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 dawnkotzer.com

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

Happy Ground and Glory Day

Ground and glory Day

Not all of us were ready to plan 2016 on January 1. I know I wasn’t…and that’s OK. Sometimes it takes a little while to ground ourselves; to hear our voice within, to find our groove.

I took some time to ponder how I’d like 2016 to look, to feel for me, finally landing on this simple Ground and Glory Tree playsheet.
This little graphic worked for me, giving me a chance to lean in and listen to my essential self, my core of instinct and intuition.
These intentions bubbled up:
I want to:

  • let go of thought loops and tired old stories that suck my soul dry
  • give myself permission to embrace more play
  • celebrate the things I do and skills I learn along the way
  • commit to leading and living a life with a creative, artful vibe
    more in tune with who I am at heart.
  • pay attention to life priorities but for my own goodness sake, give curiosity a chance to lead me astray. 🙂
  • and so…Tada! a Ground and glory Playsheet.Use this contemplation as a place to start, to ground and glow.
    Seems Groundhog day is thee perfect time to share it with others
    who have a keen desire to stretch, to play, to grow.
    Download Ground-and-Glory-tree-2016

If this works for you too, I’d love to hear. Comments are always welcome.
Please share this post and my Ground and Glory PlaySheet with others.
I appreciate it your support, encouragement and time.
Thank YOU.

Dawn

 

6 Ways to set Resistance Free

 

Resistance-Small Steps and a stick
Release resistance. invite PLaY

M.a.D. Explorer Tips and Tools-
6 Ways to set Resistance Free:

You know the feeling, right?We have stuff we Must do, Should do, Have to do…yet it feels impossible to start. We stall out, trapped in a doom chamber of resistance. Resistance can bring out the fight, flight, freeze or faint in us.  What if releasing ourselves from resistance brought out our inner explorer or the curious child in us instead?
I’ve used all 6 of these tools…which ones work for you?

1) Play ‘I See YoU’
Awareness is a powerful practice. It is the gentle flashlight of our soul, offering compassion and a chance to lighten up.
Instead of ‘Arggghhh, Resistance. You can’t be here. Situation Stalled.‘ Try rephrasing that into ‘Ahhhh, Resistance…I see You. Situation, normal mortal.”  Take 2 minutes, do a stretch, attend to a tiny task, have a cup of tea, breathe. Start your project again in a little while.

2) Frame a declaration of independence
“I’m not going to do a damn thing this morning and that’s ok

As a Mad Explorer (aka curiosity hound-intuitive-creative rebel) I’ve lost count of the times this declaration has set me free, fueling my tank for an effortless start at something later in the day.  If your can’t clear an entire morning, just clear 30 minutes. How does “I’m not going to do a damn thing for the next 1/2 hour and that’s ok!” feel to you?  The release comes from giving yourself permission to be OK with whatever amount of time feels right for you. 10 minutes may be your magic number. Start there.

3) Create a NOT-GoT-to-Do list-
Make a short list of real time actions/tasks and give yourself permission to NOT have to Do on a given day.
This could be grocery shopping, doing taxes, washing windows, sorting seasonal clothes, non-deadline stuff…
Whoosh! The pressure lifts. We get to remove our own mindset shackles and free ourself to take on the day as it unfolds.

4) Draft a dirty Deed list-
As chief Sherpa in our rural paradise, there’s quite a few jobs that fall into my domain that I DO NOT enjoy doing. (think crawlspace plumbing/ cleaning out icky, stinky cold rooms, doing roof repair, did I say plumbing? etc.)
For whatever reason creating this list ricochet’s me into the land of doing things that, while still not part of my Top 3 Wanna Do Chart, seem a lot more appealing than those on the dirty Deed List. It also makes it easier to do the dirty deeds…of-course I’ve likely left them to the last minute. Yep, deadlines and urgency help too, especially when we’re talking plumbing.

5) Read a Book-
Jill Badonsky’s books, 9 Modern Day Muses (and a Bodyguard) and The Muse is In offer a galaxy full of lively, creative, effective insights, exercises  and guidance. Grab your copies. Check them out for more ways to navigate Resistance. I don’t leave home without them.

