Passion Prey or Passion Play?

passion and hound at play

I must find and follow my Passion. I’ve tried everything and I can’t find it.

During my years as a coach I’ve heard this a lot...  I feel compelled to ask them
“What if you let it find you? Sometimes our search feels more like like passion prey. Wouldn’t you rather feel passion play?”
Sometimes people appreciate the question and sometimes? not so much.

See the photo? backstory
I had dropped to the ground to take a closeup of a crocus in bloom.
Teagen, my Irish Wolfhound closed in, intent in her desire to come to my aid. I mean I was laying prone-obviously in need of protection from this small blue thing in my face, right?
The crocus turned into her prey…until she read my energy and then, alas, the poor flowers became the object of play. My hound snouted the flowers out of the soil and tossed them in the air.  Prancing around, she seized the moment, tossing them up again and again.
From passion prey to passion play in the blink of an eye.

Years later this moment stays with me.
It seems a good metaphor for my take on the need to discover one’s passion. I don’t quite buy into it the whole ‘must find purpose and passion’ thing.
It seems the hunt becomes too confusing as so often we miss the obvious.

Think about it. What do you feel when you go hunting for something you really want to find? Car keys, house keys, bank card, phone? In that moment, they are the prey. What energy is fueling you? Desperation, irritation or frustration? And what do you often feel if you can’t find them.

What happens when you stalk your passion like prey?  You try to capture a fleeting glimpse of it so you can hunt it down, claim ownership and in a blinding flash know your way. My experience has been that this happens only the big screen and not in real life.

Oh ya, passion can make us feel alive. I, too love the feeling of life in my fingertips. But it’s  curiosity, resonance and peace that have consistently led me toward a more wholehearted, playful self, where I can own knowing that I am enough for me.
Passion and desire have merged with where I am. The unrealistic expectations of the hunt have disappeared. I feel more excited about possibility of play than fearful of failure to come away empty-handed.

What if clearing a welcoming, nurturing, flexible inner space that allows for growth, change and reflection could channel a little more invigorating adrenaline your way? A little less hype, a little more curiosity? A little less prey and a little more play?
If you were passion would that draw you in or push you away?
You don’t have to answer right away…let the question percolate and see what bubbles up.

The next time you feel the desperate need to find your passion, lean into curiosity.
Give yourself permission to feel a good-enough-in-this-moment vibe and then go play.
Let passion find you.

Updated and revised from a post,originally published in 2010. Seems searching for our passion and purpose in life is part of human be-ing. How can you make the search more fun?

I use a lifetime of diverse experience, humor and grass roots wisdom to guide others into mind expanding landscapes.  Find how your inner genius, creativity and pursuit of Canameaning and success connect naturally at

Sign up for my e-letter here. We meet at dawn.

Life Lemonade on the Freedom Trail

Lemonade & Freedom

Natalie’s Day 3 prompt:

“Dawn, what’s your definition of freedom in business and adventure in life?”

Freedom? Adventure?
At first glance, it seems like there’s more work than freedom and less adventure than desired…more lemons than refreshing lemonade.
But scratch zest the surface beneath that thought and what do I find? That familiar taste of personal freedom and small adventures, growing day by day through 30+years of owning my own businesses.

Is Freedom in business easy?
Nope, not always.

In the beginning, everything was new and exciting. I believed if I was doing what I was meant to do, everything would be EasY-Peasy…
you know- tap into your passion,  make a wish, breathe deep and Viola`~ the Big U. would deliver in the blink of an eye.
hmmmmm…that’s not exactly how it works. Serious, consistent, grit and effort was often the flavour of the day. That is, until I discovered how to work in Aligned Effort.

 Aligned Effort has a magical quality to it. It lightens the load and brightens the road when partnered with our core motivators, making things easily feel worth the time and effort. 

Did I make mistakes?
Uh-huh. But remember, mistakes aren’t always a bad thing.
Don’t get me wrong…I don’t like making mistakes. My mistakes can make me feel pretty uncomfortable, even defensive …especially when I have unrealistic expectations of myself or I fall into Perfectionist thinking.
Eventually, I get past my sense of embarrassment and remind myself that making mistakes in life is Normal.  I get to practice a little self compassion, cut myself some slack and lean into humility as I discover how to take the best from these moments and keep on moving. That’s part of the bittersweet taste of freedom and adventure, isn’t it? We have the power to turn a bad moment, a mistake into something sweet or sour.           
Remember the saying?

when life hands you lemons, make lemonade


What if we reached for a glass of deliciously cool, homemade life lemonade the next time we celebrated a day of Adventure on the Freedom Trail? Works for me. How ’bout you?


