be recorded and you can even email me your questions ahead of time and listen to my answers in the recording.

The call is happening live online on May 23 at 1:00 pm (Central, North America)

Yes it will be recorded and you can even email me your questions ahead of time and listen to my answers in the recording.

The cost: Just $30 US a call (or free, for Creative Dream Circle members)

Sign up for this callOr

Find out more about the Circle

in Making Dreams Real, Spiritual Life Coaching For Creatives

Hello Day 30 Day Journal Challenge

The Hello Day 30 Day Journal Challenge starts on May 17.

Every day, for 30 days, I’ll share a Hello Day journal prompt and we’ll explore together.

Hello Day is one of my favourite journaling practices. It’s kind of amazing how helpful it can be to take a few minutes to say hello to your day.

It helps you be more present with where you are and where you want to be. It’s grounding, calming and (imho!) the perfect way to start your day.

I love it so much I made a whole guided journal and coloring book about it:

Yup! My second Guided Journal and Coloring book is now available!

(My first one is You Got This: Guided Journal + Coloring Book for Dissolving Doubt + Bolstering Your Capacity To Make Your Dreams Real)

You can order the Hello Day book now so you’ve got your own copy to colour in, or use your own journal for exploring the prompts.

The inside of the book looks like this. Each page has a “Hello Day” with a doodle to colour while you ponder the prompt for the day:

Hello Day 30 Days of Mindfulness, Coloring + Self-Discovery is available on Amazon:

USA: Amazon.com | Canada: Amazon.ca | Great Britain: Amazon.uk | Europe: Amazon.de

How the 30 day journal challenge will work:

We start on May 17.  Then – every day, for 30 days, I’ll share a Hello Day journal prompt (the prompts will be from Hello Day 30 Days of Mindfulness, Coloring + Self-Discovery)

I’ll share the prompts here on my blog (you can subscribe to get my blog posts by email right here) and also on Instagram – where you can join in with pictures of your Hello Day journal, using the hastag #hellodayjournal

Excited!

in Making Dreams Real

The Four Leaf Clover

First I want to say – I’m hosting a (free! online!) Journal Party today with Jamie Ridler and I hope you can either be there live or catch up with us on the recording.

(Jamie is one of the first coaches I met online and has been a real inspiration to me. If you don’t know her yet I promise – you’ll love her.)

(This is from last week in my Year of Dreams Guided Journal + Colouring Collage Kit)

It’s always so fun and nourishing for me to participate in these parties and I think we need this kind of thing right now more than ever.

I’m still thinking a lot about how the online creativity/life coaching culture is developing and how I want to participate in it.

Right now my thoughts are just one big mess. This is always a part of the process for me – when I’m willing to be with the mess I tend to be able to move through it much faster.

But some ideas are starting to become more clear, like how much I want to hold onto what I see as the magic of what is possible for creative people to do online.

And how simple it really is to just stay away from all of that sleazy online business stuff.

And also a piece I don’t totally understand just yet that is pushing to me to share more of my own stories as I live with my dreams and figure out how make space to pursue new dreams.

I think it helps when we feel less alone on this path, and sharing our stories is a way of showing each other that we’re not alone.

Plus the people who are sharing their stories the loudest (or the ones who show up the most often through sponsored stories in my Facebook feed) are sharing stories of growth-growth-growth magic bullets and easy 3-step systems.

I want to see more real stories of living joyfully. Right-size over bigger-bigger-bigger and staying true to what’s in your own heart.

So that’s why I am excited to hang out at the Journal Party with you guys and Jamie Ridler today.

Jamie is one of those people who have been able to harness to possibilities of the internet to create creative communities without even the slightest sniff of manipulative sales tactics or sleaze.

As I said, Jamie is one of the first coaches I met before I started blogging or working online – like 8 years ago. In all that time I’ve seen her show up, every day, and offer her own unique brand of inspiration.

I know when people are starting out they want to know how to build an audience and that’s it: Show up. Offer the things you have to offer.  Invite people to be a part of what you’re doing.

Instead of focusing on making a million dollars, try focusing on showing up a million times.

It’s so simple.

It’s just a lot of work – so much work that you need to be passionate about why you want to build this thing because it’s that passion will sustain you for the long road.

Connecting with kindred spirits along the way helps too.

Again – come hang out with us today!

It’s so uplifting to connect with other people who are moving towards their dreams, whether you can be there live or catch up with us on the recording.

Also – I’m getting married tomorrow.

And I know that the ceremony is important, or it is important to me anyway, but also the commitment has already been made. We’re in it. We are learning to live with each other. I am learning how to be a step parent.