6) Go Kaizen-
Activate curiosity by asking “Whats’ the smallest step I can take to get started?”
Break the project down into chunks; break the chunks into tasks. Break the tasks into tiny steps, so ridiculously small that you are guaranteed 100% success. Resistance often flares when we anticipate failure at something, usually because it’s too big a step to start with.

[ctt tweet=”Resistance= fear of failure when we choose a 1st step that’s too big. Break tasks down. Start with a small step. Repeat. ” coverup=”4876m”] Have any of the tips mentioned above work for you? What’s your best tip for setting Resistance Free?
Please share your thoughts or questions in the comment section below.

PS
Go Ahead- release resistance~ even just for a moment. Invite a sense of PLaY  and curiosity along for the ride. You’ll be glad you did.
If you’d ever like someone along for the ride to make it easier to get through the sticky, icky bits give me a shout.  I can help.

happy trails,
find me at the corner of meet at dawn, my weekly newsletter
and this blog, M.a.D. Explorers club
dawn kotzer
inner wilderness guide, master kaizen-muse™ creativity coach,
martha beck certified life coach, iwg biz mentor, curiosity hound

Celebrate?What if the going gets rough~

Celebrate: to mark a significant time or event with an enjoyable activity.’

Image-Celebrating Small Steps
Photo- Celebrating Small Steps

It’s easy to celebrate when things fall seamlessly into place…right?
We have a plan, a goal, a dream.
We get at it, enjoying the feeling of having our feet on solid ground.
We know we’re heading in the right direction~ we have a clear destination in view.
Now take a look at the photo above…
What about this girl?
Does she look like she’s celebrating or just managing to stay afloat?

Can we celebrate when the going gets rough?
Who wants to celebrate when it feels like it’s all we can do to stay on our feet…to stay afloat?
How do we even begin to find our way towards a Spirit of Celebration?
Ah…good question.
What if it’s not a case of moving forward but rather standing still?
Pausing.
Bringing Awareness into the present moment.
Lowering Expectations.
Cutting our self a little slack.
Exchanging ideals of Perfection for the success of ‘Good Enough
Giving ourself a little Credit.
Responding to our own sense of Equilibrium.
Taking a Breath; allowing a space for Relaxation.
Asking ourselves this one small question…

“What’s going right?”

Too often, we’ve trained ourselves to pay attention to the deficits, the issues, the problems,
the restrictions, the limitations of our journey. Ugh.

Hey…what about all those overlooked things that are going right?
The unexpected moments of calm that are placed perfectly on our path?
The Small Thoughts that endlessly entertain True Self…
nudging us to go inside for just a few moments and play with our wild and creative self, exploring our landscape of possibility ?
{…you know, those ‘what if?’ energy boosting thoughts you promise you’ll pay close attention to~later~when you’re finished building your empire, putting stuff in order, making things perfect, yada, yada, yada.}

Can you give yourself a little CREDIT for the small things you’ve accomplished today?

The girl in the photo is my 8 year old granddaughter.
Determined to make it to the other end of the dock, she boldly declared it was NOT too windy or rough to ‘walk the plank’.
Certain she’d turn around after the first few rock and rolling steps, I watched as she took one small hesitant step after another, dropping to her knees as a wave crashed into the platform.
She’d look back over her shoulder…a big smile on her face.
“uh-oh…she’s going the whole way. Good thing the water’s not too cold or deep,” I thought.
By now, she’d realized the waves were bigger, the wind more fierce, the challenge greater than imagined.
It was all she could do to stay upright, yet she kept going.
Every few feet, she’d pause to look back, grinning from ear to ear.
She managed to stay afloat; she refused to turn back.
I watched as she stepped into moments of Celebration.
She’d pause, breathe, wait for the waves to calm and regain her balance.
Then she’d continue…moving up and down, forward; sometimes backwards…one small step at a time.

Many, many small steps later she stood at the far end of the dock…she made it.
Undaunted by the sudden realization that she had to retrace her steps over the rock and rolling dock to get back to the car, she clasped the guardrail watching the waves slapping close to her feet.