These days, as a Master Kaizen-Muse™ Creativity Coach and Martha Beck Certified Life Coach, my Freedom Trail connects me with individuals in their search for ways to BE Real, Find Freedom…surely the Adventure of a life time.
Feel free to drop me a line, leave a comment, give a LIKE or share this post…
Thanks for reading and may you find a cool refreshing glass of life lemonade waiting on your Freedom Trail.


Day 1- what WAS I thinking?

Sun Slipping Away Soon
Why do I procrastinate writing blog posts?
How many more times will I ask myself that question?
Months can go by…not a single post…at least not in print.
Oh sure, I’ve crafted some winners in my head but they never make it into the light of day.
Time to find a better question.
“What if joining Natalie Sisson’s Blog Challenge might help me find a groove?” Viola`.
I sign up before I can give it a second thought.

As promised, Oct. 1’s prompt arrived-

  • Day 1: Write a post on why you started your blog, who you wanted to reach, what you wanted it to be all about. Then state why you joined this blog challenge and what you want to get out of it.

I pause…I ponder. I take my Android apart…ChecK the battery just for good measure…clean the screen. I wander around the house, GraB a cup of coffee…open the fridge door…close the fridge door…get a warmer pair of socks…find my way back to my office, ChecK email…format some pictures…make a phone call…
Shoot. No one’s home. Seems like I’ve run out of ProcrastiOptions.
AARRRggHHHHhhhh….What if I don’t KNOW the answers, I whine silently.
My Inside Buddy pipes up. (Know who I mean? Tiny inner voice that answers you when you’re talking to yourself…yup, that one. I call her inside Buddy.)
” What if you don’t have to know? You just start writing and see where it takes you…C’mon, just go for it.”
So here I am…starting before the sun slips away.

Day 1.
Why did I start my blog?
Because the other coaches had one? Because it seemed like the thing to do? Oh. Now I remember.
I wanted to have a place to share things that might be of value to others and myself.
(oh god, that sounds lame. I’m hitting delete. “Leave it be”, inside Buddy says. “You’re doing great.”)

Whom did I want to reach?
(hmmm,  this question feels easier.)
People who have the same questions as I did.  Like:
How can I make finding my own groove just a little bit easier? When do I get to feel I am EnouGh?

(sheesh! now it sounds like I’m writing for myself. “SO?” Inside Buddy pipes up. “Keep going.”)

What did I want it to be about?
(Wow. This feels even easier to answer. Inside Buddy is nodding, smiling, 2 thumbs up!)
I wanted to share my stories and photography.
Living alongside nature in the the almost wilderness,  there’s been so many small but powerful moments that have helped me Let Go of who I thought I MuSt Be in
this wild and crazy business called LiFE.
These memorable moments have taught me HOW to catch my breath, to Lean Back and Sigh;
to give myself
Permission to be successful, to Be Real and Find Freedom in living my everyday life.
A Blog lets me share what’s worked for me with others.

Why did I join this Blog Challenge? What do I want to get out of it?
putting words into play
giving myself Permission to get comfortable with Close Enough
being OK to post, to show up as myself in a manner that feels right for me
Practice sharing small moments with others who resonate with my vibe.

Thanks, Natalie, for asking questions.
The sun has set. This post is a wrap.
Close Enough is Good Enough for me.

Please, leave a comment, share this post or drop me a line
if you’d like to hear more of how to Be Real, Find Freedom in this wildly exceptional business called LiFE.
Dawn Kotzer, a Master Kaizen-Muse Creativity& Martha Beck Life Coach, living below a hill, below a hill, on the edge of Tobin Lake, SK, Canada, guides others to successfully discover how to BE Real and Find Freedom.


Go Get your RICH ON.

Money…isn’t it just the Coolest Tool around?TDOY_bloglovintour_graphic_500px

We stretch it, hold it, make it, save it, grow it, share it, trade it, keep it safe,
PlaY with it, burn through it, compound it, freeze it, invest it, desire it, drool over it…
Money colours our perception of the world…the world we live in, the world we Want to live in…the world we Don’t want to live in…
We give this Cool TooL a LOT of power.

Here’s the thing…
Money is a man-made TOOL.
A 10$ bill is simply a piece of paper with a price put on its head.
It is an object of convenience to be used at our discretion.