This weekend I made a list of things that needed to be done around the loft. Like vacuuming and laundry and cleaning the bathroom and stuff.

I have never made such a list in my life.

I mean living alone for so long I clean up here and there when I feel like it, or else I clean up everywhere in a mad rush before people are coming over.

And I want us to share household stuff but I also want to not be comparing and measuring – how much did you do? How much did I do?

I’d like it to be more relaxed than that, I would like creating a loving and nourishing home to matter more than having clean floors.

But his parents are coming over for the first time (they live out of town) so I didn’t want to take any chances.

So I wrote the list.

And it was amazing – I felt less overwhelmed as soon as I saw it all written out.

And this is kind of funny – I didn’t have any paper to write the list on. I’d just gone through the last of our printer paper. All I had was this old sketchbook with cheap drawing paper in it, the paper was too thin for the markers I like to use so I had put it into my giveaway box.

So I wrote the list on this sketchbook and realised – oh this will really help make our life together smoother, having a book full of things we need to keep track of.

My first shared journal.

So I wrote the list and then we just worked through it – much faster than I thought we would.

Plus he scrubbed the grout in my shower with a toothbrush and bleach. I never do that.

And when it was time for me to vacuum downstairs I asked his youngest son to take my cat outside for a walk because the vacuum freaks him out. (All of his kids love my cat Starfish, who loves to be taken out for walks on his leash)

He was happy to take the cat out and you know what? He found an honest to goodness four leaf clover while he was out there.

Felt like a good omen for all of us.

PS: The price of the Creative Dream Circle is going up at the end of this week. I never want anyone to feel pressured to join, but if you’ve been thinking of joining I do want you to know about the price change.

in Making Dreams Real

When I was finishing high school (and holy crap can I say that having an 18 year old step-daughter who is making all the same choices I made at that age is eye-opening, in a horrifying kind of way) I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up.

I knew I was going to university because my parents didn’t give me another option, which I am very grateful for.

But I didn’t know what to take.

I knew I wanted to be happy and feel free – like not lock in to doing one thing over and over for the rest of my life.

At that time I had not done any art, so I wasn’t thinking about anything creative like that. I thought I would go into journalism. It didn’t feel magical or anything but seemed like it offered some freedom.

I think I thought I’d be traveling around the world and just writing up articles whenever I felt like it.

And then – I don’t remember how or why it happened other than that my mother had sewn most of my clothes when I was growing up so sewing always seemed natural to me – I started to sew.

I remember getting a simple pattern and some cute floral fabric and making a spring dress and being totally hooked.

(I mean 25 years later I am still making myself cute dresses)

I think my creative life was calling to me through the only channel which was open at that time.

So I decided to go into fashion design.

The reality of working in the fashion industry is pretty far away from the joy I feel when making myself cute dresses so that career path did not pan out for me but it taught me everything I needed to know and got me onto the right path.

I believe that it got me onto my right path because I was following inspiration.

The thing I loved most about fashion was pattern design. The class I really excelled in was surface design. After graduating I really wanted to be a textile artist.

Secretly I wanted to be a pattern designer but I didn’t even let myself explore that because it seemed so impossible from where I was.

(And as I said in my blog post earlier this week – this seems so weird to me now, there are lots of things I could have done it was 100% my own self-doubt that stopped me from pursuing this)

I pursued my career as a textile artist which, in a 15 year long and winding story, led to me leading creativity workshops and healing/meditation circles which then led to me starting the Creative Dream Incubator.

In hindsight, one of the best things about my textile art career was that I failed at it so hard.

It was the pain of that failure that set me on the path to learning about how to really get your outer self/life into alignment with your inner truth, how to live your real life.

Because I felt that being an artist was being my true self – that’s why I didn’t want to give up and get a job. But it was a constant struggle.

I knew about affirmations, meditation and visualization and practiced devotedly but it didn’t help. I didn’t know that I was missing the biggest piece – I didn’t understand how healing and transformation actually work.

And that’s what I learned right there amongst the ashes of my failed art career – which quickly became compost to nurture my new creative life.

(I learned this in the context of spiritual healing – but I believe the principles are the same in other modalities.)

And, as an artist, as I was learning about how spiritual healing and transformation work of course I was combining this with the creative process.

The way I was taught was very dry and “head-y” so bringing colour and creativity in was my way of making it all both more grounded and real and more fun and sparkly.

Ultimately, for me the creative process and the spiritual process are the same thing. The creative process is focused on the thing you are creating and the spiritual process is focused on your own self.

