Skating Lessons: An artist date on ice

A couple weeks ago, I wrote that I had begun the Artist’s Way by Julie Cameron, and was trying out free journalling and some solo adventures.  I’ll confess that I’ve dropped some of the “curriculum” laid out in the book, but that I continue the practices which led me this last week back to the rink.  Like other instances I’ve experienced since the beginning of this fellowship, I once again was led in a direction that I never could have anticipated and learned something that I didn’t realize I needed to be reminded of so badly. Continue reading

How to control your elephant: Emotional Intelligence and Self-Management

Last Wednesday, I attended a workshop, “High Impact Leadership” on Emotional Intelligence and Personal Leadership.  Hosted by MAP for Nonprofits, and presented by Christine Hammes, the workshop really brought me much closer to some tangible strategies for self-management and self-awareness.  

The book, Switch, talks about the two different motivators of humans.  There’s our rational and “automatic” parts of the brain – the rational part being our calculating and reasoning side of the brain that checks different orange juices in the grocery store for the best price per ounce; the “automatic” being the one that gets a certain brand because “that’s what we always drink”.  Switch describes the “automatic” as the elephant, a big, strong, willful creature, and the rational side being the little human that sits atop the elephant with the reins.  I love this image because it shows how the two parts of ourselves do interact and can affect the other, but also the tenuous control that the rational has over our “automatic” elephant. Continue reading

Mindfulness: If you want to dig in, you’ve got to let go.

With such an emphasis on mindfulness throughout my Bush Fellowship, I thought I would check out some of the opportunities at Common Ground Meditation Center.  Earlier this January, I attended a 1/2-day retreat with Mark Nunberg, their Guiding Teacher, and began to see how mindfulness isn’t a state, but a practice…a constant practice.  

Continue reading


Over the last four weeks, I’ve really taken a leap in terms of talking about community-based social marketing and how this framework can help our organizations meet robust and real outcomes.  I am talking with organizations, practitioners, and community members about how community-based work can help us change our behaviors and lifestyles.  I’ve done presentations in the past, but the nature and content of this type of presentation also makes it a valuable and interactive experience for me. Continue reading

Finding my Artist’s Way

This begins a hodge-podge series of post of bits and pieces, thoughts and activities, from over the holiday.  But somehow this collection of “hodge-podge” seems to set me up nicely for the new year.

Finding my Artist’s Way
Recommended by several fellows at our most recent leadership seminar, I decided to check out Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, an introspective and spiritual approach to re-cultivating one’s creativity.  While not known for creating art, my work and fellowship do require a lot of creativity.  Even more, of late, I’ve felt “stuck” in the language, concepts, and ideas that I encounter on such a regular basis.  I am in the middle of my 3rd week (of what is presented as a 12-week course) and am intrigued by the seemingly small challenges it poses me and the subtle but real changes it seems to be initiating. Continue reading