The return journey was easier…she knew the waters would be choppy, the passage rough.
Perfection was replaced by ‘Good Enough.’
Every step was in fact a Celebration, a big “Yay Me!…I’m still afloat. I can do this.

I’m glad I was there to take photos of this adventure. They’re a great Reminder for ME.
It used to be easy for me to focus on all that was undone, unfinished, deficient…
Celebrations only happened at the end of a job.
By that time, I was too tired, too grumpy, too worn out, too jaded, too this, too that to celebrate.
Now?
I give myself Credit for the small things more often than not.
I cut myself some slack. Somedays, I cut myself a lot of slack.
‘Close Enough’ works for me.
I leave room for Good to happen.
I Celebrate the small, the medium and the large.
I Celebrate at the beginning, in the middle and at the end.
I Celebrate being Me.
~especially when the going gets rough.

Would you like to find out how to Celebrate being you…at home, at work, at play~
I’m just an email away.

Thanks for taking the time to hang out with me here. I appreciate it.

Dawn Kotzer
creative coaching for this business called L.I.F.E.

  • Master Kaizen-Muse™ Creativity Coach

    • Martha Beck Certified Life Coach

      • Coach Mentor

 

 

What are you waiting for?Earth Shattering Big Time Happy?

?........................What are you waiting for?

WooHoo! The bluebirds are back!

So?

What the heck do birds have to do with big time happy?

Let me fill you in.

BACKSTORY-I’ve been putting off writing a blog post for weeks.

Why?…I’d convinced myself that whatever I posted had to be of EARTH-SHATTERING interest; so full of ‘Ah-Ha’ moments that you could barely catch your breath.

Well, guess what?

I couldn’t even dig up an ounce of Earth Shattering. Worse yet, I’d managed to back my post into a dark, silent, glum corner…you know…that corner where only daDismal hangs out. That’s where my engine stalled. Day after day…full of sh*! stalled.

ENOUGH! Dawnie, let it go already. So I did.

NEW STORY– I decided to rev up a new engine, this one parked in a different corner of my world.

Out came the little BMW convertible. It was time to go for a drive…top down, I hit the road.

Pulling on a toque, I headed south into town. (May can still be a tad chilly around here). It didn’t take long before a good dose of brisk spring air had thoroughly rinsed out my brain.

Home again, I went straight to my office, sat down and started writing about the first thing that came into my now fresh-air-experienced mind.

Finally, out of the daDismal corner and into the light. Woohoo! indeed.

Here it is…my earth-shattering, man-this-feels-big time happy story.

BLUEBIRDS OF HAPPINESS:

Early in the spring, I’d spotted a nestbox that had fallen off its fencepost into the ditch along the highway.

(Years ago someone put up bluebird nestboxes—that’s why these birds always come back here—they’re coming home.)

I pulled onto the gravel shoulder, rummaged around in the back of the SUV for something to use as a hammer (small shovel would do) and a length of heavy old wire…I was good to go.

After plonking and adjusting, twisting and shovel-hammering, the nest box was back up, wired onto the post, a little off kilter but secure.

Then I waited. Day after day I watched. I waited some more.

Suddenly, they showed up.

Driving by, I notice mercurial streaks of color first.

“What was that?”

Where?

“There! No There! Over there—Yes, there!”

It’s the most amazing thing. A streak of high octane blue illuminates an already clear blue spring sky.

I spy a nimble little beauty flicking sparks of this high octane blue as his calling card…one deliciously bright he-man bluebird has arrived.

Each day, I slowly drive past the row of nestboxes.  Hoping to catch the male sitting still, taking a break from his primping and preening in between scooping up insects from the grassy field, my patience is rewarded.  Better yet, his mate sits close by. I’m thrilled. Elated. Calmed. They’re back.

Today there are 2 pair of bluebirds nesting along the highway…fencepost neighbours, so to speak. They dart and spark the sky.

I swear I inhale happiness at the sight of them.

Sometimes I wish they were around all year long, streaks of cheer to watch in the dead cold of winter. How selfish is that? Nope, my life is richer, more exciting when I allow room for the anticipation of their return each and every spring.

Is today the day? Maybe tomorrow? Any box need fixing before they get here? I can do that.