What about all those feelings around money?
Yup, they’re man-made,
too—man made by the energetic history of moi`.
Money is nurtured and soul-er powered by the energy we bring to work with it;
energy seasoned by generations of cultural and family conditioning and personal experience, channelled by success or stirred up by fear.
Money Energy has often been given free reign in defining our take on wealth.
Fear of Lack or Attack, Comparison, Self criticism, Perfectionism or Self-sabotaging Habits can have this definition of wealth doing a 180º depending upon which side of the Abundance Coin we see ourselves on… RiCh beyond Measure? or Impoverished beyond Hope?

What does Money have to do with Wealth?

  • Wealth: A tangible or intangible thing that makes a person, family or group better off…

Sometimes we think that money is the ONLY way of measuring wealth, the only thing that makes us better off…not So.
{Altho’ money makes building material wealth a lot simpler…trust me, it’s a lot easier to use moola to pay the bills than trade with goats or chickens.

What does Money have to do with Abundance?
…not as much as you’d think.
I see Abundance as a state of feeling wealthy…sitting with grace, surrounded by things that matter to me…things that may seem utterly worthless to you but in my world, are priceless.
I GET TO discover what makes me feel wealthy, what feels like Abundance, what choices  match my definition of wealth, what actions align my spirit and money energy as I choose how to use this cool Tool called Money.

Which side of the Abundance Coin do you see yourself on?
Do you FEEL like money finds you easily, landing softly beside you? Can you sit in wonder, luxuriating in the rich beauty and priceless moments this world effortlessly brings your way?
When butterflies land on your toes, can you see that as proof positive of a wild and wealthy life?

Abundance Check? dawn

Or do your feelings around money drag you down, limit your ability to see the grass beneath your feet?
Do you feel penned, restricted and unable to find any wealth in your existence?
Does ‘Go Get your Rich On’ have more to do with indulging in whipped cream than investing in pork bellies?

Looking for the bright side? contact

Don’t get me wrong…I like money.
I like having enough money to satisfy my needs {and a decent amount of my wants.} I like to be well paid for my work.
Money makes life easier, provides financial security and creates a certain amount of personal freedom.

Does this make me feel rich?
It sure helps.
Getting right with my Money Energy gives me a knowing confidence that I’ll use this Cool Tool called Money by honouring my True Self as I Go GET my Rich ON
but honestly,
I feel most Wealthy, most Rich when I give myself Permission to Stop—to be amazed by the butterfly landing on my toe or grounded by the solitary bison, grazing on the hill.

What about you…when do you feel most Wealthy, most Rich?
Give yourself Permission to Stop and Be Amazed…just for a moment, see how it feels to ‘Get your Rich On.

I’d love to hear how you get your rich on.
Leave a comment below or drop me a line at DawnKotzer-coaching for this business called life.

“The Declaration of You, published North Light Craft Books and available now, gives readers all the permission they’ve craved to step passionately into their lives, discover how they and their gifts are unique and uncover what they are meant to do! This post is part of The Declaration of You’s Blog Lovin’ Tour, which I’m thrilled to participate in alongside over 200 other creative bloggers. Learn more – and join us! – by clicking here.”

What isn’t Missing?

Snow on the Horizon

Go ahead. Take another look.
Nope-nothing wrong with your screen…or your eyes.
You have a clear view of all that is there.

The title begs the question “what ISN’T missing?
Aren’t you just dying to say”Everything’s Missing!
There’s nothing there but snow.”

You are looking at a wide open, naked landscape.
Unapologetic, courageously, audaciously present.
Grounded, unassuming, patiently waiting naked.

Ready and willing to embrace the lonely prairie nights,
the howling, frigid north wind,
the blinding strikes of ice crystal racing across this frozen desert.
Ready, willing, able.

Did you come up with an answer yet?
“What ISN’T missing?

Let me give you some clues.
Cheerfully naked and contentedly waiting,
this landscape GETS TO dream
under the full moon of winter
where even the smallest snowflake shines like a diamond in the night.

This landscape GETS TO claim
a front row seat during the main event,
the dance of the Aurora Borealis, the Northern Lights.

With a cool detached eye,
this landscape GETS TO watch
rainbow hues,unaware of color wheels and fashion forecasts,
chase each other with abandon across the night sky.

Naked and loving it,
this landscape GETS TO rest
and warm in spring sunshine yellow while
flocks of migrating birds trumpet the changes on the wind.