You can try to control your art and make it fit into some kind of box and you may be good at that but you’ll still find there’s not a lot of magic in that in the long term.

Just like you can try to control your self and shove your life into some kind of box of what you think it’s supposed to look like. You absolutely have the power to do that – but you won’t find a lot of magic there.

(Sometimes we get caught in that with our dream work too – when we’re pursuing the dream we think we should want, instead of listening to our hearts about what our real dreams are – but as long as you stay in the process and keep showing up for your dreams the best you can, you’ll end up on the right path, just like I did with my fashion career.)

The real magic is in allowing things to grow and evolve into what they really are.

There is so much power in that. Which is kind of funny given how it comes out of a state of surrender.

So, twenty years ago I set out with this dream to be a textile artist.

And I ended up here.

My work now feels just like how I wanted my career as a textile artist to feel… creative and free and like I am living my real life.

And I still make art all the time, but it’s just to help me sort through my own inner process. I don’t focus on finishing pieces or developing creative ideas the way an artist does.

Though a few times over the past 6 years I have been inspired to make custom art for people (paper doll portraits and original art inspiration cards) and I have loved doing that.

And now the next thing is calling – making more art to share. It feels like starting a new career as an artist.

So the last time I felt called towards something new I was shifting through the ashes of my failed art career.

Now I’m working from a place of power, you know? The Creative Dream Incubator is going really well, the Creative Dream Circle is this beautiful thing that is nurturing dreams every day.

It all supports me in this new dream.

It actually feels now like I built myself the foundation I need to get back to that dream.

And it reminds that – always, always, more than anything – you can trust where you dream leads you.

in Journaling, Making Dreams Real

Last week I wrote about a dream that shook me up and then what I did about it and how terrifying it is to after this new dream.

Everything feels a lot less terrifying now. Over the weekend I felt a lot of things just snap into place.

I mean I am still exploring. But it feels more like exploration and less like stumbling around in the dark.

You know when you’re working on creative projects and suddenly it just clicks? Well I had some clicks where three different creative projects/ideas clicked together. So it feels like everything just opened up.

your dream is waiting for you to come true

That’s a drawing I did this weekend.

I started with a way different drawing of three flowers that I wanted to turn into a repeating pattern, and then kept re-doing it, refining as I went.

It’s like a combination of intuitive art-making with traditional pattern design.

People are often surprised to find out that I have a degree in fashion design, but I do and pattern design was one of my favourite parts.

So working on pattern design now feels like coming back to my past self, but bringing all these resources to it.

Because back when I was pursuing pattern design it was a hard, hard thing to get into. I was working at the best job I could find that allowed me to do some designing with the promise of more but those promises never quite came through.

And, looking back what really surprises me is that I wasn’t designing patterns on my own. I was passionate about this dream but I wasn’t doing it.

I wasn’t designing gorgeous patterns in my spare time because I felt hopeless about this dream.

I didn’t see the path to getting my work out there, so I didn’t take the steps that were in front of me to take.

And the one person who I thought could help, the only person I thought I could rely on for support, my boss at that stupid job, didn’t want to help me, and so he didn’t.

I was 24 then. At 42 I see things much differently.

It’s up to me to do the work FIRST. Had I put my all into drawing all those patterns that were floating in my head back then – my path might have been a lot different.

Today I would never hang my hopes on someone else.

Your dream needs YOU. You have what you need inside you to create the opportunities you need. You don’t have to know how to do the whole thing, you just have to take the steps that are in front of you to take.

So, following the inspiration that has been opening up as I’ve been exploring this dream – I spent the weekend working on some pattern designs.

And it felt like I was coming back to this past-me. And bringing her healing and resources and showing her – hey look we can actually do this now. I have the resources and see the opportunities now.

So there’s this huge healing/blooming thing happening in my heart right now.

And I mean holy hell pattern design is a million times easier now!

Back then I had a home-made light box for tracing and re-drawing. I was so grateful that my mom helped me build it – but it got hot and was cumbersome to use.

Today I use my iPad pro and just add new layers and draw on top.

No uncomfortable lightbox, just snuggled up on my couch with the iPad on my lap.

Which is also a metaphor for how much easier my dreams are for me now that I have the benefit of 20 odd years of taking baby steps along that path.

So I’m at Starbucks this morning, working on the material for How To Grow Your Dreams While Surrounded By Dream Doubters and Negative Nellies.

Not being supported in your dreams is such a delicate thing. Sometimes we project our own fears onto other people because we don’t want to deal with them in ourselves. Sometimes we scare the people who love us when we take risks with our dreams.