REAL STORY:

My bluebirds of happiness may be small potatoes in the scheme of things…hardly Earth Shattering, until I realize that this infusion of Blue Joy is oozing from my inside out.  It spills out of me, onto and into everything around. Ho-hum normal is effortlessly blasted into a moment of Happy—big time happy.

A single bluebird sighting binds me to the Ah-Ha. I catch my breath. Time stops. I am NOW.

He-man Bluebird-Big Time Happy at Home.

Tell me that isn’t Earth Shattering, even for a moment? When did you last stop time?

I’d love to hear about your ‘bluebird of happiness? Really.

Add your voice to mine.

Post a comment.

Share your story.

What’s your big time happy?

What are you waiting for?

Wanna Live More? Laugh More? Love More? When I’m not watching bluebirds or shovel-hammering nestboxes, I like to help others get real and find freedom…the kind that comes from being connected to central self.


Check out my site and blog at dawnkotzer.com. Certified Kaizen-Muse™ Creativity Coach, Martha Beck Certified Life Coach, Artist, Student of Curiosities.

P.S. Want to check out the goods on KMCC? Start Here…ya, right here.


Looking for a Little Detachment?

detachment by dawn kotzer

Years ago, during a time of personal chaos and confusion I heard about this book by Deepak Chopra-

The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success– A Practical Guide to the Fulfillment of Your Dreams.

Three words sent me to the bookstore to buy this book…

Success, Guide, Fulfillment.

The fact that I didn’t have a clue what my dreams actually were didn’t put me off. This was a guide to fulfillment. Close Enough.

I remember reading the book, enjoying the book but one page in particular, Chapter 6-page 81, stayed with me.

More specifically, the Aha! of that moment imprinted upon my soul and stayed with me.

I’ve inscribed the quote on index cards and journals; plastered copies of it in my office, my studio, my fridge ( I can always use a little help in the kitchen).

I’ve shared it more times than I can remember.

Today, I’m sharing it with you.

The Law of Detachment

“In detachment lies the wisdom of uncertainty…

In the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom from our past,

from the known,

which is the prison of past conditioning.

And in our willingness to step into the unknown,

the field of all possibilities

We surrender ourselves

to the creative mind

that orchestrates the dance of the universe.”

Go ahead. Take your time. Read it again if you like. I’ll wait.

Then consider what happened for me.

Accepting  that dance of uncertainty  carried me to the magic of not  knowing, of  not needing to know. Surrendering to the music of the creative mind~I give myself permission to discover and embrace my own guidance  towards  finding fulfillment, even if I have no specific dreams.

Take a peek at the book’s  overview. You may decide it’s worth your time and effort to read the book.

If you’d like to share this post, please pass it on. Your comments on this or other posts are welcome.

Feel free to get in touch with me.

Now go dance.

How does your Inner Genius, Creativity, Pursuit of Meaning, Success Experience and Lizard Brain connect naturally? Find out at dawnkotzer.com. I’m a Certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach, Modern Muse Group Facilitator, Certified Martha Beck Life Coach, artist and student of life thriving in Saskatchewan.

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”

“THE BODY FEELIN’ CURIOSITY”

“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.

Oh-no!

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.

meow

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.

(If you like this post, please pass it on.)

Would you like to use any part of my posts  in your own materials? That’s possible but only if you use the following paragraph as credit, making sure my links are active. Thanks for being fair.

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.

Whoa.

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…

My first step

ah, I see a path.

New to posting a blog,  I grimace over the learning curve. Why am I doing this again?  

Despite the snowstorm outside banking drifts across the road and the techno-fog inside my brain I  push on. What else is a Canadian Life Coach to do?

Then I realize I’m okay not knowing exactly how to proceed. Curiously, I just keep moving forward, getting a feel for the lay of the land.  Apparently I have everything I need…a sense of direction, a desire to get going and a point of view.  Befriending my ‘I Don’t Know’ mind has been a slow, uphill battle but oh, so worth it.  I’ll fill you in soon. The techno-fog is lifting. Snowdrifts be damned.

Wish me luck. Stay Warm.

Looking forward….

 

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 dawnkotzer.com