What ISN’T missing?
When we give ourselves Permission to see from the perspective
of NO Thing Missing,
the possibilities are endless.

What do you think?

When I’m not snow-dreaming, shoveling snow or gazing at the horizon, pondering ‘what ISN’T missing?’
you can find me doing my thing, guiding others into their own open landscape,
a place of possibility and full of goodness.

Who am I ? I’m Dawn Kotzer:
Founder of the Your Open Landscape. Inner Wilderness Guide. Artist. Entrepreneur.
Master Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach, Martha Beck Certified Life Coach,  Student of Life.
I’ve spent time getting lost and finding freedom within my own Inner Wilderness…

Do you find your Inner Wilderness cluttered, overgrown, rank and disorderly?
Get In Touch...I know a good guide who will show you safely home.


Earth Day…old school stylin’.

I enjoy listening to Jian Ghomeshi on CBC Radio One.

April 20-21 shows revealed a curious take on the ‘latest technology’ being snapped up by a small group of 21st century communication experts…aka YOUTH.
Attributes of this product include-
No viruses…ever.
No updates…ever.
It prints at the exact same time you use the keyboard.
It’s earth friendly…uses no electricity.

Know what it is?
Clue: Most Zoomers and Boomers can use it immediately. No learning curve involved.

That’s right, you guessed it…the latest hassle free tech discovery, perfectly matched to Earth Day philosophy is…drumroll, please…the Manual Typewriter.

True, it’s a still a small movement. But just imagine–once the masses unite, it’s anyone’s guess how loud the clatter will become.

(Who knows of a good supplier for bamboo paper?)

There’s an added bonus
Income Archeology for those who like to tinker.

Sourcing typewriters, selling typewriter, changing ribbons, (sourcing ribbons), fixing keys, (sourcing parts), oiling moving parts and type mechanism.

So tell me-

on this earth day

how will you choose?

…to be happy,

…to upcycle,

…to touch the earth.

Curiosity killed the Cat. Really?

Who said curiosity will kill the cat?

In my virtual world, I hang with a herd of cool cats who pad softly into The Muse is In Writing Club. Twice a week, prompts (divined by the Big Cat herself, Jill Badonsky) come to my INBOX.  I never know what the prompt will be but I’m always curious to find out.

Last Week’s Prompt-#115: Feel or imagine curiosity in body, mind and spirit and then see what you are inspired to write.

“Feel Curiosity in the Body…”

I roll the prompt over in my mind as if trying to feel its’ texture with my fingertips.

Rolling them back and forth, my mind feels the words as if to find the edge of another side. Suddenly, the voice inside my head breathes out.

“Body the IN-Curiosity Feel…ahhh, I like it.”

With that, my mind takes off like a cat springing into action, giving chase to a tiny mouse darting for cover between the rocks on shore.

Letters jump from rock to rock, rearranging themselves into words and phrases quickly; the curious cat leaps to keep up.

“The Feel-In-Body-Curiosity”

“Curiosity IN-THE-FEEL Body”

“Body Curiosity in the Feel”

“Feelin’ the curiosity body”


“Bodyfeel in the Curiosity”

C’mon, that last one was just plain silly.

Yup. That’s the point.

Just for a moment longer I push past the staid into the silly. Worry about how it sounds or if it makes sense falls away in the moment.

‘How does curiosity feel?”

By now I’m really getting into this. The virtual crowd inside my head goes wild. (Apparently I’m not alone in there.) A scene unfolds before me.

Leftbrain BestBet Beulah, running out of steam, is fading, fading…she stumbles. The torch is scooped out of her hand by RightbrainWhat-if Wendy.


The torch falls onto the ground. What-if Wendy scrambles as she tries to recover it.

Too late.

Letters tumble against each other one last time.

The crowd goes silent. Will this be the final phrase?

“Thy Bid- One. Feel CURIOSITY.”

Back to reality, I preview my response to Writing Prompt #115. Before staid might again overtake silly, I hit POST.

I wait. No tightness, no ‘rightness’ surfaces. I feel loose, fluid, happy that I let go in the moment and rode the wave of curiosity. Just as Oley, the rockstar discovered, it doesn’t really matter if the mouse gets away when the process of curiosity is fully activated. I’d say that’s a Win-Win.

So the next time you feel even a twinge of curiosity seep into your bones, breathe out, set worry aside; let your mind leap! into the process. Ride the wave of What-if? Give yourself permission to step out of staid and into silly one short moment at a time.