Sometimes we wait for our boss to give us the opportunities that we need to create for ourselves.

Sometimes we are just are surrounded by jerks and need to do something about that.

So I am offering this call because of my dream to have this collection of coaching calls on specific topics to that people can just grab the one they need in the moment and get the inspiration/ideas/support they need to move through it.

I want to offer this not just for my people, but for my past self who struggled so much.

Not that I can remove the struggle with my classes and coaching – it’s more like I want to offer these as a way of saying – you are not alone.

It’s an act of healing to create the things I used to need.

I want that healing to ripple out and impact others who want it – but it has to start here, with me.

And it’s so beautiful – how I have been offering these works to my past selves who struggled with their dreams, that this old dream has come back.

And it didn’t just come back – it’s like all the drawing I have been doing for the past year and a half was the perfect warm-up for coming back to pattern design. So it’s like I am just seeing it now but it’s been here a while.

In fact last year I did make some drawings meant to be patterns for things I wanted to create and sell.

But the first round of test products went really badly. And I wasn’t sure what to do so I put it away to focus on things that were going well.

I mean we only have so much time and energy and we can’t do everything at once!

But your true dreams will keep coming back to you, as this one does with me.

And the other thing that is coming out of this process of exploring my dream – I want to blog more. And I have been, as you can see.

So I’ll see you back here.

PS: How To Grow Your Dreams While Surrounded By Dream Doubters and Negative Nellies is happening tomorrow! I hope to “see” you there.

in Making Dreams Real

It’s hard to sit down and explore this – I mean who knows what you’ll find, right?

Your dream will grow you. I trust this. And I know I’m ready for it. But I don’t know what any of this means right now, exactly.

So, I dive in with the questions I ask my Circle members to answer every week:

My dream is: to find this new dream

I want it because: well it feels like it wants me, like it’s calling me. But I must want it or I wouldn’t be here so… I want it because I want to keep following my creativity and intuition, I want to keep growing into who I really am.

When I have it I will feel: well I think I will feel more enlivened to have more projects that light me up. I will feel inspired and happy and excited.

So – don’t I feel those ways right now? Well yes, but I also have this feeling like there is room for more.

This feels like I am starting to go in circles!

But going in circles is part of the path, too. Going in circles can wear down the path and gently bring you deeper into it where things start to look different.

And if a circle is only movement I can make then going in circles must be the right way to go.

It’s better than standing still.

I’m also worried that I am doing all of this exploring and it might be for nothing.

Like my new dreams are not going to end up being very exciting. Like they won’t be worth it.

Like what if my “new dreams” are really just to keep doing what I’m doing? More guided journals and colouring books, more decks of cards. I mean those are the kinds of projects that excite me right now.

I have been having so much fun drawing new patterns for my new guided journal and colouring book and seeing how I could use them in a deck of cards too…

What if my new dreams aren’t new? What if I’m looking for something that doesn’t exist?

Well if I am looking then I feel inspired to look and what if that’s enough?

See, circles.

So I’m asking a question that is usually helpful:

What do I think will change in my life when I have this new dream?

I will work more.

Really? That’s the first thought that popped into my mind?! I want to work more? Is that what this is all about?

Because that is simple enough, I can just work more. I can do more coaching circles and create new e-courses and keep going with the guided journal and colouring books.

Just sitting quietly with that.

I want to blog more, I have missed this.

And yeah – I would like to work more. Produce more.

OMG that is so weird. I don’t want to judge my answers because that kills the process of exploration but I also really want to judge these particular answers.

Just sitting quietly with that.

So when I think about the people who really inspire me I am always amazed by how much creative work they produce.

I honour their commitment to their creative practice, which always feels bigger than my commitment to my creative practice.

See I have really resisted “working too much” because I come from a family of workaholics.

So I’ve always seen it as a thing for me to be aware of and to manage.

What if it’s a thing to celebrate?

Geez this is not where I was expecting this circle to lead me to. But I am going to put this down for today and let this settle a bit.

in Making Dreams Real

So I’m still kind of in a haze from yesterday’s dream.

I mean it feels like one of those big dreams that came to guide me and it will impact me for some time.

I’ve missed having these kinds of dreams. I used to have them more often when my dreams felt further away. Like my sleep-dreams wanted to help me find my real-dreams.

There is a lot of magic in going after a dream and going from not-having to having. Like when I graduated from University with all these creative dreams and no clue how to make them happen and a shitty job that barely paid the bills.

And then when you’re more a place of living with a lot of your dreams, going after new dreams real can feel less dramatic and exciting.  Like where I am now.

After I’d been doing the Creative Dream Incubator full time for a few years, I started wanting to shift more of my business to the Creative Dream Circle.

At that time, the Circle was called Advanced Creative Badassery and was only available to people to had already taken classes with me.

It’s much easier to sell individual classes than a year-long membership. And it’s easier to make more money selling more classes to the same people, than offering them all for one price.

But making a dream real – from the inside out – involves so much inner and outer work I didn’t want to offer small pieces of the solution. I wanted to put it all together and then create a community of people doing the work together.

So I knew I wasn’t doing this because this was the easiest way for me to make a living. I was doing it because it felt true – it was how my work wanted to grow.

And even though it was really hard sometimes – I had so much love and passion for growing the Circle into something stable.

That was a huge dream and it wasn’t easy to get it to where it is now. But for the past few years, the Creative Dream Circle has been stable.

Stable as in – I don’t feel like I am working on growing it.  I am taking care of it and keeping it thriving but that takes a really different, much less intense, kind of energy to do.

So I’m in a good place with my work and that feels amazing.

And I don’t want to just stay here. I mean I’m 43 I have lots of good years left still!

But, and this is part of why the 6-7-8 figure online biz cult has been on my mind lately, I don’t want to take this and make it bigger. Which is why I resent all these messages I feel bombarded with about how this is the only way to grow.

The Creative Dream Circle is thriving and beautiful. I am in LOVE with it. I am happy with the income I get for the time and energy I put in.

Everything feels good exactly how it is.

Not everything needs to scale.

So that reminds me of the World Domination Summit which I went to in like 2012 or 2013. It was the first year that it was 1,000 people instead of 500.

And I remember Danielle LaPorte spoke and addressed how some people were concerned that the event would lose some of the magic by growing like that and she said “Love scales”.

And I’m sure she believed it. I don’t know her, but it seems like empire-building is a part of her truth and that growing a larger business is a part of how she lives her truth.

I just don’t think everyone needs to grow bigger in order to shine brighter, which is the message we are getting online right now.

Anyway, when she said that, “Love scales” I was like WTF?

Because I was sitting there totally overwhelmed by the crowds and wishing for something smaller where I would feel more comfortable.

Love didn’t scale for me in that way.

Which didn’t mean that the World Domination Summit should stay small because that’s my preference, of course. It doesn’t mean they sold out or did anything wrong at all.

It means that I get to choose to attend smaller events. I can also choose to grow smaller things.

Frankly I think that once you’ve got a thing, focusing on growing it bigger bigger bigger is boring.

Maybe that’s just a part of my own quiet nature.

Like – one of the big perks of self-employment for me is that I can go do things on “off times”. Grocery shopping, going to the park – anything where there are lots of people, I do on the off times when there are not a lot of other people there.

So it would be really weird for me to go against my nature and want to turn my business into something big and loud.

And I think we can be more creative about how we live with and grow our dreams.

And that’s what my dream the other night was pushing me towards.

Take all that energy and drama  – being vulnerable, taking risks, trying new things – to finding my next things.

Because I’m not as hungry as I used to be – that’s for sure. And I am not desperate to get out of my day job.

And I’m doing a lot of quiet experimenting on my own and not sharing it. In that dream, the really intense part that wouldn’t leave me was that fear of sharing my shaky experiments with others.

I used to do that with my dreams. Because I was so excited about them and wanted to put them out into the world.

I haven’t been doing that lately. I’m holding my dreams closer.

So – and this feels so weird to admit – I have to work at being just as excited and passionate about my new dreams.

Right now I have so many ideas swirling around me. I’m experimenting and exploring and really unsure about which path(s) I want to pursue.

And I don’t really want to share anything until I know where I’m going with it.

And my dream is saying: NO. Those first tentative steps need to be shared.

I mean – do not misread me OMG this is not a general rule that everyone should do this!

A lot of dreams need safe, sheltered, quiet space to grow.

But as a teacher, I think the rules are different for me. I think teachers are only as effective to the degree to which they walk their talk.

Well, I have been WALKING my talk I just haven’t been talking about it. Honestly – I don’t want to appear flaky by trying a bunch of things and not necessarily going anywhere with them.

I mean one of my strengths as a teacher is that I am grounded and stable and you can count on me to do what I say I will do.

But another one of my strengths as a teacher is sharing my own stories – helping people feel less alone in those places where they stumble with their dreams.

And this isn’t so complicated, I mean I can share those stories while saying “I am experimenting with this – I’m not making a promise about this”.

So. That’s where I am today: grateful for being shock up by this dream.

in Making Dreams Real