Here’s the thing. Curiosity doesn’t kill the cat…curiosity breathes life in to the cat.


p.s. Interested in these writing prompts? Don’t be shy. Check out The Muse is In Writing Club.

p.p.s. The mouse got away.

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Want to Laugh More, Love More, Live more? Curious about how your Inner Genius, Creativity, Pursuit of Meaning and the Language of True Self (Soul) connect naturally? Check out my site. Dawn Kotzer, Certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach, Modern Muse Group Facilitator, Artist, Speaker and Martha Beck Certified Life Coach engages in life from her Boreal Forest home in Saskatchewan, Canada. Get in touch here.

Hanging on by a thread…

Heading outside to do some ordinary, everyday task, I stopped in my tracks.


It was just unexpectedly there.

A golden leaf,  hanging by a spider’s silken thread, twirling round ever so slowly in the warm sun trap by our front door.

‘What a shot’, I thought.

I  ran back inside and grabbed my camera.

Snap, crackle, Ta-Da!

This photo will make a great card. Good thing I noticed the leaf.

It wasn’t until I printed a few copies of the photo that I saw a similarity between this leaf and our thoughts.

Take another look at the leaf.

Dead, dried up, having served it’s purpose for the tree, nature cut it loose. To do otherwise would crowd out the possibility for next year’s buds, stunt the growth of the tree, limit potential.

What if we’re the tree?
What if the leaf is a dead, dried up thought we cling to no matter what?
What if we hung on to so many of them that there’s no room left on our branches for new growth?
Would we be limiting our potential as well?

What do we do with our thoughts?
Do we acknowledge and respect their best use; then, when the time comes, gently set them free?
Or do we create our own sticky web from efforts to embrace and protect thoughts that no longer serve our highest good?

It’s something to think about, isn’t it?

Gently question your thoughts.

Are they fresh, sun-drenched; sitting green and vibrant along the length of your potential? Do they honor your spirit? Feed your creative your soul?

Or are too many of them spent and dried up, shadowing your true nature because fear is blocking out the sunlight?

Are your thoughts getting in the way of new growth?

Maybe it’s time to clear away the cobwebs and set them free…

Talking to Trees

Talking to Trees

I’d like to climb inside you Tree, but first must find the door
a hidden entry deep within your folds of knarly skin.

It’s touchy work.

I know I’m getting close, your sappy tears tell me to stay
while your sharp, clear fragrance finds my nose.

My hands wander your map of wrinkles
…finger printing resin markers you’ve laid along the way.

I’m sense I’m almost there.

I’d like to climb inside you Tree, and hear your life story
Will you ring it in my ear? Will I understand your language?

I listen for your voice.

I wrap both arms around you, my attempt to feel your soul
…a sound comes softly to me on the heartbeat of a breeze.

Your leaves, now ardent cheerleaders applaud this childlike act of love
They know that you are now inside of me.

How does your Inner Genius, Creativity, Pursuit of Meaning, Success Experience and Lizard Brain connect naturally? Find out at Dawn Kotzer is a Certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach, Modern Muse Group Facilitator and  Martha Beck Certified Life Coach, Artist thriving in Saskatchewan.

Sometimes you gotta make your own fun.

Copy of IMG_3166 prazma famEver felt like this?  Somebody telling you exactly where to stand? what to do? how to be?

Where’s the fun in that? There isn’t any.

One of  these boys was my grandfather, and he knew how to have fun!  He and his siblings would make fun out of anything, anywhere, any time.  Their childhood practical jokes were legendary…at least according to Little Gramps. There’s not a trace of that in this photo though.

Sometimes my life feels a little like this family photo…rigid, black and white,  ideas wilting on the vine like the flowers in the little girls’ hand.

So I hit pause…take a moment to have some fun,  to make my own fun…create something out of nothing. I play a practical joke on the To-Do list.

Let the smallest possible thing spark your imagination. Squint, do some jumping jacks, look at something upside down and backwards, or do what I do…go jump in the lake. Literally. See what comes of it…take a look at my new cat.

Seems to me that IMG_4080Little Gramps would’ve had a good laugh at this one.

I use a lifetime of diverse experience, humor and grass roots wisdom to guide others into mind expanding landscapes.  Find how your inner genius, creativity and pursuit of meaning and success connect naturally at Dawn Kotzer is a Canadian life and creativity coach living in  Saskatchewan.